Rant

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    I hate to burst your bubble on hump day, but I have some discouraging news to share, working moms. We're damned if we do and damned if we don't ... and I have scientific proof.

    According to a new study, flexible schedule requests at work are benefiting dads more than moms. A sociology professor at Furman University surveyed nearly 700 people and the results were shocking: Dads who ask for a flexible work schedule or to work from home twice a week are viewed as more committed, more competent, more worthy of a promotion, and ... get this ... more likeable compared to equally qualified moms who ask for the same thing.

    But wait ... it gets worse.

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    I am about to bring up a subject that will make me pretty unpopular, but I can’t help it. Please, moms, pretty please ... do not wear Hello Kitty pajamas to school dropoff this year. It’s not cute ... not even on your little girl (unless it’s pajama day, then it’s adorable). 

    Why do you avoid getting dressed like you avoid the scale after a vacation week of bingeing on candy and carbs? Why? It’s not that big of a deal. (A quick seven-pound gain is scary ... been there.) Let me tell you something: It takes the same amount of effort to slip on a pair of leggings, a nice top, and boots as it does to put on sweatpants, a hoodie, and sneakers. Really, it does. Oh, except the boots zip and the sneakers tie, so I will save you precious time. And you will look damn good at drop-off.

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    Last week Gene Simmons of KISS apologized after making some harsh statements about depression and suicide -- two weeks before Robin Williams' death. They were insensitive, essentially saying to those suffering from depression that the world is harsh and to deal with it or just kill yourself. After Williams' passing, Simmons apologized for what he said, hopefully realizing that those facing depression need support to get help and do not deserve to be harshly criticized. Sadly, another celebrity rock star has made some new comments on depression, this time directly attacking Robin Williams.

    Henry Rollins slammed Williams for what he did to his children when he ended his life. He also added that he no longer takes anything Williams did seriously.

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    Pete Wentz has managed to outdo himself as a card carrying member of the crazy celebrity baby name club. His first child with ex Ashlee Simpson, Bronx Mowgli, was a doozy. But second time around his kid registers on the highest richter of the playground teasing scale. Pete Wentz and girlfriend Meagan Camper named their son ... wait for it ... Saint Lazslo.

    Saint Lazslo Wentz. 

    Poor baby.

    Unless they're enrolling Saint Lazslo in some underground playgroup with North West, Bear Blu, and Blue Ivy with teachers who get paid to stifle their snickers and sarcasm, he's in for it.

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    Recently I met a 3-year-old who said, "It's nice to meet you, Ms. Dutton." I was floored -- my 4-year-old typically greets strangers with a stony silence and a suspicious stare. Still, what jarred me most about this kid's behavior was not just the level of courtesy, but how she addressed me as "Ms." followed by my last name

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    It's happened again. A month after a mom was arrested for daring to let her daughter play in a park near the McDonald's where she works, another mother has been slapped with a pair of metal bracelets for leaving her kids in a park to play. Only Ashley Richardson's story is especially heartbreaking.

    According to cops, the mother of four kids ages 6 through 8 was at the food bank picking up something for her family to eat while her kids played. While she was gone, her 8-year-old tried using a toddler swing and got tangled up, which prompted a call to the fire department. When Mom returned, cops arrested her.

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    There is a "new" convenient sleep training method that parents with too many sleepies in their eyes have somehow bought into. Dubbed the "Jassey Way" after the pediatricians who wrote the book on it, this method boasts that parents can get started on this before baby's one month birthday. The idea: don't feed baby during the night and eventually they will learn that they are not getting fed and so they will sleep and parents can sleep.

    I love to sleep. I would go to sleep right now if I could. But when you have a newborn, sleep (as you once knew it) just isn't part of the routine. And that's because babies need food every two or three hours in those early months to grow. All this nonsense about ways to help newborns sleep through the night really should be about parents who will try anything to be able to sleep through the night themselves without their pesky baby waking up.

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    Hold on to your seats, ladies, because this news will make you lose your freaking minds. According to a new survey by vouchercloud.com, men believe that women should become mothers by age 25. Meanwhile, women think that the proper age to have a first child is 31.

    Take a moment and let that sink in. Apparently, the quarter-century mark is the most timely age to become a mother ... according to the gentlemanly folk, at least.

    I think I'll pass, thankyouverymuch.

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    Just because Robin Williams was famous doesn't make it okay for anyone to treat his death with so little respect -- regardless of what that person may think of suicide. The actor's 25-year-old daughter, Zelda Williams, may have found some initial comfort in the many sweet and compassionate messages she received on her Twitter and Instagram accounts after her father committed suicide Monday. Sadly, the few Internet trolls who make it a priority to hurt others with their nasty comments were enough to inspire her to quit using her social media accounts -- at least until she heals.

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    Moms, hold onto your smartphones, we're in for another bumpy ride. This time it's a pediatrician who has overtaken the Internet with yet another diatribe about parents who spend too much time with gadgets in their hands and -- in her mind anyway -- too little time paying attention to their kids.

    Sure, some of what Dr. Jane Scott has to say in her now viral essay, "Parents, Put Down Your Smartphones," is worth pondering if you're a parent. But added to other rants of the same ilk that have popped up over the past year or so on the Internet, it's hard not to feel like people like Scott often miss the forest for all the trees.

    Smartphones have changed parenting. Sometimes for the bad.

    But it's time some acknowledge that just as often, smartphones have made life better for kids and parents alike.

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