2021年10月9日 星期六

But You Seemed So Happy

Parents are reassessing their relationships in our new normal.
A roundup of new guidance and stories from NYT Parenting.
Golden Cosmos

The pandemic has inspired a lot of people to reassess their relationships, and divorce filings are on the rise. While some of that increase is from the backlog of cases that occurred when courts closed in 2020, some of it must be because spouses were trapped inside together and realized it wasn't the life they wanted forever.


"During the pandemic, couples took the time to re-evaluate their relationships and set their minds on reprioritizing, before deciding to either stay married or get divorced," said Elizabeth Overstreet, a relationship expert in Raleigh, N.C., in an article the Times ran in September.

I was thinking of this kind of thoughtful revaluation when I read Kimberly Harrington's essay, which is adapted from her new book, "But You Seemed So Happy." Her piece is about deciding to continue living with her ex after they separated, and then divorced. They both wanted to maximize their time with their teenagers before they left the house for college, and Kimberly found that they are better partners as friends and roommates than they were as spouses. "As our living situation continues, a curious shift has occurred: We ask about each other's days and share more now than we did before," she writes. Friendship is often considered as somehow subordinate to and less desirable than marriage in our society, Kim argues, but she feels she has the opportunity to change that perception.

Also this week, some deeply horrifying statistics about how much the governments of other rich nations invest in child care compared to the U.S. The Norwegian government (the most generous nation tracked by New York Times reporter Claire Cain Miller's analysis) spends nearly $30,000 on child care per year for every toddler. The United States spends just $500 per year, while the average wealthy nation spends about $14,000 per year. Though we know day care is difficult to find and afford in the U.S. writ large, a new survey from WalletHub finds that Montana, Tennessee and Colorado are all tied for the most child care centers per capita.

Speaking of vital shortages, access to diapers has been a huge problem since the beginning of the pandemic. As I have noted in previous newsletters, moms who can't afford diapers find that hardship to be more stressful than food or housing insecurity. More than a year and a half into this global crisis, Alyssa Lukpat finds that diaper need is still a pressing issue for millions of American families.


Finally, we are working on a photo essay about adaptive Halloween costumes. If you have made or purchased an adaptive Halloween costume for your child, and are willing to be photographed and interviewed for a story, we'd love to hear from you. Please drop us a line here.

Thanks for reading.

— Jessica Grose, columnist, NYT Parenting


Article Image

Tatjana Prenzel

Can a Good-Enough Marriage Make for a Great Divorce?

In continuing to share a home, along with our teenage kids, my ex and I have found true partnership.

By Kimberly Harrington

Article Image

Kemalbas/Getty Images

As Courts Reopen, Divorce Filings Are on the Rise

Whether the pandemic caused new problems or amplified old ones, divorce cases have family lawyers and judges busier than ever.

By Vincent M. Mallozzi

Article Image

Mathias Svold for The New York Times

How Other Nations Pay for Child Care. The U.S. Is an Outlier.

Rich countries contribute an average of $14,000 per year for a toddler's care, compared with $500 in the U.S. The Democrats' spending bill tries to shrink the gap.

By Claire Cain Miller

Article Image

Liz Martin/The Gazette, via Associated Press

Diapers Are the Latest Pandemic Shortage

A police bulletin seeking information on a man recorded shoplifting packages of diapers drew fresh attention to a continuing crisis of access to the product, according to the National Diaper Bank Network.

By Alyssa Lukpat

Article Image


The Best Places to Have Babies

A new study compares health care costs, accessibility to care, and baby- and family-friendliness in the 50 states and Washington, D.C.

By Michael Kolomatsky


Subscribe Today

We hope you've enjoyed this newsletter, which is made possible through subscriber support. Subscribe to The New York Times with this special offer.

Tiny Victories

Parenting can be a grind. Let's celebrate the tiny victories.

After months of my toddler clawing at us, he finally listens when we tell him, "Nice hands," and softly rubs where he just clawed us. — Sarah Miller, Pendleton, Ind.

If you want a chance to get your Tiny Victory published, find us on Instagram @NYTparenting and use the hashtag #tinyvictories; email us; or enter your Tiny Victory at the bottom of this page. Include your full name and location. Tiny Victories may be edited for clarity and style. Your name, location and comments may be published, but your contact information will not. By submitting to us, you agree that you have read, understand and accept the Reader Submission Terms in relation to all of the content and other information you send to us.

Need help? Review our newsletter help page or contact us for assistance.

You received this email because you signed up for Parenting from The New York Times.

To stop receiving these emails, unsubscribe or manage your email preferences.

Subscribe to The Times

Connect with us on:


Change Your EmailPrivacy PolicyContact UsCalifornia Notices

LiveIntent LogoAdChoices Logo

The New York Times Company. 620 Eighth Avenue New York, NY 10018