Will a new definition of autism affect your child?I was introduced to the world of autism in 2003 when my stepson, then 5 years old, was diagnosed. What a generation ago would have been considered "quirky" now had a name -- Aspergers Syndrome -- and a bewildering array of treatments and interventions, none of which guaranteed anything, all of which offered him the possibility of a better chance at school and at life.
No one knows what causes autism. The autism-MMR vaccine link has been thoroughly debunked, but there are genetic components to consider and environmental issues to look at. As many as one in 110 kids in the United States are diagnosed with autism each year, and some people have speculated that the rapidly increasing rate can be blamed on the fact that the definition of the autism was broadened in the 1990s.
"It was an artificial inflation," Jennifer Pinto-Martin, director of the Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities at the University of Pennsylvania, told Time magazine. "If you have a larger umbrella, more
Blog Posts by Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Parenting – Mon, Jan 23, 2012 2:55 PM EST
Will a new definition of autism affect your child?I was introduced to the world of autism in 2003 when my stepson, then 5 years old, was diagnosed. What a generation ago would have been considered "quirky" now had a name -- Aspergers Syndrome -- and a bewildering array of treatments and interventions, none of which guaranteed anything, all of which offered him the possibility of a better chance at school and at life.Read More »from What Will Redefining Autism Mean for Kids on the Spectrum?
Amazon Moms used to offer a great deal on diapers, but they've changed the program -- and parents aren't pleased.It was a great deal: Members of Amazon.com's Mom program got 30 percent off diapers and wipes, free shipping for up to a year, and didn't need to clip coupons or track store sales in order to get the best prices on baby supplies.
So parents were understandably upset last week when Amazon.com announced new parameters for the program, with lower discounts and a limit on the free two-day shipping. But things really hit the fan when members found out that they'd need to purchase a $79-per-year Amazon Prime membership in order to keep their 15 percent Moms discount once the three-month trial period was over -- and that they couldn't even get one last order in at the lower price.
"What we find devastating is that they disabled the discount 10 days before they said they would," wrote Suzanna Gabulyan Forestell on the Amazon Moms Facebook page. "I've been a loyal customer for so many years and referred so many people to them and I cannot believe this is the treatment I am getting!"
NowRead More »from Amazon Moms say new diaper discount program reeks
8-year-old Juliet has something to thrash about.Eight-year-old Juliet is about as far away from cloying bubble-gum pop as you can get. She's like the anti-Rebecca Black. And she's taking YouTube by storm with her new video, "My First Hardcore Song."
"Let's open up this pit!" she yells, slamming on a trampoline filled with stuffed animals. She's wearing a T-Shirt that reads "I Heart Phuket," which is sure to give some helicopter parents heart palpitations. She tosses her long hair, windmills in the street, and howls.
The edgy, black-and-white video -- shot by her mom, photographer Kristina Childs, and produced by a family friend, Australian producer Rob Sharpe -- is interspersed with shots of her beloved dog, Robert, her pet fish, and Juliet in a deserted playground. Juliet wrote most of the lyrics herself, her mom says.
"Yes, this is her first music video," Childs told Yahoo! Shine. "It was all done as fun when Juliet was hanging out at our friend Rob Sharpe's house. He has a studio at home andRead More »from 8-year-old Rocker Gets Her Two Step On
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Work + Money – Thu, Jan 19, 2012 4:32 PM EST
Rick Perry drops out of the GOP race.Here's a quick look at the stories that are making political headlines right now:Read More »from Political Roundup: Huntsman, Perry Drop Out; Gingrich Courts Palin; Romney's Off-shore Money
Rick Perry ends GOP bid, endorses Newt Gingrich: Rick Perry ended his presidential campaign Thursday and endorsed Newt Gingrich for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination at a press conference in South Carolina. "Newt is not perfect, but who among us is?" Perry said. "The fact is, there is forgiveness for those who seek God." It seemed to be a reference to Gingrich's personal life, which were put back in the spotlight Thursday by his second ex-wife, Marianne, who told ABC News that her ex-husband had asked her for an open marriage after admitting to a six-year-long affair with Callista Bisek, who is now his third wife.
Gingrich says he'd ask Sarah Palin to play a major role in his administration: Former GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin has long been a Newt Gingrich supporter, and CNN's Wolf Blitzer asked Gingrich what many others are wondering: Is Palin on Gingrich's short list for a
Chuntera Napier and her son Gaquan show off the tattoos. Would you let your 10-year-old get one?When Chuntera Napier's son told her he wanted to get a tattoo in memory of his brother Malik, who was killed in a car accident two years earlier at the age of 12, Napier was touched.
"My son came to me and said, 'Mama, I want to get a tattoo with Malik on it, rest in peace,'" Napier told WSB-TV in Georgia. "It made me feel good to know to know that he wanted his brother on him."
But the problem is that Napier's son, Gaquan, is just 10 years old. And when someone at school noticed the ink on his arm, Napier got arrested for child cruelty and for being party to a crime.Acworth, Georgia, police Chief Mike Wilkie said that while he sympathized with Napier and was sorry for her family's loss, police had no choice but to arrest her after confirming that the tattoo was against the law. The tattoo artist in Smyrna, Georgia, is being investigated.
"We hope they can find something that can sustain them through that loss, but this is not the way, and it is illegal, and it was something we Read More »from Would You Let Your 10-year-old Get a Tattoo?
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Love + Sex – Thu, Jan 19, 2012 1:51 PM EST
Newt Gingrich's second wife, Marianne -- seen with him here in 1997 -- now says that he asked her for an open marriage.In an interview with ABC News, Marianne Gingrich -- Newt's second wife -- says that when the GOP Presidential hopeful told her about his six-year-long affair with Callista Bisek, he asked his wife of 18 years to share him with his mistress.Read More »from Marianne Gingrich: Newt "wanted an Open Marriage and I Refused."
"I said to him, 'We've been married a long time.' And he said 'Yes, but you want me all to yourself. Callista doesn't care what I do'," Marianne Gingrich told ABC News' Brian Ross in the interview, which is set to air tonight on "Frontline." "He wanted an open marriage and I refused."
"She does not think that her ex-husband has the moral character to serve as president," Ross said on "The View" earlier today. "He has campaigned talking a lot about family values, and the sanctity of a marriage between a man and a woman… and what Marianne says is that is not the way he lived."
In December 2010, Marianne Gingrich told Esquire magazine: "When you try and change your history too much, and try and recolor it because you don't like the way it was or
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Parenting – Tue, Jan 17, 2012 6:30 PM EST
Protesters urge Tuscon, Arizona school board members to reconsider eliminating ethnic studies.To many educators and students, the Mexican-American Studies program in Tucson, Arizona, schools promoted cultural diversity and supported at-risk kids. But to the state's superintendent of schools, the classes fostered racial unrest -- and violated a state law that prohibits classes advocating ethnic solidarity, promoting racial resentment, or that are primarily for one ethnic group.Read More »from Should Schools Cut Classes and Ban Books to Avoid Racial Issues?
"A troubling, common theme arose time and time again in course and instructional materials, books and lesson plans: Latino minorities have been and continue to be oppressed by a Caucasian majority," Superintendent of schools, John Huppenthal wrote in a 2011 press release. "The assertion that TUSD's Mexican American Studies Program was designed and implemented only to promote cultural diversity and a greater understanding of the role of Mexican Americans in this nation is inaccurate and incomplete."
Though the schools insist that the program was in compliance with the law, an Arizona judge upheld
- Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Parenting – Fri, Jan 13, 2012 2:09 PM EST
Evidence included photos of Casey Anthony partying while her 2-year-old daughter was missing. Could the new details explain why she was behaving so badly?(AP Photo/Red Huber)New revelations in the Casey Anthony case surfaced this week when her psychiatrist, Dr. Jeffery Danziger, revealed that her murdered 2-year-old daughter, Caylee, may have been conceived by rape.Read More »from Was Casey Anthony Raped? and Would that Change How You Feel About Her "not Guilty" Verdict?
"Got pregnant, had the baby," he wrote in his notes from a meeting in November 2010. "Took two beers, possibly given another drug. Woke up passed out unclothed bottom. Don't remember anything at a party. Age 18. This is how she became pregnant." He said that she didn't know who Caylee's father was.
Dr. William Weitz also conducted the psychological evaluations; according to his testimony, Anthony said that she "never considered, once she was pregnant, having an abortion or having the baby put up for adoption. She wanted the child."
The details came to light when Anthony's psychological evaluations were unsealed this week; Danziger's and Weitz's notes were from depositions taken on April 7 and April 13, 2011. Neither psychiatrist testified during her trial last summer.
The evaluations show
While the U.S. wrestles with ways to make school lunches healthier without busting the budget (pizza as a vegetable, anyone?), here's a look at some typical school lunches around the world. What do you think? Are our kids lucky to have so many choices (simple fare, like rice and beans, feature prominently in other countries), or are our school lunches, which offer more processed and preserved items, contributing to chronic illnesses like diabetes and obesity?
Also on Shine:Read More »from What's for Lunch? School Lunches Around the World
What are the most germy places in your child's school?Kids catch anywhere from seven to 12 colds each year. Add in the other bugs sweeping the nation's school systems -- H1N1, norovirus, strep, e.Coli, MRSA, and run-of-the-mill influenza -- and kids age 5 to 17 end up missing school by the millions. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that nearly 22 million school days are lost due to the common cold, and as many as 38 million schools days are missed thanks to the flu. And the place where most kids are picking up the germs is at school.Read More »from The Most Germy Places in Schools
"Kids spend more time [at school] than they do at home," Peter Sheldon, vice president of the commercial cleaning company Coverall,told Yahoo! Shine in an interview. "But while things like flu shots and other preventative care are important, schools are not playing enough attention to effective cleaning."
Eighty percent of common infections can be spread through the air, water, food, and via contact with contaminated surfaces, he points out. And the places where kids are most