Recently, our middle schooler, a rising seventh grader, casually mentioned seeing some of her classmates vaping in a parking lot. I found myself in one of those moments as a mom for which I was unprepared to talk but knew that is exactly what I needed to do: have a solid, but brief conversation with facts.  

I went straight to the FDA to do a little research, and just as I suspected, the newest and attempt to be cool is definitely a harmful choice.  

The facts

In recent years, vaporizers, vape pens, hookah pens, electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes), and e-pipes, all types of Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS), have become increasingly popular among young people. In 2015, more than 3...

I write this with a loving heart and an understanding that you are probably like most other humans with a heart and soul. That means I know you experience pain, regret, sorrow and icky thoughts and feelings of unlovability. It’s gigantic, hard stuff. The kind of gigantic, hard stuff that becomes etched in your spirit and worn daily like a uniform – worn daily as if it’s mandated by some higher authority figure. But what if you aren’t mandated to always wear your mistakes? Imagine the feeling of self-acceptance you could experience with permission to exhale a mistake that you’re holding on to and learn to let it go. Just release it. Learn to accept it as part of your story… but for crying out loud, LET...

There is nothing new about sharing a nude photo with a beloved. You just used to have to go to a seedy photography shop to get your film developed, or use a Polaroid and hand it over. The chances of lots of people seeing the photo were low. Remember needing to spring for double prints? Now, within seconds, thousands of people can see your nude photo depending on which app or website it gets uploaded to. Stats on the prevalence of sexting among teens are unclear, because studies range between 9%-60% (1, 2) of teens reporting that they have ever shared a nude image of themselves. But the stats are boring - what we really need to think about is WHY are teens sexting and are there differences in sexting between boys and girls that we need...

It’s a familiar experience. The landscape and details may change, but the internal experience has no doubt been experienced by each of us. At times, it seems like an unwelcome visitor that insists on showing up. It’s the same for you as it is for her (that girl you think is prettier, smarter, and utterly flawless), but I’ll get to that part later. Just keep reading.

I bet you sometimes fear that you look as clueless in social situations as you feel. Anxiety bubbles from the pit of your pretzeled stomach and you scan the room looking for a sign that you’re not that awkward. You decide you must be because the feeling is so intense. Remember that I’ve taught you feelings aren’t facts. Just because you...

If you use the word vagina when referring to female parts “down below,” let me first say we’re proud of you for NOT using hoo ha, or cootchie, or lady bits… or junk. We’ve come a long way toward creating comfort around using the word “vagina,” but we may have taken it a bit too far. 

“Vagina” is not a catchall term for all the parts that exist in the magical space between a female’s legs, but it’s just one part (albeit an important one) of anatomy among many parts that make up the VULVA - which IS the catchall term for those parts.

Maybe in our puritanical efforts to minimize discussions about our genitals, our foremothers decided to keep it short and sweet: boys have a penis; girls have a vagina. But to be honest, the...

In the last blog, I shared with you the importance of learning to tap into the part of you that is soul. You can’t feed soul through starvation, body-shaming, and unnecessary insecurities. You and I both know that when the going gets tough, for some reason, we become increasingly dissatisfied with our body. I know… I’ve been there. We’ve all been there. I want you to know that it is with with compassion and understanding that I insist that a positive identity can’t be found through the size or shape of your body. Searching for satisfaction through your jeans size will never lead you to feeling loved. It leads to the opposite: It leads to the dead-end road of self-pity and an uncomfortable relationship with food.

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Gone are the days when we pretend that our teenage girls are not immersed in a sexual society.  Finally, we get it. Sex surrounds them, entices them and sadly, in many cases sex defines them. Thanks to likes of Peggy Orenstein and her latest book, Girls and Sex, we have a better look at what the girls themselves are thinking. She provides insight into sexually stimulated world of teenagers in this book written for parents, asks crucial questions, and in my opinion, most importantly shows us that girls are willing and want to talk to us about sex.  

Orienstein interviewed 70 middle class young women between the ages of 15 and 20, both heterosexual and homosexual, a wide range of psychologists, and experts. In this thought...

You’re trying desperately to manage the strangulating pressures of life, and working hard to reject your impulses to feel rejected. You may think the answers can be found in the dying-to-look-like-they-look comparison game. But you won’t find the answers playing the comparison game because (SPOILER ALERT!) the game is fiction. It’s an illusion.

I want to teach you the difference between ego and soul:

So, what’s ego? For the sake of simplicity, think of ego as the part of you that seeks approval, recognition, and the feeling of being special. Your ego wants you to shine. It wants you to have popularity, privilege, and praise. It wants you to go shopping for what-she-is-wearing outfits. It wants you to have...

When my daughter was 14, she started begging to get her ear cartilage pierced. To be totally honest, I have always thought extra earrings were pretty cool, but not necessarily for my young teen. So, I ignored her like I ignored her childhood requests for a pony. She didn’t have any friends who had cartilage piercings; she just thought it looked cool. And to a girl who never really felt “cool,” this was the way she wanted to demonstrate that she wasn’t “just” the stellar student, the responsible big sister, the hardworking, considerate, and helpful daughter. But she was also my child who always had the perfect justification to support her cause, and she was beginning to work her persuasive magic on me.

As I began to consider her...

Did you know that two things can be true at the same time? That’s right! Keep reading and hopefully life will begin looking brighter by simply understanding how to modify a certain type of negative thinking that makes perspectives seem dim and disappointing.

All-or-nothing thinking is the tendency to evaluate a situation in extreme categories. When we judge ourselves, or others, using extreme measures, we decide –consciously or subconsciously – that a situation is all good (perfection) or all bad (failure). Now, if we make all good or all bad our only two choices, and perfection doesn’t exist, then the only choice left with this type of thinking is… all bad. Yep, a big, bad, hideously daunting failure!

So, if you tend to...

Love Math? Cool with menstruation? Make memes? You could be like our SUPERSTAR Communications Intern, Mallory Harris who was just named a 2017 Goldwater Scholar. That means she is one of the most outstanding college students in the nation pursuing a career in the field of mathematics, natural science or engineering. We are so proud of her (even though we can’t take any credit for her awesomeness), we have to tell you more - maybe she’ll inspire YOUR girl!

Although she does a lot of work for Girlology, hanging out with us is just a fraction of what Mallory does! As a junior at the University of Georgia, Mallory entered UGA as a Foundation Fellow (the most prestigious academic scholarship at the university) and is studying...

Have you ever heard the saying “paint yourself in a positive light?” It means make yourself look good… I MEAN REALLY GOOD! And for many on social media, this concept has become so amplified that it actually means TRY TO LOOK PERFECT! Everybody is doing it, right? It’s mind-blowing the measures people will go to in an effort to paint themselves in a positive light. Some take 100 selfies to try to find that ONE perfect picture. Some use an editing app to try to create a perfect, flawless smile and body. Some agonize over the perfect caption to promote the perfect friend group. Some work tirelessly to capture the perfect, relaxed look on that perfect eat-your-heart-out-bet-you-wish-you-were-here vacation.

It’s EXHAUSTING trying to...

Most men admit it – periods freak them out a little. Is it worth the effort to help them overcome their menstrual misunderstandings? What if they were actually supportive – even low key supportive. We don’t need men cheering us on when we start, or making a big deal about our miraculous monthly, but we DO need men to be cool with it and not stutter or cover their ears when we mention menstruation. How nice would it be for him to grab a box of your favorite fem care products when he sees it on sale? Yeah. We have some work to do.

Sure, we women can continue buying our own stuff and managing just fine, right? But for those men with daughters, it’s actually important to help him loosen up when it comes to lady stuff.

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Our phones allow us to find “the best,” “the funniest,” “the craziest,” as we constantly search for something better or funnier in the endless supply of material on the Internet. But have you ever thought about how much time you spend looking for more stuff ... just checking and scrolling?

When we’re constantly looking at and checking our phone, others often feel like we’re looking past them to see if someone better will show up. Have you ever felt like a third-wheel because someone was so immersed in her phone that she missed the plot twist in your conversation? Or you pour your heart out only to get the inappropriately-timed response of “that’s awful?” We all know that feeling. It can feel like your...

Did you hear about that guy in Connecticut who asked his date to the prom by skydiving from 10,000 feet in the air? True story. How about the one on America’s Got Talent? A basic search on YouTube will easily reveal 150,000 plus videos of “Promposals.” The fixation on social media and Youtube has opened the door to showcasing proposals to prom and the idea that we all must outdo each other along the way. I must tell you that I overheard a parent talking to her teenage son a few weeks ago at dinner, and more than these stunts working overtime to attract attention, her words were truly spectacular.

According to VISA Inc., the average family spends nearly one thousand dollars on prom.  One thousand dollars worth of updos, spray...

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