Tuesday, July 13, 2010

One Big Happy Family

NPR has become my new source for good reads.

One afternoon I heard an interview of One Big Happy Family by Rebecca Walker. It's a collection of essays by people finding their place in non-traditional families.

I loved it.

Although I did not care for the essay on polyamory. Disturbing.

The essay by a woman dealing with raising a child while her husband is in prison was really sad and difficult to read.

In one essay a man details his experience of working from home. His wife also works from home. Their child is also always at home (either homeschooled or too young for public school). In the essay (IMO), the guy comes across as a bit nuts. I wonder, is this what happens when everyone is home together all the time?

But I found the majority of essays inspiring and enlightening.

Two of my favorite essays centered around adoption. One regarding open adoption, another about a couple struggling to help their adopted son's mother, who chose to live on the streets.

An essay on equally shared parenting had great insights on communicating with a spouse.

The essays on cross-cultural families were so interesting.

It was fascinating to learn about the experiences of other families. Different backgrounds, different life experiences. But as they say in The Muppets Take Manhattan, "Peoples is peoples" (and yes, I get a lot of inspiration from Jim Henson). Everyone is different, but everyone is loving and learning to cope with what life throws at them.


  1. Hey, I could have written an essay for that book...entitled how normal people become terrorists (they live with too many extended family members)

  2. I don't know the previous commenter, but I suspect there may be a grain of truth in what she says - for any of a number of reasons.