Latest in Families
  • Wendy
    Published about an hour ago
    Life After Kids!

    Life After Kids!

    You have devoted your life to your children and family. Your youngest child is a teenager and in just a few more short years will be off to college or out in the world living their own life. You’ll be all on your own for the first time since they were born. You wonder:
  • Lisa Melo
    Published about 3 hours ago
    In Search of My Siblings

    In Search of My Siblings

    I have always been the only child for my mom. I didn’t grow up with my dad and only had a chance to see him once, 21 years ago when I was already 27 years. My mom got pregnant of me after being married for only 6 months, and she divorced him right after. He found out about me months later. They never allowed me to see my father or let him near me. At the time of our first and only encounter, he mentioned that I had a sister and two brothers, and told me their names.
  • Amy James
    Published a day ago
    Mommy School

    Mommy School

    Day One:
  • Jessica Hillis
    Published a day ago
    The 4 Gift Rule Keeps Christmas Simple

    The 4 Gift Rule Keeps Christmas Simple

    It's that time of year again! If you are like me, this time of year can be pretty stressful trying to budget gifts for your family. Sometimes that stress can make the holiday a little less fun. But it doesn't have to be that way!
  • Kelli Fuqua Hart
    Published a day ago
    Teen Mom

    Teen Mom

    Well, it happened. My energetic, bubbly and sweet little girl woke up a reluctant, mumbling teenage loaf. Mom is no longer cool. Everything is “literally the worst.” And don’t even get me started on how boys became “so cute” – overnight.
  • Geri Spears
    Published a day ago
    Ungrief

    Ungrief

    Over the past year I can say I have been on an emotional roller coaster of emotions. My parents, my mother and my uncle (who was also my godfather), had been ill for a long time. Both my sister and I lived quite a distance away from them and due to family issues of our own and were only able to help our much younger nephew who lived with them with managing their care through phone calls and a constant open three-way text. Other than the information he relayed to us, we had no idea what was going on. I sent county workers out to their house but I was told that they couldn't help. My sister and I found out way too late we were being fed a huge web of lies.
Staff Picks
  • Samantha Bentley
    Published 3 days ago
    What Is Attachment Parenting?

    What Is Attachment Parenting?

    From the moment we pee on a stick and find out the reason we are so moody and bloated, is because a tiny little human has started to form in our womb, we begin to think about the kind of parent we want to be. There is nothing more personal than parenting…
  • Haley Peterson
    Published about a month ago
    Just Call Me Mom

    Just Call Me Mom

    For many women, and I know for me, finding out you are pregnant comes with an onslaught of thoughts shortly after seeing that little red line. Many questions come to mind. How will my life change when this baby is born? Am I ready to become a parent? Will I have a boy or a girl? Is labor really as painful as it is made out to be on TV? Among all of these questions, one that lingers and continues to become more and more of a question an expectant mother wants to figure out an answer to is: Should I continue working or become a stay at home mom?
  • Rosalind Sedacca
    Published 3 months ago
    Coparenting: 7 Success Strategies After Divorce

    Coparenting: 7 Success Strategies After Divorce

    Divorce affects every child differently. However, all children of divorce do best when both parents stay actively involved in their lives. This continuing connection makes a positive difference for children of all ages—even teens—minimizing the fact that their parents no longer live together.
  • Tomás G Robinson
    Published 3 months ago
    Sometimes, Facebook Hurts... Kinda

    Sometimes, Facebook Hurts... Kinda

    According to the every-now-and-then reminder notice from Facebook (also known as Memories), it's been six years since I took Alex to a celebratory lunch after we attended his graduation ceremony for promoting from Tevis Junior High School to Stockdale High School. I was so proud of him, and it was some rare quality time he and I would share that became less and less common as he got older, and I moved farther away.
  • Ayla Burk
    Published 4 months ago
    Transgender Woman... Mother of 4 Boys?

    Transgender Woman... Mother of 4 Boys?

    How can this be? I know I am a woman at heart, but am a father... of four boys, nonetheless. As if raising four boys to become amazing men wasn’t full of its own challenges. Throw my being transgender and it’s quite an adventure. How lucky am I though to be a parent of blood borne children! I am so blessed!
  • Rebecca Bailey
    Published 4 months ago
    Failure

    Failure

    I had failed, that’s all I could think. I was a failure as a parent, a foster parent and a decent human being. In training, they all but said that if we disrupted it was all our fault because we weren’t trying hard enough. (Disrupted means asking a child to be removed from your home before they are reunified, sent to live with relatives, or moved to their forever home). I had tried so hard, but I just couldn’t take it anymore and this child and our family was suffering because of it.
Featured Collections
Advice
  • Jessica Hillis
    Published 3 days ago
    Christmas Is Stressful When You Are the Working Poor

    Christmas Is Stressful When You Are the Working Poor

    It’s getting to be that time of year. The time where my kids get excited for the up coming holiday and I start to get stressed about how I am going to pull it off.
  • Claire Raymond
    Published 3 days ago
    How to Handle a Toxic Parent

    How to Handle a Toxic Parent

    People seem to have this idea about parents, that they’re protective angels who would do anything for their children. And whilst those parents do exist, sadly, they don’t seem to make up the majority. More and more people are realising that not only are their parents not the selfless protectors they should be. They are in fact selfish, hurtful narcissists out for all they can steal. But what can you do if one (or even both) of your parents are toxic? How are you supposed to have a normal relationship with people who care more about themselves than they ever will about you? 
  • Megan Long
    Published 12 days ago
    The Holidays Aren't for Me!

    The Holidays Aren't for Me!

    I promise I’m not a Grinch, but I might be skipping out on the Holidays. Don’t get me wrong, I love Thanksgiving and Christmas and I love decorating for them (and will continue to do so in my own home). It’s my extended family that makes it very hard around holiday time. I wrote an article about “Becky” (which is up on my Vocal profile, please check it out), my aunt who is ableist and tends to point out basically everything she thinks I’m doing wrong in my life.
Children
  • Amy James
    Published a day ago
    Mommy School

    Mommy School

    Day One:
  • laura varela
    Published 2 days ago
    Waking up to Your Inner Child

    Waking up to Your Inner Child

    As children, we dont have much to any control over how we are raised, when you ask a child what do you like to do? they often reply with "I like to.." and then finish it off with whatever the parents have allowed the child to do, whether it be painting, writing on the walls, or simply watching tv, it all comes down to the grown up in control of raising the kid. As an adult, all those traits, manners, vocabulary, personality, mindset, they all come down to the way we were brought up, each individual human has a certain way of seeing things, which is passed down from generations to generation with different variations, almost like religion. Being raised with two moms I have come to the conclusion that there is always one parent who will make u understand a different point of view from the other guardian, and in essence they will make them "look bad" in the eyes of the child, for one will react in rage, and the other one will take a breath and tell us why what we did was wrong. Now, my mom who reacts in rage had a terrible childhood, with abusive parents, and neglected feelings, growing up she pretty much had to take care of herself most of the time, undoubtably with that amount of trauma, now as an adult I cant expect her to be complacent with her distressing experience, of course, as i child i didn't know any better, which always made me favor my other mom. Now, my other mom was raised by her grandparents since her parents died when she was 3 years old and she doesn't really remember them, only thru pictures. Lets call her Carol, so Carol my second mom is the sweetest person ever, she always acts kindly towards everybody, she always told me when i did something wrong why it was bad, and as a child i tended to favor her since she never yelled. Thus now you see my point, both of my moms were raised in completely different environments, as kids one had parents that were not the most amicable ones, and the other one didn't have any, conveying codependency issues, which she deals with to this day. Trauma is the way the brain responds out of survival, out of fear of repeating something that happened already and it goes into alert mode, which is reacting instead of responding. More often than not, we dont have control over how others react to us in any type of situation and sometimes we're left feeling like there's something wrong with us, when the truth is that how others react to us has absolutely nothing to do w us and everything to do with themselves, but because we aren't taught that nobody has any power over us unless we allow it, often times we tend to blame ourselves by the actions of another person. When we're kids, we dont really make that conjecture and as a result, we usually think we're to blame for another's behavior. As grown ups, we deal with things children don't understand, maybe its pms, maybe its a bad day at work, maybe its just not our day, the point is, we expect children to understand something they have not yet experienced, and almost nobody teaches them that they are their own person because most people haven't gotten the chance to be it for themselves, to get to know their own scars, their trauma, the very things that made them who they are now, they've accepted it as a way of being without trying to change it for the better as if there's not a way to be better, to be mindful and aware of every situation that goes on around them without throwing a fist of rage when an inconvenience happens. When u treat children as undeveloped beings, they begin to think they are, as in when a child throws a tantrum and the adult reacts violently, or decides to sshss the child without validating their feelings, they start to repress their emotions with the intention of not being a bother to the guardian, therefore while keeping their emotions bottled up as if to say, they become irritable, and sometimes angry that they're feelings are not processed and let go of and we begin to see self destructive traits that begin at an early age, resulting in the society we live in now. However, when we treat children as we would do an adult they are more susceptible to less trauma, ensuring that the child grows up expressing a different response by emitting a frequency of understanding and releasing emotions, which in turn leads to an affine adulthood. Shouting is a mechanism adults use to "discipline" kids, its how they let out their frustration for what the child is doing, not realizing that they are subconsciously damaging the child's way of thinking by creating a perspective where when they do something that we do not find "acceptable" to our liking they already know what will happen, but since they already been thru it before they simply create a toleration for it, until the parent results to physical discipline, thats when we see that psychological abuse come to be repeated by the next generation. Lets start treating our children as adults who understand what we say and they will act like it, its all about how we decide to raise them that defines who they grow up to be.
  • Morgan Alber
    Published 3 days ago
    Listening to Mother's Heartbeat: A First Step Toward Reading

    Listening to Mother's Heartbeat: A First Step Toward Reading

    (A note: I use the male pronoun in this article to allow the narrative to flow more easily. It is not meant as a bias toward or against any other gender.)
Extended Family
  • Megan Long
    Published about a month ago
    Don't Be a "Becky"

    Don't Be a "Becky"

    My aunt is very aggravating. For the sake of privacy (not that I'm sure she will ever read this, but still), I'm going to call her "Becky." Everyone has a Becky in their life. As I go on to describe the defining features of a Becky, I'm sure you'll be to pick out which family member or friend is your Becky.
  • Melissa Hevenor The Psychic In Your Pocket
    Published 2 months ago
    My Life with Robin (Part 2)

    My Life with Robin (Part 2)

    When Ruthie Ann was halfway out the birth canal, the doctor told Brenda to take a deep breath and prepare to push. When she did, Ruthie’s fragile, premature, little body slipped back into the birth canal, depriving her of precious oxygen for 45 seconds. In a panic, the doctor reached inside and pulled Ruthie into the world. It seemed as though the physician made a horrible mistake, which would ultimately lead to Ruth Ann’s physical disability, later diagnosed as Cerebral Palsy. However, because I am from the non-physical world and understand things from a higher perspective, I will tell you that this event was no accident caused by a doctor. In actuality, this act was the fulfillment of Ruthie’s own spiritual destiny. In a spiritual sense, she already knew the difficulties she was about to encounter in this lifetime. In a moment, her spirit hesitated as she tried to retreat to the warmth and comfort of her mother’s womb just one second before she was fully present in the physical world. It was in that second Ruthie questioned her resolve to fulfill her destiny. She did not feel ready to endure such hardships in the life that lay ahead. Understandably she tried to escape the difficulties that she would face by retreating back into her mother’s womb.
  • Arlene Placer
    Published 2 months ago
    Aunt Mute

    Aunt Mute

    Yes, that’s what she was called. I don’t know if I ever remembered her given name. But Aunt Mute it was.
Fact Or Fiction
  • Pam Jannes
    Published 14 days ago
    These Are the Most Common Last Names in America

    These Are the Most Common Last Names in America

    Last names are an interesting thing. Everyone has one and you really have no say in what it is. You use your last name for reservations, work paperwork, and really in every aspect of your life. You are either born with your given last name or married into it and at that point most people just accept their last name. You could legally change it, but who really wants to go through the process.
  • Ian Worrall
    Published about a month ago
    About to Die

    About to Die

    It was terminal, that's what the doctor said. Mary now had at most 12 months to live. What does anyone do with news like this? Most people would say knock at least three things off your bucket list, but Mary was a type of person who got on her bucket list at the age of 15 and knocked everything off.
  • Emily A Dinwiddie
    Published about a month ago
    The Thistle Legacy
Grandparents
  • ashley sirianni
    Published 7 days ago
    Go See Your Grandparents

    Go See Your Grandparents

    My Italian grandparents are 84. They're from another world, and a different time. Both of which don'y exist anymore. They had their honeymoon in the mountains of Italy, at my Nonna's sister farm. She said it was the best two weeks of her life.
  • Mukesh Saini
    Published 17 days ago
    My Grandmother Life and How She Used to Live It

    My Grandmother Life and How She Used to Live It

    For a girl, what is being a bride today? Perhaps there is not much difference these days being a bride and being a girl before being a bride. Girls are demanding these days. They have their conditions when they want to marry.
  • Don Feazelle
    Published about a month ago
    Grandpa! You Are Embarrassing Me

    Grandpa! You Are Embarrassing Me

    Families gathered huddling in small circles waiting for their future concert musician to come out. We had just finished Landon—my eldest grandson’s—Middle School holiday concert. He is a violinist.
Grief
  • Geri Spears
    Published a day ago
    Ungrief

    Ungrief

    Over the past year I can say I have been on an emotional roller coaster of emotions. My parents, my mother and my uncle (who was also my godfather), had been ill for a long time. Both my sister and I lived quite a distance away from them and due to family issues of our own and were only able to help our much younger nephew who lived with them with managing their care through phone calls and a constant open three-way text. Other than the information he relayed to us, we had no idea what was going on. I sent county workers out to their house but I was told that they couldn't help. My sister and I found out way too late we were being fed a huge web of lies.
  • Plyerz
    Published 5 days ago
    Getting Lost in LOSS

    Getting Lost in LOSS

    We all suffer a loss during our lifetime, whether it is a parent, sibling, spouse, family member, friend, colleague or a beloved pet; the lingering effects seem to prevail over us. We become engrossed with the trauma of the moment and the memory which is overwhelming; leaving us lost while trying to navigate the profound impact on our bodies, emotions and brains.
  • Miranda Harquin
    Published 13 days ago
    The Last Moments My Grandmother Lived

    The Last Moments My Grandmother Lived

    Last year my grandmother passed away. It was a surprise to us when the doctor told us she had stomach cancer. At her age it was impossible for chemo or any sort of treatment to work on her and living in the US I doubt they would spend any more time and money trying to cure something so life threatening like stomach cancer. I believe the goal for the doctors was to make her feel comfortable and pain free. She would keep asking every day she would spend in the hospital if she was able to go back home. Sometimes I wondered if she already knew that she wouldn’t make it or if she just accepted that her time was coming. She seemed calm most days, I didn’t see her cry about it. I recall when I went to the hospital to visit her and the doctor came in and explained that there was nothing they could do anymore and the best thing was to take her home or place her in a hospice. To this day I still don’t know if we made the right decision of taking her back to her home.
How To
  • Jessica Hillis
    Published a day ago
    The 4 Gift Rule Keeps Christmas Simple

    The 4 Gift Rule Keeps Christmas Simple

    It's that time of year again! If you are like me, this time of year can be pretty stressful trying to budget gifts for your family. Sometimes that stress can make the holiday a little less fun. But it doesn't have to be that way!
  • Martin Bagel-Brown
    Published 20 days ago
    Top Tips on Getting Your Newborn to Sleep Well at Night

    Top Tips on Getting Your Newborn to Sleep Well at Night

    Tired mums and dads all around the world are way too familiar with the trouble of getting their children to sleep. Thankfully, there is enough input from experienced parents to help ensure that your toddler stays asleep through the night.
  • Kevin
    Published 2 months ago
    4 Tips to Picking the Right Pet for Your Family

    4 Tips to Picking the Right Pet for Your Family

    Adding a new pet to your family can be both exciting and challenging. There are many things you have to take into consideration, when it comes to adopting a new animal and bringing them into your home. To help make the best selection based upon your preferences, family, and lifestyle, consider some of the tips listed below.
Humanity
  • Ann King
    Published 5 days ago
    Christmas 2019 Goals, Traditions and Changes

    Christmas 2019 Goals, Traditions and Changes

    It is that time of year again folks. The time of year when most of us begin to stress over the upcoming Christmas holidays. Many people will now begin their speedy trip into a financial slump and credit card debt just to pull off what they feel is the perfect Christmas.
  • John Teehan
    Published 10 days ago
    Remove Holiday Stress by Removing Toxic People
  • Andrea Kafure
    Published 14 days ago
    The Ride Back

    The Ride Back

    I was living in New York City and visibly pregnant, when I got into a Lyft after dinner with friends. The driver congratulated me. I thanked him, and asked if he had any children. “I do!” he replied, “I have a daughter who is 14.”
Immediate Family
  • Olivia Moore
    Published 7 days ago
    My Family Keeps Comparing Me to My Older Brother, and I Hate It

    My Family Keeps Comparing Me to My Older Brother, and I Hate It

    I received the label of "financially irresponsible" when I was 6 years old. This coincided with the year I started school. I had never been to any sort of school setting before, no pre-school, no kindergarten, none of that in the early 90s. My first foray into school life was when I started Grade 1. 
  • Olivia Moore
    Published 8 days ago
    Discovering My Brothers Had a Different Dad

    Discovering My Brothers Had a Different Dad

    My mother had two sons from her first marriage. I came along years later after she married my father. I was 6 years old when I figured out we had different dads.
  • Jaclyn Mackay
    Published 11 days ago
    The Revenge Of A Former POG Owner

    The Revenge Of A Former POG Owner

    Siblings fight. It's inevitable. You ate the last cookie, you broke my favourite toy, you told mom, the variations are endless. Here is a story dear to my family and most family
Parents
  • Wendy
    Published about an hour ago
    Life After Kids!

    Life After Kids!

    You have devoted your life to your children and family. Your youngest child is a teenager and in just a few more short years will be off to college or out in the world living their own life. You’ll be all on your own for the first time since they were born. You wonder:
  • Kelli Fuqua Hart
    Published a day ago
    Teen Mom

    Teen Mom

    Well, it happened. My energetic, bubbly and sweet little girl woke up a reluctant, mumbling teenage loaf. Mom is no longer cool. Everything is “literally the worst.” And don’t even get me started on how boys became “so cute” – overnight.
  • Diane Campbell
    Published 2 days ago
    Di the Book (Part 2)
Siblings
  • Lisa Melo
    Published about 3 hours ago
    In Search of My Siblings

    In Search of My Siblings

    I have always been the only child for my mom. I didn’t grow up with my dad and only had a chance to see him once, 21 years ago when I was already 27 years. My mom got pregnant of me after being married for only 6 months, and she divorced him right after. He found out about me months later. They never allowed me to see my father or let him near me. At the time of our first and only encounter, he mentioned that I had a sister and two brothers, and told me their names.
  • Theresa Rose
    Published 3 days ago
    Lucky Charms & Chicken Gizzards

    Lucky Charms & Chicken Gizzards

    The almond milk slowly tumbled out of the spout of the carton and onto the organic, gluten-free oat clusters. The days of cow’s milk, sugar-coated cereal, and Tang are far behind me, but the ritual will inevitably trigger a flashback of nostalgic memories.
  • Rebekah Battle
    Published 3 months ago
    How to Hate Your Life...

    How to Hate Your Life...

    "I hate my life! I hate my life! I want to get out! I want all of this to end!" I screamed angrily into my pillow. It was not a loud scream, but a soft one with all the ferociousness and intensity from my body of a loud one... I do not have the privilege of letting out my frustrations for the neighbor and their dog to hear.