Parenting and Families

Real life

Exposed by my children for what I really look like

Author and stay-at-home mother of two, Bridgette White.

Bridgette White Flipping through the pictures on my phone, I see it. My first reaction is shock. Who took this hideous picture of me?

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'Good girl'

Why people pleasers grow up to become pushovers

good girl

Lauren Henderson The effects of being a Good Girl are far-reaching, personally and publicly.

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Anxious parents aren't bad parents


SONJA EBBELS Why we shouldn't worry so much about our children inheriting our anxieties.

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The 10 year gap

Yumi Stynes: Giving birth after a decade's break


Yumi Stynes After a long break, Yumi Stynes gets a reminder of the pain – and the pleasure – of birth.

Lone male

I have daughters and I don’t want you to feel sorry for me


CHRISTOPHER SCANLON Five commiseration clichés you get for being the 'only male in the house'.

Home truths

The one parenting rule everyone should break


Beth Woolsey What if what we've always been told about the key to good parenting is wrong?

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Fertility panic

Fertility panic and the 30 plus woman


Claire Moulds Claire Moulds takes a look at the panic-mongering around women aged 35-plus who have not yet had children.

Raising daughters

Why raising 'pleasers' is screwing up our girls

Kids sharing

Anea Bogue The desire to please leaves many girls willing to relinquish their own unique and personal desires, passions and talents, all of which are fundamental aspects of her identity.

In praise of partnerless holidays

Children walking on wooden path towards the ocean

ANDIE FOX Andie Fox on the magic of blending families and group parenting on a partnerless retreat.

The cost of kids

How much does it actually cost to have a child?


Laura Shin A no BS guide to the biggest 'investment' of your life.

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Report jargon

I don't understand my children's school reports


PAUL CHAI Paul Chai has had enough of the corporate speak and 'compliment sandwich'.

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Parental guilt

A note to my children's future therapist


ANDIE FOX Here is my side of the story. In case that day shall come.

6 ways our fears around sex are damaging our girls


Anea Bogue If girls feel their parents' fear, she will naturally make associations between her sexual desires and fear.

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The toughest rejection?

When your child chooses to live with your ex

Mother and Child by Lake

Paul Mitchell Now that Paul Mitchell's daughter has chosen to live with his ex, he wonders if he'll ever get over her absence.

The bath photo that got this mum banned from Facebook

A photo by Joyce Schafer of her kids playing in the bath was removed by facebook for nudity. Photo: Joyce Schafer

Tim Barlass It's a picture most parents would cherish. You can almost hear mum saying: "Here they are, they loved that first bubble bath together. We couldn't get them out."

Like a girl

The advertising campaign that will make you proud to run 'like a girl'

run like a girl

T.L. Stanley It’s time to flip that tired old phrase on its head, according to this 'Always Maxi Pad' advertisement.

Going viral

Powerful advertisement reminds us what happens when girls are always told they're pretty


Effie Mann A powerful US advertisement has highlighted the impact of gender stereotyping on young women.

Mum talk

A mum's guide to talking with childless friends

Woman holding baby (6-9 months) rear view

KATE FRIDKIS The choice to not ever have kids is a world of difference from parenthood.

Parental pride

It's okay to brag about your kids

Mother and Daughter

SARAH MACDONALD Life with a child is a triumph of hope and a tonne of struggle. Celebrate while you can.

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Real life

I fell pregnant after my husband passed away

Katie Elfar with sons Oscar,4, and Beau, 22 weeks.

Erin O'Dwyer Although Katie Elfar's husband was no longer with her, having a baby using his frozen sperm was the best decision she ever made.

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When strict uniform policies become a 'monumental waste of time'


Cathy Sherry A public high school student was prevented from attending an HSC English study day because she had dyed her hair pink. The school claimed that the dye was contrary to the uniform policy. The president of the school’s Parents and Citizens Association said the ban was an attempt to ‘‘mimic private school standards’’.


Fighting against dress code sexism at school


ANDIE FOX To both sexualise and silence teenage girls is a terribly dangerous combination.

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Are you a victim of 'pre-crastination?'

Close up of female hands holding headphones

SARAH MACDONALD Procrastination's evil twin is probably making you just as inefficient.

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Parenting myths

The lies we tell each other about childcare


Marisa Black Marisa Black was deeply conflicted about childcare – until a backward glance put her mind at ease.

New book

Facing the onslaught of maternal intimacy


ANDIE FOX We need to see address child-rearing in terms of intimacy rather than a series of developmental stages.

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We need to talk to children about race


Lindy Alexander Why telling your child “everyone’s equal” is not enough.

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Why kids lie

When Your child is a natural-born liar


Melinda Wenner Moyer When kids lie, it’s not a sign that they’re on the road to delinquency.

Sarah MacDonald

The end of the stay at home mum


SARAH MACDONALD Should we mourn or celebrate her dwindling tribe?

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Parenting gripe

Things all parents should stop doing, now

Happy Father and Daughter in the park

PAUL CHAI "As parents we are just a ragtag bunch but there are a few of you who are really letting the side down, and we need to talk."

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New motherhood

An apology to all the mums I used to hate

Woman holding baby (6-9 months) rear view

KATE FRIDKIS Kate Fridkis on crossing the not-so-wide divide between young woman and young woman with a baby.

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Ten things I learned travelling with kids


DOM KNIGHT Dom Knight realises parenting is really hard, and parenting while travelling is harder still.

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Child-free experts

The fine art of writing about parenting


Nathan Jolly *When you don't have any children

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Parenting as therapy

Can you protect your children from living your mistakes?


ANDIE FOX Andie Fox on the fraught practice of using parenting as therapy.

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Awkward parenting moments

Why I won't give my teens the 'sex talk'


SARAH MACDONALD It’s the sex information night at our local public school this week. But here's why my kids won't be going.

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Has mother's guilt become a status symbol?

Back view of mother and child wrapped in striped towel

Jacinta Tynan Jacinta Tynan on why mothers need to give themselves a break.

Yumi Stynes on round two of having children

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Who on earth would want a baby 10 years after the last one? We do, says pregnant mother-of-two Yumi Stynes.

Grieving on mother's day

A message to the motherless on this day

Rear view of woman looking out to sea

CLEMENTINE FORD Clementine Ford: "In the years since my mother’s death, I have often felt like a weightless balloon".


When your transgender child comes out

portrait of a girl

Nicola Petersen The practical changes a family must make following gender transition.

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No reason to panic about teens, sex and technology, says new study

PHONE AFR 050526 PHOTO BY ROB HOMER --- woman using a mobile phone  in the cbd --- generic business , industry , phone , mobile , telecommunications , texting , sms   AFR FIRST USE ONLY

JILL STARK A comprehensive study argues there is no need to panic about the intersection of teenagers, sexual behaviour and technology, writes Jill Stark.

Is having a baby really worth it?

Baby generic.

Caroline Beaulieu Having a baby is like losing your leg and winning the lottery.

Inside the world of mother's group friendships


ANDIE FOX The intense friendship circles where women came to know each other better their partners did.

Sarah MacDonald

What to do with a child who hates sports


SARAH MACDONALD What if your kid hates whistles, coaches and sponsored uniforms? Should you really force them to change?

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Fighting back

A letter to the troll who called my son ugly


Megan Davies Mennes Since I started blogging about my son Quinn and his disability, I knew this day would come.

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Real life

Stop policing my daughter's appetite


KASEY EDWARDS Why do strangers feel entitled to comment on young girls' food habits?

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An atheist's guide to explaining Easter to children

Tracey Spicer

TRACEY SPICER Tracey Spicer's nine-year-old son is convinced that Zombies are involved.

Parenting manifesto

Can we undo sexism by the next generation?


ANDIE FOX A manifesto to new parents.

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Parenting myths

When shouting at your kids isn't a bad thing

Parenting mistakes

Rowan Pelling When it comes to disciplining children, is yelling better than silent treatment?

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Choosing to have kids alone

Sunday Life. Twins. Solo mother. 
Nicky Levigne has two twin boys, 7 months old. location: Bondi beach. 
Make up artist: Melanie Moylan. 
Photo: Edwina Pickles. 13th Nov 2013.

JO HARTLEY Jo Hartley meets three women whose longing for a baby was so great they each decided not to wait for a partner.


Do we need to be stoic for our children?


ANDIE FOX A beginner's guide to coping with all the surprises of single parenthood.

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Parenting myths

Are we responsible for our children's happiness?


SARAH MACDONALD Parenting books say yes, but Sarah MacDonald isn't so sure.

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Birth photos

Birth photo shoots are becoming a trend


KATE FRIDKIS A new poll says one in five expectant mums will consider hiring a 'birth photographer'. Would you?


Introducing your kids to a new partner

Mother and daughter embracing

Robyn Doreian When it comes to introducing a new partner to your children, the experts advise baby steps.

Dad turns son into world's cutest action star


Laura Vitto It sure pays to have a Dreamworks animator dad.

Positive Education

Are we being too kind to our kids?

Drawing by the window

SARAH MACDONALD Schools are banning red pen in the name of positivity, but are we going too far?

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Ben Law

Life lessons from our Asian mother


Benjamin Law and Michelle Law The pleasures and awkwardness of growing up with an Asian mum.

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Australian women turning to Europe for affordable IVF

IVF file pic

ALEXANDRA SMITH Australian women in their late 40s and even 50s, desperate for a baby, are increasingly travelling to Greece and Spain to get pregnant.

Parenting rule to break

Why I let my baby kiss whomever she wants


LAUREN SMELCHER SAMS Lauren Smelcher Sams on why grown ups shouldn't shame little girls for kissing their friends.

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'My Little Pony' ban

9-year-old boy trimphs over 'My Little Pony' backpack ban

Emma Young.

Emma Young It took a child with the 'wrong' bag to pose the pertinent questions about gender stereotyping.


Parenting makes us all hypocrites and liars


Paula Sirois Call it stretching the truth or little white lies or whatever you wish, but the facts are the facts.