The Martyrdom of Mothers Must End

Did you buy your mom a Mothers’ Day card yet? It’s probably been on your mind since Monday when American Greeting dropped this heavy-handed reminder right into your Facebook Newsfeed.

The ad, created by Boston agency Mullen, features real-life job applicants interviewing via Skype for “the world’s toughest job.” They’re reminded of a series of bonkers-sounding requirements, like having to be able to stand for 135 hours a week with no breaks and holding a degree in medicine, finance and the culinary arts.

Of course, the big reveal is that the world’s toughest job is — wait for it — being a mom. Cue the groans from cynics everywhere and the squeals of delight from the easily impressed.

Read more »

Doctor’s Opinion: How My Experience With Post-Partum Depression Helps Me Relate to Patients

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

I just had my baby and thankfully, all is going well. He’s thriving and I am having a much better post-partum experience this time than with my daughter. Despite lingering blood-pressure issues, carpal tunnel syndrome in my dominant hand and the stress of all the baby weight I want to lose, I am happy. I didn’t think it possible to feel this way, having struggled with my mood after my first pregnancy.   

Read more »

How to Get out of Having the Birds and the Bees Talk With Your Kid

Shutterstock.com

Shutterstock.com

World War II fascinates my 10-year-old son Michael, so I rented the movie Pearl Harbor from Verizon. I forgot what a horrible movie it is and how director Michael Bay tried to force a love triangle into the plot. Before the Japanese attack, there were a lot of intense kissing scenes, which bothered my 7-year-old son David.

“Every time they kiss, my penis starts to shake,” he yelled out.

We probably were not supposed to laugh, but my wife and I couldn’t help it. It was a genuinely funny line and it wasn’t his last. Spurred on our laughter, David said, “It’s like I have an alien in my pants. It just keeps getting bigger and bigger.”

(At this point I want to write a message to future David for when he Googles his name years from now and reads this. I am not writing this to embarrass you or the alien. You were just naturally funny and I hope you still are as you read this. If not, I’ll pay for the therapy … or a car … which ever is cheaper.)

I share this story first and foremost because, as I said, it’s funny. But also, because my wife then told me that I soon need to talk with my two boys about sex, especially Michael.

When Is the Right Time to Talk to Your Kid About Sex? »

Temple Launches Philly’s First Public Umbilical Cord-Blood Donation Program

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

Temple University Hospital announced today that it is establishing the city’s first public cord-blood donation program to collect stem cell-rich blood from discarded umbilical cords. The hospital’s Women and Infant’s Division is partnering with the Mason Shaffer Foundation and Community Blood Services, a non-profit organization that operates a public cord bank in New Jersey, to establish the Mason Shaffer Public Cord Blood Program at Temple. It comes at no charge to parents who opt in or to Temple Hospital.

Read more »

Normcore? More Like “Momcore”

The Thursday Styles section of the New York Times last week contained a big bloomingarticle on the fashion trend known as “normcore,” which the article helpfully defined in the following way:

 A fashion movement, c. 2014, in which scruffy  young urbanites swear off the tired street-style clichés of the last decade — skinny jeans, wallet chains, flannel shirts — in favor of a less-ironic (but still pretty ironic) embrace of bland, suburban anti-fashion attire. (See Jeans, mom. Sneakers, white.)

Accompanying the article were a lot of photos of my clothes. Specifically, there were Nike sneakers, cargo shorts, t-shirts, a hoodie from a random college, Champion sweatpants … Well, hello, old friends!

Read more »

Science Finds a “Stupid” Gene. What Should We Do With That Information?

shutterstock_dunce-stupid-gene-940x540

Linguist/philosopher and Philly native son Noam Chomsky once postulated that the current era of human history might “provide an answer to the question of whether it is better to be smart than stupid.” We got closer to that answer last week, when researchers from Cardiff University in Wales announced an intriguing new find: a gene for stupidity. Specifically, they showed that kids born with two copies of the common gene known as Thr92Ala who also have low levels of thyroid hormone are four times more likely to have a low IQ than children with only one copy of the gene, or with two copies but normal hormone levels.

How low an IQ? Between 70 and 85, the researchers say. Anything below 70 is classified as an intellectual disability; the 70-to-85 range is considered “mild intellectual disability.”

So, let’s all rush out to have tests on our unborn babies, right? Read more »

DHS Takes Child from Mom in SEPTA Video

mother septa bus video

Last week, a video of a mother ignoring her child on SEPTA made the Internet rounds, and police said Philadelphia’s Department of Human Services was investigating. Now, today, the Daily News‘ David Gambacorta reports the child has been taken from her mother.

During the weekend, the little girl was removed from her mother’s home by DHS workers.

The mother, whom the Daily News is not identifying because she has not been charged with a crime, posted this update on Facebook: “I f—— hope all you skumbags [sic] out there are f—— happy,” she wrote. “I just lost the best thing in the world to me all because ppl [sic] think before they open there [sic] mouths!”

Read more »

Parenting Consultants in Philly: Do You Actually Need One?

Mommy's Little Helper:  Baby concierge Marisa Piccarreto at her South Street boutique. Photograph by Jillian Guyette

Mommy’s Little Helper: Baby concierge Marisa Piccarreto at her South Street boutique. Photograph by Jillian Guyette

Last fall, 20 hours after our firstborn came home from the hospital, our little family welcomed its first visitor: my lactation consultant. She glided in, assessed and tweaked my nursing technique, and left her number should any drama arise. It was, my husband and I agreed, $150 well spent.

My lactation consultant. I know this sounds like something you’d hear on Real Housewives of Bourgeoisville. A co-worker—a boomer who’s raised two children—didn’t pull any punches when, a few months later, we were discussing the recent uptick in Philly pros to whom your average parent is turning for help: the nursing experts, yes, but also the sleep consultants, the postpartum doulas, the child nutritionists and so forth.

“You fucking incompetents!” she hooted. “We had help. It was called Dr. Spock.”

Today’s parents have Dr. Spock, too. But now we also have Dr. Sears. And Baby Wise. And the Baby Whisperer. And the Internet.
Read more »

« Older Posts