When I saw the title of an article, “Marriage Isn’t For You,” accompanied by a photo of a happy-looking couple on their wedding day, I was naturally intrigued. Written by Seth Adam Smith, he talks about how just before he got married, he faced the normal fears and anxieties. He took them to his dad, asking questions like “Am I ready? Will I be happy? Is she the right one for me?”
I’m just going to copy what his father responded, since it’s a little bit amazing:
Seth, you’re being totally selfish. So I’m going to make this really simple: marriage isn’t for you. You don’t marry to make yourself happy, you marry to make someone else happy. More than that, your marriage isn’t for yourself, you’re marrying for a family. Not just for the in-laws and all of that nonsense, but for your future children. Who do you want to help you raise…
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Participants in a regional meeting at Lagos, Nigeria, in September 2013.
Next year marks the 20th anniversary of the International Year of the Family, a United Nations observance which many voluntary groups hope will prod governments towards greater recognition of the social importance of the family. The 75 million youth who are unemployed around the world have reason to understand that.
International years usually result in some idealistic charter for governments to take into account in policy making over the next decade. Preparations have been under way for some time in the form of international and regional meetings, research and various other exchanges about good family policy.
This article was originally published at The Conversation. Sarah Biggs is a Postdoctoral Fellow in Paediatric Sleep at Monash University in Melbourne.
We’ve long known that children need a certain amount of sleep: nine to 11 hours per night for older kids, and up to 14 hours in 24 for toddlers. There’s no doubt that getting enough sleep is paramount to a child’s healthy development, but recent research has shown that a regular routine – going to bed the same time every night and waking the same time every morning – is just as important to a child’s daytime functioning.
An Australian study of almost 2,000 school-aged children recently showed that, when compared to a child with the same bedtime (less than a 30 minutes difference across the week), a child with a 60-minute difference was twice as likely to display hyperactive behaviours and have problems controlling their emotions.
The News Story - More US girls developing breasts before age nine
A Pediatrics study released online Monday reveals that girls are becoming women faster than ever before. Reports Reuters, “Girls are developing breasts at younger and younger ages, a new study confirms. And upward trends in childhood obesity seem to be playing a major role.”
The study—which followed more than 1,200 girls in the San Francisco, Cincinnati, and New York City areas—revealed that “African American girls started getting breasts just before they turned nine, on average. Among white girls the average age was about nine and a half—a few months earlier than in the 1990s.” The researchers tied rising rates of childhood obesity to this new trend and claimed the need for more research, as early onset of puberty is linked to having sex at a younger age, using drugs, depressive symptoms, and low self-esteem.
Did you know there is a whole website dedicated to information for couples who are deciding whether to make the leap up from two to three children?
At Having Three Kids, Jennifer Eyre White explains that she started the website after attempting to Google for information about this "potentially life-altering decision" and discovering a dearth of info available. So after having her third, she started this resource for the rest of us. Today apparently, the site receives thousands of visitors each month.
It's a bit surreal to see this kind of website pop up online, and it's somewhat disturbing that such a website can become so popular. I guess it speaks to the low birthrate in our society that so many people are blowing up the three-child family into some kind of circus-like spectacle, as if it was somehow a "large" family.
The following article appeared in the New Zealand Herald this morning after several days of outrage over a small group of boys who behaved the way they've seen somewhere -- perhaps in a videogame.
This week the Roast Busters sparked outrage across the globe. When I heard about the group of young Auckland boys who sought gratification and entertainment by luring drunk girls - some of them underage - into group sex and then bragged about their conquests on Facebook, I was saddened and disgusted. I was unfortunately not surprised.
A misogynistic culture in our society has spawned the perfect breeding ground for this type of behaviour, but the blame does not lie solely with boys and men. There is a constant stream of explicit sexual images, not to say filth, which bombards them from every angle, for which we…
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The News Story - Norway's mission reposition: state says date nights key to good marriage
At least one of the Nordic countries — that paradise of social progressivism — seems to be rethinking its earlier disregard for the institution of marriage. Solveig Horne, the new Minister for Children, Equality, and Social Inclusion in Norway’s Populist government, recently suggested that to curb a 40% divorce rate, Norwegian married couples should institute “date nights.”
Reports the Guardian, Horne “said the government needed to cut divorce rates – and that encouraging couples to try date nights was a good place to start.” “It is important to find small pockets of time where parents can be lovers," said Horne, who believes that she may have saved her own marriage through date nights and other similar efforts.
An article has appeared in the NZ media this morningabout some absolutely absurd claims that some NZ academics are now making about men who show respect for women by opening doors, etc, for them. It also makes laughable claims about the women who accept such behavior as normal, even going so far as to suggest that they have a psychological disorder.
Here’s what the article has to say:
“Benevolent sexism has been identified as the flip side of the “hostile” sexism that would banish women to the kitchen.
It’s a distincition that has been looked at by Auckland University researchers in a survey of the attitudes of more than 6500 New Zealanders.
Study author Matthew Hammond said benevolent sexism portrays women as “fragile and delicate and in need of protection” and emphasised their emotional qualities.
Started by a New York bloke called Brandon Stanton, he was aiming to create a photographic census of the city. What it evolved into however, is a vibrant collection of portraits of the people he met – each one accompanied by thoughts or stories from the person captured. I don’t know how he does it, but often the information that people share with him is very intimate, sometimes heart-wrenching, and often uplifting. It’s like an in-depth portrait of humanity and people love it, judging by the numbers that follow him - nearly one million over various social media networks.
The News Story - Japan’s sexual apathy is endangering the global economy
Japan has a new term for an “illness” that has Japanese officials increasingly worried—“celibacy syndrome.” In a nation plagued by sexual permissiveness, skyrocketing cost of living, and cutthroat workplace competition, more and more Japanese are losing interest in marriage, family, and even sex altogether.
In a blog entry for the Washington Post, Max Fisher reports that this lack of interest spells bad news for more than just Japan. Writes Fisher, “Japan is the world's third-largest economy, a crucial link in global trade and a significant factor in everyone else's economic well-being.” If Japan, which “owns almost as much U.S. debt as China,” goes bust, the U.S. will sorely feel the repercussions.