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I have strung words together for The New York Times, Vice, and more. I write and shoot people (with a camera, you guys) from my home in upst...

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    When the STFU Parents blog first came on the scene, parents everywhere were outraged. How dare a childfree woman make fun of us and our precious widdle snowflakes? Moms, Dads, I've got to break it to you ... sometimes our brothers and sisters in parenting are just asking for it. As much as it pains me to admit this (considering I have a 7-year-old daughter), sometimes I'm embarrassed to be a mom. So embarrassed that I read the new STFU Parents book with a box of tissues beside me; some for the tears from my hysterical laughter, some to drown my sorrows that I'm associated with these oversharing nitwits. And when I came out on the other side, I decided it was time to do something about it. STFU's Blair Koenig has got the bizarre world of oversharing covered. But what else is there? What else do parents do that makes our child-free friends squirm? Could I be making the same idiot mistakes?

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    One of Britain's most famous prime ministers of all time has died.  Margaret Thatcher, the first woman to hold the highest office in Britain, was 87. It was a stroke that took the Iron Lady from us, the same ailment that first took her out of the spotlight way back in 2002, when she cut back her public life and the speaking engagements that brought us the quotes she was most known for. Thatcher served from 1975 to 1990 as leader of Britain's Conservative Party, leading the country through the Cold War and a war with Argentina over the Falkland Islands. But the Iron Lady was perhaps best known for her unfailing ability to speak her mind, often cutting right to the heart of the matter. It seems only right to honor her legacy with a look back on the quotes that made her a dominant force in the world:

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    When my kid was itty bitty, I used to dream about the elementary school days. I reasoned I'd be able to say "use your words," and she would, and it would all be hunky dory. No more trying to figure out why a screaming infant is all upset with Mom. Big kids can help you solve their problems! Go ahead. Laugh. I deserved it. Here I am with a 7-year-old and have finally realized that being able to talk just means your kids' outbursts are that much weirder. If anything, knowing why I'm the "WORST MOTHER EVER" just makes me scratch my head. Come on, I can't be the only one dealing with a little angel who quite suddenly runs into the bedroom and slams the door because, OMG, Mom, you DID IT! It's true, I'm the worst mother in the whole wide world. Behold the evidence:

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    Well, it looks like Farrah Abraham may actually get what she's always wanted. Rumor has it a sex tape featuring the former Teen Mom star is being shopped to numerous porn companies. Finally! She can be as famous as Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton! Hey, it's what she seems to be gunning for, doesn't it?

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    Today in everything that's wrong with the way kids are being raised in America: a junior high school in California has banned wearing skinny jeans, leggings, and yoga pants. Well, actually just girls are banned from wearing tight pants. The boys? The boys can wear whatever they want ... the new dress code at Kenilworth Junior High is really just about keeping girls from "distracting" those hormonal teenage boys with their tempting gams.

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    There's tragic news out of Los Angeles this week. Lorna Valle, the mother accused of drowning her young daughters in the family bathtub last year, has died. Police say the mom killed herself in jail where she was awaiting trial for the deaths of 5-year-old Marian and 1-year-old Lindsay. She'd just learned that she would likely face the death penalty if convicted. Some may say good riddance, even celebrate the death of the type of monster who would kill children. But Valle's death only goes to heighten the tragic nature of this entire case.

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    Have you heard? Teen Mom 2 star Kailyn Lowry is moving away from baby daddy Jo Rivera, and she's taking son Isaac with her. Kail's husband, Javi Marroquin, has gotten his assignment from the Air Force, and the whole family is shipping out. Welcome to military life, where PCS (permanent change of station) happens every few years, and the whole family has to adjust. That means that when there are stepkids involved, a military assignment often means separating a child from their biological parent, at least for the majority of the time. So why is poor Kailyn getting a ton of flak from the fans for splitting up Daddy and son? They're even calling her a bad mom!

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    If life were perfect, we wouldn't know the name Marina Krim. She would just be another mom living with her three kids, snuggling up on the couch on a Friday night, reading bedtime stories, playing board games, and maybe yelling once in awhile. But we all know who Marina Krim is, of course, because her former nanny, Yoselyn Ortega, is about to go on trial for allegedly killing two of Krim's three children. So it is that Marina and husband Kevin Krim have come to create the Lulu and Leo Foundation in honor of the son and daughter they lost too soon. So it is that what Marina Krim has to say about motherhood has come to matter in ways that probably even she wishes it didn't.

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    If there's one thing new parents really get competitive about, it's baby's first word. Mom wants the little person she carried for all those months to say "Mama" first. Dad, of course, is working every angle to get kiddo to say "Dada." I've seen parents sit their baby down and spend a half hour (or more!) trying to coax their name out of the poor kid. I hate to break it to the parents who do that, but you're just making yourself crazy. Your baby is going to drop that first big word -- usually sometime after their first birthday -- and what they say is going to be totally up to them. Heck, a quick poll of parents showed kids come up with some pretty goofy stuff. So don't fret if your kid said your partner's name first. You could have gotten one of these:

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    Jenelle Evans must have her local cops on speed dial by now. The Teen Mom 2 star has reported yet another friend to police, this time for allegedly stealing her diary and sharing it with the world. Asked about the diary, she admitted it was hers ... and said friend Julia Knowles is going to be facing larceny charges. Some friendship, huh? To be fair, the entry puts Jenelle in a rather sticky position.

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    My 7-year-old came home excited from school the other day. Apparently during standardized testing, her school is going to allow the kids to chew gum. Great. My kid is being bribed to take yet another test. Way to keep it classy, local elementary school! It's no wonder a mom in Pennsylvania behind a movement to pull your kids out of standardized testing is getting so many followers. Did you even know you could yank your kid out of these tests?

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    Kids and drugs. They're just about every mom's worry. But just how far are you willing to go to keep the two apart? Would you let your 13-year-old be drug tested just so she can take part in extracurricular activities at her junior high? That's the question parents in Marion, Ohio are facing right now. Pleasant Middle School has made drug testing mandatory for any student involved in extracurricular activities. EVERY extracurricular activity.

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    Maybe you make your own baby food. Maybe you pick up a few jars every time you hit the supermarket. Here's something we can all agree on: moms deserve the right to know what their baby is eating. Only a bunch of baby food makers disagree; they want to keep a lead warning off the side of their eats.  Yes, I said lead. In baby food. Ewwwww!

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    You know it's been a bad day on a college campus when the best thing you can say is "at least there wasn't a shooting." Indeed no guns were used at Lone Star College's Cy-Fair campus, at least not by the attacker who allegedly stabbed at least 14 people at the school outside Houston. With the college on lockdown, at least four people had to be airlifted out because of their injuries, and the suspect was only stopped by a brave student tackling him. The reports are unsettling. The injuries scary. But it's impossible to deny the sense of relief that comes when you read reports of critical injuries rather than fatalities.

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    Do you ever read a news story so horrible that you try to convince yourself it isn't true? Take the story of Daniel Reilly. He was a sixth grade teacher in New York City. Was that is, until allegations came out that he'd been sleeping with a young girl, a former student. Oh, but I'm not done. Reilly is a new father of an 11-month-old baby, and cops say he had been having sex with the now 14-year-old victim in the apartment he shares with his wife and baby. And it seems like his wife is standing by him.

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    You know, I was all ready to get on board with the Machiavelli Mom. Trying to blend a family of kids and stepkids after a marriage, Suzanne Evans decided she needed some out-of-the-box thinking. So she turned to Niccolo Machiavelli's The Prince for ideas. She was doing fine until she decided to apply the scheming Italian politician's divide and conquer theory to parenting ... and then things went off the rails. In an article in the Wall Street Journal meant to promote her new parenting book, the Machiavelli Mom admitted she pitted at least two of her kids against each other in a competition over who could fare better in school.

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    Oh moms. Just when you think you've heard it all, someone sets up an Etsy shop and starts selling "breast milk jewelry" made out of moms' own boob juice. And you thought the mom who couldn't throw out her baby girl's umbilical stump was clinging a little too tightly to her memories? You ain't seen nothing yet! Apparently there exists a whole subculture of mothers who need wearable evidence of the fact that they breastfed. And Mommy Milk is happy to cater to them for the low, low price of $64 (that's on the low end, you can go up to $125 for something truly fancy).

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    It's pretty safe to say that if you're on death row and about to sit in the execution chair, you are one sick motha. But Rickey Lynn Lewis, a Texas convict executed this week for murder and rape, takes sick to new heights. In his dying words, Lewis told his rape victim that she should be glad he raped her ... at least she isn't dead. If you're sputtering at the audacity of the comment, join the club. How DARE he?

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    When is the last time you had a good cry? Did you have your dog beside you while you did it? Then grab the tissues, because you're about to get all blubbery when you hear how a soldier was reunited with the puppy he rescued while serving our country in Afghanistan. Tom Burright saw a lot of homeless, sick, and starving dogs in the streets while he was deployed, and when he spotted a little ball of fur out there, he knew he couldn't leave her to die. He brought Lyla back to the base, and you know what happened next.

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    Post by Jeanne Sager
    When my daughter stopped calling me Mommy, I had a much harder time than I expected. It seemed to signal the end of an innocent time. And yet, that bump in the road is one I dare say has better prepared me for the inevitable moment when she doesn't want to call me Mom anymore. This seems to be an even more difficult hurdle for parents. I've talked to moms recently who said flat out that they'll never allow their kids to call them anything but Mom (or Mama or Mommy) because to allow them to deviate is disrespectful. But is it? Is it really so bad to give your kid a little leeway in how they address you? Even to, gasp, let them use your first name?

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