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June 26, 2017

This week’s family-related news included a “loving” job for retired judges, a modern “twist” on the school dance, online marriage advice in China, the importance of understanding baby’s needs, a look at remaining hurtles for same sex married parents, a personal essay on transcending transgender marriage, the financial impact of “gray divorce”, surviving your teen’s road to independence, the prevalence of “helicopter parenting” – even in the workplace, a video of a Parliamentarian openly breastfeeding while putting forth a motion and finally extolling the benefits of a “relationship contract”.

Judges for Love Offers Commitments, While Hoping for No Appeals Vivian Wang, The New York Times, June 18, 2017 In his retirement, Justice Marrus has become one of five Judges for Love, a group of former New York Supreme Court justices who perform civil marriage ceremonies for couples who want more pomp and circumstance than is provided by a quick trip to City Hall.

Father-Daughter Dance Gets a Makeover in ‘Modern Family’ Era Marc Silver, The New York Times, June 18, 2017 At Crocker/Riverside Elementary School in Sacramento, the event is now known as a “family dance,” with students able to bring adults of their choosing… “We have a lot of single parents, two moms, two dads,” … “A father-daughter dance doesn’t represent who our parents are anymore.”

China, Where the Pressure to Marry Is Strong, and the Advice Flows Online Karoline Kan, The New York Times, June 18, 2017 Ayawawa… one of several online advice dispensers who have won celebrity in China by tapping into urban women’s anxieties about finding a man to marry.

Cranky Baby? Feeding May Not Be the Right Answer Perri Klass, M.D., The New York Times, June 19, 2017 Results from the trial have shown that when parents got this training, their babies were less likely to be overweight at a year of age; the babies also slept better than those in the control group, in which parents got safety training rather than responsive parenting guidance. “Parents and grandparents are usually open to receiving this information,” Dr. Paul said, but it isn’t necessarily provided as part of standard well-baby care.

Same-Sex Parents Still Face Legal Complications Elizabeth A. Harris, The New York Times, June 20, 2017 But while questions of marriage are largely settled, same-sex couples who choose to have children still face a patchwork of laws around the country that define who is and who can be a parent. This introduces a rash of complications about where L.G.B.T.Q. couples may want to live and how they form their families, an array of uncertainties straight couples do not have to think about.

A Transgender Groom Sees Beyond What He Ever Imagined Alic Custer-Shook, The New York Times, June 21, 2017 I was neither bride nor groom…I dreamed of being seen, of sharing my life with someone who could see beyond male and female, and that’s exactly what Kevin does. He sees me. He invited me to take up space that I didn’t know existed before, and I believe there is healing in that.

A Costly ‘Gray Divorce’ Can Upend Your Retirement Plans Tim Sobolewski & Wendy B. Pegan, CNBC, June, 21, 2017 Among U.S. adults ages 50 and up, the divorce rate has roughly doubled since the 1990s. When divorce becomes part of the financial equation, funding retirement can become more difficult for both parties.

No, Your Teen Doesn’t Hate You. It’s Just Summer. Lisa DaMoura, The New York Times, June 21, 2017 Think of it this way: Teenagers are charged with the impossible project of becoming independent while still sleeping under our roofs. To accomplish this paradoxical task, they distance themselves psychologically in order to prepare to part physically. Adolescents can’t move on without sometimes pulling away, even while living at home.

When Helicopter Parents Hover Even at Work Noam Scheiber,The New York Times, June 21, 2017 But while pundits derided LaVar Ball as the state of the art in obsessive sports dads — an Earl Woods or Stefano Capriati for the social media age — he may actually epitomize a model that extends far beyond the arena: the helicopter parent of the workplace.

Senator Breastfeeds as She Talks to Parliament Video, CNN, June 22, 2017 This is the moment senator Larissa Waters breastfed her baby daughter while putting forward a motion in Australia’s Parliament.

To Stay in Love, Sign on the Dotted Line Mandy Len Catron, The New York Times, June 23, 2017 The latest version of “Mark and Mandy’s Relationship Contract,” a four-page, single-spaced document that we sign and date, will last for exactly 12 months, after which we have the option to revise and renew it, as we’ve done twice before. The contract spells out everything from sex to chores to finances to our expectations for the future. And I love it.”

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