No My Child is Not Stupid. You're Just Not Listening. Child Development 101.


By Grace Runo Wanjiku

I was having dinner with some friends recently. The conversation soon turned to parenting, as it usually does when more than half of the people in a group are parents. One of our younger friends started telling us about how children learn to talk from their parents and that if a child has delayed speech it’s because the parents or the primary caregivers in the child’s life don’t talk much to the child. The rest of us tried to convince him that delayed speech is not always a result of lack of communication at home. He was however adamant and the rest of us just kept quiet and let him have his say. After all, you know how they say it hasn’t happened until it happens to you? We left him alone because we knew he would never understand the struggle of parenting until he became a parent too.

I don’t blame the young man though because I know it is sometimes hard to empathize with a situation you have never had an experience with. Take my case for instance.

How Coming Close to Death Changed These Moms


Stacie J. & her girls/ Sheryl Roberts and her son
By Erickka Sy Savané

Written a few years back, this article about two moms who were forced to pay more attention to their mental health is just what the doctor ordered for Mental Health Month! Please read and take a moment to reflect on whether you're taking care of yourself as you should.

Sheryl Roberts was driving home late one evening when she fell asleep at the wheel. No she wasn’t drunk. But she was tired. So tired, in fact, that she was supposed to be on vacation. The first one in years. But she postponed it because when you’re a commercial actress and you book a mega job, you take it. Especially, when you need the money. So despite the fact that she crashed into a parked car and had a huge laceration on her forehead, she refused to go to the hospital.

“All I could think about was my job, and I still went the next morning even though my head was the size of Shrek,” says Sheryl.

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Tell It Tuesday: Gabrielle Union's 'Breaking In' Will Have You Giving It Up to Mom.


By Ta-ning Connai 

Gabrielle Union was recently spotted wilin’out, throwing things and dropping bodies left and right! NO, not in real life (that'd be so weird) but in her new movie, Breaking In, which was released over Mother's Day Weekend. Instead of the same old “if you try to hurt me, my dad the ex-cop is gonna postpone his retirement, come after you and your crew, I'm gonna go free, and y’all gonna be dead and oh so sorry" flicks, we are finally presented with an exciting, refreshing storyline that's quite believable too.

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Jodie Patterson on Raising a Transgender Child

Photo via GeorgiaNY.com
By Erickka Sy Savané

For many of us just getting an idea of what it means to be transgender (identifying with the opposite sex of that which you are born), the thought of a transgender child is confusing because it poses questions like, is it just a phase and is a child old enough to make such an important decision about his or her identity? And while the majority of us will never have to deal with this issue, the truth is, some of us do, and probably more of us than we think. One of the reasons the topic stays under the radar is not because it’s not happening, but more often because opinions are so strong that parents choose not to talk about it. For Brooklyn-based beauty blogger and mother of 5, Jodie Patterson, staying quiet is not an option. For her, raising a transgender child, the right way, is a matter of life and death. Though I wrote this story a few years ago, it still rings true today, even more so with transgender rights and people being constantly under attack. Hopefully, reading this will give some insight into this under-discussed topic.

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Getting Married and Having Kids in Your Twenties. Big Deal or Nah?


By Kanisha Parks

“I want to be married with at least two children by the time I’m 28.”

At least, that’s what 14-year-old me said. You know how it is—you have all of these life expectations for yourself set long before you even reach adulthood, (many of which are shaped by societal “norms”). You probably knew who and what you wanted to be, what you wanted to do, how much money you wanted to make and when, etc. I mean, these were the kinds of conversations we had during lunch. But things change.

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Swimmie Caps Motivate Black & Brown Kids to Swim

Photos via Swimmie Caps IG
By Winnie Gaturu

Yolanda Flournah-Perkins is a mom on a mission. She is the brains behind the first swimming cap brand to feature images of black and brown kids in a bid to motivate them to take more interest in swimming. The thought initially came when her kids aged 4 and 6 wanted some swimming caps, and she took them to the local retail shop and bought two. Once they got home, the kids were excited to put their caps on, however, when her daughter Bella opened her swim cap, she wasn't pleased. She said it was ugly since it didn't have a picture of a black girl on it. Yolanda told her that she would purchase one for her online, but she couldn't find one featuring a black girl. After searching for two days, Yolanda realized that no such product existed in the market. That's when she did something about it and Swimmie Caps was born.

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8 Times Serena's Baby Olympia Got Our Ovaries Tingling

Serena & Olympia 
By Erickka Sy Savané
For many, the days can seem long and staying UP can be an uphill battle. From #45 to police brutality to the snow storms that keep slamming the East Coast like a pro-wrestler, sometimes we need a diversion. Serena's IG page is a good start. There we can find enough photos of her now 7-month-old sweet-faced baby Olympia to bring a smile to the gloomiest face. Don't believe me, sift through this post and I guarantee you'll be smiling too! You may even try to make a baby....

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Advice to a Mom Whose Daughter Gets Teased for Her Short 4c Hair



By Erickka Sy Savané

As the managing editor of CurlyNikki I read a lot of comments, especially on the Facebook page where folks nowadays seem more comfortable, or maybe it's just more convenient, to sound off. This particular comment and question from a reader was tough to read, and I think anyone would agree, whether a parent or not: My daughter has 4c hair and the shrinkage is real! She gets teased at head start by her peers. They call her bald head and ugly because her hair isn’t long and silky. I try my best to instill in her love for her natural self. She doesn’t feel pretty unless she has crochets in. I was teased a lot in school, and it still has an affect on my self esteem. I’m afraid she’s going to end up the same way. How do we teach our kids to love themselves when we have other kids out here telling them they’re not good enough?

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There's No Space for Vanity in Motherhood

Annette Brown Bravo 
By Dawn Washington

One day I overheard my brother remarking about a family member. "She let herself go," he said.

This particular family member was a mother of multiple children. Prior to her children's births she was the "hot girl." I know because I witnessed the attention she received. Nevertheless, something rose up in me when my brother made that particular comment, mostly because it was incredibly unfair and shortsighted.

This Mom Shares the Key to Getting Kids to Eat Healthy & it Doesn't Involve Force

Jamie & her son left, delicious vege tacos right
By Erickka Sy Savané

For many moms, getting our kids to eat foods that are healthy and good for them is like pulling teeth.  If it ain't fried or dipped in sugar they don't want it. At the same time though, we bare the responsibility because they can't eat what we don't put in front of them. But it doesn't mean that we don't know that eating well is the key to a long, healthy life, and setting up good habits now, while our kids are still young, is essential. So what's a well-meaning mom who wants to do better to do? For the answer we turn to Jamie D. Rhoden, mom of two boys, ages 13 and 14 years old. Jamie has been working at popular, Marcus Samuelson-owned Red Rooster in Harlem for the past 6 years, going from server assistant to supervisor, to working in pastry, and having some of her own recipes featured on the menu. Coming from a background that is Puerto Rican, Jamaican, and Irish, Jamie grew up between Atlanta, DC, and Los Angeles, eating a wide range of delicious foods that she's been passing down to her boys, right along with background stories. Safe to say, her sons eat everything she places in front of them, always have, and she's going to share how we can get our kids to do the same.

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When It Comes To Punishing Your Kids, How Far Is Too Far?


The worst part of parenting is when you have to deal with your child's ill behavior. Every parent wants their kid to grow up into a responsible adult. However, the disciplining part can be difficult especially when dealing with teenagers. Recently, a mom streamed herself online, shaving off the hair of her 14-year old daughter as punishment for being disrespectful. Many criticized her actions citing that it may lead to low self-esteem and even psychological issues. A dad shaved his kid's head into an 'old man' cut because he was acting 'too grown.' This begs the question, how far is too far when it comes to punishing kids?

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AVOID AUNTIE-ISMS: 7 WAYS TO BREAK OUT OF YOUR 40-SOMETHING STYLE RUT

"Cookie"
By Kerika Fields Nalty

As a woman of a certain age, my primary life goal at this moment is to evade the lure of Auntie-ism. What is Auntie-ism? Glad you asked. It’s when a woman over 40, whether an actual auntie or not, begins to dress, behave, look and sound like one of their beloved aunts. It starts with the sweats, or that favorite pair of yoga pants. And if you’re not careful it can escalate to the notorious “mom jeans” or even a moo-moo dress. Once it sets in, constant and inappropriately timed complaints about bad knees and hot flashes are soon to follow...

Pay Up Kiddo! Should a 5-Year-Old Have To Pay Rent?



By Erickka Sy Savané

Making the rounds online like a California wildfire is definitely a topic that caught my eye about a mom, Essence Evans, who shared on her facebook page that she charges her 5-year-old daughter rent. As a mom of two who is constantly asking myself whether I'm doing the right things as a parent, it made me stop and think. Should little kids pay rent? Well, you can imagine that there has been A LOT of discussion, sometimes heated, for and against, from here all the way to the UK! Find out what this mom hopes to accomplish by teaching her daughter that ain't nothin' going on but the rent, and share your thoughts!

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Shena...and Mom Are Naturally Glam!


Shena and Mom
Born in Flint, and raised outside of Tallahassee, Fl, Shena is a social worker, mom, and sister girl who loves hanging out with her friends. She also loves her mom. Find out what makes her naturally glam!

These Chocolate Mommies Of Birmingham Are Taking Breastfeeding To New Heights


Photo: Lakisha Cohill
By Winnie Gaturu 
Some of the best things in life come free of charge; sunlight, oxygen and breast milk for babies. 

Still Struggling To Lose Weight? Maybe It's Time To Get Honest.


By Erickka Sy Savané

I'm looking at a picture of a friend on Facebook, about to throw up my chips. This girl had her baby around the same time as me, yet she looks like she should be on the cover of Fitness magazine and me, well, that's another story. I've been working on this for four years!

Why is it taking me so long to lose this weight?

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5 Things Moms Are Teaching Their Sons About Rape


By Mwabi Kaira

When rape and sexual harassment claims were brought against Harvey Weinstein we knew it was a serious issue but were able to keep it “over there” until Lupita Nyong’o spoke out. It became an ‘us’ thing and we were on high alert. Then Terry Crews spoke out and it was hard to wrap our minds around a man of his stature being violated by another man in front of his wife. But since allegations have recently been brought against Russell Simmons the conversation has shifted to us. Nine women have accused the media mogul of sexual harassment and assault. Four of these women, Drew Dixon, Toni Sallie, Tina Baker and Sherri Hines have accused Simmons of rape and the NYPD has opened an investigation. In response, Russell has started his own hashtag #NotMe to state his innocence.

This is a teachable moment for our sons and we cannot ignore the important conversation that needs to be had. I have taught my sons about accountability since they were young in all areas of their lives including sex. I have many friends who are raising sons as well and I reached out to them to ask what they are teaching them about rape. Their sons range in age from 16 to 21 and are athletes, one plays in the league. We had a long discussion and this is what we are teaching our sons about what they should know about rape...

Signs You're Stressed And How To Deal


By Erickka Sy Savané

4:37 a.m. on a Saturday morning and I'm sitting on the toilet, trying to pee. It’s my third attempt in 60 minutes and try as I might, nothing’s coming out. My bladder feels tight like a balloon filled with water, but somehow my body’s not getting the memo because it just won’t release. Jumping jacks, dancing, nothing has worked so far. Panic is setting in. What if I can’t pee? Two hours later, I'm lying down on a bed in the emergency room at the hospital.

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Is Your Value As A Mom Based On What You Can Buy Your Kids?


By Erickka Sy Savané

“When am I going to start dance lessons?” my 6-year-old daughter asks me at the park, soon after discovering that her new friend just came from ballet class.
“We’ll see,” I tell her.
“That’s what you said the last time.”
“I know,” I reply.

“We’ll see.” I heard that so many times growing up and it always meant the same thing. “We can’t afford it.” Now I’m saying it, sounding just like my mom who didn’t want to make me a promise that she couldn’t keep. But it sucks because as parents we strive to give our kids the things we didn’t have, and when we can’t it can feel like a failure.

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To The People Telling Me To Have More Kids




By Winnie Gaturu

Since my son started walking, I've received a lot of unsolicited advice from acquaintances to complete strangers: "You should have another kid to keep your son company," "You should have a girl," (as if I can determine the child's gender), or the one that bothers me the most..."You should have more kids in case one dies." That's downright disturbing!

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