Posts Tagged: Parents

Pathogen Privilege

Amanda Uhry, who runs a consultancy called Manhattan Private School Advisors, which, as its name suggests, helps parents through the private-school application process, said she recently turned down a half-dozen clients when she discovered that they were opposed to vaccination. For a long while she had never inquired about the issue, but a few years ago, a child she was working with missed his kindergarten interview because of whooping cough, which left her stunned. "I thought, Whooping cough? Who gets whooping cough anymore?" she said.

While the Times strains to paint the wealthy parents New York City as marginally more reasonable than the wealthy parents of Los Angeles [...]


How to Avoid Raising a Monster

People drop things on the Internet and run all the time. So we have to ask. In this edition, writer and ThinkUp cofounder Anil Dash tells us more about how raising a kid affords one all sorts of opportunities for mischief.

There are waaay too many moments that tempt me to raise a horrible child. Anyway, my son now says "Sous vide me!" to indicate it's bathtime.

— Anil Dash (@anildash) April 19, 2014

Anil! So what happened here?

The most immediate prompt for the tweet was that my wife was talking about dyeing Easter eggs with my son—a project that they’d never done [...]


Ask Polly: My Parents Don't Want Me To Marry This Short Man And I'm Freaking Out!

Dear Polly,

For the past seven months I've been dating a great guy but now that things are getting quite serious I'm totally scared. I can't tell if it's because I myself am beginning to fall out of love with him, or if the internalized judgment of my (very judgmental) parents is freaking me out.

Before I met this guy, I was on an online dating rampage. I was preselecting guys who were tall, dark and handsome, had been to good schools, and were very, very likeable by my parents' standards (which at the time I thought were also my standards). I am extremely intellectual and well-educated and was [...]


Ask Polly: I'm Angry At My Mom And I Can't Talk About It!

Appearing here Wednesdays, Turning The Screw provides existential crisis counseling for the faint of heart. "Spare change for when your stock hits a 52-week low."

Dear Polly,

I hope that I can get this out in a coherent manner because I am a jumble of emotions right now and it's hard to sort it all out.

Some background: I'm 22 years old and when I was 18, my parents separated. When I was a senior in high school, I was looking for some of my clothes in my mom's dresser and found an envelope of printed-out emails between my mom and—get this—my old middle-school teacher. They were love [...]


Parents Give Their Child World-Record-Breaking Wedgie

The quote that sums up a 10-year-old's attempt to break the world record of wearing the most underpants at one time: "By the time he had on 195 pairs, Jack's feet were asleep, so they laid him down and kept going." He only ("only"??) had 20 pairs to go in order to reach the record-breaking threshold. [Via]


The Book I Didn't Write

I didn’t write the book because the thought of it made me feel vaguely ill at all times. Even when I wasn’t thinking about it directly I was thinking about it. None of the thoughts were good.

I didn’t write the book because it was a book about betrayal that could only be facilitated by my betrayal of other people, many of whom had already been betrayed. This wouldn’t have been a clever metatextual commentary on the nature of betrayal; it would have just been really quite mean of me, and sad.

I didn’t write the book because I thought that in the end it would not [...]


Finally, A Website Where Parents Can Vent Their Frustrations

"The website, which launched last week, is a safe and anonymous space where parents can let off some steam or even have a laugh at other people’s confessions…"


Parents Pull Kids From School To Protest Barbara Ehrenreich, Eric Schlosser, Bill Ayers and Justin Bieber

Parents protesting the "Common Core" curriculum on the grounds that it promotes tyranny and/or makes their kids feel stupid are keeping their children home today. This is basically a protest of parents who are too lazy to home-school their kids. If you're not familiar with the opposition to Common Core, this policy paper blames Hillary Clinton, Bill Gates and Bill Ayers and protests the literature being taught in schools, all while not being able to use commas properly: "Typical are adaptations of popular adult nonfiction books like Fast Food Nation, the socialist tract, Nickel and Dimed, and books about teen idol Justin Bieber." And the most damning truth [...]


The "Parental Anecdote" Rule of Columnizing

Even speaking as someone with 126 emails—oh Lord, 128 since I started writing this—marked as "important and unread" that I really do intend to answer as soon as possible, which is proving to be something of a struggle, and also sort of humiliating given that some of them date back to, like, January, this claim that people are digitally wasting our time with politeness is, as the publisher of Little Brown put it this morning, pretty much the day civilization died.

But here's the deal. For each member of your family that your column cites, it becomes doubly as dubious. (This tactic is a hallmark of columns [...]


This Be The Curse

Research suggests that our fathers' genetic material has a stronger effect on the development of our instinctual behaviors (eating and mating), while the higher-order cognitive abilities (language, socialization, etc.) are the result of a greater contribution from our mothers. So now you know who to blame, and for what. [Via]


The Case for Drunk Texting Mom

People drop things on the Internet and run all the time. So we have to ask. In this edition, critic and columnist Richard Lawson tells us more about the horrors of accidentally sending the wrong text message to your mom.

Cool beans. Sent my mom a text about Fire Island plans that was meant for a friend. So I'm committing seppuku now

— Richard Lawson (@rilaws) June 17, 2014

Richard! So what happened here?

I was coming home from a staff drinks kind of a thing and was juggling several text message conversations, one with my mom who just visited me and my sister [...]


Parents Suck, But You Can't Say That Because Of Their Precious FEELINGS

"Parents will accept any amount of second-guessing from their own children, but not from the childless: You’re not allowed to express an opinion about parenting unless you are a parent. Sounds reasonable enough. How could I know, etc. etc. (Simply having parents doesn’t count.) But here’s the thing: Everyone makes judgments about everything all the time. You have an opinion on your dentist without having gone to dental school. You judge the value of goods while knowing nothing of the intricacies of international supply chains. You comment on teachers (your kid’s, your own) without reading up on pedagogy. And you have every right to, because you’re a human who experiences [...]


Ask Polly: I'm Afraid To Leave My Abusive Parents' House

Dear Polly,

My birthday is coming up in a couple of days and I'm turning 25. Ever since I was young, 25 was the big year. The year I thought you become an adult, have your life figured out and making your way through an impressive list of accomplishment. Life hasn't shaken out for me in that way.

I come from an abusive family. When I was younger, I chalked it up to cultural differences. My parents are conservative and traditional minded parents. They favor boys more. I am a girl. So when my brother was born, 9 years after me, I became no longer worthy of love. I [...]


How Hard Can You Helicopter Parent?

You can all stop writing your kids' college essays and letting them live at home till 26 now and telling your friends that they're doing great, because someone finally took gold in "making excuses for your kid."

Police said a 14-year-old stole a car on Sunday then led officers on a chase that ended in a crash on a Parkway East ramp…. "My son was wrong for taking that vehicle but someone jumped out of their car and a 14-year-old seen the opportunity to take the car. He didn't break the car to steal it. They left the keys in the car. I think as an adult we [...]