Issuu on Google+


Odds of a child becoming a top fashion designer: 1 in 7,000 Odds of a child being diagnosed with autism: 1 in 110

H

V Some signs to look for:

No big smiles or other joyful expressions by 6 months.

No babbling by 12 months.

No words by 16 months.

Jo

To learn more of the signs of autism, visit autismspeaks.org

*2 tio Dis

Š 2010 Autism Speaks Inc. "Autism Speaks" and "It's Time To Listen" & design are trademarks owned by Autism Speaks Inc. All rights reserved.

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E V SA % *

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R

IE

E U S

IS

M E R

IN EVERY ISSUE

P

11

The Big Q

13

Seen and Heard

51

Likes and Yikes

THAT COVER 14

She’s Her Own Boss and Loving It

Elianne Ramos, Marketing Maven CEO By Natalia Lopera

18

Beth Daley: Environmental Watchdog

By Lindsey Hoshaw, aka Garbage Girl

28

Reflections

How the Media Has Impacted Our Self-Image

36

5 Tips to Self Improvement

Body, Mind and Spirit By Laura Fenamore

43

A Shot of Testosterone

Mike Robles, Emmy Award Winning Comedian

Want more? Go to THATmagazineforwomen.com FollowTHATmag

Copyright 2012 THAT magazine for women LLC.

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FOR YOU 56

Book Reviews

60

Recipes from the Farmers' Market By Cara Clarke

YOU, THE MEDIA AND YOUR...

og

23

Money

By Julie Murphy Casserly

24

Legislative Beat

By Jessica Mason Pieklo

40

Parenting

How a child’s self-esteem is affected and what we can do about it By Cara Clarke

44

Rosie the Riveter:

WWII Symbol of Women's Empowerment By Beth Silverman Landau

FOR FUN

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64

Poet’s Corner: “Wonder Mag”

By Elle Amberley

02

10/10/12 5:39 PM


10 reasons

to take a walk today

01

You will feel energized, with a boost in mood. Your clothes will fit better.

03

It’s cheap. No membership fee!

04

You will hear your own thoughts—if you leave your earbuds at home.

05

You will look better naked.

06

Your cheeks will grow rosy—both sets.

07

You will process stressful thoughts.

08

Your awareness will switch to ON.

09

You may have better orgasms. (Doctors say so.)

4 •

Walk because you can. Our dear readers who can’t walk will tell you so.

November/December 2012

ThatMagFile 2.indd 4

MANAGING EDITOR Rebekah Sweeney COPY EDITOR Susan Free CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Jessica Pieklo, Julie Murphy Casserly, Traci Salisbury, Meghan Lemery, Natalia Lopera, Marta Moran Bishop, Terry Gibson, Robbie Kaye, Elle Amberley, Cara Clarke, Laura Fenamore, Mike Robles, Lindsey Hoshaw, Beth Silverman Landau, Elin Stebbins Waldal COVER PHOTO Julie Briceland

02

10

PUBLISHER Rebekah Sweeney

THATmagazineforwomen.com

ART DEPARTMENT Randy Major MANAGER OF SALES Nora Canon PHOTOGRAPHERS Christine Gacharma. Kelly Cantu PRODUCTION Gavin Advertising WEBSITE www.thatmagforwomen.com Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest @THATmag4women

ADVERTISING RATES For current advertising rates, contact the sales department Phone: 717-814-8032 info@thatmagazineforwomen.com THAT magazine for women LLC 2536 Eastern Boulevard, Suite 413 York, PA 17402 © November/December 2012 Vol. 1 Number 1 Copyright 2012 THAT magazine for women LLC. THAT magazine for women is published bi-monthly. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from its publishers is strictly prohibited. THAT magazine for women is not responsible for content that represents the individual opinions of writers. Co-Founder, Marlene Lang ISSN 2165-6568

10/10/12 5:39 PM


T:7”

T:10”

You don’t have to be perfect to be a perfect parent. There are plenty of teens in foster care who would love to walk an extra block for you. 1-888-200-4005 • adoptuskids.org

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Publisher's Note Let us explain what THATmag for women is. And why it is. First, why: Because sometimes the choices are not between bad and good but between, what seems, bad and bad. That is when we women need to go deep, to drop far inside ourselves to find the sacred chutzpah, which can be identified in that dark place by its furry bunny ears dispensing invisible rays of courage. We are here to lend encouragement for your search. There is a serious backdrop to all we do, but no one needs to know. Our meditation sessions are secret and sneaky. We make people wonder what brand of energy drink we imbibe, or if we engage in yoga and mountaintop prayer. THATmag is a magazine that acknowledges women’s social conscience without being preachy. One that dares to address her spiritual quest without condemning her eye for fashion. We had noticed that our world seemed presently to be toggling between dog-eat-dog and dog-feed-dog philosophies and that the devouring pack was ever at the door. We knew women like ourselves who were a simmering source of compassion and empathy. And that women genuinely wanted to be a force for good in their worlds. We believe that our times call for women to show that they are strong enough to be gentle when necessary or to be tough bitches when that is called for.

“ We have inherited a world full of hungry and sick children who exist alongside unimaginable wealth. Is it weak for women to rise up and wail about it? ”

We are serious: We have inherited a world full of hungry and sick children who exist alongside un-imaginable wealth. Is it weak for women to rise up and wail about it? To take those children under their wings, like hens? To call for an end to the greed and the fighting that continually create these conditions? We don’t think so. Nor do we mind that in the midst of the mess, women want to be pretty and talk weight and shoes. As female insiders, we know that women have much more going on. And yet, shoes and makeup and hairdos and relationships are going on. THATmag for women is a means of encouraging women to be all that they are: body, mind, and heart. Enjoy our premier issue. We look forward to sharing our publishing journey with you.

Rebekah Sweeney Publisher

6 •

November/December 2012

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THAT

Contributors

Marta Moran Bishop lives on a small farm in Massachusetts with her husband, horses, and cats. She is the author of The Between Times, A Poet’s Journey: Emotions, and Wee Three: A Child’s World. Stacey Burroughs is an outpatient psychotherapist and mental health consultant. She specializes in trauma, addictions, at risk youth and families and women’s issues.

Julie Murphy Casserly (CLU,ChFC, CFP) is a 16-year veteran of the financial services industry and has often been referred to as a financial healer.

Cara Clarke is a parent of four, teacher, writer, and organic farmer. She co-owns Thyme Stands Still Farms, in the beautiful Finger Lakes, with her husband.

Laura Fenamore is on a mission to guide women around the world to love what they see in the mirror, one pinky at a time.

Terry Gibson is an activist, author, editor, survivor, traveler and lover of life. "I love learning and will never stop: I think they call that being a ‘professional student.’"

Lindsey Hoshaw is an environmental journalist based in Boston. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, the Boston Globe, and Forbes, among others.

Robbie Kaye is a photographer living in southern California. She is the coauthor of Rendezvous with Light, a book of her photographs and poetry by Carol Muske Dukes, California Poet Laureate.

Beth Landau is a student, teacher, and writer based in Pennsylvania.

Meghan Lemery is a psychotherapist practicing in Upstate New York. She is also a columnist for Saratoga Today and the author of Please Pass the Barbie Shoes.

Natalia Lopera is originally from Columbia and a freelance journalist and translator in Arizona.

Traci Salisbury is an adventurous lady who travels the globe. She is a travel writer for Go! Girl Guides and calls many places "home".

Elin Stebbins Waldal is an author, speaker and an advocate for healthy relationships. She is the author of Tornado Warning, A Memoir Of Teen Dating Violence And Its Effect On A Woman’s Life. THATmagazineforwomen.com

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BIG BIGQ THE THE

IfIfyou youcould could be be any any age again for one age again for one week, week,what what age age would wouldyou you be? be? Why? Why?

21! 21!I would I wouldraise raisemore morehell hell&&give givemyself myself more more pieces pieces ofofheaven. heaven.Heidi HeidiGraf Graf

35 35- the - thetime timethe thekids kidswere werebetween betweendiapers diapers and and pre-teens. pre-teens. And Andwe wewere wereallalltotally totallynaive naiveabout aboutlife. life.Linda Linda Gruber Gruber

23 23- was - wasa atime timeofoflaughter, laughter,pushing pushinglimits, limits, really really liking liking and and rerespecting spectingwho whoI was, I was,and andfeeling feelingexcited excitedabout about the the future. future. Lesley LesleyMerrifield MerrifieldJacobs Jacobs

If IfI could I couldknow knowthen thenwhat whatI Iknow knownow, now,18 18.. IfIf that that wasn’t wasn’t possible, I’d remain remain50. 50.Age Agehas hasbrought broughtso somany manythings things that that no no part part of my youth worth worthredoing. redoing.Jane JaneDevin Devin I’m I’mwith withJane. Jane.At At49 49, ,I Ihave haveno nowishes wishesto to go go back back to to any any other age. I’mgood goodwith withwhere whereI Iam, am,no noregrets, regrets,no no longings longings for for times times past. Laurie I’m Laurie Bunker Bunker

18- The - Thesummer summerafter afterhigh highschool, school,and and before before college. college. I was skinny and 18 and didn’thave havea acare careororworry worryininthe theworld. world. Heather Heather Moyer Moyer didn’t

I wouldgo goback backtoto21 21. .I Iwas wasexpecting expecting our our first first child, child, things things were were good good I would financiallyfor forususand andoverall overalljust justaagood good time time in in my my life. life. Katie Katie Hartman Hartman Mcfinancially McCleery Cleery

25- Not - Nota akid kidanymore anymorebut butstill stillonly onlyresponsible responsible for for yourself. yourself. Ginny 25 Ginny Hogan Hogan Veneziano Veneziano

21 - nokids.. kids..awesome awesomebody..all body..allI Ihad hadto to worry worry about about was was work work and 21 - no and school. school. JulieTiffany Tiffany Julie

19- for - for a week would be great. It was a LOT of fun, and I was responsible for 19 a week would be great. It was a LOT of fun, and I was responsible for

very little. I didn’t have to account to anyone for anything, lived in a city where very little. I didn’t have to account to anyone for anything, lived in a city where I could disappear from every single person on Earth for days, and made decisions I could disappear from every single person on Earth for days, and made decisions based on whims. Devon Forrest based on whims. Devon Forrest Right now, sometime before 16. No bills to pay! Jessica Rawlings Right now, sometime before 16. No bills to pay! Jessica Rawlings

Nextissue issue Big Big Q: Q: Next

What rights should the father have if his unmarried girlfriend wants an What rights should the father have if his unmarried girlfriend wants an abortion? abortion?

Please post answers to thebigq@womenontheverge.net for a chance Please post in answers to thebigq@womenontheverge.net for a chance to appear our January/February issue. to appear in our January/February issue.

THATmagazineforwomen.com

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7"

The to-do list in Beth Hoyme’s purse will never get done because a drunk driver convinced his friends he’d be fine.

Photo by Michael Mazzeo

10"

Friends Don’t Let Friends Drive Drunk.

NOTE TO PUB: DO NOT PRINT INFO BELOW, FOR ID ONLY. NO ALTERING OF AD COUNCIL PSAs. Drunk Driving Prevention - Magazine - B&W - DDDDP-M-09093-A “Purse” 7x10 110 line screen

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SEEnAnD hEArD:

Olympics-Athletics-Sprinter sounds clarion call to Afghan women

Afghan Tahmina Kohistani was by some distance the slowest runner in the Olympic women’s 100 metres preliminary round on Friday but it was a 14.42-second triumph given the obstacles she had overcome just to be in London.

22%

The majority of women (single, married or with a partner) are the primary breadwinners in their homes, according to a 2012 study of 1,410 women and 604 men by Prudential. Among women who are married or living with a partner, 22% report making more money than their husband or partner, the study shows.

Epublishing Rapidly Expands, Amid Uncertainty

Sales of ebooks and the devices on which people read them—ereaders, tablets and smartphones—are on a steady upward trajectory, according to a new emarketer report.

Urban dictionary: Cheesin’

Smiling artificially and excessively largely, as if a picture is being taken of you. man, I had to lie to my parents last night and I was cheesin’ hard!

Male Birth Control Possible?

JQ1 Compound Decreases mice’s Sperm Count, Quality. The compound initially made to help in the fight against cancer could also hold promise for a reversible form of male birth control, scientists say.

QUOTES wE wILL mISS ThEm:

I took back my life. Etta James

Tranquilizers work only if you follow the advice on the bottle - keep away from children. Phyllis Diller

All adventures, especially into new territory, are scary.

I try to write parts for women that are as complicated and interesting as women actually are. Nora Ephron

The connections between and among women are the most feared, the most problematic, and the most potentially transforming force on the planet. Adrienne Rich

Sally Ride

Beauty can’t amuse you, but brainwork reading, writing, thinking - can. Helen Gurley Brown

13 ThatMagFile 2.indd 13

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with marketing

E

lianne Ramos grew up around

strong, wise Hispanic women who not only guided by example but turned her into one, too. That sĂ­ o sĂ­ (yes or yes) mentality led her to become an NBC Latino and Huffington Post columnist, a dynamic public speaker, a social media powerhouse, and an entrepreneur. Above all, it instilled in her a sense of social responsibility to help the Hispanic community by drawing on all of her talents. Growing up in what she calls a modest background in the Dominican Republic, with her mother and aunts working and taking care of kids, and her grandmother managing the family farm, Ramos quickly adopted the work ethic that would lead her to success. After moving to the United States and gaining 16 years of marketing and communications experience, working with corporations including Procter & Gamble and Panasonic, Ramos started her own business, Speak Hispanic, to help companies reach Latinos in a culturally appropriate manner. The 40-year-old also kept in the vanguard of technology and became

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maven and CEO Elianne Ramos by Natalia Lopera vice-chair of marketing and public relations of Latinos in Social Media, or LATISM, a nonprofit that utilizes social media for social good. Her expertise in this area is also why other companies such as ad agency Pandolfo Perez Inc. seek her expertise to infuse their marketing campaigns with Twitter, blogs, and the like. Ramos talked to us about her work and community involvement from her home office on Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, where she now resides with her teenage daughter and husband. THATmag: When did you move to the United States? Elianne: I came here when I was 16. The Dominican Republic is not necessarily an ideal place, and my parents decided to come here to build a future for us. Ultimately, I think they wanted us to come and study here. THATmag: What did you study? Elianne: Communications, film, and media, with a specialty in advertising and a minor in arts, at City College of New York. THATmag: How often do you go back to the Dominican Republic? Elianne: I’ve been here since 1988, so it’s going to be 24 years, and I’ve only

been there twice. I’ve been busy, or I prefer to go somewhere where I have not been before, and my family comes here all the time. THATmag: You mentioned that you want your marketing business to have more of a social mission. Elianne: I’ve been choosing, for several years now, projects that have some aspect of social meaning. I find myself in a great position, actually, to fully dedicate myself to that. Instead of using my skills for selling beer, I’m going to use them to help organizations increase their visibility and the effectiveness of their communications. THATmag: You’ve been writing for the Latino Voices section of the Huffington Post for about a year, and you’ve been contributing to the Hispanic news website NBC Latino since June. What kind of articles do you write? Elianne: Everything that I write has to do with the Latino community. Sometimes I write about technology, sometimes about education, you know, you name it. A lot of the articles also have to do with civic engagement––that’s a topic I’m very passionate about. You’ll see that also in the LATISM blog, where I write, too, and the conversations I have online with people have to do with the Latino community.

THATmag: So you got your social media start using Twitter back in 2008, when you used to write about Hispanic businesses for Examiner.com. Elianne: I started asking questions about my articles, and I would get hundreds of responses. I come from advertising, so Twitter became my private focus group, where I would ask questions and get all these answers, opinions on things about what I wrote, and for free. I started doing that more and more, and the rest is kind of history. THATmag: Has your involvement in these different media brought an issue to light or helped effect change? Elianne: It’s hard to gauge. What I’ve been trying to do when we have chats online through LATISM is to make people aware that there’s so much going on, but we all have a role in changing things for the better. We get from 300 to 1,000 people, and you see that people are fired up, and say “Tomorrow I’m going to do this” or “I’m going to pass this info to my aunt.” It’s raising consciousness (through social media), not just laughing about a picture of a cat. THATmag: Is your work influenced by your upbringing or background? Elianne: In many ways, yes. They (my

THATmagazineforwomen.com

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maven and CEO Elianne Ramos by Natalia Lopera vice-chair of marketing and public relations of Latinos in Social Media, or LATISM, a nonprofit that utilizes social media for social good. Her expertise in this area is also why other companies such as ad agency Pandolfo Perez Inc. seek her expertise to infuse their marketing campaigns with Twitter, blogs, and the like. Ramos talked to us about her work and community involvement from her home office on Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, where she now resides with her teenage daughter and husband. THATmag: When did you move to the United States? Elianne: I came here when I was 16. The Dominican Republic is not necessarily an ideal place, and my parents decided to come here to build a future for us. Ultimately, I think they wanted us to come and study here. THATmag: What did you study? Elianne: Communications, film, and media, with a specialty in advertising and a minor in arts, at City College of New York. THATmag: How often do you go back to the Dominican Republic? Elianne: I’ve been here since 1988, so it’s going to be 24 years, and I’ve only

been there twice. I’ve been busy, or I prefer to go somewhere where I have not been before, and my family comes here all the time. THATmag: You mentioned that you want your marketing business to have more of a social mission. Elianne: I’ve been choosing, for several years now, projects that have some aspect of social meaning. I find myself in a great position, actually, to fully dedicate myself to that. Instead of using my skills for selling beer, I’m going to use them to help organizations increase their visibility and the effectiveness of their communications. THATmag: You’ve been writing for the Latino Voices section of the Huffington Post for about a year, and you’ve been contributing to the Hispanic news website NBC Latino since June. What kind of articles do you write? Elianne: Everything that I write has to do with the Latino community. Sometimes I write about technology, sometimes about education, you know, you name it. A lot of the articles also have to do with civic engagement––that’s a topic I’m very passionate about. You’ll see that also in the LATISM blog, where I write, too, and the conversations I have online with people have to do with the Latino community.

THATmag: So you got your social media start using Twitter back in 2008, when you used to write about Hispanic businesses for Examiner.com. Elianne: I started asking questions about my articles, and I would get hundreds of responses. I come from advertising, so Twitter became my private focus group, where I would ask questions and get all these answers, opinions on things about what I wrote, and for free. I started doing that more and more, and the rest is kind of history. THATmag: Has your involvement in these different media brought an issue to light or helped effect change? Elianne: It’s hard to gauge. What I’ve been trying to do when we have chats online through LATISM is to make people aware that there’s so much going on, but we all have a role in changing things for the better. We get from 300 to 1,000 people, and you see that people are fired up, and say “Tomorrow I’m going to do this” or “I’m going to pass this info to my aunt.” It’s raising consciousness (through social media), not just laughing about a picture of a cat. THATmag: Is your work influenced by your upbringing or background? Elianne: In many ways, yes. They (my

THATmagazineforwomen.com

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B

eth Daley stood on a research ship among a group of journalists, crowded around a marine conservationist as he pulled a bull shark on board.

The team was set to draw blood, take a biopsy, and implant a small ID tag on the shark’s fin to map the animal’s habitat in an effort to protect the threatened species from shark-finning. Daley, an environmental reporter for the Boston Globe, had helped to organize the shark-tagging expedition off Key Largo for 17 reporters as part of the Society of Environmental Journalists’ conference in Miami last year. But as the journalists participated in the tagging process, Daley was holed up near the bow, checking her email and making last-minute phone calls for a different story. Her article on fish mislabeling was set to run in the Boston Globe in three days—a story for which she would later win an innovation in watchdog journalism award.

BETH DALEY ENVIRONMENTAL WATCHDOG ENVIRONMENTAL JOURNALIST’S REPORTING SPAWNS LEGISLATION

by Lindsey Hoshaw

“It was totally stressful,” Daley said. “I wanted to enjoy the shark-tagging tour, but the (fish mislabeling) story was so incredibly complex. We’d been working on it for five months and had the New York Times lawyers working on it.”* Daley was rifling through piles of notes even while on the tour. In a time when quality investigative journalism has often been replaced by wire stories, aggregated content, and popular culture presented as news, Daley’s work is groundbreaking. Her award-winning article proved that not only had several Boston restaurants been mislabeling seafood on their menus, but the fish they sold was of a lower quality than advertised and often caused illness. When the two-part story launched on the front page of the Globe Sunday section on October 23, 2011, it immediately made waves. “The reaction was really strong,” Daley said. “We were on NPR the next day and ‘Good Morning America’ called us, and other reporters asked how we did DNA testing to see if they could do it too.” Response from local restaurants and the public was immediate, Daley said.

18 •

November/December 2012

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“A lot of restaurants were put on notice that they had to pay attention to the supply chain, and the public was aghast at the magnitude of the problem.” Daley’s story caught the attention of lawmakers, too. In July, nine months after Daley’s fish story ran, Massachusetts congressmen Ed Markey and Barney Frank proposed legislation that would require the fishing industry to track their catch from boats to restaurants.

She has more inquisitiveness and curiosity than just about any reporter I know.

“To me, Beth Daley’s series on fish fraud represents the very best kind of investigative journalism,” said Representative Markey in an email. Markey sits on the Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans and Insular Affairs Subcommittee. “She uncovered a serious problem, revealed the bad actors, and identified the people who are being harmed. Her investigation inspired me to craft legislation to stop the fish fraudsters manipulating the marketplace.” Daley is working on a follow-up story to assess how much negligence comes from the supply chain.

READ BETH DALEY: “Shark fin bans ensnare New England fishermen” http://bo.st/OzmoIm

“Globe investigation finds widespread seafood mislabeling” http://bo.st/UhMchl

“Global warming debate makes climate tough on friends” http://bo.st/U6OIbV

see which restaurants correctly or incorrectly labeled seafood on its menus. Readers could even search the database, which had a responsive design that was compatible with both tablets and desktop computers. Daley has the type of dogged persistence that makes her both an outstanding journalist and a vibrant personality. Her stories convey the complexity of current environmental issues. Last year, she was awarded a prestigious John S. Knight Journalism Fellowship, which allowed her to spend a year “on sabbatical” at Stanford University. “She has more inquisitiveness and curiosity than just about any reporter I know,” said Gideon Gil, the Globe health and science editor. “She generates ideas and asks questions that many others don’t see.” Daley’s work has resulted in real change, and despite dwindling attention spans and 140-character news bites, she says that readers are just as hungry as she is for longform investigative reporting.

In August, the Gannett Company, the largest newspaper publisher in the United States, awarded Daley and her colleague Jenn Abelson, who co-authored the story, a $5,000 prize for Innovation in Watchdog Journalism.

“We often get emails after big stories where people say, ‘Oh, so this is why we pay for the Globe,’” Daley said.

The story included an interactive database where users could

* The New York Times Company has owned the Boston Globe since 1993.

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I was a mediocre student in high school. My grades screamed boredom. I was socially awkward and isolated. Nobody in my family went to college, and no one expected me to go. With grades like mine, how would I go? How could I go? And that didn’t matter because I had no interest in going anyway. I walked the graduation stage without career goals, prospects, or skills. But I always had a job. There was babysitting, the bake shop, and then the flower shop. The details of my first jobs are mundane. I had one sleeping asset: I wanted to make a difference. My first boss may have seen it. He was not a warm and fuzzy guy; we had no special rapport. He was taking courses for his MBA and started cajoling me about taking a class with him. It was an English Composition class, too. I blew off the idea. I was not college material. He persisted until I caved and took my first class just to shut him up. I was happily surprised that I did well; I even looked forward to going and completing the assignments. Then on to another English class––that went just fine, too. I didn’t flunk or get kicked out because I wasn’t “college material.” One class at a time, one semester at a time, I got my collegial feet wet.

flashing lights went off in my head. I was not psychotic or even mentally unstable. I was stepping into the arena of my future. Nothing had ever made more sense to me. Right there in that classroom in Campbell Hall, my career goals were formulated. I researched career paths and learned about the Certified Addictions Counselor credential and commenced my quest to make a difference. I devoured materials on addiction. I knew it would take years to reach the point where I could earn that credential, and I didn’t care. I worked full-time and went to school part-time, year-round for seven years. I learned to speak in front of people and not feel queasy. An internship on an inpatient psychiatric unit confirmed my career goals, and I began to live out my desire to make a difference. I worked with patients who had every problem imaginable––psychosis, suicidality, addiction, trauma, personality disorders. I loved going there. I was exhausted and exhilarated when I left.

I wanted to make a difference.

Then there was Introduction to Psychology. The instructor was wickedly interesting and told the best stories. He was a clinician-turned-administrator and adjunct faculty. I couldn’t wait to learn and demonstrate my knowledge.

I worked a series of jobs and finally landed an Addictions Counselor Trainee position with graduation on the horizon. Scads of clients, mandated to treatment by the courts, cycled through the program. I was making a difference.

And my life changed.

I gradually realized that my passion for people with addictions was no coincidence. I connected the dots and found that my passion had grown out of my life with my dad. He has been sober for more than 20 years.

The next semester was Abnormal Psychology with the same wickedly interesting instructor. The textbook read like a book of wisdom and truth to me. I think I may have slept with it. There was something different here, something I could not get enough of. We arrived at the chapter on addiction, and there it was: bells, whistles, sirens, and

I graduated, earning a bachelor of science in psychology in 2002. My dad was there, and he was sober. It was an accomplishment that changed everything that I ever THATmagazineforwomen.com

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believed about myself. I found my passion. I found that I was smart enough to make it through college and to make a difference. I am college material. Yet another graduation is on the horizon. I’m fulfilling the internship requirement of the program and plan to finish in spring. This time, it’s a master’s degree in mental health counseling. With its emphasis on health and not pathology, this program has suited me well both personally and professionally. The work and academic experiences I’ve had since graduating from York College have brought me to a completely different place in my practice of counseling. I’ve grown new layers of insight and compassion that I am so proud of. Some came from books and classes, but a greater part is from clients. Every day, they teach me patience and that there is nothing on earth that compares to the human spirit. They show me how very resilient and brave people can be. They make me a better human being. I think my old boss is somewhere in Oklahoma. I plan to make this year the year that I find him and thank him for believing in me, and seeing, before I did, that I was college material.

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Revamping Your Financial Image by Julie Murphy Casserly

What’s your financial image? Is that the image you want? Media portrayals can play an enormous role in how we as women invest our money. The premium is placed on what you have and rarely on who you are. We are bombarded with a specific image of success. The media encourage us to look younger, get fitter, be fashionable, and live a fabulous life. Unfortunately, that lifestyle puts a huge weight on consumers financially, resulting in a negative relationship with money. In a world where many people would choose fame over success, that relationship needs to be a healthy one. When it comes to money, what matters most is how you use it to energize the life you want. Don’t invest in a life that will leave you struggling come retirement, but don’t ignore your current life to focus solely on getting out of debt, either. The key is to clean up your past and save for your future while still living in the present moment. For that to happen, you must say goodbye to your media-inspired image and focus on you.

Your financial image The average American has some form of debt. For households with credit cards, the average credit debt is $15,956 according to CreditCards .com. The Daily Finance websitesays that student loans are averaging $23,000 per person. And an article on AOL Real Estate, citing Capital Economics, has the average 2012 mortgage at $235,000. According to data released in 2010 (the most recent data available) by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average American household’s income is $63,091, with average expenditures totaling $48,109. Your financial image has a lot to do with how you handle those facts and figures. Whether you like it or not, your net worth is directly related to your self-worth. And the “D” word? It drags your self-worth down––you don’t feel you have choices, you feel stuck.

Debt is viewed as a burden, something that is rarely talked about but always just underneath the surface. People’s financial images are one of guilt, embarrassment, and shame. But debt doesn’t have to be dirty, especially if you have a plan.

Your practical next steps Have the courage to total your debt. Spend some time in the next week adding up all your bills, and write down that number. Now rejoice in the fact that the number can and will go down because you are setting the intention for it. Next, take a look at your money coming in minus your fixed expenses. Say your annual income and expenditures are the average. That brings your monthly net income after expenses to $1,248.50. Take half of your net and allocate it to your goals. Devote the remaining $624.25 to three things: one-third goes to paying off your financial decisions from the past

Have the courage to total your debt. (debt), one-third goes toward planning for your future (building cash reserves, college funding, and/or retirement), and one-third goes to living in the present moment, like a vacation you’ve always desired. Once you accomplish one of your financial goals, reward yourself. If you pay off a credit card, take that next month’s payment and pay cash for something you’ve wanted. One client of mine threw herself a party to celebrate her zero balance of credit card debt. Paying off debt and saving for your future can happen, and you can still have fun in the process. It’s easy to use what you see in the media as a measuring stick in comparison to your own life. Although we are besieged with outrageous images of what success is supposed to look like, you can rest easy in knowing that you can create a successful life defined by and for you. Remember, money is energy. Are you energizing what you want?

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In the 2008 presidential election, just over 70 million women––or about 60 percent of the total population of registered female voters––cast a vote. With this many women participating in the electoral process, it’s no wonder politicians are clamoring for the women’s vote. But what exactly is the “women’s vote,” and who are all these women? If we know anything, it is that women hold a host of opinions and beliefs that don’t fit neatly and cleanly into one discreet category. So who are these voters, and what do they care about? For starters, the electorate in the 2008 election was the most racially and ethnically diverse in U.S. history, according to the Pew Research Center. Nearly one in four votes were cast by nonwhites, and for the first time, black women claimed the top voter turnout rate of any racial or gender group. According to Pew, of all those women who turned out to vote in 2008, 56 percent voted for then-Senator Barack Obama, whereas 44 percent voted for Republican nominee John McCain. The split among women was more pronounced than that among male voters, who split almost evenly between the candidates, creating what has been termed a “gender gap” in voting. So what explains this gender gap in voting? The nonprofit Center for

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American Women and Politics, based out of Rutgers University, dissected the voter and polling data to see if any patterns or explanations emerged. Researchers found that generally, women were more likely to favor a more activist role for the government in health care reform, financial regulation, and other social policies. Women were more often opposed to U.S. military intervention in other countries and more supportive of programs designed to meet basic human needs such as Social Security. They were more supportive of restrictions on firearms and of affirmative action and other efforts to achieve racial equality. These are positions historically embraced by Democrats, which explains in part the gender gap among women voters. Historically, Democrats have also done a better job recruiting women to run for office and mentoring them, and this may explain the difference, says Laurie Kretchmar, media and social media director of the 2012 Project. But ultimately, she says, the goal is parity in representation because women as candidates and representatives bring a different set of skills to the table than their male peers. It’s a message that appears to be catching on. Female candidates are running for seats in the U.S. House of Representatives in record numbers. Thanks to re-districting at the local and federal levels, there is a record

number of open seats. This window of opportunity lead the 2012 Project to launch an ambitious “20 Percent in 2012” campaign. The goal is simple: Get Congress to be 20% percent female after the November 2012 election. To reach that goal, a total 107 women in the House and Senate would require a 3 percentage point jump from the current 17 percent of women elected to Congress, according to Kretchmar. If achieved, that would be the largest rate of growth since 1992, known widely as the “Year of the Woman.” “We ask women the simple question: Are you represented?” states Kretchmar. “We want women who would never consider running for office and to get them involved. Collectively we make better decisions when men and women are at the table.” With women’s suffrage a mere 92 years young, women’s participation in the electoral process matters. It is not a question of party affiliation but one of civic engagement. Women’s votes change policy, and since the 19th Amendment became law in 1920, women have consistently outvoted their male counterparts. And now, with more female candidates on the ballot than ever before, women are set to make history yet again.

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Jessica Mason Pieklo is a writer and law professor specializing in constitutional law and public policy. A former litigator, Jessica covers legal affairs for a number of publications with an emphasis on women’s rights and the law. When she's not writing and teaching, she is enjoying time with her husband and their children, tending to her garden, and practicing yoga. Her book––Crow After Roe: How “Separate But Equal Has Become the New Standard In Women’s Health and How We Can Change That”––will be available this spring.

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Hearing What You Forgot You Know • by Rose Mateo WE KNOW. We think and reason and try to make sense of our world and relationships, and we often find we have made what seem like mistakes. And in the face of our blunders, we begin to ask, “Why didn’t I listen to my gut?” Our gut knew. It tried to warn us, to tell us what was good for us, but we had unlearned its knowing. When we were five, we knew what our gut said and didn’t doubt it. A bad person was simply bad, and a good person was good. We knew who gave us the creeps, and we trusted grownups who laughed hard from their bellies. Later we were told it was more complicated than that—and, of course, it is. But does that mean our gut was not telling us something true? "Gut intelligence" is often equated with intuition, a "mysterious" way of knowing usually attributed to women but not fully acknowledged even as existing, depending on who is talking. We wonder, are older women really more psychic than the rest of us? Do you need to wear a purple turban and gold hoop earrings to have intuition? And, hey, how did our mom—and grandma—always know when we were lying? Gut intelligence—or intuition—is a form of knowledge that registers through the body as well as the mind and emotions. Ever told a lie and felt instantly queasy? That was your gut talking: "If you lie, you will lose the trust of those you lie to." This is deep wisdom, but not the kind of stuff you can easily explain to Dr. Spock. It’s not always logical, but it’s not illogical. Gut talk is wider than logic. Our gut’s intelligence is not easily quantified. We cannot count it, measure it, weigh it, or otherwise make it into a specimen. We just feel it. Scientific method would ask us not only to measure our gut’s voice but to make the experience of its speaking repeatable. Studies have attempted to prove the existence of intuition, by varied names. Lie detector tests are the most familiar example of measuring the gut’s voice. But in the day to day, we have learned to discount the gut’s incessant talk. It’s background noise to most of us. It becomes like those

angels that you were told follow you around; you either believe or you don’t—and even if they are there, you have forgotten about them. Ah, then comes the day when the gut is screaming and we have to listen. Why not try to hear, before that happens? We can tune in to our intuition, with surprisingly little effort. Arm yourself. The tools? A notebook. You are going to write down those gut feelings. With dates. Simple stuff, like November 12: We got a new coworker today, and I immediately felt like I couldn’t trust him. He seemed like he would do anything necessary to get what he wanted. Like he might pretend to be my friend, even. We’ve all had responses like this to people. We have learned that it is not nice to say this about a new coworker because we have just met him. We need to give him a chance. And we do. We make friends and decide he is really pretty nice, and we forget that we had that strong first reaction to him. We let down our gut guard. Eight months later, you learn that things you shared with him about your family life have been shared with your boss, and now your boss has questioned whether you are doing alright, in light of the “problems” you are having at home. You are stunned. You wonder where all this came from. Your work performance has been fine, you thought. How did you end up being doubted? Your gut broadcasts a reminder of last November. Remember, you put it in writing? You felt something untrustworthy about this person. You wrote it down, but you overrode your gut and now you are dealing with an absurd situation. Sound familiar? This is not to advocate mistrust of people—we all want to believe the best about others. But there is a time for reservation, and we need to relearn the trust we can have in what our gut knows. Get that notebook. Not used to writing things down? Don’t be nervous. You are not trying to convince the Academy of Sciences––only yourself. Don’t fret over your writing style, either. This is for your own use. When you write down those gut responses, you will have created your own data bank for future reference and analysis. Try it and see what happens.

Here are some tips for your

Gut Talk notebook:

1. Date your entries.

3. Be honest.

This will be useful over time.

The more clear and true you are to your gut’s voice, the more you will learn.

2. Be specific. Say as much as your gut is saying. Describe the situation, faces and circumstances that triggered your gut’s reaction.

4. Review. Your gut’s talk will look and sound different over time. Go back over your entries and listen again. You will be surprised at what you knew!

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HOW THE MEDIA HAS IMPACTED

SELF-

by Elin Stebbins Waldal

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The female body is the place where this society writes its messages.

Rosalind Coward ¹

S

tanding in line at a grocery store, I am transfixed by the cover models and headlines on the magazines: LOOK!—YOU NEED THIS ADVICE!—they seem to all shout.

As if taking inventory, I glance down at what I have come to think of as my uniform: a tank top that bares evidence that I drank coffee this morning, running shorts, legs that haven’t been shaved in days, sneakers… And that’s just what I can see. I step closer to the check out, and there, captured within the television screen that airs the news, I now catch a glimpse of my reflection: uncombed hair pulled up into a ponytail; reading glasses haphazardly placed, and forgotten, stretched across my head; and a look of pure astonishment staring back at me. The bubble over my head is this: “THAT… is me.” I look nothing like the women on the covers of the magazines. I am a 49-year-old woman who has lived each and every minute in all of my days. There is no airbrushing away the lines—testimonials to life experiences and sun damage—nor candidly do I wish for that. “I am the majority… ” I think to myself as my eyes dart back to the models peering at me from each magazine … I busy myself with placing my grocery items onto the conveyor belt while wondering about the effect that these kinds of close encounters, both involuntary and voluntary, have on the hearts and souls of women, including the models, everywhere.

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Kara Norman, founder and executive director of Empower Her Inc., an agency that provides empowerment programs, events, and services for women and girls in Atlanta, Georgia, shared with me that television had a profound effect on her upbringing. During her formidable years, Kara’s mother suffered from poor self-esteem, which impacted her ability to be a positive influence over her daughter. The advent of Oprah had a transformational effect on her mother changing what was previously a very negative trajectory. She embraced the “love yourself” mantra, set and achieved goals, and ultimately grew into a wonderful role model. As a grown woman, Kara understands that children require positive muses in their lives. She worries, however, about the long-term effects that social networking may have on a growing female psyche. Left unchecked, the comparison game of who “likes” my status updates and pictures on Facebook, juxtaposed with those of my friends, could underscore insecurities. Kara acknowledges that even as an adult she has caught her own mood dip if she allows herself to compare her achievements to those of her colleagues, which begs the question that if an adult with well-honed coping skills sometimes feels a mood decline, albeit slight, where does that leave young girls who are simply making their way toward adulthood? For Kara, the answer is to enrich the lives of women, young and old alike. In an effort to better understand the effects of media and social media on women, I reached out to Melanie

In her chapter of the newly released anthology 21st Century Yoga: Culture, Politics, and Practice, Melanie discusses the intersection of media literacy, yoga, and body image, and how making each a practice naturally leads to empowerment. In her role as a mentor to young women (and men), she has countless opportunities to facilitate the deconstruction of gender stereotypes, objectification, and sexualization of girls and women found in mainstream media. When the conversation turned to social media, Melanie recalled her introduction to it in 2005 via MySpace. She was fascinated with the information that people shared via self-selection––empowered to construct an image that reflected how they wanted the world to see them, online profiles were created to depict the individuals behind the screen, and in an instant their virtual persona was live and a new community of friendships was forged. MySpace was a game changer, the arrival of which brought life events both positive and negative out into a public forum that once shared became memorialized in a way the world had not yet seen. Fast forward to current day where by all appearances we are neck deep in social networking: Facebook boasts in excess of one billion users, whereas Twitter has reached more than 500 million, to name just two from the plethora of choices. For Melanie, social media allows her to extend her voice and speak back to mainstream media furthermore by encouraging her students to do the same. Their sense of agency is cemented in being an influencer versus being rendered a targeted recipient. Debbie Reber, an author and certified life coach living in Seattle, Washington, shared that her own experience with social networking has been very positive. She observes that women rely on Facebook in different ways––some for work, others for both professional and personal support, and a seamless means to remain connected with family and friends.

Klein, a writer, speaker, and professor of sociology and women’s studies at Santa Monica College. She contends that considering we are inundated with media, and that most of us are plugged into social networking sites of our choosing, we walk a slippery slope if we aren’t pairing the tsunami of information with literacy tools.

She does, however, share concerns about social media’s potential for adverse effects on self-esteem for girls and women, noting that she has had clients who for reasons of self-preservation chose to disengage from Facebook. The day following my conversation with Debbie, she sent me a blog post written by a self-proclaimed technology addict named Maude. Her narrative succinctly describes the ups and downs of growing up in a live-out-loud era: I like Twitter because reading about crazy things other

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people do makes me feel normal. I like Twitter because people are so nice to me and it makes me feel happy. I hate Twitter because it consumes me and I never stop thinking about it. I hate Twitter because it fills my brain with sad news and events.—Maude Apatow² Truly I get it. In August, the Internet was lit up with outrage, and subsequently so was I, over remarks made by Representative Todd Akin of Missouri, when he referred to “legitimate rape” and how a woman’s body has the ability to “shut that whole thing down” while speaking about pregnancies that occur in cases of rape. Women, including me, were triggered. My own memories of being raped flooded me. A speaking platform given to an unqualified individual had in effect temporarily usurped anything else I had been thinking about that day. And judging by the countless news threads, blog posts, tweets, and Facebook status updates, I was not alone. I know that the media—in all forms—has an effect on me, sometimes positive and other times not, and after reaching out to dozens of women, it is clear we share that in common. The thread that wended its way through the conversations sews together a sense of unity. It’s important for women to change the very meaning of power to one we can embrace wholeheartedly because it is the power to define our own lives and leadership, for good. We have the responsibility to use the power to speak our truth without delay.— Gloria Feldt³ Strength is derived from our ability to find community, raise our voices, and represent ourselves, to speak back to mainstream media and bring power to our messages, versus allowing what the world produces, to have power over us. As Melanie Klein mused when we spoke: “One of my great Yoga teachers told me once: A knife may be used to butter your bread or stab someone. It is up to the one holding it how it is used. And therein lays insight into our consumption of and response to media and social media. Tool or weapon, Iappreciate the power of the tool but know that I benefit immensely from scheduled breaks. And what do I do when those moments crop up that feel more akin to a weapon against me? I have control over how I choose to respond. I breathe, find my voice, and to the best of my ability I share it with the world.

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Collectively, as women, we have numerous opportunities to link arms in solidarity. We can support groups that promote the whole woman. Consider the following organizations: Miss Representation, the award-winning documentary film that exposed how mainstream media contributes to the underrepresentation of women in positions of power and influence in America . SPARK an intergenerational, girl-fueled activist movement working to challenge the sexualization of girls. Proud2BMe an online community created by and for teens, covering everything from fashion and beauty to news, culture, and entertainment—all with the goal of promoting positive body image and encouraging healthy attitudes about food and weight Last, we invite you to contribute your thoughts on THATmag’s online forum at thatmagazineforwomen .com because dialogue paired with action creates change—change that if embraced will change the landscape for the women of tomorrow.

¹Rosalind Coward, Female Desires: How They Are Sought, Bought and Packaged. ²Maude Apatow, “Falling Out of Love With Twitter.” ³Gloria Feldt, No Excuses: 9 Ways Women Can Change How We Think About Power.

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THAT’S SO “CHEERLEADER WHO LIKE, CAN’T LIKE, SAY SMART STUFF.” you Th ink tha t’s me an? Ho w do ? thi nk “th at’ s so gay ” sou nds . off it Hu rtf ul. So , kno ck

ThinkB4YouSpeak.com

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Reinvent Travel This W

ell, here we are again. The holiday season is drawing upon us, and the weather seasons are changing quickly. Familiar scribbles can be found on our calendars during the months of November and December that read “Thanksgiving at Mom’s,” “Dessert at the in-laws,” and “Holiday party 7 pm––don’t forget the grab bag gift.” For many of us, this time of year can be a cocktail of emotions––two parts stress, one part enjoyment, and a splash of crazy! Combine that with impending visions of January’s piles of dirty snow and laying to rest those gorgeous fall boots and… well… we might actually need a cocktail! Fear not. This season, instead of going through the motions of hyperconsumerism and dreading the weather reports, here are some unique travel ideas to reinvent your holiday season and stoke your wanderlust fire.

NEW TRADITIONS

Why not grab a glass of wine tonight and start planning?

Who says that you can’t create new traditions for your young vibrant family? Take the kids on an adventure away from home. Celebrate the season in “voluntourism” fashion. Arrange a trip domestically or abroad for a week filled with helping others and packaged sightseeing tours. We live in an age rife with materialism––why not shower your kids with the gift of experience? Now that will give them something to talk about after winter break at school! How about helping out a nonprofit in New Orleans repainting homes and catching a Saints game? For an abroad experience, consider hiking the Incan Trail to Machu Picchu and working with impoverished Peruvian children in Cusco. A simple Internet search will yield tour companies that are family oriented. If it's just you and the hubby, a quick romantic getaway is a great idea. Get the shopping done early, and head out on a warm weather vacation during those maddening weeks leading up to Christmas. This is a great time to score deals on Caribbean cruises. Effectively dubbed “shoulder season” in the travel world, these are times within the tourism calendar when a customer is in between the high and low seasons of travel. Early December is perfect because it's post hurricane season in the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean ports of call are heading into their dry season. Vacations To Go is a great site for booking discounted cruises. Right now, there are fournight Caribbean cruises departing from Miami to Cozumel starting at $200.1 Spend those three days lavishing in the sun with your man, and create your own festive party––starboard side.

1. http://www.vacationstogo.com (look up FastDeal #36070)

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by Traci Salisbury EMBRACE UNIQUE WINTRY DESTINATIONS

TRAIN TRIPPIN' NORTH AMERICA

As the leaves pass their blazing peak of color, we all must face the “ugly” truth that it’s turning into winter. However, beauty is always in the eye of the beholder. Instead of curling up into a ball of brooding hibernation this year, with Netflix as your companion, grab your best girlfriend and embrace a unique winter adventure!

For all of your winter wanderlusts that cringe at the idea of gray skies and sense captivity in your apartment, take it to the rails! Although it may be a few more years until we see East Coast high-speed tracks laid down, Amtrak has some fun extended trips with multiple stops. I suggest the Empire Builder ride—a two-day trip that departs from Chicago’s Union Station and ends in Seattle or Portland. This trip is a stunning way to see the landscapes of North Dakota and Montana in all of their winter glory.3 And, don’t forget the two stops it makes in Glacier National Park . . . snowboarding lessons anyone? In addition to a kick-ass journey, Amtrak melts your heart with discount offers for college students, AAA members, military personnel, seniors, and groups of 20 or more.4

Go to Iceland. Seriously. A friend of mine ventured off to Reykjavik last winter with her fiancé and had a bang-up time! Pictures of the two of them lounging in the mystical Blue Lagoon and applying the geothermal spa’s deposits of rich minerals to their faces sprung up on Facebook soon after the trip. Needless to say, it’s now on my travel bucket list. Reykjavik is the world’s northernmost capital city and a neat destination close to the States that is growing in popularity. However, many rule it out in favor of quintessential romanticized destinations like Spain or Italy. But the European Union is rife with potentially dangerous protests and such right now, so head on over to Iceland—a sovereign state with its own currency (at the moment) that is still bouncing back from its 2008 financial crisis, making it an affordable getaway. Iceland’s amazing landscape, which consists of volcanoes, hot springs, snow-capped mountains, lava deserts, and glaciers, makes it a truly wild adventure. Go whale watching off the coast, sign up for a glacier trek, bask in the Blue Lagoon, and see if you can catch a glimpse of the northern lights. Once you've had your fill of outdoor escapades, take in Reykjavik’s booming nightlife. More than 50 clubs and bars line the main street, and you can party until the wee hours.2 2. http://bit.ly/QbNhVO

On an 11-hour ride from New Orleans to Atlanta to visit a friend of mine, I discovered many things to do whilst onboard. Socialize with your new mates. Indulge in the soft rocking of the sleeper car. Hang out in the snack car shooting the breeze with the workers. Maybe even get involved in a rogue game of hide-and-seek in one of the trains’ forgotten cars with 10 year olds. Just saying. So as you begin to pack away the Halloween decorations and notice the supermarket toting candy canes, get ready to turn this year’s holiday season into something truly memorable. Why not grab a glass of wine tonight and start planning? The pumpkin pies can wait, but a journeying soul cannot.

3. http://bit.ly/PUUC9N 4. http://bit.ly/PIHLZF THATmagazineforwomen.com

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BE HAPPY NOW -

A

s someone who coaches women on how to overcome atheir body image issues, I encounter many women aawho want to be happier. My student Eliza is a perfect example. When she came to me, she was struggling with bulimia and desperate to have a second child. Through our work toward self-acceptance and self-love, she realized that external influences––the pressure to be thin, the competition to be a perfect mother and wife––were dictating her goals. She has since ended her bulimic habits and relaxed into accepting that a second child isn’t crucial to her self-worth. She’s happier than she’s ever been.

self-doubt and self-loathing. We burned these letters as a symbolic act of final release. By refusing to be controlled by her negative emotions, Judy was finally ready to find her way back to control and love. She has since lost the 75 pounds her mind told her she never would.

The fact remains that society––the workplace, the media, the home––can be hard on women. But that doesn’t mean that women have to give in and lose power. It is possible to tune out the cultural “shoulds” and instead find and embrace our true desires. Wherever you are in your life, now is the time to take the reins and steer yourself where you want to go. There may be obstacles, but you can be happy, healthy, and see growth in everything.

Step 1: Let go The first step to self-fulfillment is releasing the burden of victimhood. Feeling like a victim robs you of your power to make yourself happy; it cedes control to the person or people whom you feel hurt by. My client Judy couldn’t move past the fact that her exhusband cheated on her. Fifteen years after they’d divorced, she harbored deep resentment and had gained 75 pounds. Early in our work, Judy realized that she would have to let go of her ex-husband in order to move forward on her own terms. And to do so, she had to move on to step 2.

Step 2: Self-Empowerment To take charge, we must trust and love ourselves. Judy wrote two letters, one to her ex-husband and the other to herself. In these letters, she forgave her ex-husband for cheating, thereby releasing herself from being tied to him. She also forgave herself for allowing his actions to lead to her own

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Step 3: Keep a journal Time for reflection is essential as you move forward toward your goals. Keeping a journal is a great way to give yourself time, and literally space, to remind yourself what you want and what steps you’re taking to get there. It’s a place to track your progress and make note of what works. It’s also a place to sort out what might still be holding you back. Before you go to bed, write down five things that made you happy that day. They could be as simple as enjoying a sunny morning or as profound as achieving a major life goal such as landing a job. If you prefer typing to long-form writing, check out this great website: 750words.com. It’s a wonderful way to motivate and turn daily writing into a supportive habit.

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Step 4: Appreciate your body

Step 5: Focus on the positive

It’s no secret that fashion magazines and society’s definition of beauty are a blow to women’s body image, a trend that was well documented in the 20th century and continues today. Linda Smolak, Ph.D., a psychology professor at Kenyon College who researches body image and eating disorders, has found that “many people, especially women, think that they are immune to media messages. Research on a variety of types of media influences indicates that this is not the case at all.”

We convince ourselves that life begins and true happiness will be found after we’ve achieved our goals. Why wait? Find things to be happy about in the present moment and accept what is now. What we focus on expands. If you focus on how much you dislike your body or your discouragement with a job hunt, guess what keeps showing up? Work to stay positive in the face of disappointment.

Smolak suggests that we need to consciously work to see the emphasis on female appearance that is in commercials, on TV, in magazines, and on websites. We need to keep asking why thin women are needed to sell men’s products, children’s products, household products, and seemingly everything else. “Women typically cannot judge their susceptibility to media messages. This is, of course, not because women are stupid or gullible,” she says. “It is because the media message is more ubiquitous and more subtle than we think. It is also because the messages about body image begin in early childhood and we come to believe that elements of it are normal and do not question it.” Start loving your body by appreciating it for what it does rather than what it looks like. Make a pact with a loved one to keep each other accountable for how you speak to yourself and how much time you compare yourself with others––always a setup for failure. Why compare ourselves when what we could be doing is celebrating all we appreciate about ourselves?

My student Amy was a full-time working mother with three children. In our classes, she found areas of her life that she could control and improve––her health and her relationship with her body. She committed herself to progressing in those areas and celebrating her achievements. Nothing could stand in her way––not even her house burning down a year after she finished my class. Her commitment to the goals she could work toward made dealing with the difficulties out of her control much less upsetting. When self-love is present, anything is possible. Goals materialize, and a state of peace and contentment becomes the norm.

Self Empowerment Tips Tip 1: Take a hike or at least a walk. Even moderate exercise produces endorphins—your brain’s self-generating happy chemical. Check out Dr. Oz’s reasons to walk, from reducing stress to dropping weight: http://bit.ly/UQ4YtU Tip 2: Identify the people you feel wronged by—these could be coworkers, siblings, even long-gone parents. Write each person a letter explaining your feelings and forgiving any wrongs. No need to send these letters—you can burn them, bury them, or save them in a drawer to see your progress later on. Your final letter should be to yourself, forgiving yourself. Any time you start slipping into negativity, reread it. Tip 3: While you’re getting rid of emotional clutter, get rid of physical clutter, too. Devote a weekend to filing your papers, donating old clothes to charity, or organizing your closet. A neat space creates calm, and when we are organized, we spend less time looking for (and stressing about) missing documents or shoes. Start with Julie Morgenstern’s book, Organizing from the Inside Out. Tip 4: Watch this movie now: fatsickandnearlydead.com. The benefits of juicing are well documented, and this documentary really brings them to life. Also check out the related blog—jointhereboot.com—for recipes and meal plans for both total juice and juice plus eating cleanses.

The fact remains, society—the workplace, the media, the home—can be hard on women. But that doesn’t mean women have to give in and lose power.

Tip 5: Meditation is a phenomenal, age-old way to practice being present in the here and now. Its benefits range from decreasing depression to lowering blood pressure (check out http://nyti.ms/i1DR4g for more). Even just starting with a few minutes a day can make a difference.

THATmagazineforwomen.com

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Parenting Is the Media Hurting Our Children’s Self-Esteem?

Watch what your children watch. You need to know what they are involved in. Children in elementary school are involved in interactive websites where they can chat with other children, like Webkinz and Club Penguin. You might think that their television shows and games are harmless, but there is only one real way to find out. Get outside and be active! Get your children involved in regular physical activity. They will feel better physically and mentally. Also, get them involved in activities based on their strengths, whether it’s art classes, music lessons, or dramatic arts.

Find good, strong role models that your children can relate to. There are many celebrities who are recognized for their gifts and achievement, rather than notoriety. Avoid reality television, at least when your children are around.

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Limit viewing time. Give your child time limits when it comes to television, the Internet, and video games. Set up a schedule, if necessary.

November/December 2012

Praise your children’s efforts and abilities. Positive reinforcement works wonders for self-esteem. Be specific with your praise. “Good job” really does not say much. However, “You had great enunciation and energy when you gave that speech today” shows a child that you really value his or her strengths.

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We know that kids are impressionable, and that includes influences on body image. A 2011 British study found that children as young as 5 years old may start to become concerned with how they look. Even as adults, we tend to compare ourselves to what we see on television and the Internet. To help children become secure and confident in their appearances and abilities, there are a number of things that parents can do.

Be a good role model. If you don’t want your children to spend hours absorbed in television and social media, don’t mirror this type of behavior. You may need to curb your own Facebook time. Also, avoid being judgmental toward others, because this shows your children that this type of behavior is acceptable.

Gender and race seem to factor into the equation. Two researchers followed and surveyed more than 400 “tweens” for a year. Their findings, released in May, indicate that, on average, children spend 7 hours daily engaged with “entertainment media.” With the exception of white boys, the more children watch television, the lower their self-esteem, according to study authors Nicole Martins, an assistant professor of telecommunications at Indiana University, and Kristen Harrison, professor of communication studies at the University of Michigan. Females and black males seemed to suffer the most, owing to negative media depictions and the sexualization of women. According to the study, “the majority of television content serves to reinforce both gender-role and racial stereotypes.” On television, Martins and Harrison found that “females are portrayed as frail, emotional, and sensitive,” “Black male characters are disproportionately shown as buffoons, or as menacing and unruly youths,” and “Black female characters are typically shown as exotic and sexually available.”

by Cara Clarke

C u

They are everywhere: kids staring at screens of varying sizes. As a parent and high school teacher, I often see kids engaging with media, whether it is television, video games, social media, or texting during class. My students show me the latest viral videos, and my oldest child is heavily involved in online gaming. With my classes, we have discussed video gaming and Internet addiction, citing cases like the one in Taiwan where a young man died during a 40-hour gaming binge. Students have gotten into fights over Facebook arguments that have driven more vulnerable girls to tears. It is not just physical health that is at stake here; some children’s self-esteem is suffering.

B l

Read. Reading builds imagination. The Internet seems to have a reverse effect. Set up specific nights just for reading, where your children can’t watch television or play video games. We implemented this with our oldest, and he really digs Tolkien.

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a SHOT of

TESTOSTERONE

by Mike Robles Thank you Dancing with the Stars, William Levy! Because of you, my “Mambo Days” are over! Don’t get me wrong, I can dance. I just don’t have the cutest butt on the dance floor or allow women to tear off my shirt! In the real world, I am very secure of my manhood. However, in the media world, the pressure’s on! The expectation of living by “today’s man” looks, as portrayed in the media, has most men sweating to the oldies!

The flamboyant, Cuban-born papasito, William Levy, is just an example of the pressures men face today by the constant flow of media onslaught, spotlighting “today’s man.” From magazine covers to television commercials to today’s superstar athletes, the media has created a “macho image” that have women salivating and most men crying! Don’t believe me, check out your Facebook timeline! I have never seen more women posting pictures of men like David Beckham, William Levy, and Mario Lopez with the caption “OH LAWD . . .” Really, ladies? OH LAWD?

It makes me cringe when I see magazine covers featuring gorgeous men with 6-pack abs. Mario Lopez comes to mind. Have you seen Mario Lopez’s abs???!!! Ay Dios Mio! I want to slap the Saved by the Bell star with a chancla! Thanks a lot, Mario! What type of conversation are men supposed to have on a first date? “There's something you need to know about me, I don’t have Mario Lopez abs, I have more like George Lopez abs! Is this going to be a problem?” But wait, it gets worse! Fast-food restaurants have now found a way to lower men’s self-esteem, thanks to Burger King’s latest commercial featuring sex symbol, pretty boy, and Los Angeles Galaxy superstar, David Beckham! David Beckham has been known to wear sarongs, pink nail polish, and his wife Posh Spice’s thongs! In the commercial, we see David Beckham turn the counter help to jelly with his metrosexual appearance. He looks so hot that even the manager (who happens to be a man) is blown away by David’s good looks! Talk about pressure! The only time I was able to make a woman turn to jelly was when I offered her front row seats to an Enrique Iglesias concert! Thanks a lot, David! The antidote to this constant flow of media onslaught, chiseling away at men’s self-esteem, is to celebrate who you are and what you got.

“My name is Mike Robles, and I am definitely comfortable in my own skin.”

THATmagazineforwomen.com

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Rosie the Riveter: A beauty with biceps

Even today, 70 years later, Rosie’s name is invoked when women make advances in primarily male professions. 44 ThatMagFile 2.indd 44

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WWII Symbol of Women’s Empowerment By Beth Landau

S

he was beautiful, productive, and patriotic. Invoked by the “We Can Do It” posters and cemented by Norman Rockwell’s May 29, 1943, Saturday Evening Post cover, her image was an invitation for white, middle-class housewives to enter the workforce and for already employed minority and lower-economic-class women to pursue higher salaries in traditionally male industries. As part of the Ad Council’s “most successful advertising recruitment campaign in American history,” Rosie the Riveter changed how women viewed their roles and their value to society. Following the bombing of Pearl Harbor and the U.S. entry into World War II, government agencies faced a crisis. Men’s departure from their peacetime jobs threatened the nation’s economy and ground to a halt the federal government’s production of war supplies for Allied forces. To maintain financial growth and stability, the government needed women to take service, commercial, and industrial jobs. But first, the taboo against women in the workforce––strengthened during the Great Depression when men struggled to support their families––would need to be shattered. The newly established Ad Council was charged with convincing women and their husbands that it was patriotic, economically sound, and even attractive for women to work during the war. According to Kay McAdams, Ph.D., a historian and associate professor at York College of Pennsylvania, a pivotal issue was “the preservation of femininity and masculinization via work. Rockwell’s painting is a prime example of that. [Rosie’s] muscles are men’s muscles, but she has lipstick on.”

In 1942 and 1943, newspapers and magazines were flooded with images of women in feminized work clothes: curve-enhancing denim or crisp, collared dress versions of factory uniforms, and kerchiefs protecting stylish updos. Photographs captured a range of women, dainty or rugged but always attractive, in a variety of pro-war effort jobs. Posters, such as J. Howard Miller’s “We Can Do It!” for Westinghouse, and short propaganda films praising women’s stateside war efforts, also contributed to the idea that it was patriotic and sexy to do a man’s job.

The media blitz picked up speed in 1943 when the Four Vagabonds’ version of “Rosie the Riveter,” by songwriters Redd Evans and John Jacob Loeb, gave the campaign its anthem and Rosie her name:

So what if she’s smeared full of oil and grease Doing her bit for the old Lendlease She keeps the gang around They love to hang around Rosie the Riveter. Photojournalists augmented the campaign with stories about “real life Rosies.” Life magazine’s Margaret Bourke-White, for example, turned her attention from the war front to the home front with a spread featuring women working in the steel industry. The campaign was a success for the government and for women. The Council for Economic Education reports that between 1940 and 1945, women went from 25.4 percent to 35.3 percent of the workforce, and the federal government was able to honor its war supply contracts. This number dropped 7 percent by 1947. Rather than feeling duped by propaganda, however, women were empowered. McAdams notes, “the image endured . . . despite the ‘return to hearth and home’ push that characterized the late [19]40s to early 1960s.” Even today, 70 years later, Rosie’s name is invoked when women make advances in primarily male professions. Lynnetta Faith Payne, one of the few female urologists treating male fertility problems, was dubbed a “contemporary Rosie the Riveter” by the West Virginia Register-Herald. Rosie’s likeness appears on lunch boxes and tote bags. More than mere propaganda, McAdams explains, the symbol of Rosie the Riveter persists because she represents “empowerment and independence as an aspirational goal for women.” .

THATmagazineforwomen.com

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very year, my family heads south to Del Boca Vista to enjoy some R&R for the holidays. This year, in an effort to spice up my wardrobe, I decided that I wanted to get some new bikinis for the trip, so I set out for what I knew would be a delightful, relaxing afternoon of bathing suit shopping.

Three days prior to “B” day, I drank nothing but lemon water and inserted bamboo shoots under my nails so that the severe pain would distract me from eating. Although I knew how bizarre my actions were, I was sure that these tactics would save me from any humiliation and trauma that bathing suit shopping can inflict on its victims. When the day to shop arrived, I was prepared. I packed my purse with smelling salts just in case I passed out from starvation. I also packed some tealight candles; after all, it’s no secret that everyone looks better in candlelight. I also threw in a pair of night vision goggles to protect my eyes from the ultraviolet rays of the dressing room lights. They would also hopefully conceal the sight of my bulging varicose veins, giant pores that had taken over my nose, and chin hair that had recently grown so long that you could use it for dental floss. This year, I would, by the grace of GAWD, make bathing suit shopping a pleasant experience. I refused to look in the mirror and despise the reflection staring back at me. Ten hours, five hundred tealight candles, and three Xanax later, I decided that I would purchase a floor-length cover-up that came with air vents to keep from suffering dehydration and overheating on the beach. When the entire day came to an end, I had to ask myself why we are so hard on ourselves. Why can’t we just rock whatever body type we have whether it’s an apple, pear, or watermelon? Every shape and size is unique, and like fruit, tasty in its own way! Perhaps the key to growing our confidence isn’t to transform our minds and bodies, but rather to embrace what we have and learn to sparkle and shine even if we have some bulges, dimples, and wrinkles.

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I saw this example firsthand a few years ago on a trip to Mexico. As I basked in the sun in a post food coma from my burrito and giant margarita with salt, I was able to observe a dance contest taking place at the pool lounge. As I watched the collegiate spring breakers with tiny waists and giant jugs line up for the contest, I could not take my eyes off of one woman who shined like a diamond in the rough. “Ms. Seasoned” had cankles that you could swing from and a midsection that screamed she too had gone through the same buffet line for lunch that I had. She was wearing a bright orange bikini and a smile so bright that I was sure I would need more SPF to protect myself from her bright, shiny aura.

When the music began to play, she let go with such a joy and confidence that the entire place was captivated. By the end of her dance, in the people in the joint were on their chairs dancing, smiling from ear to ear, and cheering Ms. Seasoned to victory. She won the contest by a landslide and was even asked for an encore! Her inner sparkle, shine, and enthusiasm served as an airbrush for any physical flaws. Perhaps it’s time that we all take a lesson from Ms. Seasoned and pledge to honor our sparkle and shine over a low-caloric meal. In a season that is about gifts, let’s give the gift of self-acceptance to ourselves and choose to get out the orange bikini and shake it like the divas we were meant to be! It’s not about being perfect, but being perfectly you––dimples, wrinkles, and all. Thanks, Ms. Seasoned, for teaching us a valuable lesson. I hope you still have that orange bikini!

Ms. Lemery is a psychotherapist practicing in Upstate New York. She is also a columnist for Saratoga Today and the author of Please Pass the Barbie Shoes. For more information, visit http://www.meghanlemery.com. THATmagazineforwomen.com

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What can I say? Since my hair loss, this is definitely my favorite hat. EVERYONE comments on how cute it is…I love it!...Thank you for making something a little different than all the rest…we all need a little whimsy in our life!!! – Julie W., Carencro, LA

For many years I have been aware of the limited selection of well designed headwear for people experiencing hair loss. In 2010, I was inspired as an artist and a business women, to create and patent a comfortable, versatile cap that is not only suitable to people of all ages experiencing hair loss but also desirable to those with hair.

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See the Renegade Raging Grannies sing “Legitimate Rape”: http://youtu.be/G0eG_FrnPw8 High school students Emma Axelrod, Sammi Siegel, and Elena Tsemberis petitioned the Commission on Presidential Debates to include at least one woman as moderator of the fall 2012 presidential debates. The Commission chose CNN reporter Candy Crowley to host the October 16 debate. It’s unclear if the petition had an impact on the decision, but THATmag likes it all the way around! Check it out: http://bit.ly/SbXgfH

Victoria’s Secret “Love My Body” campaign: http://bit.ly/SEpr7l “Arizonan who faked cancer to get breast job pleads guilty”: A 27-yearold uninsured Arizona woman pretended to have breast cancer to raise money for a double mastectomy and breast reconstruction. Fundraisers generated more than $8,000––which paid for the surgery. Check it out: http://bit.ly/S9xwfn SkinnyGirl Cocktails attempts to set the female gender back a few decades with its “Drink Like a Lady” campaign. Just say no. Check it out: http://bit.ly/KaYkJ5

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TheFbomb.org (“F” for feminist): Described as “a blog/community created by and for teenage girls who care about their rights as women and want to be heard.” For the first time ever, in the 2012 Summer Olympics, women athletes outnumbered men. Planned Parenthood promoted its “Yes We Plan” effort at the Republican and Democratic conventions: http://bit.ly/NaNedM

Clean and dry intimate wash: India’s obsession with fair skin reaches all the way to vaginas, with this product that claims to lighten the labia as well as clean it. Read on: http://slate.me/RORgFR Feel like a virgin again . . . at least down there: Also from India, the product “18 Again” calls itself “a vaginal rejuvenation & tightening gel” and says it is “redefining the term women empowerment.” Empowerment from the inside out? The video says “feel like the very first time.” How many women liked that time the best? Wonder if they make this product for men? Check it out: http://youtu.be/vPayFrCOiZM 51

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When a person says the word sex, its one harsh syllable stops the voice dead, as though bumping into a wall. In contrast, the five syllables of the word sexuality have a lilt, the musical cadence of a song. When one speaks the word, the voice seems eager to continue drawing out the hum of the final “tee” sound just to feel the pleasurable sensations. Feeling the tee vibrate as it emerges from between teeth and tongue, resounds in the larynx, and then strikes the human ear is orgasmic. Sex is sufficient. Sexuality is full of promise. Sex fits well enough as a descriptor of gender, as a way to label our embodied selves in a biological way as female, male, or some mix of both. But sexuality is a better word to describe the endowment we have, the potential to experience our embodied selves in the world. Still better is the term human sexuality, because it indicates our ability to express our endowment . . . body to body . . . in human ways. It is in our action—in acting toward, in acting with—that we make our endowed potential real. Aren’t we smarter than this? True beauty of sexual expression is devoid of the questionable ideas we’ve internalized: that acquiring things, competing, and winning will gain us happiness. Beauty of sexual expression is free from messages that try to link sexuality with acquisition, competition, and happiness by using the word sex—that short word that stops us dead in our tracks when we speak it.

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♥ Sex—that little word that seems sufficient to describe gender—is thrust upon us daily, nearly everywhere. It barges in, mid-thought, preventing us from questioning the display of women and men with “perfect” physical attributes that perhaps will be ours when we purchase the pitched product —a car, clothes, cream, a beverage, or even medicine. Sex is commercial bait that implies we can become winning competitors in the pursuit of happiness. We rarely stop to think about with whom we’re competing, probably because at a deep level we know it is with friends, family, neighbors, coworkers . . . with nearly every woman and every man in our purview. If we analyzed when and where we’re competing, we’d realize that the contest is consuming our attention. Constant competing keeps us on edge, nervous about what we are or aren’t, and anxious about whether we’ll win or lose. We’re rarely sure of our own identity because we know we’re not measuring up to the idealized portrait.

Aren’t we smarter than this? "Sex as bait programs" our thinking processes to register sensation. The bait hooks our innate sensory faculties of seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, and touching, all of which we use in sexual expression. In less than a minute, we can be baited with a scene of a partly nude woman, the sound of romantic music, a scent of musk, and a glance of someone touching skin. At the same time, we can be assured that drinking a particular beverage will put us in the hip crowd.

The problem is that our senses are wide open, like the mouth of a hungry fish, eager to be fed, alert to receive information. Sex-bait directs us toward experiencing sensations as pleasurable, if only in a fantasy way. Sex-bait diverts our attention away from reasoning, away from realizing that we are being hooked by fiction. We latch onto the sex-baited idea that forming ourselves to fit into society’s photo shop will keep us competitive. We diet to shrink ourselves. We dress to look undressed––to display outlines of breasts, chests, genitals, and muscles. We latch on hoping that our snapshot will gain us a necessary edge, that it will win us happiness. We fail to think clearly about what is going on or to realize that we’re being duped. We also don’t register what else is happening: In trying to compete in the parade of bodies, we turn ourselves into sex objects. We form ourselves into commodities that deliver to others the same diminished idea of sexuality that has been sold to us. We fragment our own sexuality potential by expressing only what swallowing sexbait produces in us: superficiality and pretty people pictures.

Sold: Your sexuality When we hawk the same ideas that we have been sold, we become pared-down human beings. Something insidious happens when we swallow the bait: We join the force that is selling us a tiny bit (sex) of what was already ours to begin with (sexuality). We try to inject ordinary THATmagazineforwomen.com

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inanimate objects with sexual power, mirroring that baited shadow of sexuality––sex––that has been cast at us. For example, we speak of sexy clothes, sexy purses, sexy ideas, sexy food. Those items, of course, are not sexual. When anything and everything is called sexy . . . then nothing really is. Our real sexuality becomes cheapened. Such is the situation in which we live––each day we hear young and old link the word sexy with inanimate objects. Certainly, those objects are of concrete or abstract material. But they’re not infused with sexuality. They are empty of the ability to be sexy. Attempts to inject sexual power into empty, inanimate objects symbolize the emptiness present when we live striving to acquire, to compete, and to win. Living in alignment with a lie that misleads and seduces us with that short word sex—and plays with us for its own purposes of acquisition, competition, and winning––does not inform and nurture us toward becoming full human beings. Such living is empty of care, is empty of human fullness. It is not real.

“Shall I kiss you, too?” The truest expression of human sexuality that I ever witnessed––the most real––took place when I was in my midforties. My 39-year-old patient, Ed, was dying of cancer. Ed, his wife, his wife’s sister, and I were visiting in the family living room early one evening. Ed’s three sons, ages 6, 8 and 10, whom I had just met that evening, moved in and out of the room. From time to time, the boys went off to play and then returned to listen to us talk and to partake in the visit. The boys’ mother announced bedtime for the younger two boys. She asked them to say goodnight to everyone before heading upstairs with her. The boys followed her direction. They accompanied goodnight words to their father and aunt with a kiss and a hug. The youngest boy, Matthew, stopped in front of me. “Goodnight,” he said. He fixed his gaze on my face, hesitated, and then added, “Shall I kiss you, too?” I answered, “You may if you want to, but you don’t have to.” Matthew moved away and started to leave the room. At the doorway to the hall, he turned around, bolted back, stood squarely in front of me, and pronounced, “I just have to.” He kissed me. And he threw his arms around my neck and hugged me as well––tightly. Then, just as quickly, he was gone. Matthew just had to kiss me. He had to physically express his comprehension of something that was happening in the room where his father lay dying, and the grown-ups around him were grieving together, being tender with each other, laughing sometimes, and sometimes being silent.

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Sex is sufficient. Sexuality is full of promise.

Matthew was only six years old, but he was a sexual being and was a part of the evening’s events. Because he grasped its significance, before he took his leave, he needed to touch his body with everyone else who was a part of that deeply human, even holy, time. Compelled to express the humanity of his sexual being, he needed to touch and to give something . . . he just had to kiss me. And he gave his whole self––all six years of it––to me in that moment, in that kiss, and in that hug.

Velveteen Rabbit, sexy? Becoming real is what human sexuality is about. Many of us remember from childhood the story of the Velveteen Rabbit, in which the Skin Horse said to the Velveteen Rabbit, “Real isn’t how you are made. It’s a thing that happens to you.” Human sexuality is like that: It happens to you, and you happen within it. It happens to us, and we happen within it. The Skin Horse told the Velveteen Rabbit, “When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but really loves you, then you become real.” In a similar way, as adults, when others don’t just play with us but, instead, really care about us in loving ways, we become real. Our sexual potential is actualized into fuller human expression. We become real as we cease treating each other as mechanical toys, cease competing, and actually care. The Skin Horse instructed the Velveteen Rabbit that becoming real takes a long time, that it sometimes hurts, that one can get pretty shabby and worn on the way to real. “But these things don’t matter at all,” the horse continued, “because once you are real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.” And so it is with human sexuality. Once the realization of who we are as sexual persons takes hold in our minds and hearts, once we express our sexuality along with caring, then we cannot be ugly, except to people who don’t understand. In becoming real, the qualities of our full humanity expand within us like a galaxy of stars. Self-knowledge, rational judgment, respect for people and place, tolerance, a sense of wonder, open-mindedness, appreciation of what is and of what may be possible, humor, sensitivity, humility, compassion––they burst to life within us. They are qualities of real. None of those qualities is ugly. And when we express our sexuality by incorporating those human qualities, a beauty emerges around us, a grace that others experience in our presence, whether we’re fully dressed or not.

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The Salt God’s Daughter Ilie Ruby Counterpoint/Soft Skull Press September 2012

Review by Terry Gibson

The Salt God’s Daughter, Ilie Ruby’s latest novel, is set in the 1970s in Long Beach, California, on the frigid, mysterious, and unassuming Pacific Ocean. With remarkable diction and cadence, Ruby has skillfully sculpted an epic tale about the lives of three generations of women, and has written it with such eloquence that the pages often sang to me, leaving me salt-drenched, feeling protected by fuchsia bougainvilleas, and in a state of breathlessness. From the first sentence, this book careens the reader through a whirling, magical voyage into the color and richness of Scottish myth and Jewish mysticism. Suddenly, we find ourselves considering anew the shifting moons, eclipses of the sun, changing tides, cloud formations, selkies, “groatie buckies,” barnacles, and a plethora of other animal and plant life in and around the water. The story begins with Diane, a young single mother to two daughters, Ruthie and Dolly, who struggles with drinking and depression. They live in a station wagon, are often hungry, miss school, and endure the disconnectedness of that reality. With life like this, Ruthie and Dolly are often at the mercy of their mother’s moods and health, and learn early to tend to and comfort her. They begin their rite of passage early in life. “Dolly and I had time on our hands to fantasize and create, to conjure and compose, to experiment and dramatize, to create a world wholly experienced in the imagination. We’d frequent the pier, our bare feet slapping the wood slats as we played chasing games …”

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Years pass and daughters become mothers. Mothers become grandmothers. The sisters change individually but stay solid in the tight bonds between them. Like everyone, however, they are destined to seek out a lover and a partner, like their great grandparents, Ruth and Daniel, found in each other for 70 years––or so was the story that Diane told the girls while she leaned on the car, smoking, and made them all feel hopeful. Achieving this goal meant accepting and loving themselves fully, before loving another. This is not easy. Both women must come to terms with their own mistakes, and the toll taken by errors or atrocities that were never theirs to bear. Loving themselves through those difficulties takes strength–– especially after being traumatized, labeled “other,” unworthy, or immoral by misguided, cruel peers and adults. Both find solace in the home, performing valuable work as caregivers to some of the women who nurtured them and doing everything possible to keep the family and its stories safe and intact.

Loving themselves through those difficulties takes strength.

While enchanting in its musicality and vivid imagery, this book is also gritty, evocative, and relevant to the cultural and sociopolitical climate in the United States and world today, especially in the area of sexual politics, predominantly rape and abortion. Reading and reviewing The Salt God’s Daughter has had a huge impact on my own life. Through Ruby’s voice, I rediscovered my own unheard and silenced cry in the dark from decades ago. It felt freeing to know that the loss of young girls’ lives to suicide––from bullying, a crime committed against them, landing on the wrong side of current sexual mores, or oppressive rules and laws––has stimulated healing. In fact, I believe that this work has released a groundswell of women’s energy and passionate words, which resound right now like an echo in a canyon. I hope we will all find the courage to heed Sister Mary’s words: “Speak, Ruthie. As often and as loudly as you can. Keep speaking it,” she said. Therein lies the secret of The Salt God’s Daughter.

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Even Tough Girls Wear Tutus:

Deborah Jiang Stein’s haunting and inspirational memoir, Even Tough Girls Wear Tutus, gives readers the gift of acceptance of themselves and others.

Inside the World of a Woman Born in Prison

Deborah Jiang Stein

Many adopted children never learn who their birth parents are, and many may never discover their nationality, ethnic background, or even their race. This was the case for Stein, whose brown skin and almond-shaped eyes differed from the looks of her adoptive family. Some of Stein’s problems can be blamed on the era in which she grew up. In the early 1960s, people did not ask uncomfortable questions, and society did not talk about race or family troubles. Interracial adoptions were rare. One can only imagine how hard it must have been for Stein growing up in a Jewish community near Seattle, searching for her identity. When she came home from school one day crying because someone had called her “nigger,” her adoptive mother’s reply was, “You are just one of us dear . . .” But remarks like these only instilled more of a sense of isolation.

I had to learn how prison doesn't always mean behind bars, and locked up isn't just inside a jail cell.

A passage describing when young Deborah finds and reads a letter written by her adoptive mother brought this reader to tears. “Can you please alter Deborah’s birth certificate,” my mother asks in the letter to the family attorney, “from the Federal Women’s Prison in Alderson, West Virginia, to Seattle? Nothing good will come of her knowing she lived in prison before foster care, or that her birthmother was a heroin addict.” Impossible. Read it again. Everything blurs . . . It can’t be true. How am I lovable if it is true? Who loves anyone from prison?

Cell 7 Media December 2011

Review by Marta Moran Bishop

Stein reveals to us the depth of her despair and the scars that secrets and lies can leave behind. Recreating the solitary confinement she often lived in with her prison mother the first year of her life, Stein builds an invisible wall around herself. “I had to learn how prison doesn’t always mean behind bars, and locked up isn’t just inside a jail cell,” she writes. “Some people shoot heroin, others overdose on shame, guilt, and secrets. I’d lost myself in all of it . . .” As you read this review, Deborah is probably on a prison tour, a practice she started more than 10 years ago, with supplies to make tutus with inmates and teaching them basic writing skills. She may be telling the story of her prison birth, the fight to overcome addiction, and her life as a drug mule or holding a class on the importance of the tutu: “Freedom came with finding courage, curiosity, and purpose in life … The tutu appeared in my life when I first took dance lessons as a girl. It transformed over a span of years into more than the rustle of tulle and into a symbol of liberation, curiosity, and discovery.” Her message is so powerful that it captures inmates and guards alike. Many inmates break the no-touch rules and hug her, and some of the guards ask Deborah for supplies to make their own tutus. As in her memoir, Stein gives them all a chance to let go of their own mistakes, accept themselves, and learn to become more than their past. THATmagazineforwomen.com

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Shaping Destiny:

but hope that it will all come together: art, love, and the pursuit of authenticity. There is no shortage of conflict or contrast, yet there is a sense of constancy in her journey.

A Quest for Meaning in Art and Life

Destiny Allison

If you’re looking for romance, you will absolutely find it here, although not in a conventional way, because it becomes apparent that very little is conventional about the author. This is a love story: about partners, art, family, and the quest for selflove as it rises from the ashes of pain and passion.

CreateSpace 2012

Review by Robbie Kaye

One doesn’t have to be a sculptor to relate to the process that Destiny Allison describes in Shaping Destiny. The author writes her story with poetry and wisdom reminiscent of Joseph Campbell, but from the point of view of an artist and woman. Through her quest to create a sculpture conceived from authenticity—be it from metal, wood, or clay—we learn about the exploration that becomes necessary to build the foundation of such a creation. The book reads like a suspense novel, making it extremely difficult to put down. As the story progresses, the metamorphosis of both art and artist becomes inevitable. Allison recounts the angst of her family’s past and considers the future and the choices that she will make, and we are reminded that this is very much a true story of a woman’s reality. She takes her sculptures apart and starts over until she feels the connection. As she grows as an individual, so do her creations, and we get to witness the unfolding, the breaking apart, and coming together as she welds, molds, and constructs her life and art, embedding each one in the other.

Rebuilding a sculpture after you have carved too much away can be a difficult process.

Throughout the book, Allison eloquently weaves the metaphor of sculpting one’s own life with the literal creation of sculpting art. Even if you think that you are not going through some kind of transition, by the time you finish reading Shaping Destiny, you will feel as though you have just experienced a major shift.

Allison’s words are so much more than thought provoking; they are heart and soul provoking in ways that aren’t always obvious but are always raw and honest. “Rebuilding a sculpture after you have carved too much away can be a difficult process,” she writes. Starting over is never easy, and one can’t help

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A

Prior to starting, prepare your pumpkin. You can use any cheese or pie pumpkin, but I prefer to use Long Island Cheese pumpkins because they have fewer seeds and are less stringy than regular pumpkins, resulting in a creamy puree. This recipe works just as well with butternut squash. I cut them in large chunks and steam them until soft. Then, I peel the skin off and remove the seeds, puree the pumpkin in a food processor, and refrigerate until I am ready to use it. I always freeze multiple batches so that I can make these in the spring. You can also use canned pumpkin for this recipe. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease muffin pan or use liners. Beat eggs lightly with a fork. Mix in sugar and oil. Add pumpkin and water. In another bowl, mix all of the dry ingredients. Add wet mixture to dry. Stir in chocolate chips. Fill muffin cups about two-thirds full (you should get 12 muffins). Bake 20 to 25 minutes. Substitutions: In place of sugar, you can use ½ cup of honey. Vegetable oil can be replaced with ¼ cup applesauce. For flour, you can use whole wheat or gluten-free substitutes.

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utumn is one of our favorite seasons at Thyme Stands Still Farm on beautiful Seneca Lake in Upstate New York. Our farm stand gets loaded with squash, grapes, apples, and pumpkins. We love to cook and bake with fresh pumpkin, and a good pie pumpkin is surprisingly easy to work with. Pumpkins are loaded with vitamin A, good for your heart, and low in calories. One of our customers’ favorite treats is a pumpkin chocolate chip muffin.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins Serves 12 ¾ cup pumpkin ¾ cup sugar ¼ cup vegetable oil ¼ cup water 2 eggs 1½ cup flour ½ cup chocolate chips (semisweet) ¾ teaspoon baking powder ½ teaspoon baking soda ½ teaspoon cinnamon ¼ teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon nutmeg ¼ teaspoon cloves

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by Tiffany Nicole I just touched down about four hours ago, and I can’t get certain songs out of my head. Like every radio station I have experienced in the nation, Atlanta’s stations play the same songs over and over again. Now Jeezy, Drake, Tyga, Wale, and Blue’s momma are in my head. Their words are blending together to make this new song—some new remix I have solely created. One repeated phrase, I do, plays randomly, almost constantly. Of course, my magnificent mind reaches into formerly inaccessible areas and begins to think about those two words, I do. People live to hear these two words on one special day. Yep, those words stop at that altar and linger for that one momentous day, and sometimes forget to make a connection to their intended context and audience. Did you know the divorce rate in 2009 was 50 percent? That means half of the people who married in 2009 will divorce. I’m baffled. What’s the point of committing to eternal love while limiting its length? But this post has little to do with marriage or divorce explicitly. The two words really got me thinking about to what I say “I do.” Follow me.

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I am super shy. Have always been. I’m not the one who enters a crowded room and mingles with everyone. It’s not that I lack in the conversational skills, but I’m shy. Initiate a conversation with me and I can go without breathing, yet I am content to do things and be by myself. Yes, I love being with others, but I’m content shopping alone, too. Why? Because one day I just decided to say I do to me. That inner voice has always been present no matter how much I tried to deny it. I’d dress it up to hide it because its sound was offbeat from others. Imagine if we all married ourselves—not like Dennis Rodman, which could be rather amusing. I’m speaking about deciding to commit to who you really are. Many of us would rather deny ourselves the luxury of meeting ourselves. I’m convinced that the real you is much better than the fake somebody else. Every time you assume the character of another, you are branded as fake. In reality, there’s only one of you; one Mike Jackson (as my handsome little cousin Allen affectionately calls him), one Whitney Houston, one James Brown, one Etta James, one Teddy P, one Heavy D, one Gerald Levert. No matter how many people may sound like these, there’s still just one. When we deny ourselves the power to be the person we were created to be, ultimately we lose. It sounds harsh, but ignoring important things can be harmful. The divorce rate? Honesty would have stopped you way before a proposal would have been planned. Stop saying I do to the wrong things. Sometimes you need to say I don’t and I won’t.

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wonder mag Look at our cover! Aren’t you excited? We like to tease, to provoke too. We promise you the world A better life, better sex. The body of your dreams How to sort out your love life Your children too. Your house will be a palace Your health problems will vanish We’ll show you how to eat How to dress and paint your face. Don’t love yourself the way you are? Of course, you don’t! That’s why you need us. We’ll sort out all your little and not so little bothers You’ll love the new you. Don’t look elsewhere, we have all the answers. Keep coming back. Next month, we’ll make you a Goddess.

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Nove/Dec 2012 Premier Issue