Stefanie Wilder-Taylor's Blog
July 9, 2015
It doesn’t seem controversial to say that if you’re a man you can’t just go around punching women in the face, right? This statement should be like, Life 101. And yes, I should make it known that I am speaking as someone who has been punched in the face by a male person on more than one occasion. Once when I was about sixteen, I threw a cup of soda on a guy’s lap who was being mean to my friend. He retaliated by going all aggro, pouring an entire pitcher over my head and then hauling off and punching me in the mouth so hard I needed stitches. Another time, while still a teen, I was out with a guy who got drunk and abusive with me. He threw me down in a parking lot and kicked me because he didn’t like something he thought I said. I was so angry I chased him into the restaurant and slapped him and he PUNCHED ME IN THE FACE.
Seriously, not cool. You would think I’m preaching to the choir but you would be wrong. There have been more than a few incidents recently where a grown-ass man punched a women in the face and instead of the world having a no tolerance policy, many have defended the man. This is insane to me.
A few days ago there was De’Andre Johnson who is a Florida State University football quarterback (well, was). He apparently pushed into a woman in a bar, she got pissed and said something to him, he grabbed her and she took a swing at him and he, yes, PUNCHED HER IN THE FACE. I was naturally horrified at a huge football player punching a woman but my response wasn’t shared by many people who commented on the story. Just look at the responses to the YouTube video. I know what you’re thinking – people who comment on YouTube are assholes right? Well, what about a progressive website? Think Progress posted the story on Facebook and there were lots of comments like these: “I never hit a woman……………if a woman hits me I’m beating her till the white meat show.” “If a woman wants to be treated like a lady she should stay in a woman’s place not act like a man by throwing punches and kicking. She got what she deserved.”
Then yesterday, I find this story about a 6’2″ male manager at Panera Bread who threw a tiny female employee down the stairs and then when she popped back up and came in angry as hell and tried to hit him, he PUNCHED HER IN THE FACE. Hard. Again, the commenters say ugly things like Yolanda who said, “Common sense tells me she was fired- and started causing a scene. I’ve been in that cage. The “flight” of stairs consist of two steps…. The media circus rolls on.” Yo, Yolanda, did you not see the video with your eyes? Or this commenter on Gawker “It’s truly amazing how the women are never in the wrong in any of these videos, regardless of what’s captured or reported. #equality” or this one who really thought it through and decided that the girl was at fault unless he finds out otherwise: “If the story comes out that she was some saint pushed to the limit due to some kind of abuse or harassment, hey, I’ll change my tune. From what I can see? Experience tells me that this is someone who went “FUCK ALLA Y’ALL” because she couldn’t hack the horror that is a retail job. Boo fucking hoo. It’s called “work” for a reason; do it.” Nice. And a lot of these comments are from women. What gives ma bitches?
Things keep coming up in the news where the police are accused abusing their power. Some police officers have bullied, used physical force and in some cases killed unarmed black men. Sometimes the victims were instigating it and many times we have found out they weren’t. And we, men and women alike, have been HORRIFIED. We have banded together and cried racism! We’ve taken to the streets and protested! Rightfully so! Me too! Fuck those racist cops and their abuse of power! But why aren’t we equally horrified when it’s women who are the victims? Women who are not in a fair fight. Women who have no idea when or if a man might have a violent streak.
Women don’t normally do this shit to other women. If I was to spill a glass of soda on a woman’s lap in a bar, she might come at me, sure. But I wouldn’t be afraid of dying; I’d be afraid of having my hair pulled hard or getting my t-shirt ripped. Hell, some men would probably think we were goofing around and throw dollar bills at us. But I doubt anyone would end up bloody or hospitalized.
I’m just so mad that this kind of incident is getting so common place and more people aren’t pissed. If women aren’t going to get outraged and stand up for other women who will? This is why people like Bill Cosby get away with rape – because there will always be people like Whoopi fucking Goldberg saying, “Sorry. I need more proof.” When will we stop needing more proof?
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June 9, 2015
9. Take a compliment – If you tell my daughter she has nice eyes she’ll say “Thank you” and move on with her day. Tell me I have nice eyes and I will start with, “Oh, that’s just because I have mascara on from last night because I’m so lazy I couldn’t even be bothered to wash off my make-up!” and end next Tuesday.
8. Play basketball –My kid actually enjoys organized sports. I think she’s adopted.
7. Update my Instagram account –Until recently, I didn’t even realize I still had one. Now thanks to her constant updates because, “Mom, it’s illegal for me to have my own account until I’m 13 so can I use yours?” I have a ton of new followers.
6. Rocking colored hair dye –My kids can do a pink streak like nobody’s business. If I tried to do it I would just look like the world’s oldest Cyndi Lauper fan.
5. Remembering stuff –and thank goodness for that since even if I put something down on my to-do list, in ten minutes I’ve forgotten that I even have a do-list. I’m old.
4. Stop eating when she’s full. Oh yeah, she’ll eat half a bowl of ice cream and leave the rest to melt because…because…I don’t know! There’s no possible valid reason for leaving a perfectly good HALF BOWL OF ICE CREAM. Does she not understand the healing powers of dessert? Does she not have feelings she needs to numb with sugar? What is her deal? I don’t get it, is what I’m telling you.
3. Shake off disappointment – Last week she was devastated that she didn’t get the part she wanted in her school play. There were tears but the next day she said, “Hey, it’s not Broadway” and moved on. I’m still nursing a grudge about a party I wasn’t invited to in 2003.
2. Accessorize. Seriously, this kid can figure how to tie a scarf to make it look “kicky.” She can somehow pair just the right stud earrings with a cute barrette. I, on the other hand, have been know to spend an hour trying to determine if I can wear work shoes with yoga pants. According to my daughter the answer is, no.
1. Keep a secret. Do you have a crush on someone but you don’t want anyone to know? Well don’t tell me because I can’t keep my mouth shut. But if you tell my daughter not to say anything, she really won’t say anything. She’d make a terrible cast member on the Real Housewives.
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September 12, 2014
I know divorce sucks. Many friends and acquaintances of mine are either getting divorced or have been for awhile. But, if you are or have untied the knot, this doesn’t have to be a horrible thing if you can parlay it into cold hard cash, amirite? That’s where I come in to help! I just found out that a new show is looking for divorced couples and I figured I’d pass the opportunity along to you!
NBC is casting a new competition show! From the producers who brought you transformational shows such as The Biggest Loser and Extreme Weight Loss, Eyeworks USA announced that casting has begun for their new series on NBC. This new competition show will bring divorced couples together to compete in both physical and mental challenges for a chance to win a large, six-figure trust fund for their children.
Interested couples should email the below information to CastingDivorcedParents@gmail.com
Name & Contact Info
How long you’ve been divorced
Photos of you two together, your kids, your new families
A paragraph or two about your relationship
So go forth, get money and give it to your children! Please let me know if you get on the show so I can watch you!!!
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February 3, 2014
Elizabeth D.’s Story
Ninety-one afternoons ago, I went to a happy hour that changed my life.
Leading up to it, it was clear that I wanted a change. Sick of the lonely bottles of wine, I switched to vodka so that I wouldn’t see my own empties in the recycle bin.
As we raised our girls, I never hid my drink or even tried to control it. But now, the situation had crossed into very sad. Despite my huge career, I was now a very buzzed drunk who would zone out every single evening.
Back at happy hour, I poured down vodka with abandon at an upscale bar with old friends and colleagues. We seemed smart, beautiful and funny with the friendly bartender attentively pouring booze out of backlit bottles anytime we held out our glass.
Within a while, a few of us transitioned into a booth. Alone in my drunken stupor, I vaguely recall trying not to eat too much to not ruin my buzz or my waistline. Far more interested in “drinking my calories,” I nibbled mindlessly at a piece of salmon.
When my husband said that it was time to go, I quietly lost it. I didn’t want to leave.
Dazed and entering a blackout, I managed to stumble out of the restaurant’s bar muttering to myself until November’s fall air slapped me and I let out a stream of obscenities aimed directly at him.
Later, my husband, lover and friend of 32 years would tell me that he thought of taping me with his iPhone. But despite his disgust, he could not bring himself to capture the sordid scene.
At home, I woke up at 2:00 a.m. in another room. I got up and staggered half-dressed until I found my husband asleep in a guest room. There I woke him up and promised that I’d check into Betty Ford or Sierra Tucson.
“Who do you think you are? Get over yourself,” he said, voice low and furious.
The next morning he hardly spoke to me. As he left to play tennis, he managed, “Get your fucking shit TOGETHER!” And then he was gone.
The dogs stared at me stunned that their usually happy dad could make so much noise.
Terrified, sick and alone, I managed to get to my computer and Google, “Alcohol help. Help for drunks. Drinking help.”
Every single time, Alcoholics Anonymous would be the top hit. Finally, after enough surfing and no real information, I called the main office of AA. A woman named Jackie talked to me for two hours and ultimately directed me to a meeting nearby that day.
Ninety days ago, I parked outside a rickety old building on the other side of town just hours after taking to Jackie. The low-cloud Midwestern day perfectly punctuated my somber mood as I entered into my first AA meeting.
“Wanna dive right in?” asked the group’s smiling leader as he handed me my first coin and beginner packet.
Anxiously, I did exactly as he suggested. I read from the Big Book, shared my first 12 hours of sobriety and how I came to look for my first-ever AA meeting. Deep down I knew that I was in the right place. This first meeting held 6 men and three other women all of whom shared the same dream: A desire not to take a drink that day.
Today, 90 days after that first meeting, I woke up this time next to my husband and in the early dawn, we dared to whisper words such as “beginnings, fresh starts and hope.”
I got out of bed and wrote my “morning pages” a writing exercise for the book, “An Artist’s Way.” I took a spin class and then drove through the snow to get to an AA meeting where I ran into a friend and picked up a green coin marking my 90th day of sobriety.
As a surprise, my husband created a comfy spot for me to watch TV and have a fire in the fireplace. We are closer now than we have been in years.
Tonight, we are going out for an early dinner with friends. Everyone drinks alcohol. But I know that I will not.
I have new tricks and tools to help me navigate the stressors and triggers of every day and in life. They include books, TV, tea, music, meditation, movies, candles, candy, sparkling pops, popcorn, peanut butter, pillows made of down, blankets, comfy slippers, exercise and of course penguins.
Today I am humbled, grateful and am very relived to be here. Today I am sober.
Submitted with love,
January 23, 2014
8:00 am Wake up super excited about the zoo if only to see the Asian elephant exhibit. Try to rally kids to my level of excitement. Fail.
8:30 am Argue with kids about the value of a good breakfast bringing up the excellent point that I don’t want to start buying expensive snacks at the zoo as soon as we get there since it defeats the purpose of using free passes.
9:00 Give 5 minute warning that we are leaving for the zoo.
9:05 “Please put your shoes on.”
9:06 “Please put your shoes on.”
9:07 “Please put your shoes on.”
9:08 “Put your shoes on.”
9:09 “Put. Your. Shoes. On.”
9:30 Leave for the zoo.
10:30 Arrive at the zoo with clenched jaw and sore neck from listening to kids argue about whether or not orangutans are monkeys. I settle argument by letting them know they are indeed monkeys. After Googling it in the parking lot find out I’m wrong. Orangutans are apes. I do not share this.
10:45 After waiting in long line to get into the zoo, realize passes are expired and we must pay full price.
10:48 Kids say they are starving. We head to the nearest snack stand.
10:55 Pay $67 for 3 hotdogs one order of onion rings a pretzel and three lemonades. Shed my first tear of the day.
11: 20 Throw away most of the food and listen to kids yell that they want ice cream. Think about wanting a beer. Remember I don’t drink anymore and shed a second tear. Realize this was a bad idea.
11:22 Head to flamingos. After making it 20 ft. six-year-old claims she’s too tired to walk. Carry her for two minutes before deciding that it would be best to rent a stroller. Pay $11 for a double stroller.
11:35 Heave double stroller weighed down by ninety pounds of the combined weight of two six-year-olds in the general uphill direction of the flamingos.
11:45 Stop at flamingos. Kids can’t see through the fence. Suggest that getting out of the stroller might provide access to a better vantage point. Get met with dead stares.
11:47 Begin hyping the Elephants of Asia exhibit.
12:00 Attempt to bypass the insects due to intense dislike of bugs. Spend next ten long excruciating minutes in front of a Madagascar Hissing Cockroach. Find out against my will that female Madagascar cockroaches give birth to live young. Know in my heart of hearts that there won’t be enough Tylenol PM in the world to help me sleep that night.
12: 10 Try to generate elephant excitement.
12:15 Head in general direction of elephants, which seem to be at the farthest point of the zoo.
12:17 Kids spot playground and insist on stopping to play.
12:58 Insist we move on to see some animals since if the kids were just going to want to play on a playground for an hour we could have just walked to the park.
1:15 Move at a snail’s pace toward elephants. Nine-year-old wants to stop and rest. Sit down on bench. Kids decide they are ready to go home.
1:25 Insist that we stop at Bat-Eared Fox exhibit because we are going to see some goddamned animals if it fucking kills us!
1:27 Start questioning parenting ability.
1:39 Generate a small amount of interest in stopping to see the apes.
1:50 Maneuver all kids out of stroller and through throngs of unruly kids and adults and finally get them positioned right smack in front of the apes. Success.
1:51 Look up at where people are pointing at the same time as all three kids to see the biggest ape is standing front and center furiously masturbating.
1:51:30 Remember thirty seconds too late that most apes unlike humans have zero sexual modesty. Begin trying to explain about how apes sometimes can get a very very itchy penis.
1:52 Six-year-old wonders if apes penis got poison ivy since that seems like extremely itchy.
2:00 Push on toward Asian elephants while answering question after question about itchy penises.
2:10 Promise ice cream just as soon as we see the elephants.
2:11 Stop at ice cream cart and spend $16 dollars on 4 glorified popsicles. Curse life.
2:20 Ask kids to please stop saying the word penis.
2:30 Arrive at the elephants which are all sleeping. Feel like crying. But then start Joining children in yelling to elephants to “Wake up!” “Wake up, you lazy elephants! You have a job to do! You are asleep on the job! Start giggling. When six-year-old yells “Hey, they don’t pay you the big bucks to lay around all day!” start laughing.
2:32 See elderly couple gives kids and me a dirty look. Laugh harder. Think to self that some people take the zoo way too seriously.
2:40 Return the stroller.
2:45 Carry six-year-old through the parking lot because her “legs hurt from walking so much!”
3: Drive home while mentally tallying the cost of the day which including entrance comes out to $157 dollars. Look in rear view mirror and see two out of three kids fast asleep one of whom is covered in chocolate popsicle. Admit to self that in the end, it actually was totally worth it.
July 31, 2013
It’s me Stef. How are you? Yes, I know I just saw you this morning at Western Bagel -you tasted so delicious all slathered in reduced fat cream cheese and topped with a tomato and lox -but I already miss you and I just wanted to let you know how I feel.
You have been getting a lot of negative press lately and you probably feel like a loser but I want you to take heart, you have some diehard fans like me out here who will never ever leave you. How could I? I love you. Maybe I’m even just a touch obsessed with you, fine. Okay, guilty. But I’m not stalking you. It’s just that you’re so goddamn yummy! Please don’t listen to the haters.
It seems it’s trendy right now to shun you. You’re like the Alexis on Real Housewives of of the OC just trying to do the Lord’s work while people sit in their mega-mansions and talk shit behind your back. It’s trendy to only go to restaurants where there are “gluten-free” options and people constantly post recipes for “gluten-free” cookies on Facebook (I know right?) but don’t worry, I’m not falling for that. I march to my own drummer and that drummer is wheat!
Sure some people have valid reasons for avoiding you – Celiac disease or a real sensitivity to gluten and I feel for those people because they are missing out on your ambrosial detectible scrumptiousness. Hey, according to spell check, scrumptiousness isn’t even a word but you drive me to invent new words to describe you! Screw spell check. Spell check is probably gluten-intolerant anyway!
I just want you to know that no matter what happens, I’m not going anywhere. There was a time that I had to break-up with sugar for a few years. And then we got back together, and then quickly broke up again and then tried to make it work one last time…actually, I’m not sure what sugar and I are doing right now. It’s messy is what I’m saying. But that’s different. It has nothing to do with you or with us.
What is it about you that keeps me coming back for more? I’d have to say it’s the way you make me feel, cared for, nourished and…full. Yes, that’s what it is! Full and satisfied. Damn you’re sexy. If loving a warm piece of sourdough baguette with butter is wrong, then I don’t want to be right!
It’s you and me, gluten. We’re in it for the long haul.
June 24, 2013
We all know that once you have a couple of kids, start tooling around town in a minivan and dressing only in yoga pants it gets tougher to feel sexy. But you know what else makes it tough to feel sexy? Rarely being able to talk about sex anymore -having to rely on vague euphemisms such as “making cookies” or “mommy and daddy are going to take a nap.” Remember the days before children when you could talk dirty to your partner any old time you want? You could walk into the kitchen, slap their ass and let them know what you’d be serving up that night for dessert (hint: it ain’t chocolate mousse). Now we have to be a bit more creative if we want to keep the spark alive. For this reason, I took to Facebook and asked for your favorite euphemism for sex. Here are some of my favorites.
Playing a little poker
Getting congress in session
Doing squat jumps in the cucumber patch
Getting some vitamin F.
Taking the Weinermobile for a spin
Doing the antler dance
Do you have time for some breakfast sausage?
Talking about Christmas
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
Paying the rent
Checking for ticks
“Appreciating” each other.
Richard visiting Virginia
Nik Nik –from Latke on Taxi
Riding the wild Gillooly
Snaking the drain
Taking old One Eye to the optometrist
Going to Home Depot
Buttering the beans
Feeding the kitty
Putting a roll of coins in the change box
Frosting the pastry
Okay, I think that’s enough. Do you have any you’d like to add?
May 23, 2013
Just wanted to let you know that Parental Discretion got a pick-up for season 2! I couldn’t be more excited to go back into production (probably in August) and have brand new episodes on the air by January. In the meantime, new episode are still rolling out including this Monday, May 27th at 11 pm.
I’m trying to think of ridiculous things to do for the new season such as the pole dancing class I did or the tattoo I got. One idea I have is a trapeze class. What do you think? I need ideas! Give them to me! And watch the show on Nick Jr. so I can fool NickMom into thinking I have fans!
May 17, 2013
I started trying to quit drinking right after Christmas 2012. Well, I guess I tried to start a year earlier, when I quit drinking for the month of November 2011. I did it just to prove that I could, to prove to myself I didn’t have a problem. And the day I made it, I poured a huge goblet of wine and toasted myself. A whole year later I was so far past where I had been, I felt hopeless. I spent 2012 trying to “discover” myself. I went to therapy. I quit my soul sucking corporate job to pursue my freelance writing and photography career, a life’s dream! My schedule finally wasn’t full to the brim with work, so I could actually spend quality time with my kids. After months of preparation and practice, I had everything I ever wanted. And I was miserable.
That’s when I realized I had a problem. Until then I kept making excuses. “My job is so stressful, I deserve a glass of wine.” “My kids are insane, I need that bottle.” “My husband is never home, might as well drink.” But then everything was better, but I couldn’t stop drinking. I basically drank a bottle of wine every single day of the month of December. And then in January, on a work trip, I decided to stop. I woke up covered in cold sweat and had horrible insomnia. After a week, I gave in, and was back to the booze. I figured I had to drink to sleep, so I drank. That’s about when I finally joined an online community for women in recovery (the Booze Free Brigade) and infamously Googled “symptoms of an alcohol addiction.” I introduced myself to the online community and quit for two weeks, but I didn’t stay with it. I faded away, feeling shame as I read posts from people who were able to make it through. I watched as people who started posting around the same time as I did hit milestones like 30 days or three months and I was so jealous. Why couldn’t I do this?
After many stops and starts, I finally took my last drink on April 15th, 2013. I had just returned home from my dear uncle’s funeral and saw the news of the horrible bombings in Boston. There was a bottle of wine on the counter and I had two glasses before I felt sick. I knew I could not do it anymore. I finished the bottle and went to bed. When I woke up, I felt horrible as always, in a hungover fog complete with pounding headache. I made it through the day white knuckling it, and then went back online to figure out how to join the private Facebook group that was associated with my sober community online. The minute I was added to that Facebook group, I received tons of notifications from other sober people welcoming me and telling me how glad they were that I was there. That was my turning point.
Since then I have done lots of things to stay sober. The first thing was really, REALLY recognizing the fact that I cannot drink alcohol safely. I am not a one drink kind of girl, so I must be a no drink kind of girl. I check my online community daily, and post as often as I can. With encouragement of my sober community, I have started attending AA meetings, which at the very least are free therapy and at very best are saving my life. I came out to my husband and two friends about being in recovery. I text sober people when I’m feeling vulnerable and I try and provide support to others who need someone to talk to. I drink lots of sparkling water and allow myself nightly treats, like ice cream or candy. For the first week or so, I stayed tightly in my bubble, spending a lot of time sleeping and watching TV on Netflix. My kids have watched more TV in the last month than in their entire lives! I order out for dinner more often to avoid the stress and triggers of cooking. I listen to the Bubble Hour podcast, a podcast that covers topics for women in recovery, while I’m cooking or cleaning, or even mowing the lawn. I have almost completely forgone the gym, as I had no energy early on in my sobriety and I didn’t want to try too many things at once. Hopefully I can get back in to that soon.
What has changed? Well, there’s the physical stuff. I’m 10 pounds of bloat lighter. My skin has cleared up and brightened. My fingernails, which had started pealing off, are growing back. My eyes are clear and the dark circles underneath them are fading. I still get headaches, but not nearly as often, and I hear these will fade over time. I’m finally not tired anymore, but that only kicked in during this past week.
And of course, the emotional growth has been magnificent. I actually enjoy spending time with my kids. I am present in their lives, not just in the room. My husband and I are working hard, but it’s not easy. He does not think I have a problem with alcohol, but he does admit I’ve been more fun to be around lately. We’ve been out at several events and I always get to drive his nice car home. My work, which was severely neglected during the end of my drinking and beginning of my sobriety (due to shear exhaustion) is finally back on track. I am creating again, and it feels incredible. But best of all, I am seeing things again. I remember when I first got eye-glasses as a kid, and I walked outside and saw all the individual leaves on the trees. I was amazed! My whole life I’d only seen a green blur from afar, and now I could see each leaf. It was astonishing and awe-inspiring. That’s how I feel in sobriety. I see each leaf. I see each flower petal and every inch of the blue sky. I smell the raindrops on the wet ground. It’s like I’m seeing everything in my life for the first time. What a gift! It’s like being reborn.
So, that’s where I am. Day 30, with many more sober days in my future.
May 8, 2013
So a few weeks ago I got my kids’ summer camp information in the mail -and let’s please not talk about how much it’s going to cost me to send all three of my little scamps to camp for the summer -seriously, I have to write a check for that nonsense by May 20th if I don’t stroke out first. Anyway…I got the info pack and inside there was a flyer featuring Gruvy Wear. Elby got a hold of it and immediately wanted a shirt. I looked at the flyer a little more closely and realized that the shirts are basically wearable UV protection and because my husband is a neurotic freak (even though I’m the Jewish one) he was all for us buying a few. Jon is a sun nazi and is constantly asking if the kids are wearing sunscreen. He’d love them to wear it to bed if it weren’t so darned messy. But short of that, he’s thrilled with these shirts that double as swim wear.
Well, when we got our shipment all three kids freaked out so much that I decided to get some more. I wrote to Gruvy Wear to see if they give me a few in exchange for putting them up on my blog and they graciously agreed.
The point is, you guys know that I rarely do posts on my personal blog featuring products but I am now such a huge fan of the shirts I couldn’t help myself. Check out Elby to your left who is wearing the matching skirt! Is that not the freaking cutest?
Here are Sadie and Matilda wearing size 5/6 and size 3/4 respectively. They both chose the guitar rhinestones motif and I think they really showed some fashion prowess. If you don’t find these pictures adorable I would suggest having someone take your pulse because you are clearly completely dead inside.
So guess what! You can order Gruvy Wear and get the old Stefanie Wilder-Taylor discount! 15% off your order if you use the code SWT15. And just to make sure you know, I’m not making any money off of this. I just loved the shirts so much I asked them if I could give my readers a discount!
I mean, if you wanted to get Elby a headband she wouldn’t knife you or anything. But you don’t have to. Buy one for yourself. Protect your hair color that you just paid $100 for. Not judging. Stating facts.