The art of losing (and winning): how do you teach your child to compete?


Henry is in one room. I’m in the other. Two outfits lie before each of us. We’ve been waiting for this moment for seconds, if not minutes. And now the moment of truth has arrived. “Ready,” I call out. “Set,” Henry yells. Go. The race is on. And just like that, within seconds, it’s all […]


Only children: will they grow up to be selfish, lonely, self-centered, homicidal maniacs?


Scott and I have been torturing ourselves over the question of trying again for a second child. We share an urge to embiggen the family, but we also like our little club just the way it is. Henry certainly seems happy enough on his own. True, he has occasionally asked for a little brother, but […]


Writing about your kids: a few thoughts on parent blogging


When Henry was four, I wrote on my blog about a meltdown he had at Ikea, and what I felt were the insensitive comments of the strangers around us. I wasn’t prepared for what happened next: readers and bloggers on other sites mocking Henry, wondering if he was autistic, if he needed medicating, or if […]


Is pretend-shooting acceptable play for kids?


I have been shot. I also have also been blasted. Tasered. Stun-gunned. Vanquished. Laid low by a surprise shot from a laser cannon. Sent into unconsciousness by a sleep weapon that looked an awful lot like a pillow. I can’t talk about the mind-control ray that seized control of my brains, except that BLKELEHGJADHKADSJFH. See, […]


What would you tell yourself, if you could?


To: Alice Bradley, July 2002 From: Alice Bradley, July 2008 Subject: You, in a few months. ———- Hey there, hot pregnant lady! And I don’t mean temperature-wise. The oversized-belly look works for you, seriously. This will be the last time your midsection is ever this taut, by the way, so enjoy it while you can. […]


Are our children overprotected?


As we walk to the playground, Henry yells to his friend, “Let’s race!” And they do. Down sidewalks that are bulging and splitting from the tree roots underneath, two semi-coordinated boys flail their legs downhill, shouting with glee. Behind them, I cringe, and wonder who’s going to scrape his knee this time. But I keep […]

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