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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.

    man pacifier in his mouthIf I were honest, I would have to say I've always been a wee bit competitive. I didn't want to get "good" grades as a kid. I wanted to be at the top of the class. I didn't want to get into an "OK" college, I was shooting for one of the top schools in the country. And so on and so forth. But I never knew what the word competition meant until I became a mom.

    Since giving birth to my daughter, I've learned that mothers will take any opportunity to one up one another. Don't believe me? This week I read about parents who were challenging one another on whose baby's poop smelled better.

    Really.

    Can we talk about this, moms? Specifically about how STUPID all these "mompetitions" (yup,  it's in the Urban Dictionary) make us look?

    You may think you "won" something when your kid walks at 9 months and hers at 10, but what exactly is it she's losing ... huh? Next time you are tempted to go into a full on "my kid takes a crap and unicorns come running out" brag, I want you to think of the following, m'kay?

    Have you heard moms getting competitive about #4? What do you say?

     

    Image via C.J. Burton/Corbis


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Farrah ArahamWell, Teen Mom fans, I've got bad news and good news. This week's Couples Therapy may have given us the least amount of Farrah Abraham we've gotten all season. That's the bad news. The good news?

    We found out what happens when Farrah tries online dating!

    It's been pretty awkward for Farrah as the only non-coupled up person in the Couples Therapy house ... for obvious reasons. But her single status seemed to be working for her for the first time when the therapists decided to spring a "compatibility" test on the couples. At least Farrah didn't have to do some serious nail biting until the results came in ... or get the shocker that Jon Gosselin and girlfriend Liz got when the test givers declared them "incompatible" (to be fair, is a guy really going to be compatible with a woman who will call him a "p---y" on national TV? Just saying ...).

    Instead, the therapists decided Farrah should fill out an online dating profile so they could judge how she does at picking men.

    But first, she got advice on what she should say.

    Farrah announced on her profile that she wants to get married, but get this, the folks at PlentyofFish.com who were running the compatibility testing actually advised her to take that off so she didn't scare guys off. Instead they told her to say that she wants to "find a relationship."

    Not bad advice for anyone, but especially for Farrah. She has this habit of rushing into things. Remember Daniel Alvarez, the guy she dated on the last season of Teen Mom? They'd barely just met and she was already dropping marriage hints every five seconds.

    So how'd it all work out for her? Welllllll, it didn't. Apparently the guys who checked her out said she was "cute" but didn't want to end up on TV.

    Hey Farrah, maybe that's a sign?

    What did you think of the compatibility tests?

     

    Image via VH1


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    heartsAh, Valentine's Day ... the one time of the year it's almost required to get good and sappy. The holiday may have a bad rap, but I'll admit I love all the mush and gush that comes out on February 14. There's nothing sweeter than someone whispering sweet nothings in their lover's ear, is there? Well, maybe someone trying to find just the right love quote to express what's hidden in their heart?

    In honor of the sweetest holiday there is, how about some romantic quotes straight out of the lovey-doviest of movies to really get you in the spirit?

    I'll confess #11 has always been one of my favorites! How about you?

     

    Image by Jeanne Sager


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Jenelle EvansEver since Jenelle Evans announced she was expecting baby number two with boyfriend Nathan Griffith, there have been a ton of questions for the Teen Mom 2 star. Was this pregnancy an accident? Was it planned? And why, exactly, is Jenelle having another baby when she still doesn't have custody of son Jace?

    Well, the cat is out of the bag! In exclusive clip from tomorrow night's episode of Teen Mom 2, that The Stir has obtained from MTV, Jenelle and Nathan break some major news to her mom, Barbara Evans.

    Get More: MTV Shows

     

    Did you catch the look on Barbara's face? She's not exactly known for holding back (who can forget "I hope ya have fun livin’ in the street with ya booooooyfriend!?"), but man, did it look like she was struggling to stay calm there, didn't it? I give her kudos for keeping it together -- if she did deliver a zinger to Jenelle with that whole "I'm the only mother Jace has ever known" comment.

    What's really amazing, though, is how normal Nathan seems to be ... and how committed. He really seems to think babymaking with a girl who doesn't have custody of baby number one is a fabulous idea. I'm curious to see if they share more of their plans tomorrow night on Teen Mom 2!

    Are you surprised to see Nathan and Jenelle planning the baby the way normal couples do? 

     

    Image via MTV


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Jenelle EvansOK, it's time for MTV to 'fess up! What have they done with the real Jenelle Evans? The girl we're seeing on Teen Mom 2 lately is nearly unrecognizable from the one we saw in seasons 1 through 4. In fact, get this: Jenelle not only did some normal mom stuff with son Jace on tonight's episode, but she actually wanted more!

    Could we be seeing the new and improved Jenelle Evans? It couldn't be coming at a better time!

    The episodes, of course, were shot last year, and we now know that Jenelle is expecting baby number two with boyfriend Nathan Griffith. Well, tonight we found out how that happened -- the two talked about pulling the goalie and making a baby after just two months of dating. Even her best friend Tori was shocked and pretty much told her she was being an idiot, especially with a felony charge still hanging over her head, but since when does Jenelle listen to anyone else's opinions?

    More From The Stir: Jenelle Evans Shares Exclusive Details on Her Pregnancy

    She and Nathan even made the rather brave decision to come out and tell her mom, Barbara, that they were planning to have a child.

    I will say this about Jenelle -- and Nathan too -- it showed a lot of maturity for them to talk about their plans like reasonable adults. In the past, this is the exact kind of thing Jenelle would have hidden from her mom, but she seems to be taking more ownership of her life and her life's choices.

    She's also showing a lot more interest in being a mom, and not just in the babymaking sense. Tonight we saw her take Jace to his swimming lessons and actually ask her mom for more time with him. When Barbara said no, she'd rather Jace come home and rest, Jenelle didn't throw a fit -- something she would have done in the past. She even seemed honestly excited that Jace would get to come visit her the next day, a big change from the days when she was whining about having to get out of bed to actually, gasp, spend time with her child.

    Of course, Jenelle isn't the only one we've seen change -- even if her changes have been some of the more drastic.

    Chelsea has really started to come into her own, especially since starting aesthetician school. She's totally over A-D-A-M, and tonight she even managed to drop Aubree off with her dad for awhile and go on a girls' weekend in LA with bestie Megan.

    Poor Leah, however, had to say goodbye to HER bestie. Kayla has been there through it all -- she's a regular on TM2 -- but now she's married and moving to Vegas to be with her military husband. Now Leah is alone without her husband OR her best friend around to help her with three kids.

    And then there's Kailyn. She made the big move to Delaware ... without telling Jo! Their court case is still up in the air -- in fact, they're going to meet with a mediator next week (from the looks of the promo) -- but she decided she doesn't want to be away from her own military hubby any longer. After Javi closed on their house in Dover, close to where he's stationed by the Air Force, she packed up their apartment and slipped out of Pennsylvania with Isaac.

    Risky move! Judges don't tend to look too kindly on that kind of thing. But then, Javi has a point -- it doesn't make any sense for him to be away from HIS baby and for Jo to be away from his son. Shouldn't one kid at least get to spend full time with dad? And as long as Kailyn makes sure Isaac still gets to spend as much time with Jo as he did before the move, it's not like Jo is missing out here. It's Kail and Javi who have to do extra driving!

    What do you think of the way the girls have changed? Who has changed the most?

     

    Image via MTV


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Farrah AbrahamWhen this season of Couples Therapy started, it's safe to say most people hated Farrah Abraham. Boy have things changed! The Teen Mom may still not be the fans' favorite, but after tonight's private therapy session with her mom, Debra Danielson, you'd have to have a heart of stone not to feel at least a wee bit bad for her!

    The show got started with a confessional group therapy session where some of the stars shared their most heartwrenching childhood memories. Taylor Armstrong and Sada Bettencourt recalled seeing a lot of abuse in their homes, while Farrah talked about being the direct victim of abuse.

    Turns out when Farrah was a kid, her parents ignored her most of the time. They'd drop her off with someone whose name was bleeped out (although it sounded like a relative as she said "my" before the bleep), and that's where Farrah recalls being abused. But when she'd tell her mom, Farrah claims she got no help.

    Now we all know Farrah likes to over-dramatize things, and I'll admit I kind of rolled my eyes a little when she started crying ... AGAIN.

    But then her mom showed up for their special session with Dr. Jenn Berman, and I remembered why I actually came around to liking Farrah way back in her Teen Mom days. Her mom is a b---h.

    Plain and simple.

    We saw a clip of her smacking Farrah from Teen Mom, but when Dr. Jenn tries to call her on getting physical with her daughter, first she tries to deny it ... then starts blaming Farrah for basically asking for physical violence. Uh, what, now?

    Oh, and remember how Debra got arrested back in the Teen Mom days for getting physical? She tried to pin the blame for that one on Farrah too, saying that Farrah lied to the cops.

    But I seem to recall Debra having copped to her part in all of that way back when ... and now she's changing her story?

    More From The Stir: Farrah Abraham Finds Out What Men Really Think of Her

    Basically the whole session was a disaster with Debra refusing to show a little human compassion for her own daughter. All we got was a lot of her being righteously indignant that Dr. Jenn would dare call her out. Meanwhile Farrah had to sit there with a mom who knows her kid is in therapy and STILL won't step up as a mom

    The hardest part came when Dr. Jenn flat out told Farrah she'd have to grieve the fact that she'll never have the mom she wants ... and Debra more or less did nothing! What a cold-hearted you-know-what!

    It seemed like she was more interested in being there to put on a show of being a supportive mom than to actually be one and help her kid out.

    Why do you think Debra came out to the Couples Therapy house if she wasn't going to open up to Dr. Jenn?

     

    Image via VH1


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Farrah Abraham Being FarrahHoly flashback Batman! It's been nearly a year since the last episode of Teen Mom appeared on MTV, but the network isn't any more ready than the fans to let the original cast go. This weekend they treated us to not one, not two but three "Being Teen Mom" specials to get a glimpse at what the girls are up to these days. And the first one to air was Being Farrah, a look at what Farrah Abraham is up to these days.

    You know ... in case you've missed the 349 million tabloid articles, sex tapes, and other reality shows featuring the former cheerleader turned household name. To be honest, this episode wasn't so much an update on the life of Farrah Abraham as it was a look at what her choices have done to her little girl, Sophia.

    Has Farrah completely screwed up her toddler's life?

    Welllll ... not quite as bad as all Farrah's haters would expect. Phewwww!

    Despite the pacifier permanently plugged into her mouth, little Sophia has turned into quite the talker, and she's already writing her own name. And in addition to filling her daughter in on way too much information about her beauty routine -- Mommy's going to her aesthetician today to look younger! -- Farrah spends car rides quizzing her tot on math problems like a normal engaged mom.

    More From The Stir: Farrah Abraham Finds Out What Men Really Think of Her

    She even steps in when her daughter throws a (normal for a toddler) fit and puts her in time out ... just like most moms of 4-year-olds would do.

    So far, so good, right? Sophia has a pretty normal toddler life between pre-school and dance class and a bedroom full of stuffed animals.

    Which isn't to say it's all roses and clover at chez Abraham.

    Farrah has purchased a gorgeous house in Austin, Texas for her little family, and her dad Michael is now crashing in the guest house. Farrah has her own office in the house, complete with a giant blow-up of her infamous Girls & Corpses magazine cover and even a shot of the cover of her sex tape. Did I mention this office is a spot in the house where Sophia gets to spend time? Even Skypes with Grandma with the big picture of half-nekkid Mom behind her?

    Then there's Farrah's own tanning booth in the house, and of course she tells her 4-year-old she is going to go tanning tonight. Because that's a totally normal conversation to have with your toddler daughter, right? Not setting disturbing beauty ideals into her head at all, right?

    Sigh.

    Honestly, the problem isn't that Farrah is a bad mom.

    She really seems to be TRYING to be a good one, and for that I give her a ton of credit. She honestly seems to think that all the choices she's made are for the best of her family and says that the mistakes she's made will help her protect her daughter from making the same ones. I can't argue with her there. 

    The problem is that Farrah is still a very immature 22-year-old who doesn't necessarily see the very distinct possibility down the road of all of these decisions biting her in the rump.

    Take what she says when an MTV producer asks her what happens when Sophia finds out about all her sex industry business -- Farrah says no one would bring up her sex life to her kid unless they're "sick and twisted" and therefore don't belong in their life anyway. Uh ... does she remember middle school? Heck, bullying -- and inappropriate conversations -- start a whole lot younger these days! It isn't sick and twisted adults who are likely to ask Sophia about her mom's sex tape ... it's going to be other kids.

    Not to mention Farrah already has the challenge any teen parent has of trying to encourage their kids to "do as I say, not as I did" when it comes to teen sex, but now she has to add sex tapes to to that list of things not to do.

    Something tells me things will not be easy for Sophia as the years go on, but Farrah does deserve credit for the things she's doing RIGHT. At least she's trying. 

    What did you think of Sophia's tantrum? Does she seem like a "normal" kid to you?

     

    Image via MTV

     


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Catelynn Lowell Being CatelynnFans of Teen Mom's cutest couple have been begging MTV to bring Catelynn Lowell and Tyler Baltierra back to the small screen ever seen the show went off the air back in spring 2013, and it's finally happened. FINALLY! MTV aired Being Catelynn this weekend, and folks, we got the answer to the question that's been hanging over these two young lovers' heads for months now.

    ARE Cate and Ty ever going to tie the knot? The answer is ...

    YES!!

    The wedding that Tyler called off in a Couples Therapy episode last year that made us all cry buckets is back on ... eventually.

    Pause for your happy dance ...

    Back?

    To be honest this special about Catelynn and Tyler was a little hard to watch.

    More From The Stir: 'Being Farrah' Recap: Farrah Abraham Hasn't Screwed Up Her Daughter ... Yet

    It opened with them still unsure about the state of their wedding, and MTV was surprisingly open about how much of a role producers play in the "reality" of the show. At one point, Catelynn's younger sister, Sarah -- who is now living with the couple in the house they purchased together -- asks if they'll ever get married. A fight breaks out, and after Ty storms into the house alone, Catelynn tells an off-camera producer that she does NOT want to talk about the wedding right now.

    It seemed as if this was the big issue on the agenda for the network, and at times Tyler came off as a real jerk for stringing Catelynn along. He loves her enough to buy a house with her, enough to be engaged to her ... but he can't commit to a wedding date? Come on, dude!

    At other times it felt like MTV was purposely trying to make Tyler look like a bad guy as he was guilted over and over into having the conversation about when he was going to finally settle down with Catelynn.

    It's hard to say if either is true, but it did make for some tough watching, especially because these two have earned their status as fan favorites. We LIKE Tyler. We don't want to see him as the bad guy or see him suffer a guilt trip. The same goes for Catelynn. We like her, and don't want to see her as the nag ... or see her get hurt.

    One thing that was clear throughout was how much these two really have invested in the other and the genuine love that's there, even when the other can't see it.

    At one point Catelynn takes apregnancy test -- she took out her Mirena IUD because of a cyst on her ovary and despite using condoms with Tyler, several days of throwing up have her a little worried. It turns up negative, but when her mom asks if Catelynn thought a pregnancy scare would speed up Tyler's decision, she's quick to say she would NEVER pull something like that on him.

    Good for her!

    In fact it's Tyler himself who figures out what is really going on. As he admits to his mom, he's just scared of marriage in general, but it's not about Catelynn.

    He then asks for her ring back, and in one of the cutest moments in Teen Mom history, gets down on his knee and re-pops the question, while promising to commit.

    Good thing, too ... Catelynn had to plunk down more than $700 on the wedding dress she'd ordered or risk losing it! Now we just have to hope that MTV will let us see her actually wear the thing down the aisle.

    What did you think of Tyler's proposal? Would you watch a full spin-off show with these two?

     

    Image via MTV


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Amber Portwood Being AMberOf all three "Being Teen Mom" specials MTV aired this weekend, Being Amber may be the one fans wanted most. Catelynn Lowell and Farrah Abraham may not have been on the network in more than a year, but the two haven't been locked up inside a prison either. We've gotten to know what they're up to. Amber Portwood, on the other hand, has managed to fly almost completely under the radar since being sprung from prison in November.

    But as we've suspected since a camera crew was spotted outside the Rockville Correctional Facility on the day of her release, MTV had it all on lock. We finally got a look at what a re-entry to normal life was like for Amber, and yes, the amazing moment that she reunited with daughter Leah was captured by the MTV crew.

    It may have been called "Being Amber," but I have to be honest: this episode was all about little Leah for me. Amber admitted she only got to see her now 5-year-old daughter three times during her 17-month stint in the women's correctional facility.

    So where did Leah think Mom was? Apparently she knew Amber was in jail -- we even heard her use the word to dad Gary Shirley. But it's hard to say just what the little girl thought that "jail" means, or if she really understands that her mom is back.

    More From The Stir: 'Being Catelynn' Recap: Tyler & Catelynn Answer the Question We're All Asking

    Amber's disappearance definitely did a number on her daughter.

    Snuggled up with Amber, ready to fall asleep, on their first night together, the little girl leans over and asks "Are you gonna be here when I wake up?"

    Another time she tells her mom she'll be over to visit the next day and asks, "Will you be at jail?"

    Heart. Wrenching.

    To Amber's credit, she absolutely gets what she did wrong. Remember the Amber Portwood who wouldn't take blame for anything? Not even punching her boyfriend on national TV, desite the video evidence?

    We didn't see her on Being Amber. The closest she came was getting a little pissy with Gary when he starts playing emotional games with her (see ... some things NEVER change), but she kept her cool. 

    The only time Amber really does lose it is about Leah. She left the room to cry in private, away from her daughter and the cameras, and you can hear her telling a producer she screwed up her daughter because she was too busy getting high.

    It's sad to see a humbled Amber, but let's face it, this is exactly what Leah needs -- a mom who gets what SHE needs. As Gary says, not unkindly, "Prison's one of the best things that's happened to you."

    It's true. Prison might have confused that little girl, and Amber will have to do a lot of work to help her daughter adjust, but she's got the tools to change things. Now she needs to do what she told her brother Shawn she plans to do -- take the money she's getting from media appearances and sink it into college tuition so she can open the rehab facility she's talking about.

    What do you think it will take for Leah to trust Amber again? Can she be a good mom this time around?

     

    Image via MTV


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Santos Elena Ruiz SolanoA baby is dead, and prosecutors say the infant was killed by her own mother. But the claims being made by a Long Island housekeeper show the prosecution of Santos Elena Ruiz Solano will be anything but easy. The maid charged with murder claims she was raped.

    Upsetting? Certainly. But if it's true, does it matter in the long run?

    Solano, who came to the United States from Honduras six months ago, is charged with murder after police say she delivered a baby girl in her employee's bathroom, killed the infant, and then stuffed her in a bag. The 26-year-old allegedly gave the bag to her husband for disposal, but he became suspicious and looked inside the bag. The husband and employer are the ones said to have called police.

    More From Our Partners: Father Kills His Own Son in the Most Disturbing Way

    Medical examiners have determined the baby was born alive and alleged she had three skull fractures that would have required “significant force.” Solano, on the other hand, is contending the baby was stillborn, and her lawyer claims the fractures came from falling against the toilet bowl during delivery.

    The latter is a little hard to believe, and it certainly sounds like mom should be in trouble here ... big trouble.

    But how does the rape claim play into all of this?

    More to the point: should it play into all of this at all?

    Certainly no one gets a pass on killing a baby -- if that's what happened here (remember, we're still in allegations territory; no one has been convicted).

    But the defendant's state of mind always plays into things, and few things can upset a woman's apple cart like rape. A rape victim can experience everything from post traumatic stress disorder to suicidal tendencies.

    Making choices about what to do with an unintended pregnancy is hard enough for a woman who was a willing participant in a sexual encounter is hard enough. Add rape to the equation, and it can be darn near paralyzing for a woman. Not to mention Honduras is a country known to have some of the strictest laws in the world regarding emergency contraception. "Dealing with" the aftermath of rape would not have been easy for this woman.

    If Solano was truly raped -- that's up for her lawyers to prove -- it wouldn't be a reason to kill a baby. There is no such thing. 

    But it would certainly create sympathy for the defendant, wouldn't it? Maybe even call for some lenience in sentencing?

    What do you think of the mother's claim here? Should she be given any sort of consideration for her ordeal?

     

    Image via Suffolk County Police


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    number oneMaking the decision to stop at one child is not an easy one to make. Even years after you've made a no-turning-back-now choice like a vasectomy or tube tying, you're bound to stumble every now and then again on something that makes you ask yourself "Did I make the right choice? Is my only child going to have a harder life because I didn't give her siblings?"

    It doesn't exactly help that everyone and their grandma has an opinion on only children. Not sure if you made the right choice -- or still debating? This might help! We looked at what the scientists -- not your nosy neighbor -- have to say about only children!

    1. They're happier. Plenty of kids love their siblings, but not all! In fact, scientists at the Institute for Social and Economic Research found that sibling rivalry makes for unhappy kids! In their study, more than half of kids with siblings reported being victims of bullying ... from their own brother or sister! Not so for only children, who the researchers say were happier because of more pleasant home lives.

    More From The Stir: 20 Completely Unselfish Reasons Moms Stop at One Child

    2. They struggle in kindergarten. Well, struggle socially anyway! When Ohio State researchers looked at how kindergartners make friends, they found that those without siblings were consistently rated as having "poorer" social skils than their peers.

    3. They're more likely to divorce. Growing up without siblings may give you more time to study your parents' marriage, but that doesn't mean you'll be better at it. Ohio State researchers found that having siblings reduces your risk of divorce. In fact, each additional sibling (up to seven) reduces the likelihood you'll divorce by as much as 2 percent!

    4. They could be criminals. When researchers in Finland looked at criminal patterns, they found the risk for violent crimes later in life was elevated among the only children, especially if they were male! There was no bigger risk, however, for non-violent offenses.

    5. They get higher grades. Worried your only child won't do well in school? Stop worrying! According to a study published in the American Sociological Review, siblings actually hurt a child academically. In fact, the more siblings a child has, the harder it is for them to make good grades. Say researchers, "As family size increases, parents talk less to each child about school, have lower educational expectations, save less for college, and have fewer educational materials available."

    6. They're not lonely at all. So #3 might have been troubling, but have no fear! By fifth grade, researchers find that onlies' social skills have developed so well that they're on par with their peers when it comes to finding friends.

    7. They're depressed teenagers. OK, not all of them. But studies have found that having a sister (although not necessarily a brother) can protect adolescents from feeling "lonely, unloved, guilty, self-conscious and fearful."

    8. They're typically nicer than their peers. Thought your only was bound to be a brat? Actually social psychologist Susan Newman, an expert in only children, says the lack of siblings makes onlies more inclined to WANT to be included, and thus they're more willing to go with the flow than their peers.

    Which one of these is true for your child?

     

    Image by Jeanne Sager


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Motherhood readiness testSo, you think you're ready to be a mom, huh? What kind of questions did you ask yourself: am I financially viable, is my partner on board, do we have room for this baby? All good markers of motherhood preparedness, I suppose, but let's get real for a second.

    It isn't until I had a baby that I realized all of the above was only the beginning. Was I ready for the kind of sleep deprivation torture the folks at Gitmo only wish they'd dreamed up? Ready to catch vomit in my hands?

    More From The Stir: 16 Grossest Things Parents Do for Their Kids

    Ah yes, if you think having a savings account and a mortgage is proof positive you're ready to be a mother, let's just say you've got some learning to do! So let's get you there, shall we?

    Can you pass these 15 test questions? Even #12?

     

    Image via someecards


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Lea Michele Naya RiveraIt was starting to feel like Glee was never coming back, but it finally happened! Fox served up the first episode of 2014 this week, and with a title like Frenemies, we should have known the episode was going to have some explosions. But after the year Rachel Berry has been through, who would have expected she'd bear the brunt of the worst of it?

    She's gone from being a NYADA student trying to make it in the big city to the leading lady in a big Broadway production, of course. But tonight Rachel found out that her Broadway break isn't going to be all puppies and rainbows.

    She's got a problem.

    And her name is Santana Lopez.

    Saw that coming, did you?

    I have to say it was awfully strange how Rachel and Santana went from more or less despising each other (um, hello, Santana took Finn's virginity) back in the day to being besties last season. I understand the writers needed a convincing way to put her back on the show, and moving her to New York and into Kurt and Rachel's loft seemed like it made the most sense. But the appeal of Santana had always been her nasty edge, and it was about time she got her bitch switch flipped.

    And it definitely has. Dealing with the troubling aftermath of shooting a Yeast-I-Stat commercial and with no other projects lined up, Santana decided to burst into the auditions for Rachel's understudy on the show and nailed it. Facing the marketing gold of selling two young girls from the same high school finding success on the biggest stage on the world, the director casts her immediately ... and destroys Rachel in he process.

    So much for escaping Lima and all the things that were holding her back ... here her big bully is now moving in on her big break.

    I know some Gleeks could take Rachel or leave her because she can be a little pushy and self-centered, but put yourself in her shoes. Remember the one kid you couldn't stand in high school? Now imagine you are finally working your dream job, doing the one thing you've always wanted to do, and you go in one morning to find that kid sitting at the next desk?

    You'd be devastated, wouldn't you?

    Rachel moving out of the loft over it all doesn't seem so bad when you put it in that context, does it?

    It will be interesting to see if Rachel can hack it or if she folds under the pressure, letting Santana get the part she really wants.

    Did you think Rachel over-reacted or would you have done the same?

     

    Image via Adam Rose/FOX


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Jenelle EvansOK, quick raise of hands. Who thought it was crazy for Jenelle Evans to be planning a pregnancy when she just had an abortion? You too? Well then this week's episode of Teen Mom 2 should have you saying "told ya!"

    Tonight Jenelle ended up with a positive pregnancy test. Only problem?

    She couldn't tell if it was her body picking up leftover hormones from her last pregnancy ... or if boyfriend Nathan Griffith had actually put a new bun in that oven. Ay yi yi.

    Turns out it was a false positive, so no baby ... yet (we all know Jenelle's pregnant in real life, right?). Jenelle cried, but Nathan made sure to cheer her up by telling her they'd have to practice at least three times a day to make sure she really is pregnant next time.

    Ewww!

    I know, I know, after last week's episode I said Jenelle seemed to be straightening out, and hey, a pregnancy scare from a girl who is in a relationship (who has told people she wants a baby!) is a lot less scandalous than shooting heroin, right? But still it seems Jenelle should be listening to the people around her who are telling her she's moving WAY too fast with Nathan.

    More From The Stir: Amber Portwood's Daughter Has a Heartbreaking Question for Mom

    If she'd at least waited until the post-abortion pregnancy hormones had cleared out of her system, she never would have ended up in a doctor's office crying!

    Of course it wasn't all about Jenelle tonight. We got to see the aftermath of Kailyn's move to Delaware in the midst of her custody battle with Jo.

    Mama got good news -- she and Jo compromised on nine days with Dad for Isaac (he had been spending eight with the Riveras), and she got the green light for the move to Delaware. Unfortunately it took going to court for that to happen. Kailyn tried to strike the nine-day deal with Jo at home to save them lawyer fees and time, but he was too busy being stubborn to say yes.

    Unfortunately the news wasn't so good for Leah, whose husband got a medical layoff from his job after passing out at work. Jeremy came home early to see a doctor about headaches he's been having, only to get the pretty nebulous diagnosis of "stress." Gee, a father of three (well stepfather of two of them) and primary breadwinner is stressed? Tells us something we don't know, doc!

    The medical scare does mean that Jeremy is going to try to find a job closer to home, which should be good for Leah (who, surprise, surprise, is also stressed!), but you can already see the strain this is all putting on their marriage. No doubt sparks are going to fly at some point in this season.

    Then there's Chelsea, who threw a big birthday party for Aubree and even agreed to let Adam come over to say happy birthday on the big day. Adam seemed to follow Chelsea's request that he not bring up his brand new baby on Aubree's big day. But he pulled a real jerk move when he asked the 4-year-old if she wanted to go with him ... when he knew she had to stay with mom that day. So much for a second baby making him more mature, huh?

    What did you think of Barbara's reaction to Jenelle's pregnancy test? 

     

    Image via MTV

     


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Loretta SaundersDoes life imitate art or is it the other way around? It's a question as old as time and one that certainly applies in the tragic death of a pregnant college student this week. Loretta Saunders went missing two weeks ago when she went to collect rent from some troublesome tenants. The 26-year-old criminology major had moved in with her boyfriend and was renting out her old place to help cover the cost of getting her degree.

    But that visit to get her money may well have cost the college student her life. Her body has been found some 450 miles from her home in Canada.

    It's sad. It's tragic. And when you consider the subject of Saunders' thesis, it's particularly chilling.

    You see, Saunders was studying missing and murdered Aboriginal women as she pursued a degree at St. Mary's University.

    Did the little hairs on the back of your neck just stand up?

    I'll go a little further. Saunders was Inuit, and Inuk people represent about 4 percent of the total Aboriginal population in Canada. She was, quite literally, studying her own end ... only she didn't know it.

    Now, of course this is not why she died -- she died because some sicko (or sickos) decided to kill a woman who was three months pregnant and abandon her body on the side of a highway. (Cops have arrested her tenants, Victoria Henneberry, 28, and her boyfriend, 25-year-old Blake Leggette, for allegedly stealing Saunders' car, but as yet they have not been identified as suspects in the pregnant woman's death.)

    But it certainly drives home why her work was so important, doesn't it?

    Our hearts go out to her family at this tough time. Hopefully her killers are brought to justice soon.

    What do you make of the way Saunders' life work is tied to her life's end?

     

    Image via Help Find Loretta


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Lynn AckerMom, what's more important: having more time with your kids or having quality time with your kids? It's not a question we ask ourselves very often, but a Minnesota mom has had no choice. Lynn Acker has three kids, and she has been undergoing cancer treatment for the past seven years.

    But just recently, the 37-year-old decided it's over. No more treatment. She's going to enjoy the time she has left with her boys.

    As she told a Minnesota TV network:

    I may not see my 40th birthday, I may not see next year, but I know I will have the last three months -- if that's what I'm given -- where I get to run around with my boys.

    How you doing over there? Managing to hold back the tears? Because I'm finding typing is slow going at the moment ... I'm too busy wiping them away.

    I've only read a news story about Lynn Acker, watched a video of her, and yet, I'm already convinced she's an amazing woman and an amazing mom. The choice she's making may not be one for everyone, but it's the right one for her and for her family. Cancer treatment might extend her life, but it won't save her, and it's making it hard for her to be with her kids and be the mom she wants to be.

    More From The Stir: I Didn't Tell My Kids I Had Breast Cancer

    Her decision has me, a mom who realizes she is blessed to be healthy, thinking a lot about what matters to our kids. It's not how much money we make by working late; they'd rather have us home, snuggling on the couch. It's not how many things we buy them; they'd rather have us in the backyard kicking a soccer ball around.

    Sadly, not everyone gets to be at home on the couch with their kids or out in the backyard with them. Lynn Acker won't get to do that much longer. But the fact that she's getting to do it at all is because of the very tough choice she's made, and it's the stuff her boys will remember forever.

    Should every mom stop fighting cancer for that quality time? Of course not. Every situation is different. But for those who do make that brave choice, they should know the gift they're giving their child is a wonderful one.

     

    Put yourself in Lynn's shoes. What would you do?

     

    Image via CBS Minnesota


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    fireAmerica, it's time we have a talk. Pretty much anyone with a pulse has a Facebook page these days (seriously, anyone, I've seen babies with their own social media accounts). The trouble is, having a Facebook page and knowing how to use a Facebook page responsibly are two wildly different things, hence the reason people are constantly getting fired ... for being stupid on Facebook.

    Think "constantly" is exaggerating? Well, try this number on for size: 8 percent of American companies say they've actually fired employees for social media mishegas. Don't want to be one of them?

    Here are some of the craziest Facebook postings that have gotten folks canned. My advice? Don't try this at home ...

    1. It may be impossible to get one of the guards at Buckingham Palace to crack so much as a smile when they're on duty, but when they're off duty, watch out! An 18-year-old working the gates at the famous landmark lost his gig at the royal wedding when he referred to Kate Middleton as a "posh bitch" in a rambling (and poorly spelled) rant shortly before the "I dos."

    hur and william drove past me on friday n all a got was a shitty wave while she looked the opposite way from me, stupid stuck up cow am a not good enough for them! posh [b--ch] am totally with u on this 1 who reely gives a f*** about hur

    2. When you work in customer service, you may want to be careful how you refer to customers ... and keep the racism to a minimum. Too bad a DTE Energy Company worker didn't get that memo. Here's the expletive-filled rant that got her canned back in November:

    Got to work this morning and we currently have 275,000 customers without power! White people in Oakland county are b****** right now ... they got f***** up lol...And don't call me acting a g****** fool...I will hang up on yo a**!  ***THIS HAS BEEN YOUR DTE REPRESENTATIVE PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT***

    3. Waitstaff don't always get the respect they deserve, and no doubt they have it hard. But if you're in the business of bringing folks food, creating a Facebook page called "Don't F--k With Servers" might not be the best way to boost tips. A Duffy's Restaurant in West Palm Beach canned the guy who created the page ... right after he ranted about a 10 percent tip on a big bill.

    4. Got a big mouth and not afraid to use it? Then maybe a job in child welfare isn't for you. Here's what got one Oregon child protective services worker fired in 2013:

    So today I noticed a Self-Sufficiency client getting into a newer BMW. What am I doing wrong here?

    5. Teachers, take heed! School districts don't exactly look kindly on racist rants on Facebook like this one that lost an Ohio teacher his job:

    I don’t mind if you come from the ghetto to trick or treat. But when you whip out your teeny [genitalia] and [urinate] on the telephone pole in front of my front yard and a bunch of preschoolers and toddlers, you can take your [N-word] ass back where it came from. I don’t have anything against anyone of color, but [racial slur] stay out.

    6. If you're in the military, here's a hint, you might want to be careful when talking about the president, at least when it comes to being directly insubordinate to your boss! One Marine got an "other than honorable" discharge in 2012 for saying:

    Screw Obama. I will not follow all orders from him.

    7. A Wal-Mart employee found out the hard way last fall that posting a photo of customers with racists slurs is a good way to get a pink slip. The photo showed two Muslim women in full burqas, with the following:

    Halloween came early this year ... do they really have to [f--kin] dress like that ... your in my country ... get that [f--kin s--t] off!!!!!

    8. Sometimes work can be a little, well, boring! But a teenager found out the hard way that you don't share that information with the world ... lest your boss finds someone else who appreciates the paycheck that comes with said boredom a bit more than you do!

    9. Employers don't look kindly on drug users on staff, something a 21-year veteran dispatcher for the Wisconsin city of West Allis MIGHT have thought of before she announced she was addicted to "Vicodin, Adderall, quality marijuana, MD 20/20 grape, and absinthe" on her Facebook wall. Dana Kuchler said it was a joke, but the city didn't care -- she lost her job.

    10. Threatening violence to the president won't just make you look like a moron ... it can also get you in trouble at work. Just ask the Texas fire captain who lost his job on the squad for posting a photo of President Obama with a noose around his neck!

    11. If you've ever been to a doctor's office or hospital, you've probably signed some paperwork about HIPPA -- the law that protects your privacy as a patient. But that doesn't mean healthcare workers always follow it! A California health center had to fire not one, not two, not three, but FIVE nurses back in 2010 for posting personal information about their patients.

    12. Patient information isn't the only thing that nurses should keep off Facebook. One staff nurse lost her job after 12 years at a medical center when a co-worker spotted this on her page:

    Instead of spending my birthday celebrating, I will be working all night cleaning up feces. I loathe that effin heffer!!! Burn in hell you effed up spawn of satan. I curse you and wish you a lifetime of pain and suffering. That is not enough, right now I would give anything you small you down and pound you to unconsciousness. ‘Tang ina* mo!!!!!

    Thanks to the effin heifer who royally effect up my schedule, not only am I working Mothers Day, my birthday and my anniversary. And this Friday, I will be getting the smallest paycheck I had in 12 years due to the 17 percent pay cut we had to endure.

    13. When you think team mascots, you probably don't think of a guy who makes hardcore decisions for the team ... and maybe the Pittsburgh Pirates Pierogi should have thought about that before he posted this status that took him outta the game in 2010:

    Coonelly extended the contracts of Russell and Huntington through the 2011 season. That means a 19-straight losing streak. Way to go Pirates.

    14. Pulling an anti-Semitic prank? You might not want to put that online. A New England Patriots cheerleader had to hand in her pom poms back in 2008 when the team learned she'd posted photos of herself, a pal, and a passed out friend ... who had two swastikas drawn on his face, plus the words "penis" and "I'm a Jew."

    15. Waitress Dayna Morales made front-page news around the world when she posted a photo of a receipt with a gay slur on it that she said was directed at her (she's a lesbian). The only problem? It turns out Dayna made the whole thing up! No surprise her bosses fired her for the stunt, huh?

    What is the dumbest thing you've ever seen someone post on Facebook?

     

    Image by Jeanne Sager


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    Farrah AbrahamThe hits just keep on coming for Farrah Abraham on Couples Therapy, don't they? Last week it was her mother who flew cross-country to be a total jerk to the former Teen Mom star on camera. This week VH1 brought in Farrah's ex-boyfriend, Daniel Alvarez, to help Dr. Jenn Berman get to the bottom of what is wrong with Farrah. 

    Not a bad move -- she showed up without a boyfriend for couples therapy, and then when they tried to have her do some online dating, no guy would come on camera. The producers needed to produce a real live guy to actually address Farrah's relationship issues, and Daniel agreed to be filmed by MTV way back when, so they knew he'd probably say yes.

    But it would have been a lot better if the guy stuck to actual relationship issues!

    More From The Stir: Farrah Abraham Hasn't Screwed Up Her Daughter ... Yet

    Instead Daniel came in and attacked her parenting!

    He wasn't completely mean; he started off by saying he was attracted to Farrah's "kind heart" and that they had fun together prior to their breakup on Teen Mom. Daniel even admitted that while Farrah is rude and blunt, he doesn't think she realizes she's doing it much of the time ... something that was awfully similar to what Dr. Jenn has been saying on the show. But then he started talking about Farrah's (now 5-year-old) daughter Sophia:

    I guess suggestions for Farrah: to be honest, true with herself and to be foremost the best mother she can be to Sophia.

    OK, so that's not so bad, right? Actually, it's kind of sweet! Farrah did introduce him to her little girl when they were dating, and he was cool with her having a kid ... so it's nice to know he wants the best for the child.

    But then came this:

    She should make better decisions in raising Sophia and set a better example for Sophia. That's my honest opinion.

    Ouch!

    Do a lot of people think it? Sure. But picking on someone's parenting, to their face, is pretty harsh. Especially when you consider Daniel -- as far as we know -- doesn't have kids. So what's a single dude doing doling out parenting advice?

    It's not really surprising that Farrah did not want to shake his hand when he left or that his comments about Sophia really seemed to shake her up. And even Dr. Jenn said that "anything that even comes close to criticizing a mom" is very painful. 

    Did Daniel go too far? What did you think of his other comments?

     

    Image via VH1


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    dumpsterA teen mother who gave birth in her bathtub is being accused of abandoning her newborn baby in a dumpster, but in a surprising turn of events, it appears likely the young mom may end up getting custody of her son anyway. The little boy's story made headlines recently when a construction worker discovered the baby, with his umbilical cord still attached, in a plastic bag in the trash. The Good Samaritan has been credited with saving the little guy's life, and the mother has decided to name the child Carlos in his honor.

    Yup, that's right, the mother still has rights to name her child. In fact, under Texas law, she still has a ton of rights ... regardless of the callous way in which cops say she abandoned the child.

    According to a representative of Child Protective Services, the girl is the child's biological mother, and unless (or until) a court terminates her rights, she gets to vie for custody. In fact, TV station KHOU reports the young mom and her family have up to a year to prove they're fit to care for this child.

    Shocked?

    I'm not ... but I'm also raging mad.

    Sure, the mom is just 16, and that has to be taken into account when considering what happened to this baby. She was likely a dumb, scared kid. Not to mention the girl claims she thought little Carlos was dead when she put him in the dumpster, which softens the cruelty of this move.

    If I were the mother of a 16-year-old who gave birth, I'd probably want to step in and try to get custody of my flesh and blood.

    And yet ... I can't say I'm not disturbed by a law that would grant custody to anyone who wrapped a newborn baby in a plastic bag and threw them out like yesterday's dinner. The thing is, this law is pretty general. It's not specific to immature teen moms. If I'm reading it right, ostensibly this could apply to a 37-year-old woman who did the same thing.

    Surely that would be outrageous, wouldn't it? We wouldn't be saying, aww, she's just a kid ... we'd be out for blood, and rightfully so.

    If wrapping a living, breathing human being in a plastic bag and throwing them in the trash isn't enough to make you lose custody of your kid forever, I have to ask ... what is? How close do you have to take a child to the brink of death before you're cut off?

    I'm not a perfect mom; no one is. But as a mother who tries her darndest to take good care of her kid, I'm disgusted by just how much the courts will let bad parents get away with. I recently had a chat with a lawyer who spends a lot of time in family court in New York State, and his assessment of what a court views as a "bad" parent was downright depressing. In his view, if you aren't shooting heroin EVERY DAY, basically you're A-OK in the court's eyes.

    Putting kids back with parents is a priority. I get that. I'm also well aware that our foster system is teeming with kids who are in need of homes, and our social services system is overwhelmed. But that's not the kids' fault!

    They deserve a little better, deserve laws that favor their well-being over anything.

    Take the teenage mother out of this equation and ask yourself -- is a law that would give a mom a chance to get a baby back after this a little too generous to parents? Or should every parent get a chance to prove themselves fit regardless of how bad the abuse and neglect?

     

    Image via dailyinvention/Flickr


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    Post by Jeanne Sager.

    removing makeupOf all the things that have to change after you have kids, the amount of time you have to devote to yourself is near the top of the list. Goodbye good night's rest and an hour or three to luxuriate in a bath on a weekend before going out. Hello sleepless nights and throwing your greasy hair up in a ponytail. Beauty routines when you're a mom are often all about what's quick and easy and what you have on hand.

    Which, believe it or not, is a LOT! Look around your house -- you may not have the money to splurge on yourself anymore, but your house is brimming with baby beauty products ... which aren't just for baby. Turns out everything from baby oil to baby shampoo can be re-purposed to do some pretty awesome things for mom too.

    If you're into saving money (and who isn't?), these beauty hacks will change your life, Mom!

    More From The Stir: 10 Beauty Hacks That Save Every Woman Time (And Money)

    Number 7 is a total game-changer, isn't it? Which baby product have you found yourself stealing from your kids?

     

    Image via sunshinecity/Flickr


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