We All Need to Be Cared For

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No matter how old we are or how independent and capable we may be, we all need someone to be there for us. Sure, there are people who protest and say they don’t need anyone and that they’re “OK” on their own, but the reality is none of us is an island.

We all crave human touch, companionship, love, passion and connection. Without it, let’s admit it: we would be pretty boring people. It’s why people take so much time and effort to pursue love, romance, sex and friendship. If it wasn’t so intoxicating, amazing and transformative, nobody would be running after it, writing songs about it, or discussing it in detail with their friends.

When we don’t feel cared for, we are often at our worst. We feel anxious, unsure and misunderstood. We feel alone, powerless and intimidated. These feelings stem into depression or general anxiety. It bleeds into our everyday lives. Not having that connection can feel like you’re on an island or swimming in a turbulent ocean with the undertow taking you further and further away from the rest of the world. This isn’t to say that we need someone else’s care and love in order to be successful and happy, but that with love and available people in our lives, we become the best versions of ourselves. Because when we have people who do not care for us or treat us well, it does dim our light. This is why it is so crucial that we care for others and that we allow ourselves to be cared for and in return, that we give love back.
Having that love is like having a homebase: without a homebase, you will feel adrift, anxious and uncertain. This is the place where we feel our least “best.” It affects our mental health and wellness. But when we have that homebase— that love and care in our lives, we grow long, strong roots and reach out towards the sky with all the potential that is in us. This is what helps us grow and shapes our self-view and stability for the days to come.

Love Others and Yourself,

Laura

Forgiving Yourself Is As Important As Forgiving Others

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Growing up with parents coming from two different religious backgrounds has so many pluses. One is it has made me more open to others’ viewpoints. At the same time, I don’t feel aligned with any religion really. I do find both Jewish and Christian traditions interesting and meaningful. So, I am spiritual but I’m not religious.

But for the first year ever, I thought about what Yom Kippur really means. Asking for forgiveness for sins and forgiveness of others. Supposedly, it’s the time of year where G-d decides your fate and therefore, you’ve got to make amends, and fast.

I thought about who I would apologize to, however anyone I may have wronged I’ve certainly apologized to. And if there’s anyone out there I offended, well, I am truly sorry!

But I think the person I am most sorry to is myself. For being so hard on myself.
The way I’ve talked to myself and about myself.
The way I’ve judged myself and compared myself.
The way I’ve doubted myself and criticized myself.
The way I talk to myself is most often, much harder than how I’ve talked to anyone else!
It is like I’m in some competition where the goals to be fabulous are so high and not obtainable that I beat myself to death for not being enough.
But if there is one thing I am, it is tenacious and persistent. I try so hard to be my best self. To be better. To do better. Be a better mom. Person. Partner. Friend. Worker. Etc.

Here is what I don’t do: give myself a break. Be kind to myself. Compliment myself. Believe in myself.

So here is a huge apology to myself for being so bad to myself at times.

Lovingly,

Laura

7 Signs You Literally Have ZERO Respect For Yourself, Girl

You’re a great person. Trouble is, you don’t realize it. You’re too busy undermining your own worth that you’re not questioning how others treat you. In your eyes, people treat you badly because a) you think you deserve it, or b) you think you keep having “bad luck.”

The reality is, you’ve got no self-respect and therefore, you keep attracting some pretty undesirable people in your life. Here are seven signs you’ve got no self-respect and it’s seriously hurting your life.

  1. You’re the “doormat friend.”

If you’re always the one that people ask things for without giving back anything in return, you’re what they call a “doormat.” Do people get away with murder when it comes to you? Are you frequently left picking up other people’s messes? Do people just expect that “you’ll do it”?

If you answered yes, you’ve got no self-respect and are letting people walk all over you.

Read More: 7 Signs You Literally Have ZERO Respect For Yourself, Girl

It’s the Truth,

Laura

 

Why You Shouldn’t Always Tell Your Daughter She’s Pretty

I hear myself saying “Oh, that looks very pretty” or “I love what you’re wearing” or “You’re very pretty” when I meet or see a little girl I know. It’s a knee-jerk response conditioned from years of growing up around five women and one man (my dad) who worked in the garment business and knows how to speak to women. One of the first things almost everyone does when they meet a woman is compliment her appearance.

Pretty, pretty, pretty, pretty.

You look great. Fabulous. Did you lose weight? I love your shoes. Where did you get that dress? I really like your mascara.

She’s such a pretty girl. What a beautiful girl you are!

Read More: Why You Shouldn’t Always Tell Your Daughter She’s Pretty

Tell Her She’s Strong,

Laura

Why I Won’t Be Mrs. Nice Guy Anymore

There was never a day in which someone said to me, “You know Laura? You’re really a bitch,” and meant it. When speaking with love interests, this was always a plus. I could say that no man had ever called me a bitch, which was a signal that, “Hey man — I won’t do you dirty.”

Is it nice to be known as a “nice girl?” Sure. No one wants to be viewed as a total jerk, but some days, I wish I were a “bitch.” Here’s why.

A nice girl gets walked on. Her love partners shortchange her, lie to her, diminish her and give her the short end of the stick. What does the nice girl do? She admonishes her partner sweetly and usually turns the other cheek.

Read More: Why I Won’t Be Mrs. Nice Guy Anymore

Not Taking Shit,

Laura

What I Want To Tell My Daughter About Divorce

What do I want to say to my daughter about divorce? So many things … like:

“You are obsessed with fairy tales and still believe that the prince saves the princess in distress. As you get older, you will learn fast that you are no woman in distress, nor do you want to be! No one but you needs to save yourself. Until then, though, keep believing in happy endings and happily ever afters.”

Read What I Want To Tell My Daughter About Divorce in PopSugar.

With Unicorn-Filled and Cotton Candy Dreams,

Laura

The Ghost of Eating Disorders Past: A Thin Mom’s Reflections for Herself & Her Daughter

Hi.

I’m a thin person.

You know, I wear like a 00.

They should have a negative size category for shrimps like me.

I also eat chocolate daily.

Basically, feel free to come stab me for my thinness.

Feel free, to hate me.

It seems like it’s been so easy for me, I’m sure.

I also have a decent set of boobs, natural.

Yup.

I was always thin.

I never was fat or chubby.

I ate what I wanted.

As a kid, I went to McDonalds and ordered two hamburgers.

And large fries.

Life was good.

burger

Today, I don’t eat McDonald’s or hamburgers.

I hope you like me a little bit more.

See the thing is, I used to have an eating disorder back in my 20’s. Oh those nasty 20’s. Continue reading

(Too) Great of Expectations: Do we expect too much from marriage?

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Ah Marriage. The divorce rate is up. The institution of marriage as we know it, has been troubled for quite some time. This isn’t shocking news, but I have been doing thinking and talking to folks about marriages–both good and bad, and I can’t help but wonder to myself, “Maybe we simply expect too much.”

We grow up thinking about marriage–I didn’t but most of my friends did–and to some extent, I feel we have all bought into this idea that marriage is love and romance. That it’s passion and joy. Marriage is supposed to be love at its peak performance: the ultimate love and devotion to the one person you’re absolutely sure you know is the one for you.

Then, 50% or so figure out that hey, maybe this person isn’t for me.

Maybe it’s because we are thinking about this marriage thing all wrong.

This guy thinks we are.

I feel that to some extent, I am guilty as charged. I’m a very passionate and sprightly person. I like romance and surprises maybe a little more than the rest of the population. Yet marriage is rarely romance or surprise. It can be utterly monotonous and predictable. If it’s not to at least some extent, you might just be married to someone with bi-polar disorder, and in that case, I hope you are incredibly patient and understanding. Or a psychiatrist.

Note: I know folks who are bi-polar and just fine, but an unmedicated bipolar person might just ruin you.

Just my two cents.

Maybe our expectations when walking down that aisle of dreams is paved with a bunch of shit that simply lowers our real resistance to what every day marriage is really like. We expect romance, love, commitment, and unwavering devotion, but the fact is many marriages will be tested in every single one of those aspects. If your marriage has always been awesome from the get-go, either you are delusional or incredibly lucky and deserve a talk-show explaining said phenomena.

This isn’t to say that marriage is a mistake, although it can be.

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This is to say that marriage is not what we were sold. That story is unlike the one you will be facing each day as a married person. You can ask yourself every deep question in the book pre-marriage like, “Can I tolerate his nose hairs?” “Can we agree on religious practices?” ‘Is it okay if we still have threesomes?” “Will her mother always hate me?” “What is the meaning of life and can I find out for just 9.99?”

Even if you get all the right answers. Yes, you guys can pick up 18 year-old chicks at bars still and No, her mother will like you, (such lies) it will be unlike what you had really expected. This is what I feel is a huge factor in divorce. We look through the lens of marriage at the beginning in a rose-colored shade that doesn’t help us for when we put on the glasses and find out, damn, things don’t always look so sexy.

So in response to this disconnect between real-life marriage and the fantasy bullshit your religion/family/friends/media told you so you would stay monogamous and not be a male whore, I have a great suggestion.

Want to get married? Are you thinking of popping the question?

Well, then I suggest you hunker down for one married couple for a year. This can’t be a newly-wed couple though. They’re still looking through pink shades. You need a couple post 5 years, with at least one kid. Spend a year with them. Sit in their bedroom closet. Go into their master bathroom. Listen to their conversations and fights. Watch their bank accounts. Watch the sex.

Does this look like what you imagined it to be? Did you expect fights over a purchase of Starbucks? Did you expect 1950’s-esque arguments over women and men’s roles in the kitchen? Did you expect the sex could be at times, boring?

Now, can you sign yourself up for the possibility that five years after walking down that aisle of clouds, you will be arguing over money, parenting, sex, household chores, and that time you told your father-in-law to fuck off?

Does marriage look so wonderful now?

Sure, you will see all the good things. The comfort of knowing one person. Family life. (Not to say that all marrieds need kids–that’s a personal choice and I respect all!) Having someone fold your hole-y sweaters and buy you new socks when the old ones become extremely ghetto.

There are good things too, but can you as a whole, encompass it all with that one person?

If you’re a method actor, a genius, person of incredible mental strength, etc, try chaining yourself to the one half of the married couple for 1/2 of the year, and the other person for the other 1/2. Really experience the fights! The orgasms (hopefully!) Feel the love during heated arguments when the nastiest shit ever is spewed that you wouldn’t even say to Hitler.

Get the full monty of marriage. And then ask yourself: are my expectations appropriate? Do I know what it takes to really be married?

If you answer yes, then good luck my friend! Remember, it does work out too. The other 50% are happily married…or at least happily masturbating while claiming joint taxes.

-Toodles and Kisses

Signs You Have Lowered Your Standards: The Low Self-Esteem Meter

Have you recently suffered a negative interaction with someone?

Have you recently stuck your head into an oven because you couldn’t stand one more minute dealing with people who suck?

Have you considered becoming a meth dealer and taking over the world, a la Walter White?

Are you unsure if you are settling for the same old BS that you swore you wouldn’t settle for anymore?

If you answered yes to any of these questions or you just simply want to amuse yourself or are incredibly bored, read on.

If someone is nice to you and you think, “Wow, this person is nice to me today. this is awesome,” 

You may have lowered your standards.

Severely.

Unless the person is your boss, no one should be that negative and mean to you so that when the person actually smiles or acts like a decent human being you feel the need to rejoice.

Sometimes it is hard to separate oneself from another person’s toxicity or moods, but if someone makes you feel bad or like you want to eat a box of nails when you are around her or him, it is time to say “au revoir douchebag.”

If you find yourself making excuses for someone all the time…

You are either a parent in public with your child…or putting up with too much bullshit from a jerk who needs to be kicked to the curb or taken out of your life.

People make excuses because they’re either too ashamed to tell the truth or they’re not ready to admit it…and when we make excuses for others, it’s for the same reasons. If you find yourself excusing someone constantly for his or her shit behavior, then it is time to evaluate if you really need someone in your life or not.

if you feel dirty after an interaction with someone…

You either just rolled in mud, are a pervert, or really need to cut that person out of your life. You should never roll around with pigs or hang out with people that don’t share the same morals and values as you because you don’t want to be in jail bending over for the rest of your life, do you?

if you feel insecure around someone..

You either need to work on yourself, or get away from that person. No one should make you feel so flawed that you can’t formulate a sentence or feel so fragile around them that you panic.

We aren’t made to be alone. We are pack creatures, but if you keep choosing jerk-offs to join your pack then like weak animals, you too will croak. Life is too short to be around people who don’t value us, and as much as we are all flawed and bad people at times, no one should be around someone that makes them feel worthless.

This therapy session brought to you by chocolate.

The Definition of Mother: a reality check.

Everyone has his or her own ideas about what it means to be a mother, or what it feels like to be a mother.

Some think it means being at home, making cookies, cleaning the house, and making blanket forts.

Others think it means teaching at home, working somewhere else, and doing laundry in between chasing a naughty toddler around.

Some thinks it means doing what you can to pay the bills, while lovingly squeezing up minutes of her child’s time.

Whatever the location, the definition and job description embodies guilt.

Guilt you’re not making money at home. Guilt you’re not at home, and you’re making money.

Some mother alone, others with a partner, and others alone, yet with a partner…and some mother with another mother…and some Mother with an extended family.

Mothering can be amazing, awful, anxiety-producing, awe-inspiring, jaw-dropping, boring, loving, irritating, tiring, and impatient.

We think it will be one way and we will behave in a particular manner up until the time a baby is in our arms, and then we realize that all our armchair parenting was a load of crap. That we know nothing, and that we still know nothing.

That we love our child/children, yet he or she perplexes us to the same degree. That we want them to be like us, yet we also hope they won’t be.

We have idealized images in our mind, and then when we fall short, we are victim to our own guilt.

Society has ideas about how we should be of how we are supposed to be and what we are supposed to do, and when we aren’t that way, we feel helpless, worthless, and unsure.

When we are how we think we should be, we feel amazing, unstoppable, and a bit too proud. We sometimes forget when we see another mother screwing up, how we did too…just the other day–hour–or minute.

We champion other mothers, yet we inspect them and hold them, deciding if they mother the way we do–if it’s good enough, forgetting that we fall short all the time.

We long to mother, and then fear we are no good.

We become a mother, and then long for the days sometimes when we were just ourselves. Just our name, and not “someone else’s mommy.”

All those Facebook memes about how we are all so happy to give up sleeping in and wearing ponytails, seem like a load of shit to us silently, because we certainly are sick of wearing our hair in a ponytail sometimes, and we want to sleep in. We love our children, but we miss our non-mothering self at times.

We try to remember what that was like, yet we can’t fully. We have photos, flashbacks, and videos to remind us…certainly we can envision that non-child person, yet we can never be her again fully. We have to be a different version of ourselves. Better. Smarter. More Patient.

We enter into new sexual territory. Some of us could care less about sex, others long for it…and miss the days when we didn’t fit as neatly into the box labeled Madonna or whore. Some of us wish it would go away at times, and others don’t want to be the soccer mom that young men say, “Yes maam,” to on a daily basis.

Some of us are still heavy from pregnancy, others are fit, and yet our bodies whether sightly or unsightly to ourselves, are somewhat different. It has done something it never did before.

We have done something we have never done before.

Every day is a learning process. Parenting is learning on the job. Prepare to fail, and plan to succeed.