Real Life

Watch for the 'red triad' of aggressive traits

Violating norms: Amy Adams' character in <i>The Fighter</i> is an archetypal aggressive female.

Helen Pitt   Aggressive and confrontational people who become perpetrators of violence can be easily identified by a "red triad" of personality traits, a Texan researcher told a conference on reducing aggression on Saturday.

Summer Guide

A Fat Lady's Guide To Summer: The beach

The fabulous Tess Holliday flexing at Mooloolaba.

Maeve Marsden   Maeve Marsen goes beyond those well meaning "get a bikini, put it on your body" memes in her first instalment of this summer countdown.

Atlas of beauty

Glorious portraits of women across the world a celebration of diverse beauty

"Beauty is everywhere", says Romanian photographer Mihaela Noroc. This photo shows a Hindu pilgrim at the Ganges River ...

Mihaela Noroc   Beauty is everywhere - and it's all about being yourself, says Romanian photographer Mihaela Noroc.

Over the limit

Why is it so hard to stop after just one drink?

If you don't remember a thing — did it really happen?

Locke Hughes   With alcohol, it's just too easy to have more, especially when you like the way rose tastes on a warm summer night.

Stripping stigma

Working in the sex industry was fine. It's the stigma that hurt

Does society's unwavering belief that only "damaged girls" do sex work become a self-fulfilling prophecy?

Leigh Hopkinson   Does society's unwavering belief that only "damaged girls" do sex work become a self-fulfilling prophecy?

Child exploitation

I unknowingly participated in an orphanage racket

Tara Winkler (seen here with Cambodian children in 2007) set up her own orphanage in  Battambang, in the west of the ...

Tara Winkler   Tara Winkler has been working to undo the damage of her mistake for the past decade.

I'm not the Australian citizen I thought I was

Teresa Mullan has been told she is not an Australian citizen – despite having previously travelled on an Australian passport.

Teresa Mullan   If this is true, I have recently sent in an illegal postal vote.

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Meet Australia's youngest female pilot

Jade Esler took her maiden solo flight on her 15th birthday last week.

Mary Ward   Jade Esler, 15, took her first solo flight on her 15th birthday.

Long face syndrome

If you ask me 'why the long face?' you might be surprised by the answer

Ruby Hamad.

Ruby Hamad   Would you believe the way you breathe can change your facial structure? Ruby Hamad recently found out the hard way.

Sexual assault

I was raped while drunk as a teenager, and I thought it was my fault

"When I most needed a good hug, I went home to the cold shoulder."

My parents only knew I'd been so drunk I ended up in hospital. When I most needed a good hug, I went home to the cold shoulder.

How the campaign started to 'Save Sarah' from a Texas ministry

A photo of Sarah May from a GoFundMe page asking to raise money for legal fees.

Elizabeth Findell   Sarah is a 17-year-old Austin-area girl who extended family members claim was sent to a "gay conversion" boarding school as punishment for taking her girlfriend to a prom.

Rebirth

Why I participated in a fake funeral for myself

Christine Heiyeon Myung before the funeral ceremony.

Christine Heiyeon Myung   Sydney student Christine Heiyeon Myung explains why she decided to take part in this extreme ceremony and what she learnt about her life.

#MaybeHeDoesntHitYou

Domestic abuse is not easier to cope with when it's not physical

Intimate partner abuse of the non-physical kind can be easier to excuse but it is just as wounding.

Jacinta Tynan   To be yelled at, sworn at and, at the other extreme, ignored on a daily basis is easier to excuse. But just as hard to take.

Long Life

Oldest woman in the world credits her long life to being single since 1938

"I didn't want to be dominated by anyone," the 116-year-old Emma Morano said.

Colby Itkowitz   "I didn't want to be dominated by anyone," the 116-year-old Emma Morano said.

Sex work

When will we stop needing to 'humanise' sex workers?

The author of this piece, Kate Iselin.

Kate Iselin   It still stings a little to see the same old stock photos used alongside media discussions of our work, writes Kate Iselin.

Perfection

What a visit to the gynaecologist taught me about perfection

"Contrary to my long-held beliefs, doing an imperfectly fine job isn't shameful or embarrassing."

Olivia Clement   "Contrary to my long-held beliefs, doing an imperfectly fine job isn't shameful or embarrassing. It's liberating."

Housemates

Life with my 93-year-old housemate

The concept of students living together with the elderly is a concept in which both parties benefit.

Gea Sijpkes   An innovative project is pairing university students with the elderly, creating a dynamic that benefits both parties.

Divorce equality

I got same-sex married and now I can't get divorced

By marrying a same sex partner overseas, I have essentially now forfeited my right to marry at all.

Olivia Wilson   Olivia Wilson has split from the person she married in NZ, but they can't get divorced until marriage equality passes in Australia.

Gay minorities speak out against racists slurs on Grindr

Medical student Dustin Mangatjay McGregor.

Beau Donelly   An Aboriginal man has published screenshots of racist slurs he was subjected to on a gay dating app to draw attention to discrimination in the gay community.

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High school reunions

Learning that other people's success is not your failure

romy and michelle

Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen   As high school reunions come 'round, it's easy to get caught up in how much more others seem to have, or have done.

Kirrily Dear

Why I ran more than 500 miles to do something about domestic violence

Kirrily Dear

Kirrily Dear   Too often we doubt our ability to have an impact; especially on the big, complex issues, writes Kirrily Dear.

Before you judge me, here's why I got a Kim Kardashian tattoo

To build a career on a potentially devastating breach of trust, and keep rising when that breach keeps being thrown back ...

Ally Garrett   To build a career on a potentially devastating breach of trust, and keep rising when that breach keeps being thrown back in your face? To me, that’s inspirational.

Treating depression

My empowering choice to go back on anti-depressants

Despite great strides in mental health awareness, using anti-depressants is still too often seen as drastic action - or ...

Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen   Despite great strides in mental health awareness, using anti-depressants is still too often seen as drastic action - or a mark of defeat.

I went without sleep for 194 hours, and I was never the same again

"Until that moment I'd never questioned the inevitability, the inescapability, of sleep."

David Leser   "Until that moment I'd never questioned the inevitability, the inescapability, of sleep."

My daughter survived a brain injury, and then the health system abandoned us

The harrowing experience made a few things crystal clear to Lisa Bryant.

Lisa Bryant   Healing my daughter doesn't finish with physical health. It finishes when that gorgeous brain of hers is functioning as well as it can be, writes Lisa Bryant.

Yassmin's story

Why I've always been obsessed with the idea of being strong

Yassmin Abdel-Magied

Yassmin Abdel-Magied   To my twelve-year-old self, physical strength was the only visible difference between men and women, writes Yassmin Abdel-Magied.

Keeping secrets

The unbearable burden of carrying secrets

The process of disclosing secrets can be deeply cathartic.

Olivia Clement   *And the deeply cathartic process of disclosing them.

Reproductive rights

An illegal abortion killed my grandmother

In a time when women didn't have access to safe abortions, they still happened, often with repercussions that lasted ...

Christine Dinsmore   In a time when women didn't have access to safe abortions, unsafe ones still happened, often with repercussions that lasted generations.

Delivered meals

The simple solution to my shame about not cooking

Clem Bastow made a decision to stop feeling guilty about not cooking for herself.

Clem Bastow   Clem Bastow made a decision to stop feeling guilty about not having the time to cook for herself.

Anxious puppy

Why it's important to be kind to your anxiety

"What we've learned is that our only priority is to comfort the dogs when they've been triggered."

Patrick Lenton   As much as people giggle when we tell them about our puppy shrink, the impact she's had on our entire lives has been astounding, writes Patrick Lenton.

I was diagnosed with a chronic disease most people know nothing about

Given that this coming Sunday  is World Lymphoedema Day, I've decided to come out as a 'lymphomaniac'.

Emma Jane   Given that this coming Sunday is World Lymphoedema Day, I've decided to come out as a 'lymphomaniac'.

Ben Law: Why taxis still stand a chance against Uber

Benjamin Law

Benjamin Law   "I now alternate between the services promiscuously, but I still want to see the taxi industry thrive."

Must motherhood kill your creative career?

Must motherhood kill your creative career?

Alice Williams   Like children, creativity needs to be nurtured in order to thrive. Must women sacrifice one for the other?

The strange grief of losing a grandparent you barely knew

Giselle (centre) with her sister Cybelle, her Bà Nội and Ông Nội.

Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen   It's an odd kind of sorrow, losing someone you barely knew but who was such an important part of you, writes Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen.

There's a reason we need time to be bored

Embracing boredom can make the world seem all the more appealing.

Rosecrans Baldwin   How embracing boredom can make the world seem all the more appealing.

Why loving your mother-in-law is a feminist act

"That very first day, I was terrified. I remember sitting in the passenger seat of my boyfriend's Morris Minor and ...

Jenna Price   37 years after meeting her mother-in-law, Jenna Price is now on the other side of the fence.

Why it's so hurtful when friends complain about feeling 'fat'

Writer Rebecca Shaw

Rebecca Shaw   We can't stop drunken men on the street being awful. But we can stop participating in the vicious fatphobic cycle.

I followed the habits of famous creatives for a month

"There's something fascinating about discovering the routines of accomplished individuals."

Madeleine Dore   And this is what happened.

How I came to terms with anger and vulnerability

Koraly Dimitriadis: "I am warm, shy and timid. Yet if someone pushes my vulnerability button, I can explode."

Koraly Dimitriadis: "I am warm, shy and timid. Yet if someone pushes my vulnerability button, I can explode."

Why you can't always nurture a loved one out of depression

"At some point, I'd decided I couldn't be OK until he was. I wanted to nurture us both back to life."

Dani Fleisher   "At some point, I'd decided I couldn't be OK until he was. I wanted to nurture us both back to life."

True grit: Deng Thiak Adut, the Blacktown lawyer inspiring a generation of new Australians

The Liberals have lost my vote: Former child soldier and now lawyer Deng Thiak Adut.

Mark Dapin   Child soldier-turned-Blacktown lawyer Deng Thiak Adut who touched hearts with his 2016 Australia Day address says derogatory comments by a law professor in 2005 inspired him to succeed.

Pipe dreams

Why hasn’t my band made the Hottest 100 yet?

Red Hot Chili Peppers bass legend, Flea.

Dom Knight   Dom Knight reminisces about the band he never had, and the rock 'n' roll dreams unfulfilled.

Reproductive rights

I'm a successful lawyer and mother, because I had an abortion

"I never felt compelled to talk about it publicly until now, as I witness the erosion of the very freedoms on which I ...

Janice Mac Avoy   "To the world, I am a lawyer who had an abortion, and, to myself, I am a lawyer because I had an abortion."

Body image

Struggling with weight in a fatphobic family

"It's not rude in Vietnamese culture to comment bluntly on other people's appearances."

Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen   What Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen's fluctuating weight has taught her about thin privilege.

House mates

What nobody tells you about living with female friends

friends

Rebecca Varcoe   Why does the prospect of women sharing a home always come with the same warning?

The irony of not wanting to be seen as a 'typical Asian'

"Only now that I'm older do I fully recognise how troubling my younger self's attempted erasure of cultural identity was."

Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen   As a teen, Giselle Nguyen took pride in not being a 'typical Asian'. That is, until she learns a heartbreaking truth.

Ben Law: A lazy person's guide to keeping a diary

Benjamin Law

Benjamin Law   As far back as i can remember, my new year's resolution has been the same. "From now on, Benjamin, you're going to keep a diary!"

Toxic grieving

Why do we turn to vices in times of grief?

"My mum's advice of 'trust your responses' took a back seat once she realised my grief involved a daily ritual of booze ...

Amy Middleton   For Amy Middleton, 2015 was a year of loss, death and grief. And with it, booze and chain-smoking became a daily ritual.

Birth trauma

How PTSD from a traumatic first labour changed my second pregnancy

Researchers in the UK found that women could keep increasing their chances of having a live birth through up to nine IVF ...

Priscilla Blossom   Losing her daughter after a highly traumatic hospital birth left Priscilla Blossom open to anything that might result in a diferent outcome.

Living in exile

The unanchored grief of losing loved ones while in exile

"We wept without a body, without a grave site to focus our attention," writes Huda Al-Marashi.

Huda Al-Marashi   "We wept without a body, without a grave site to focus our attention," writes Huda Al-Marashi.

Name's sake

I won't have my heritage erased by your inability to say my name

Saman Shad is tired of laughing off pronunciation failures of the lazy and insensitive.

Saman Shad   Why Saman Shad is tired of laughing off pronunciation failures of the lazy and insensitive.

Unkown home

The pain of seeing travel snaps from a home I cannot visit

Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen: "It's a strange feeling to miss something you've never had."

Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen   "My heritage shines brightly in my life and yet, I've never been to this place that holds all of my history."

The joy (but mostly embarrassment) of learning a new language on holiday

"Occasionally, a Roman will hear me say ciao and immediately start speaking in perfect English."

Jenna Price   "Occasionally, a Roman will hear me say ciao and immediately start speaking in perfect English."

Day in the life of a pro-choice counsellor

"When people ask about the work I do, it can be difficult to capture it in just a few words."

Sian Jones   "When people ask about the work I do, it can be difficult to capture it in just a few words."

Self Made Project

'How photographing trans guys encouraged me to transition'

A portrait from Parker Blain's series about young trans men.

Amy McNeilage   When Parker Blain began taking portraits of transgender men, the project was as much about his story as theirs.

Invisible disabilities

What it's like to live with an 'invisible' disability

What does disability look like? This might seem like an absurd question. But here's why it matters to me.

Natalie Rose Corrigan   What does disability look like? This might seem like an absurd question. But here's why it matters to me.

On Writing

How I learned to stop writing for old white men

Claire Vaye Watkins is the author of Gold Fame Citrus.

Claire Vaye Watkins   Claire Vaye Watkins admits she used to want people to say 'she writes like a man', which in our culture means 'writes well'.

Why I am keeping my great-grandmother's wedding dress

Why I am keeping my great-grandmother's wedding dress

Heather L. Hughes   "I've never had wedding fantasies, not even as a little girl playing dress-up."

How casual hookup helped me overcome painful sex

Giselle Nguyen: "With every new hookup, it became less difficult to relax. I became more confident, caring less about ...

Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen   "With every new hookup, it became less difficult to relax. I became more confident, caring less about people's opinions."

Girls to Men

Why I decided to go through surgical transition on national TV

Billy now and then.

Billy-Joe Newington   Billy-Joe Newington has become the first person in the world to have phalloplasty surgery filmed and broadcast.