Monday, June 22, 2009

Don't Call it a He-Cession

Check out my column, largely inspired by our conversation Saturday, on men's involved in feminist activism. An excerpt:
The truth is our fates are inextricably tied together, not running on two parallel tracks. When men lose their jobs -- and, indeed, they have at a higher rate than women recently -- American families all suffer, just as they suffer when women are paid unequal wages or fired for missing work to take care of sick kids or an elderly parent. Newsflash: Men aren't from Mars and women aren't from Venus; we're all struggling to make healthy, meaningful lives on the same damn planet -- and it's time we started acting like it.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Photos from Dads, Dudes, and Doing It

It was sort of emotional for each of us in different ways to be talking about our fathers. I was missing mine who died almost 15 years ago, Deborah's pregnancy hormones exacerbated her weepiness when relating her own childhood to the twins she and Marco will soon welcome into the world, Courtney talks about how her father resigned from an all-male club when she was born because he didn't want to belong to an organization that wouldn't allow his daughter to be a member, and Kristal riveted us with her touching story of having used her newly hatched journalism skills to track down the father who had been absent from her life almost since birth and persuading him to attend her graduation with a PhD at age 27. Here we're answering questions after we told our own stories at the Brooklyn Museum yesterday. L-R: Gloria, Deborah, Kristal, Courtney

Here's Elizabeth Sackler, whose vision and philanthropy made this event possible.

Signing books afterward. We appreciate everyone who attended on a rainy Saturday afternoon. Let us know your afterthoughts.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Gearing up for Dads, Dudes, and Doing It with Notes from Daddy Land

In preparation for our Dads, Dudes, and Doing It event coming up, I wanted to share some posts from The Man Files -- a regular feature by author/blogger Shira Tarrant -- over at the group blog I edit, Girl w/Pen. The latest entry, titled "Stuff Hallmark Doesn't Put on Father's Day Cards," is by Men Speak Out contributor, school social worker, community activist, lecturer, and writer and a founder of The Real MEN’s Project, Dani Meier.

As Shira explains, Dani writes about his experience as both a custodial and non-custodial parent. This stuff doesn’t fit neatly on a Hallmark card, but it should! It comes from the heart and speaks to so many, whether we are fathers, have fathers, or watch our children’s relationships with their own dads unfold.

You can read Dani's post right here.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Thank You Princeton!

We had a great event last weekend at Princeton, despite having to compete with raucous reunion festivities. (It turns out that Princeton alumni are very serious about their reunion-ing.)

Some of the great questions/insights that audience members brought up included:

What happens when women become more financially or professionally successful than their male partners? One woman in the audience feels that the contrast cost her a marriage!

We need to expand the work/life conversation beyond "get as much help as you can" in privileged circles. How can we see it as a collective fight, not a personal failure?

Are women biologically predisposed to want to spend time with their babies in a way that feminists don't feel comfortable admitting? An OB-GYN assures everyone that no woman can possibly know how she'll feel (in terms of desires around staying home or getting back to work), until she's in that post-birth moment.

Perhaps the 1970s feminist movement was not as cohesive as it is somehow portrayed to younger women. Would love to talk more about this...

Thanks to the amazing organizers, Amada, Jennifer, and Chloe, and all of those who came out for the event!