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You know that oft-cited "stat" about how half of marriages end in divorce, and it's only getting worse?

Well here's the good news: It's not totally true! Divorce rates are actually falling among younger generations in the United States for a number of reasons, including people waiting a little longer until they're sure they want to tie the knot.

Now here's the bad news: The divorce rate is still somewhere between a half and a third, which means — when kids are involved — there are still an awful lot of "blended families" out there.


We tend to think of a divorce as an emotional process filled with rage and resentment, but it's not always that simple. Most parents would agree that they want to do whatever is best for their children. And in a lot of cases when divorce is involved, that means continuing to work together with their ex-partner, even once the marriage itself is over.

Easy? Definitely not. Impossible? Not necessarily.

Mom Hayley Booth recently shared her own blended family story on Facebook and introduced the name she uses for her ex's new wife, Dakota: She's her daughter's "bonus mommy."

Often times I have people ask me how my ex, his wife, my husband and I co-parent so flawlessly. My answer is always...

Posted by Hayley Booth on Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Booth's photo, which shows the two women walking their daughter down the hall on her first day of school, makes it clear that the exes and new partners in this family get along.

But how do they do it?

"My answer is always the same — We just love our daughter," she writes. "Seriously, it's just that simple."

During Booth's divorce, "It was hard to see past [the anger]," she explains in a Facebook message.

With time and communication, however, came healing.

"Believe it or not, we talked through our problems. We did what adults are supposed to do," she says. "[I realized Dakota] wasn't trying to replace me at all. She was just trying to love my little girl the best she could. And that helped me see past all of it."

Most research shows that divorce doesn't necessarily mean poor long-term outcomes for kids, but that doesn't mean it doesn't take hard work and a lot of love from everyone involved to make that a reality.

The whole blended family. Photo by Stardust Studio, used with permission.

Booth says thousands of parents have written to her since her story went viral, some applauding her for sharing, others desperate for advice on how to make their own complicated arrangement work. She admits that it can't always work, that sometimes there might be too much pain to overcome.

She hopes her story and her friendship with her daughter's Bonus Mommy can help some people in their own lives.

"I really hope it's reaching the right people," she says.

A breastfeeding mother's experience at Vienna's Schoenbrunn Zoo is touching people's hearts—but not without a fair amount of controversy.

Gemma Copeland shared her story on Facebook, which was then picked up by the Facebook page Boobie Babies. Photos show the mom breastfeeding her baby next to the window of the zoo's orangutan habitat, with a female orangutan sitting close to the glass, gazing at them.

"Today I got feeding support from the most unlikely of places, the most surreal moment of my life that had me in tears," Copeland wrote.

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RumorGuard by The News Literacy Project.

The 2016 election was a watershed moment when misinformation online became a serious problem and had enormous consequences. Even though social media sites have tried to slow the spread of misleading information, it doesn’t show any signs of letting up.

A NewsGuard report from 2020 found that engagement with unreliable sites between 2019 and 2020 doubled over that time period. But we don’t need studies to show that misinformation is a huge problem. The fact that COVID-19 misinformation was such a hindrance to stopping the virus and one-third of American voters believe that the 2020 election was stolen is proof enough.

What’s worse is that according to Pew Research, only 26% of American adults are able to distinguish between fact and opinion.

To help teach Americans how to discern real news from fake news, The News Literacy Project has created a new website called RumorGuard that debunks questionable news stories and teaches people how to become more news literate.

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Family

A mom describes her tween son's brain. It's a must-read for all parents.

"Sometimes I just feel really angry and I don’t know why."

This story originally appeared on 1.05.19


It started with a simple, sincere question from a mother of an 11-year-old boy.

An anonymous mother posted a question to Quora, a website where people can ask questions and other people can answer them. This mother wrote:

How do I tell my wonderful 11 year old son, (in a way that won't tear him down), that the way he has started talking to me (disrespectfully) makes me not want to be around him (I've already told him the bad attitude is unacceptable)?

It's a familiar scenario for those of us who have raised kids into the teen years. Our sweet, snuggly little kids turn into moody middle schoolers seemingly overnight, and sometimes we're left reeling trying to figure out how to handle their sensitive-yet-insensitive selves.


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