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With New Fatherhood, CNN’s Anderson Cooper Joined the 3 percent

When CNN anchor Anderson Cooper announced on the last day of April last month that he had become a father, he joined the 3% of single men in the United States who become a parent without a partner or spouse.

“On Monday, I became a father,” the heir to the Vanderbilt fortune and popular on air news personality shared at the end of a CNN Town Hall segment. “I have a son.”

He later tweeted that Wyatt Morgan Cooper was born on Monday weighing 7 pounds 2 ounces.

Before Cooper, one of his best friends, BravoTV‘s Andy Cohen also welcomed a baby solo, and similarly, Cohen too announced the news on his nightly talk show Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen

Other famous men who became parents while single include, actor Hill Harper, who adopted a son, while  there is apparently a growing trend of single men turning to surrogacy, according to recent reports.

International soccer star and the most famous person on Instagram, Cristiano Ronaldo, is a surrogate to three children, two of whom were born when he was single.

In 2008, Latin pop sensation Ricky Martin used a surrogate to father twins while he was also without a partner at the time. He has since welcomed a daughter, Lucia, with his husband Jwan Josef.

In a blog post on the E network‘s Daily Dish Blog, an expert explains the trend:

“There are many reasons why some men don’t start a family in their 20s or 30s. But it’s not too late to have a child, even if you don’t have a wife or a female partner? Single men who want to have a biological child of their own, both gay and straight, are starting to turn to IVF and surrogacy,” reports WINfertility, an organization which assists men in becoming single fathers.

“It’s not a simple process — basically, a single man who wants to be a dad needs an egg donor, a gestational surrogate to carry the child, and IVF to make fertilization of the egg and transfer of the embryo possible. There are hormones to take, sperm to donate, tests to undergo, egg testing to be done, contracts to be signed. It can be a years-long process. Which means that if you do it, you really want it.”

But according to Gayle East, owner and director of Surrogate Solutions in Hewitt, Texas, single man surrogacy is becoming more prevalent!

The type of guy who will be willing to undertake such a life-altering move are professionals who are financially stable and ready to settle down but they haven’t found a partner yet.

“They’re single guys who’ve been working in a career, saving money and becoming more financially secure. It’s very doable for them,” says East. “In the past, there was the stereotype of moms raising a family, but they’re seeing same-sex couples with families. And now, watching other guys go through this process will probably give more single guys the courage to do this.”

Congrats to Cooper!

This New Mom Isolates Her Coronavirus-treating ER Dr Husband Into Garage

New mom, Dr. Rachel Patzer tweeted about having to move her ER doctor husband into their garage to live in  while he spends days and nights caring for coronavirus patients.

President Barack Obama retweeted Dr. Patzer’s 5-part tweet while thanking First Responders like Dr. Patzer’s husband and other families on the front lines of dealing with this pandemic.

Dr. Patzer, who is on maternity leave, appeared on CNN’s The Lead  today rocking her three week old baby and talked about being challenged to care for a newborn while also having to home school her 1 1/2 year old and one year old.

When asked by CNN’s Jake Tapper about seeing people ignore calls to social distance by hitting the bars over the weekend, despite people like her having to make a lot of sacrifice for this virus, she said it saddened her

She also urged more Americans to heed to the advice of the professionals attempting to flatten the bell curve of daily new cases.

 

Black History Month: Revisit the Little Girl Who Dressed Like Historic Black Women

Because we’re in the middle of Black History month, now is a great time to revisit this creative photo series that Seattle mom Cristi Smith-Jones shared on Twitter and Facebook of her daughter Lola dressed up as a different famous black woman.

The photos, taken by her friend Kayleigh Stefanko started when Lola came home from school after a classroom discussion on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. the January of that year.

“She seemed to understand where we were coming from,” Cristi told CNN, then added: “Since it’s a heavy topic, we wanted to find a way to make learning about black history fun for her.”

Smith-Jones took an epic and extreme cool approach by coming up with a list of historic women and allowing her daughter to pick which ones to dress up as, complete with expressive wigs, head wraps and suits.

This  year, Smith-Jones promises something more but has since been sharing information on other hidden figures and not so famous figures in black history. Check it out on her account HERE!

 

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Miracle Odds: Baby Born 7-11, The Day, The Time and Weight.

Perhaps a lifetime supply of Slurpees is in order for the family that welcomed their second child, on 7-Eleven day, July 11, at 7:11pm and weighing 7 pounds 11 ounces.

Mom Rachel Langford of St. Louis Missouri gave birth to a healthy baby girl named J’Aime Brown, who joins her older 6-year old son and baby’s dad Johntez Brown.

She told CNN that she kept seeing the number 7 and 11 during her pregnancy but did not think of anything.

“I thought it was weird at first, and I didn’t know that (the numbers) meant so much,” she said. “A lot of the times (during the pregnancy) I would look at the clock and it was 7:11.”

Although a bit “freaked out,” both mom and baby are doing well, CNN reports.

Langford says she even plans on telling the convenience store chain about the coincidence.

Birth Tourism is In the News Again, Not the Chinese but Russians This Time

A few years ago, we reported about how the United States federal agents raided over three dozen “maternity hotels” in Southern California that housed foreign women, mainly rich Chinese, who came to America solely to give birth to a US citizen baby.

In 2012, about 10,000 Chinese women gave birth in the US which more than doubles the 4,200 who gave birth in 2008, CNN reported citing Chinese state media.

And interestingly enough, in the current climate where Russia is at the center of several investigations and scandals, there are new reports out about how birth tourism is booming in Miami, Florida in two parts, Russian Riviera and Little Moscow.

According to an article in The Daily Beast published last fall, numerous companies are offering bundle packages that include housing and medical services for the Russian parents-to-be to use while they are in America to have their babies and they are reportedly explicitly referencing Trump hotels to draw rich Russians who can afford it. The most expensive package costs $84,700 for “a Trump Tower II apartment with a gold-tiled bathtub and chauffeured Cadillac Escalade or Mercedes Benz.”

Traditionally, such activity is associated with Hispanic American women and men from Mexico and south of the border nations who cross the border without authorization, settle in America and have children who provide ample opportunity to remaining in the United States. Some anti-illegal immigration advocates have previously used the derogatory term “anchor babies” to apply to such children.

In the California raids example, companies used social media to advertise the scheme promising to house women in these hotels and some apartment complexes in Los Angeles, Orange and San Bernardino counties. The women paid between $15,000 and $50,000 for housing, transport food, but not necessarily medical care, US Immigration and Customs Enforcement said in a report.

Court papers indicate that bank statements for one maternity tourism company showed monthly gross receipts of $213,968.79 and annual income of $1,283,812.74.

This current scenario with Russians and Chinese are certainly outside of that previous aspersion, but to some would arguably equally apply. Arguably, one can empathize with parents who are simply looking for better opportunity for their children and families.

However, the argument can be made they should not be able to freely exploit the laws of the United States to jump ahead of legal immigrants waiting for visas or to get government aid especially when their families wouldn’t have paid taxes up until the children grow up and get a job to support such aid.

The Chinese families are wary of the pollution and food shortages in China and they believe a US Passport could be a ticket for the family out of China in the future. The children would get access to good education and other benefits and can later petition for their entire family to emigrate to America when the baby turns 21.

Presumably, the same can be said for the Russians. However, travelers to the US from impoverished countries, especially, are usually denied a visitor’s visa if they are visibly pregnant. The reasoning is that the mom-to-be will take advantage of resources in America for free and exploit the visa laws to guarantee US citizenship for their baby, something that is illegal.

However, the California hotels that targeted the Chinese are routinely raided for this illegal activity. Time will tell if the current administrationwill apply the same approach to raiding the ones targeting Russians now that it has become such a big news story.

Kim Kardashian West Files Libel Suit Against Gossip Site Claiming She Faked Paris Robbery; They Apologize & Retract

media take out

Kim Kardashian West has sued the online gossip site MediaTakeOut.com for libel after the site portrayed her as a liar and a thief after she was robbed in Paris earlier this month.

In a lawsuit filed in a Manhattan federal court, Kardashian West states not only was she traumatized by the October 3, 2016 robbery but was victimized a second time when the site reported after the attack that she faked the robbery and lied about the assault.

No arrests have been made since, according to Paris police, armed robbers posing as police officers tricked the concierge of the private mansion she was renting while in town for Paris Fashion Week, and then eventually tied, bound and gagged both Kardasian West and the concierge and made off with $10M in jewelry.

The lawsuit says she asked the site to publish a retraction and apologize for painting a victim of a serious crime as a criminal. The lawsuit said the “malicious publication of the articles…is libelous.”

 

After the attack, her husband, Kanye West, abruptly ended his New York concert, announcing that he had a family emergency.

Media Take Out has taken down the post and its editor in chief Fred Mwangaguhunga  told CNN:

“Our number one goal is to produce the most accurate information as quickly as possible and we did that … But now, looking back at it, you have a chance often times to look back and reflect on what it is that happened. It’s now clear that she was robbed. It’s clear that the reporting that we did hurt her, and we certainly don’t want that to be what we do.

It’s a bigger issue than just someone telling you to take it down. Sometimes you take it down because there’s something on there that’s not right and your readers are being misled by the information on it.

Kim Kardashian is not just a celebrity, she is a human being. She is a mother, she is a wife and she was a victim of a violent crime. She definitely did not deserve it and she deserved to be believed.”

Nothing like a million dollar lawsuit to make you change you mind.

STUDY: Teens Spend more Time on Digital Screens than Sleeping or Learning in School

teen screen time bellyitchblog.com

You probably won’t be surprised to hear that a new report found that teens and tweens spend a lot of time watching TV, videos and movies, playing video games, reading, listening to music and checking social media, but you might be somewhat shocked (I was!) by just how much time.

On any given day, teens in the United States spend about nine hours using media for their enjoyment, according to the report by Common Sense Media, a nonprofit focused on helping children, parents and educators navigate the world of media and technology.

Let’s just put nine hours in context for a second. That’s more time than teens typically spend sleeping, and more time than they spend with their parents and teachers. And the nine hours does not include time spent using media at school or for their homework.

Tweens, identified as children 8 to 12, spend about six hours, on average, consuming media, the report found.

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Study agrees with Kim Kardashian; Selfies are Empowering

selfish

CNN.com posted an article last week asking if selfies empowering or objectifying.

It was a question posed on the heels of the release second time mom-to-be Kim Kardashian‘s new book of selfies called, “Selfish“.

The sex-kitten is known for posting provocative photographs that tantalize her 37 million Instagram and 33 million Twitter followers.

At a recent event, Karadashian-West agreed that the selfies she take objectify her but that added that they are also empowering.

“I’ve taken them,” the business owner confessed. “I’m proud of them. There’s power in that. There’s a control. Even if I’m objectifying myself, I’m OK with that.”

CNN.com cited an expert who suggested that selfies can be damaging to women and young girls’ self-esteem because they cause women to be more critical of their own appearance and to self-critique. The article also pointed to an InStyle magazine survey that says young women who watch fashion magazines and spend a lot of time on Facebook compare themselves to others.

The InStyle research noted that “89% of women said getting a ‘like’ on Facebook or Instagram felt like a compliment, while 82% said that getting compliments on social media improved their self-esteem.”

I’ve definitely seen several examples of women who feel compelled to post more and more provocative photos of themselves in their search for as many likes as possible.

However, I tend to think it’s a reflection of already existing low self-esteem in a person. I am not sure whether selfies exacerbates the problem, either. It just provides a means and social media the forum for these young women and girls to get validation.

women social media

And  the final result of the InStyle survey is that social media actually help young women’s self-esteem.

“I think that it’s a really beautiful thing that anyone, anywhere can post a selfie and they don’t have to be a celebrity,”21-year old New York University student Valerie Kipnis is quoted as saying. “Selfies are going to reset the standards of beauty and how people view themselves.”

True.

Unlike traditional mass media where a few powerful magazines selected and picked who they felt were the most beautiful to be featured, social media lets anyone with a smart phone snap themselves and share it with the world.

Sefies posted in social media represent an injection of many more images of women who are beautiful in their own way. More exposure of different types of attractiveness can contribute to broader acceptance of those with features and looks that were once ostracized and rejected.

What do you think?

Are selfies good or bad for the self esteem?

photos: Getty

 

 

 

 

Lisa Ling’s 2-year old daughter speaks 3 languages already

Journalist Lisa Ling just wrapped taping of her CNN globe-trotting show This is Life and in between that and balancing other projects, she managed to teach her daughter Jett three languages! Wowza!
She revealed that wonderful tidbit during a recent interview with Celebrity Baby Scoop.
“Jett is so smart it’s scary,”The View alum says of her 2-year old. “She loves books.”
That explains why a 2-year old is multi-lingual already. 

Ling, who recently revealed that she was diagnosed with ADD as an adult, says motherhood has expanded the depth of her work.

“I have always focused on girl empowerment, but now I really focus on topics I can be a voice for that help the equality of women,” Lisa says.

Nice.

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