Design

Have a Lovely Weekend.

Sheep in Ireland by Emily Billings

What are you up to this weekend? We are going to meet Santa tonight at our neighborhood playground, and tomorrow we’re are going to a holiday party. Also, we’ve been thinking so much of friends, family and everyone in Southern California, and here’s how to help fire victims. Hope you have a safe weekend, and here are a few links from around the web…

I was honored to talk about the behind-the-scenes of blogging, my mom’s dating advice and how often toddlers laugh per day on Man Repeller. Thank you so much, Amelia!

How to cure a hangover.

The Crown starts tonight, and Big Little Lies will have a second season…

And I’ve heard amazing things about this new show.

A reminder that it’s totally okay to be the friend who gets a little too excited, haha.

What a pretty blouse.

This quote about men vs. women is ON POINT.

Raising a teenager, annotated by the teenager.

Two very young dancers, living the Nutcracker dream. “Don’t eat a big meal before going onstage. I did that once and almost threw up.”

A lovely piece of art.

Wise words, if life feels like it’s falling apart.

Awww, what a sweet Instagram caption.

Plus, two reader comments…

Says Meg on children swearing: “We moved to the Netherlands six months ago, and all the kids here say fuck, because I think the shock value is lost in translation. Also, it sounds a little more benevolent with the Dutch accent, like ‘Fahck.’ So, my three- and five-year-olds, who spent the summer playing with all the neighborhood kids, merrily exclaim, ‘Fahck!’ all the time. I’ve tried to remind them to please not say it when we FaceTime grandma. Otherwise, whatever. When in Rome.”

Says Ari on four great (feminist) things: “Has anyone else started realizing just how much stuff they had subconsciously internalized as normal? When I watched the SNL skit, I had a lightbulb moment and thought ‘Wait a minute, that is weird. And it’s also weird that my dad gave me mace. Wait a minute, it’s weird that I’m afraid of being perceived as a bitch because I don’t make eye contact with men I don’t know. HEY it’s also weird that my friends and I had our Rape Call which was the person you called when you were walking home at night… It’s like when I started crying when I saw Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman because I was so awestruck to see a female superhero. I would consider myself an enlightened, educated feminist raised by powerful women. And I’m just realizing this. is. all. weird.”

(Photo of sheep by Emily Billings. Reminder via Swissmiss.)

  1. Erin says...

    The men vs. women quote is so spot on and wonderfully affirming in an odd sort of way… I guess it’s nice to remember that I’m not paranoid, just practical. Thank you for sharing!

  2. katie says...

    OMG, I’m so glad I wasn’t the only grown-ass women crying at Wonder Woman.

  3. Sharon says...

    Your interview in Man Repeller was excellent. It reminded me of all the reasons I love this blog (and your voice!) so much. Thank you for putting it out into the world and creating this place to encourage authentic communication.

  4. Haddie says...

    The quote about listing precautions against sexual assault: on point, and has me in tears…

    • Oh Haddie, sending you love! You are not alone, there are so many stories and so many tears that go with them.

  5. Rue says...

    That MR interview was just what I needed! Your paraphrasing of your mom’s dating wisdom in particular was so well-timed for me. I had a big weekend of telling family and close friends things they needed to know about how I was feeling, some of it stretching back years and years. It has been exhausting, but I also realize that now there are paths forward that weren’t there until I said things honestly to people.

    It’s *not* how my family worked when I was growing up. It’s so ingrained in me to hide my feelings that I don’t even realize I’m doing it. But while I sat on my brother’s couch telling him how hurtful it was that a friend was pretending things were fine between us when there were clearly lots of emotions, my sister-in-law asked, “well do you think you’re contributing to that too?” And even while that defensive flash of “but he’s doing it MORE!” washed over me, I realized she was so right. I had to figure out a way to show my emotions to the person who had upset me. So after I picked myself up off their couch, I texted my friend, and we had the conversation we should have had days earlier — the conversation where it turns out we’re carrying very similar emotions, and neither of us knows how to handle them, but acknowledging it is at least better than ignoring it or ignoring each other.

    It reminds me of one of my favorite George Saunders quotes, from his travel essay about Dubai. “Don’t be afraid to be confused. Try to remain permanently confused. Anything is possible. Stay open, forever, so open it hurts, and then open up some more, until the day you die, world without end, amen.”

  6. I would love to see “a lovely piece of art” on your links list every Friday :D

    • Joss says...

      Agreed!!!

  7. Sasha says...

    So much good stuff here (that sweet Santa pic! ♡ i love for a little more M.B.)

    Joanna, your quote about happiness vs wholeness spoke to me on so many levels. Yes to wholeness and letting others see our authentic selves. Yes to helping children embrace the wholeness of their emotions. Yes to unconditional love, which is what you have when you love another’s wholeness. Happy moments, but whole lives. Thank you for making this space the embodiment of that sentiment. Truly grateful.

  8. Carrie says...

    The Men vs. Women article is fascinating. This is a discussion I’m eager to open up with my husband. I’d love to hear his perspective on things. The silver lining is that going through life as a female has molded me into someone who is highly attuned to her surroundings and has a strong ability to “read” other’s energies. Feminine powers…nbd

  9. K says...

    I recently read an anonymous quote:

    When you see something beautiful in someone, tell them. It may take a second to say, but for them, it could last a lifetime.

    It’s something I’m keeping in mind as I write my holiday cards. Just thought I’d share. :)

  10. Callie says...

    Long time reader and rare rare commenter. Just wanted to share that your interview on MR was lovely. Not that I would have expected anything else. Joanna, you are so relatable and I love your blog (and the other women by proxy who you’ve decided to surround yourself with). You always highlight the most interesting parts of the internet to link to.

    This morning with the news about the bombing in Port Authority–it stops you and makes you think that the world is so big and yet sometimes so small. I read your MR article this morning before my babies woke up and then was snuggling/nursing my baby and talking with my toddler when I heard NPR mention the bombing and of course I immediately thought about my husband who’d already left for his commute on the 7 and a friend who actually works in law enforcement at Port Authority–but then my net swung wider and I thought about all the connections to people I have here in this city–including the team behind your blog. I’m rambling which is perhaps why I don’t comment very often. Just wanted to say that in a world/city/life where really the unexpected can happen at any moment and we are unfortunately reminded on a Monday morning that the world can be cruel, you and your team are a lovely reminder that the world is also full of real life realness and goodness.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      oh, callie, what a lovely comment. thank you so so much. i hope your husband and friends are okay, and sending you a big hug. xoxo

  11. Alexa says...

    I look so forward to the Friday roundup all week! My only wish is that it didn’t appear so late in the day — sometimes I don’t even see it until I check again Monday morning! I know you are a small team working hard, so it may not be possible to post earlier. Just a thought :)

    • Yulia says...

      I have always wished the Friday roundup was published early, early, early Monday morning so by the time I get to work it’s waiting there to help me start my week with a whole day of links to peruse. Since it comes later in the day on Fridays and I’m generally busy finishing up work, and because I tune out on weekends and don’t read it then either… I guess it actually IS my de facto Monday morning roundup!

  12. Lizzie says...

    Love your conversation with Amelia from MR, specifically the anecdote about the Dutch couple at the end. When wanting more and more, I think it’s always important to remember that the most valuable resource is time, not money. So happy for your continued success.

  13. Amanda says...

    J – Just read through your interview on MR. So beautiful, and I felt like I was sitting across from you drinking a coffee and chatting. I’ve sent an e-mail before to say a big thanks, right after I had my son and was having a really hard time, but I will say it again… you’ve created such an amazing community – of awesome readers, topics about motherhood, and just all of the feels. When I am looking for advice or a pick me up – I often will topic search through your blog for past articles. This is my favorite place to go when my son naps, and my husband watches crummy Netflix shows…thanks so much! <3

  14. Hilde says...

    About the men vs. Women: I read that and my immediate reaction was that’s so extreme though, I can’t relate to that. And then I remembered how about 10 years ago, when I had just started dating my now husband, how a girl my age was raped and murdered in one of the apartments on my street by some man who buzzed her door and said he was from the electrical company (and I lived in the good part of town). My now mother-in-law made a big deal about it and wouldn’t let me walk my dog at night without her son being there, and we just laughed it off and appreciated that it gave us an extra chance to hang out together. And that’s one of the things that scares me the most, how these things happen all the time but you’re so used to them that you don’t even notice.

  15. Jennifer in KS says...

    The “Wise Words” immediately brought to mind one of my favorite Steely Dan tunes ….Any Major Dude Will Tell You
    “Any minor world that breaks apart
    Falls together again”

    :-)

  16. Lauren E. says...

    Oh god, the Raising a Teenager. I heard my mom reading that essay and me annotating and then found that I was crying throughout the entire freaking piece. Thanks for sharing.

  17. MAGGIE RAY says...

    In high school I saw a quote that said “growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of a cancer cell.” It has really made me think more strategically about projects and my life in general. Loved the part of the ManRepeller article where you discuss managing Cup of Jo with intention. Bravo!

  18. Brandi Lora says...

    The quote in the Courtney Casto article truly is on point. When I was a grad student in a small college town in Colorado I lived with two female roommates who were also grad students in other programs. We were all in our early 20’s. There was an issue with a peeping Tom in the community and he had recently started breaking into women’s homes at night and they’d find him hovering over them while they slept (he would then run off). I bought a couple of used men’s working boots from a thrift store and left them on our porch alongside our own shoes so others would think a male also lived in the house. Over ten years later a female colleague/friend who was a clinical social worker and I were at a conference and getting into an elevator. She advised when I’m in an elevator alone and a male walks in that I should step out and wait until the next one comes. She had previously worked with a patient who had been in her apartment elevator when a college-aged male walked in and pressed the stop button once the doors shut. He then sexually assaulted the woman. Now I often step out of elevators. I was in my mid-30’s at that time. This is never ending for women. It’s our norm but the accumulative effect on our overall sense of well-being and safety is something that warrants more research, intervention, and support.

    • Brandi Lora says...

      *cumulative effect

  19. Alli says...

    Popping in here to say thank you to the whole team at CoJ. I’ve been reading the blog since the very beginning, when I had just graduated from college. Reading the MR article made me think back on all the tips, support, and positivity that I’ve received from this community. I appreciate you.

  20. Mikaela Fuchs says...

    I’ve watched the first two episodes of Marvelous Mrs Maisel and I LOVE IT. but as a mother of two small children I’m like where are her children all the time???

    • ZM says...

      Yes! My thoughts exactly :)

    • Lisa says...

      I thought that too! I guess the grandparents have them all the time, plus the woman in the building who babysits. But it seems like she figured out the child care really fast and with hardly a second thought. I guess the main character has so many other things going on, the writers decided to tie that thread up quickly.

    • Whitney says...

      It made me think of the statistics about women now who work spending more time with our children than previous generations of “stay at home” moms. But, I guess we also only see a small portion of her day.

  21. Marcella says...

    I really enjoyed that article about raising a teenager annotated by the teenager. I turned 24 this week and I often think back on being a teenager in middle/high school and feel bad about how I was bratty to my grandma or my mom and now it feels like my brain has lifted out of that teenage hormone fog! It’s very weird to think about how much more I feel like I’m on equal ground with my parents now than when I was a teenager.

  22. Jayme says...

    I enjoyed the MR article. Something stood out to me, and I realized why I sometimes feel like “an outsider” in this community now. It’s this part:

    She explains that there are so many polarized opinions surrounding motherhood…

    THAT is exactly what I love about this blog, that it explored all the polarized parts of motherhood, and life. Except for a big one, recently. And for me that’s politics. The blog hasn’t explored articles or conversation on the other side of the liberal agenda. Even just writing the word Republican feels like a “bad word” (spilled over from feeling that way in the real world community at large). It’s polarized sure, and affecting friendships, dating, and so many other parts of life. I love the blog. I wish there was a place for open dialogue about this here.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      thank you so much for your note, jayme! it can be tricky sometimes with politics in particular because while i LOVE featuring people with different voices, perspectives, ethnicities, budgets, styles, body shapes and sizes, religions, sexual orientations, careers, parenting philosophies, states/countries, and much more on the site, there are some subjects (such as supporting gay marriage, stricter gun control laws, a woman’s right to choose, etc.) that i am so adamantly in support and for which i will always put my full weight behind. i wouldn’t publish a pro-life argument or a anti-gay-marriage essay on Cup of Jo because that would conflict with my ethics and point of view. so i strive to represent diversity as much as possible, but at the end of the day when it comes to politics i need to still stay true to my beliefs, as the founder/editor of the site. i hope that makes sense, and thank you so much for reading! xoxo

    • Cait says...

      I think a problem lately in politics though is seeing things through the lens of “two sides.” I’m not a liberal or conservative person, I just think the thoughts I do based on facts and how I feel they relate to me and others. You can support gay marriage and be fiscally conservative. I think sometimes it’s easier to dismiss people as all one thing because then you can write them off. One thing I would like to see explored is stories of families where not everyone is of the same mind on things, and how that’s navigated. For instance, holiday gatherings I know have become particularly stressful for a lot of people in the past few years because of that.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      that’s a great idea, cait.

    • t says...

      Cait I completely agree (fiscally conservative lesbian here). It actually makes it a little easier for me to stomach the political environment at the moment and to listen to different viewpoints as I don’t feel a party allegiance. I too am pro gay marriage, stricter gun control laws and a women’s right to choose but I am also for welfare reform, healthcare reform and tax reform. I think government is too big (in both size and in terms of involvement in our personal lives).

      The thing I absolutely cannot stomach is the lack of decorum from our current president. I actually don’t think he is entirely evil but his ego completely outweighs his desire to better the world (I feel the same way about Hilary).

      Joanna, your endless supply of empathy and kindness is such a gift to your readers. I consider myself to be a pretty hard person and you soften me every day with your posts and comments. Thank you for that.

    • edie says...

      Jayme,

      It sounds like we’re both part of that infamous Silent Majority :) Glad to have you here!

      I think it’s interesting when liberal folks claim to tolerant, but their tolerance is generally reserved for those within their bubble. While COJ isn’t a newspaper (thus I don’t expect them to cover all sides of an issue) it’s worth noting that they refuse to cove certain points of view because they view them as belonging to “the Other.”

      Also, the fact that she views a “pro life” argument as something negative makes me feel despondent.

    • Cait says...

      I would point out that I lean more liberal these days, but I just really dislike when someone states one opinion and another of a differing opinion will say something like “oh all you liberals are alike.” Wait. Stop. You are putting someone in a category so that you can be dismissive (like with the phrase “liberal agenda.”) I would feel the same way about someone casting a person speaking a conservative viewpoint as like all other conservatives. This country is more than just two kinds of people.

      And for the “silent majority” comment, Edie, I would just respectfully remind you that our current POTUS, while he is legitimately POTUS based on the laws of this country, lost the popular vote – thus you are not actually in the majority. And given that one party controls the entire federal government right now, I don’t know that it can be considered silent either.

      For those feeling like they don’t belong here – it’s Jo’s blog and therefore she should not feel compelled to represent or highlight notions that she does not agree with. Of course you are free to then not visit the blog, but to claim she is being exclusionary because she does not include perspectives she is adamantly opposed to is having quite unrealistic expectations and then being angered when those expectations go unfulfilled.

  23. AK says...

    Thank all for the shout out to fire victims. On locals TV news I watched my parents’ house in Ventura burn to the ground. They lost everything but luckily they are safe and have insurance — but many people don’t and could really use a hand. Any help for victims is much appreciated!

  24. ne says...

    I am a bit surprised that only women do things to keep themselves safe. I do all of those, and often tell my friends that the number of places I can go now because I have a big dog is amazing. But don’t men scan the environment to see who is drunk, drugged and ganged up? I would think they would too…

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      good question, ne. i’m sure they do some of those things, too, at times, but it’s so much more extreme/everyday for women. for a man, maybe he would avoid a dark alley with a group of drunk guys hanging out at 2 a.m. on a saturday; but for a woman, she is nervous walking home in her quiet neighborhood on a tuesday evening right after the sun sets. or in an empty parking garage. or walking up a stairwell at her office building. that’s my take — what do you think? xo

    • Ne – I asked my husband this a few months back after I came home from a shopping trip that had me out past dark. He was concerned about me, but he thinks nothing of going out after dark himself. He thought about it and shrugged, saying: I guess I don’t think about it. I asked if he parked near a light. He said no, not consciously. I asked if he paid attention to who was standing outside a door when he exited a shop; again, he said no. I asked if he chooses running paths without wooded areas due to safety. He laughed, not in a mocking way but just because it never occurred to him. I’m now curious to ask other men in my life the same question.

    • Lindsay says...

      I am so much more aware and so take many more precautions than my husband. He almost let a drugged out, incoherent man into our small apartment building one time, but I was inside calling the police about that man who was acting weird on our stoop. First, I had called my husband because I knew he was on his way home, and I wanted to make sure he was aware of this guy acting sketchy, but he didn’t answer his phone because he was almost home! He sees what’s going on around him, but it never has an impact on him and his life like it does for me.

    • E says...

      Ne, I think men are also aware of their environments but at a different level than women. I talked to my boyfriend about this the other week, granted he is six feet tall, in the military and well trained to scan the environment and react, but he still feels the need to be aware of his situation. I think the difference is that I will not run after dark or on a wooded path, whereas he is perfectly comfortable doing that as long as he has one headphone out so he knows what is around. We both know that situation could be dangerous but the stakes seem higher for women than men.

    • t says...

      I am actually a bit surprised that so many women walk around being so cautious. Maybe I am naive but I don’t do any of the things in the article. I know many women are like the women in the article but I never shy away from being out alone at night or meeting a stranger from craigslist after dark to buy something.

  25. Thank you so much for sharing my post! I am honored to be part of such an amazing online community. I can attest to what the Man Repeller article said about you having a digital Oprah effect. And Cup of Jo readers didn’t just show up on my site – they showed up with honesty, empathy, and vulnerability.

    Joanna, congrats on a wonderful article and the community you have created here. It really is a special place.

  26. Leah says...

    Loved the MR interview. The community you have created here is so special. It made me sad that the negative comments get you down. I just want to say thank you for all you do. :)

  27. Sally says...

    What a great interview on Man Repeller. Thank you for your beautiful blog. I have been following for over 8 years. It is such a source of support and inspiration.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      thank you so much, all these notes are so so nice.

  28. Love all these things! Those young girls look so professional in their Nutcracker rolls. Their biceps are awesome!

    Tomorrow I’m heading to my first comic con, and I’m taking a photo with Gal Gadot! I’m so excited but nervous to wear my Wonder Woman costume I made. But it should be fun :)

    • Ashley H. says...

      Just reading through comments a few days late…

      I hope Gal Gadot was every bit as awesome as you had imagined and I bet your Wonder Woman costume was every bit as fabulous as you intended. :)

  29. I also cried seeing Justice League recently. I’m not typically into action or super hero movies, but seeing all the Amazons being both so beautiful and physically powerful made me choke up. Now I know why men like seeing movies where they are portrayed as super human. It’s inspiring!

  30. Lisa says...

    Loved the man repeller interview. MR and cup of jo are the two blogs I check daily, and having those worlds combine (jo physically sitting down with Amelia! In person!) was just too awesome

  31. Anna says...

    Thank you for the thoughts and the link for helping fire victims in Southern California. I’m a long-time reader that lives in Ventura, CA and it brightened my day to see COJ’s support for my community. It’s been a long week (and a very scary Monday and Tuesday). My home is okay but many of my friends were not as fortunate. Ventura is a family town and the affect on our kids has been hard, but we are also a tight knit community that has bonded together more than ever through this experience.

    • AK says...

      Glad you are safe!

  32. Laura C. says...

    The Man Repeller interview has made me think of how many years I’ve been reading this blog. This is the ONLY ONE blog that I visit everyday, and USA is not my country, English is not my first (nor second) language, but I feel like in a real and very close community where I feel listened in a very real way. I love when you ever reply a comment of mine, and I love when another reader replies a comment of mine. You Cup of Jo is Perfect, Joanna. And I thank you for that.

  33. Cynthia says...

    As a retired grandmother, I have followed your blog for a number of years always sending bits to my daughter (mother of 2 year old twins and a four month old) who has no time to read these, but will appreciate them for reference later on. It’s the community of women that your blog brings together that is so important today. Thank you.

  34. Briana says...

    “Sometimes when things are falling apart they may actually be falling into place. Stay positive.” This sentiment is the lesson of my life. This summer, Joanna, you asked for your readers to just share where they were at that moment in their lives. I was at my parents’ house, taking care of my 54 year old mother as she died from breast cancer. Your readers (and you!) were so sweet and supportive in your responses, and made me feel less alone.

    My mom died in August and the next day, my fiance of 10 years broke up with me over text message and told me I wasn’t allowed back in our apartment and all my things were in one box. It became clearer over the next month that he had had a psychotic break. A few weeks later, my 21 year old sister disappeared. She’s been missing for 3 months. Hurricanes and fires were consuming the world, nuclear war seemed possible, and everything felt upside down.

    I found solace in my mother’s journals, which she filled with wise words about staying positive through her health struggle. She didn’t perceive herself as a victim, so how could I view myself that way? It would have been a disservice to her.

    Forced out of my home and life, I was confronted with some of the fears that had been holding me back and keeping me stagnant. The first thing I ever wanted to be when I grew up, back when I was 6 years old, was an artist. I got sidetracked by a more academic life and then spent many years as a failed tech entrepreneur. A few months ago I finally reached out to a friend in Silicon Valley who helped me land a role at a great rising startup as a product designer. The day I was hired, while driving home, for lack of a better method of informing her, I just shouted out in the car to my mom at the top of my lungs, “I did it Mom!”

    With distance, I’ve realized I was in an abusive relationship and was not fulfilling my potential. Everything had to be stripped away for me to initiate change. This feels like where I’m supposed to be now.

    I read a fable recently, I can’t remember where, about an old farmer and his horse. The horse runs away one day and the villagers all say to him “Oh what misfortune!” but the old man refuses to feel down saying all he knew was that the horse was gone, and could not know what that portended. The villagers thought he was crazy, but a week later, the horse returned and brought 10 more horses with it. The villagers then come to him and say “Oh you’re so lucky!” Again the farmer refuses to attach meaning to his fortune. A bit later, his only son is riding one of the wild stallions and falls and breaks his leg. The villagers again cry out about the farmer’s misfortune. But his son’s broken leg ends up saving him when an army comes through town looking for healthy recruits. And on and on….

    Of course, the journey has been incredibly difficult. I still cry every day. But just reminding myself that all of this may be happening for a reason, or that it’s temporary, or at least reminding myself that I don’t know the ending of my story, has gotten me through it. Plus, girlfriends. Oh my gosh, girlfriends are so important.

    • M says...

      Your perspective is such an inspiration. Keep on keepin on! (And cheers to girlfriends!)

    • Abbie says...

      What bravery and strength. Sending love your way

    • Ingrid says...

      Your mother is so proud of your persistence and self-awareness. I wish you a bright and fulfilling future full of success, happiness, and love. You go, Girl!!

    • Laura C. says...

      I’d love to meet you in person and give you a big hug, Briana. Your story is so hard. I am living sort of tough times too and I find relief in this community as well. Go on sister, I support you!

    • Kristina says...

      Hi Briana, oh my gosh, that’s an incredible story and you sound so strong and courageous. My mom died of breast cancer at 56 years old exactly 8 years ago today and it still feels raw. But it also changes and you learn how to live with it. So glad you feel you are finally on the right path – feels so good to be doing something you love, doesn’t it? And i agree with that last sentiment: Hooray for girlfriends – they’re just the best!! xoxo

    • Lucy says...

      I wish you strength as you walk forward

    • Alice says...

      Briana, this is SO beautifully written. It sounds like you’ve had such a tough time recently, and that you’re handling it with such grace and poise. Sending love to you- your story definitely is still unfolding and I hope it turns out to be a beautiful one.

    • oh Briana, I am sending you so much love! I don’t know you but I am so proud of you for keeping on, in spite of so much being stripped away. You are so strong! I went through something similar almost 3 years ago, and while I didn’t lose a parent, I feel like I can relate on many levels, and I know what struggle it is to just get out of bed on most days. My boyfriend of 7 years broke up with me a year after his brother passed away in a car accident. We lived away from family, in Boston, and for a year I watched him fall into a deep depression and tried desperately, and unsuccessfully, to save him from it. Watching him disappear before my very eyes, and remain standing in front of me really through my mind for a loop. And being the target of many of his angry outbursts did some deep damage to my emotional state of mind. I was grieving losing his brother, but not allowed to express it, and watching him disappear at the same time… And after losing him to a breakup, I moved home to my parents house (at 25!), jobless (also an entrepreneur, I was 2 weeks pre-launch on my business), and feeling completely broken. I wound up in therapy after some anxiety-related hallucinations (!!) and today, 3 years later, with my own successful business, a home of my own, a (breakup) dog from the heavens, and a WONDERFUL boyfriend (from tinder!), I am SO grateful for all of the shit hitting the fan at the same time and stripping me to my very core. I love better, I live better, and I am a better friend for it. And yes, girlfriends. My girlfriends carried me through when I didn’t feel like I could keep going.

      You are such a warrior! Congratulations on your new career path, and for continuing to just do all of the things (because, it takes work!)

      Wishing you the very best as you keep treading!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      sending you so much love, briana. i’m so sorry for the loss of your mother, and for what a hard year it has been in so many ways; you’ve had an extraordinary amount on your shoulders. i’m rooting for you, and sending you the biggest hug through the internet. xoxo

    • I read your comment, feeling for you and loving the parable at the end, and most of all, I’m hoping your daughter is safe and well and you hear from her soon. Xoxoxox. Amy

  35. Jacqueline says...

    I found myself tearing up reading the Man Repeller interview! Thanks for being my internet friend for so many years.
    PS I can really relate to your concern about growth. Not just online but in so many industries it is a true “more, more more” mentality. Good for you for following your instinct. I used to always feel so guilty and selfish about not being ready to grow my company and for wanting a better quality of life but I’m glad I listened to my gut. I sold my company. Even though to the outside world I may no longer be the impressive business owner I was, I’ve never regretted it, not even for a day.

  36. VP says...

    Have you guys heard of a new show called SMILF (Single Mother I’d Like to…)? Heard about it on NPR, and it sounds like it will be good!

  37. Nikki says...

    Your interview was wonderful. Thank you for sharing yourself with us. We are immensely lucky.

  38. Beth says...

    Loved your interview with Man Repeller. I’ve been reading your blog since before I had kids! When you first published your piece about post pardum depression I was in the middle of my battle as well. It felt so comforting to know there were others out there as well in th struggle. Love your site!

  39. Janice says...

    I loved the first episode of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel! I need to watch the second one and see if I am really hooked!

  40. Lorraine says...

    I live in Rio de Janeiro and strangely, for a city that is so dangerous, I don’t experience sexual harassment here. I’m moving back home in 7 months though, and reading that men vs. women article really freaked me out because I remember that when I lived at home I was mentally preparing myself for harassment or an assault every time I went out. While I worry a lot about my safety here, there’s a different sort of mental torture involved in having to constantly tolerate street harassment and the possibility of rape vs. “just” worrying about being held up for your phone and wallet. It’s the difference between a fear you feel in your gut and something that invades your whole being.

    PS your man repeller article made me decide to try to comment more. I’ve been reading since just before Toby was born but I almost never comment! Lame.

  41. Robin says...

    I was going to say the same thing as Meg about kids swearing! We live in Belgium and little kids are so blasé about saying fuck or what the hell or shit because there’s no sense of how strong it is. My kids do it too although I react pretty strongly—I worry about when we are visiting or again living in the US.

    • Meg says...

      Robin, we are practically neighbors! Wanna take a train sometime and meet for a beer in the middle? I’m way up in Northern Holland. Amsterdam maybe? We can swap tips on our cursing expat offspring.

  42. Christy says...

    I saw in the Man Repeller article that you feel some pressure to expand the blog, and I wanted to say I think it’s perfect the way it is. Could not be better. You’re doing a really great job, and thank you! P.S. I worked from home during my maternity leave, and it was the darkest time in my entire life. I felt like I was failing at everything and had a lot of guilt and anxiety. That passed, but it was hard!

  43. Joss says...

    About the Nutcracker ballerinas- I thought the name of that character was Clara?? It’s always been Clara in any Nutcracker I’ve seen! Where did Marie come from?

    • Angela says...

      I thought so too! It was a great article, but I was confused about the Clara/Marie thing.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      it’s funny, i think it depends on which nutcrackers. i’ve seen both at different companies.

  44. aga says...

    I am all about the #metoo movement, i have been assaulted several times, i am vividly aware of gender politics, and even so, when i got to “What steps do you [women] take on a daily basis to prevent yourselves from being sexually assaulted?” in the men vs women passage, i thought to myself, I don’t take that many precautions. But sure enough, I checked off each one, and added a few! For example, I’ve taken a self-defense class, and I make sure to close the entrance door to my building behind me, instead of letting it close by itself, lest anyone walk into after me.

    It’s messed up that this behaviour is so internalized and normalized that I don’t even notice it. (For reference: i am currently living in Toronto.)

  45. Rebecca says...

    Loved that reader comment you picked on feminism! My light bulb moment came a few weeks back on this very blog. Joanna wrote about sexual harassment and briefly mentioned how her boss used to poke her in the stomach. My coworker turned boss used to do the same thing to me every time I walked past him! After reading that I began to realize all of the odd circumstances that we as women are told to put up with. I too was given mace when I moved into my first apartment. I too am called a bitch for not smiling at every man that walks by. I could go on and on. I consider myself a feminist but there is a lot of things I put up with in my life that I should be standing up against. So thank you Joanna for helping facilitate my lightbulb moment.

  46. The Man Repeller article is beautiful! xxoo

  47. That comment by Ari is so powerful. I think it’s also important to teach the men in our lives that these things should not have to be the norm and then they can teach their male friends. It really is a change that needs everyone’s active participation to happen. Thank you for sharing that!
    Nicolette | http://nicolette.co

  48. Erica says...

    Aww the Man Repeller interview was the best! I first started reading Cup of Jo back in 2009, when I was planning my wedding, and somehow reading the interview made me nostalgic for my younger self, and also made me realize how much I’ve grown and changed since then. I feel so lucky to have found the wonderful community you’ve created here to help me along the way. Thank you!

  49. I have read your blog for years, and with this boom of new blogs lately I begun to read others, but I have never find a place like yours, I am not even a mom and I don’t know if if I will be, but the things that attaches me to your blog are that you never try to show a perfect life, you are realistic, and you are not superficial or consumerist even if you promote things here, it doesn’t feel like that, this place feels sensible, human and most of all realistic with the struggles of the life and the social problems, and in between you made me love that French brand Sezane, continue like this!

  50. Sheila says...

    I’m married to a wonderful, loving, awesome, liberal Stanford educated man who STILL doesn’t really get the whole #Metoo. Like, when I tell him all the things that we think about to protect ourselves all the time he is still surprised. And we are parents to two daughters! Any advice? The men vs. women article hits home hard

    • Lauren E. says...

      I had to read your comment twice to make sure it wasn’t mine! I feel EXACTLY the same. I am constantly teaching my husband about what it actually means to be a woman. Our conversations began in earnest after the election because I felt so sad that our country still couldn’t get behind a female president. I tried to convey that no matter how tough Hillary was, she also had to be soft. For as smart as she was, she also had to be relatable. For as beautiful as she was, she also had to look approachable and age appropriate and like a grandmother but not frail and like a woman but not dainty… It. Is. Exhausting. Women deal with a host of things that never even cross men’s minds. But the more we talk about it, the more everyone’s minds are opened. Including the enlightened men in our lives :)

    • ALI says...

      This article is really interesting on kind of this point: http://foreignpolicy.com/2017/12/08/foreign-policy-hillary-clinton-jake-sullivan-me-too-mea-culpa/

      “While I have consciously sought to hire and promote women, I’ve also hired my share of white guys from Yale. They were all terrific, qualified people – but they never had to pay the ‘tax on women in national security’”

      My husband is an incredible man and desperately wants to understand and passionately advocate for me, but I find I can’t get the response I’m after from him because he doesn’t experience sexism day to day. That’s why we need more women in powerful positions – people who deeply in the core of their being ‘get it’.

  51. Loved finding you on Man Repeller this week! Cup of Jo and MR are the two blogs I read most – my evening escape, treat, indulgence with smart, funny, strong, thoughtful women. Thank you!

  52. Lucy says...

    Jo! I’ve read your blog for the last five years, and have loved every post you’ve written. What a wonderful interview you gave to Man Repeller. I love your thoughtful approach to everything you do, and I’m glad that you’re keeping your blog the way it is. I wouldn’t say it’s small. It’s tastefully done and sometimes more isn’t better. Hope you have a fabulous weekend!
    – Lucy

  53. Ari says...

    Oh man, thank you for calling out my comment Joanna! I was reading the weekend round-up and was like ‘Holy crap, there is another Ari on this site who has the exact same feelings as me.’ And then I realized I was reading my own comment. I’m so happy I found this lovely corner of the internet and this community or women.

  54. Cheryl says...

    I wanted to add how much I appreciated the Man Repeller piece, though I don’t think the title of mommy blog did your community justice.
    I don’t remember when I started reading (I think before you got married, but definitely before Toby), but for me, you have built an incredible community of women in a time when community is sparse. We’re seeing the impulse for women to gather everywhere, from women-run companies, to The Wing, to various online communities (my weight watchers internet friends have become a great source of support, randomly, for years now, even when they shut down the blog site), and so many of my great adult pro tips have come from you and your readers:

    Keys unlock away from the lock! Use a little hand sanitizer to freshen your underarms midday when you have no DO for the BO! Put in dry shampoo at night! Bario Neal! Tell a child you like watching them play guitar, etc, not that they’re great at it! The beautiful, profound grief of losing Paul too soon…
    In an age when we move around and lose that “village” community, I deeply value communities like these to share experiences and grow.

    Side bar: I won the diamond ring from bario neal you gave away a couple years ago, and since my husband and I skipped a proposal in the name of dismantling the patriarchy, I still wear it on top of my tiny bario neal wedding ring, and when I get asked, I never get tired of exclaiming, “I won it on the internet!”

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      oh, cheryl, loved this comment so much! warms my heart. SO glad about your ring!!!! :) :) :)

    • Sarah says...

      Omg YES ago some of the best life advice coming from this blog! I am a teacher and I am constantly using the, “I love watching you ___” or “I love hearing you ___” with my students. They react so differently and progress much faster due to this.

  55. I binged-watched all of Marvelous Ms. Maisel this week! I loved it!!!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      so glad to hear that!

    • Yes, I’m watching right now! All hail Amy Sherman-Palladino and Rachel Brosnahan!

    • Emily says...

      It really is a great show and so timely, in many ways. Rachel Brosnahan, the star of the show ( also niece to Kate Spade) is brilliant, but the second star of the show is NY City in the 1950’s. Great costumes, design sets, with tons of fun details. You will love it! The exercise scene in episode 3 the best!!

    • Maggie says...

      I finished MMM last week…I too loved it…..it was kind of sad coming home after work this week and having no new episode to look forward to….

  56. Robin says...

    Omg that men vs women quote. I have been so very very lucky in my life, but on a daily basis? Yes. Not so much these days since I have a baby and rarely get out after dark or by myself but still, yes, and that is messed. up.

  57. Zoe says...

    Thank you for sharing the donation info about the California wildfires. I live in Ventura so I wanted to share a few crowdfunding campaigns that deserve a little more attention–I know that people sometimes feel apprehensive to donate to large organizations like the Red Cross, but on the flip side, often don’t know if crowdfunding campaigns are legit.

    These are real people and have particularly heartbreaking stories that could really use support:
    https://www.gofundme.com/causehannafund
    https://www.youcaring.com/mikeandmorganmccloskey-1037457
    https://www.gofundme.com/thomas-fire-destroyed-our-home

    • AK says...

      Thank you!

  58. Judith says...

    Read the Men Repeller interview and almost got emotional: how lucky am I to have been spending my twenties, so far, with Jo and her team on my side! (and to realize ‘my side’ is every women’s side!) Thank you Jo! Just: thank you.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      oh my gosh, judith, thank you! what a touching comment, that means a lot. glad to have you here. xoxo

  59. Emily says...

    I’m a new mom who is really struggling with my return to work.
    Today was a dark day where I felt like I am failing everyone because I can’t devote as much attention to anything as I used to. Your quote in the ManRepeller interview(below) felt like you were reaching through the computer and speaking directly to me. I’ve printed it out to remind me that just because the way I work is different now, doesn’t mean it’s bad. Thank you!

    “They say if you want something done, give it to a busy person, because they have to get shit done all the time without stopping to think about it. Parenting makes you strive to be more efficient than you ever imagined.”

    • Hillary F. says...

      It is such a hard adjustment Emily. You will find your way, imperfectly, as many of us have. Be kind to yourself.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      yes, good luck, emily! returning to work can be such an emotional, intense time, and i promise you, it will get easier! you sound like you’re doing a great job. sending so much love xoox

    • Ari says...

      I’m not sure if you work in an office with other people but if you do — my boss is also a new mom. I can totally see how she has changed and how being a mom affects how she works and therefore how I work. But it absolutely doesn’t matter. Anyone on your team or any person in your life who is worth a dime will realize that you’re a mother-fing badass if you can keep a tiny human alive, keep yourself alive, AND keep your job alive. Huge life shifts affect how we work, and becoming a mom has to be the biggest shift of all. So you keep trucking sister. All the ladies are behind you.

    • Beth says...

      It’s a huge adjustment and I wish you the best Emily. Take it one day at a time!

  60. Lauren says...

    What a great idea to include the daughter’s annotations — and apparently, at 29, I still relate strongly to the teenager.

    • Me too. I’m 30 and I always find it so perplexing how other adults seem to completely forget what is was like to be a teen. I wonder if that automatically happens when you become a parent…

    • ALI says...

      Ana I think about this all the time!
      As an over-thinker, I wonder if it’s because when you become a parent you start with 100% responsibility for your child’s well-being. Then as they grow, it’s the difficulty with transitioning back to ‘yourself’ instead of that parent that had to constantly consider, worry and care for your child?