Mothers Rejoice! New Study Proves Quality Time Matters More Than Quantity

stylishlyeverafter.blogspot.com

stylishlyeverafter.blogspot.com

According to a groundbreaking new study, to be published in April in the Journal of Marriage and Family, which found no relationship between the behavior, academic achievements, or emotional well being of a child aged 3-11 and the amount of time spent with a parent — particularly mom.

“When it Comes to Spending Time With Kids, Quantity Doesn’t Matter.”

Bottom line: Don’t worry so much about the amount of time, but what you do when you are together.

Ex Files: The Man Who Talked Too Much

Usually my dating “strategy” consist of one first date, where I can deduce if the chemistry is there or not. If not, no second, pity date for me or a second chance. This is such a case where my dating prospect immediately becomes part of the Ex Files. It’s not as if this guy was a necessarily “bad date,” rather an instance where the guy was having way more fun than I was. I guess someone could accuse me of leading him on, but my motivations weren’t that insidious. I just didn’t want to hurt his feelings.

We meet at a Mediterranean cafe (which as you know, is my fav first date location). He was a gentleman and reserved a table ahead of time. Upon arrival, he was short. Very short. I felt like an ogre. Leading up to the date, he texted every day and several times a day; fearful I’d be a no-show.

Between hummus and chicken/cheese appetizers we exchange funny icebreakers about dating online. I was his first date after many years in a serious relationship- so sort of a first date rebound. Uh oh.

I wasn’t immediately attracted to him, but I was hoping his shining personality would win me over. Instead I received a run down of his crazy ex girlfriend, an indifferent ex wife, an equally crazy, inept mother and eccentric, hoarding father.

By 11:15pm I was looking for the check. I knew entirely too much about this man and what I found out made me want to bolt. There comes a point in time where Mumz The Word on information overload…

Notwithstanding, he was a gentleman and walked me to my car, albeit with some ulterior motives- namely to kiss me. We did this awkward two-step shuffle. He step forward, I stepped back and sideways. We did this little dance until I gave him the second hug of the night and a quick goodbye.

I awoke the next morning to a flurry of texts recounting our little “inside jokes” of last night. My responses couldn’t be shorter or more distant.

I guess I’m going to have to stop shuffling on text and actually be honest… …eek…cringe…cry…

#OSHITBRITT Interviews Me – Mother The World: Finding Your Little Village

I am so humbled that a writer, blogger and fellow feminist took the time to interview me!

OSHITBRITT’s Blog

And check out these resources to help “find your little village.”
http://meetup.com
http://www.singleparentadvocate.org/

Who is #OSHITBRITT?
I am a writer, feminist, and college dropout. I am passionate about the things I do and I do the things I am passionate about (and not much else).

What Free Food Does To An Office…

Someone sent out a company-wide email for free food after a potluck event.

In no time the table of expertly laid treats and goodies turned into a gutted carcass of plastic cutlery and packaging, a dripping salsa massacre, crumbled cookie carnage and an empty bowl of chip dust.

Where is the humanity?

Why Does He Do That?

For those who are undergoing a divorce or bitter custody dispute with an abusive ex-partner, or thinking about leaving him, I really recommend you read Why Does He Do That? Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men by Lundy Bancroft. She acknowledges that many abusive ex-partners can be women, but in her studies, the abusers are overwhelmingly male.

Some of her most salient points on the tactics abuser’s use to manipulate and control during post-separation and visitation include (paraphrased):

  • Pumping for information about the mother’s life, especially about new partners.
  • Returning children dirty, unfed or sleep-deprived.
  • Discussing the possibility of the children living with him instead, even though he doesn’t have the means or time to support the children or the change is unfounded.
  • Continuing to drive relationship wedges with unnecessary conflict.
  • Undermining her authority by making his house a place where there are no rules or limits so that the children chafe against the normal discipline of the mother’s home when they return.
  • Threatening to take the children away.
  • Seeking unfounded or unreasonable modification to existing custody or visitation orders.
  • Insisting on visitation, only to leave the child in the care of another family member, friend or partner.

why does he do thatI really recommend this book. It has a rich account of her case studies and burrows deep into the different forms of abuse/abusive types and deconstructs how they tick. It’s worth the money, as I still use it as reference and a refresher from time-to-time. It has really been a source of strength for me during the last two years.

Knowledge is power.

Single Parent’s Perspective: Back-handed Compliments

My mother is one of my fiercest referees when it comes to parenting. Last night, after discussing how I am navigating a contentious co-parenting relationship with the ex, she delivered a seriously back-handed compliment (of which, I’m sure she is oblivious):

“You’re doing the best you can with what you have.”

I’m sure she saw it as a show of support. I was thinking, “The best I can? That smells of ‘I could be doing better.'”

Some other examples of back-handed admiration or I’m-glad-not-to-be-in-your-position-isms:

“As long as the child’s father is involved…”

“Look on the bright side. At least you get every other weekend off!”

“I don’t know how you do it without help.”

“You’re only one person…”

“Well, living for your child is the only thing that matters.”

“You’re doing such a great job!” or “You’re so good with him!” (from my ex-mother-in-law).

“She has a strong support system.” (my defensive mother said to her friend).

“Wow, you’re totally a supermom. How do you find time to shit?” (a man I was talking to online after he found out I was a parent, career woman and student).

Does anyone have other examples of the dreaded back-handed compliment?

Backhanded Compliment(image source: tumblr.com)

Waddling Wednesday: We Are Walkin’…Almost Talkin’

So I’m going to take a page out of Beyonce’s book on Blue Ivy: post pictures that obscure her daughter’s face. I kind of like that idea.

My little waddler :-)

My little waddler 🙂

So Andrew is dashing around the apartment now with frantic pace. He’s into EVERYTHING. His favorite toy is the blinds’ pull string. The darn thing is so long I have to vigilantly tie it up. We’ve kind of moved beyond the cabinet phase with my handy-dandy locks, however, they are a pain in the ass to remove if I need something (like Fort Knox). I have so many toys that I could open up my own Toys R’ Us and yet, he finds more mischievous ways to entertain himself. I will forever be in awe on how babies are born to defeat the Man (i.e. baby proofing system).

Our word count is now at a solid ten:

  1. Dauuughhy- doggy
  2. Boo- blue
  3. Maaammmm- mom
  4. Da-da- dad
  5. Meemee- grandma
  6. Noooooo- no
  7. Ewwww- ew
  8. Uhhhh-ohhhh- oops
  9. Curcal- circle
  10. Nannn- Nana (other grandma)

He also points and gestures and can put toys in cups during bath time.

Ahhhh how they grow. I will savor every moment :-).

“Hey, Gimme A Smile!”

I read Thought Catalog’s “10 Obnoxious Cat Calls,”  and had a dose of realization.

There’s a security guard where I work who asks me almost every day, “Hey, gimme a smile,” or “Life’s not so bad. Smile.” I feel like this type of commentary at work is towing the line of sexual harassment. When I read the Though Catalog article, I started to think, yeah, this is kind of a cat-call! In the past, I’ve just glared at the guy or completely ignored him, but maybe I shouldn’t be so timid.

What do you think? Is this a type of harassment or should I lighten up?