As you may have heard and applauded, American women between the ages of 15 and 29 are not having nearly as many babies as they did even just seven years ago (10% drop between 2007 and 2012). MEANWHILE another adorable trend is on the rise, and Roberto Ferdman at Quartz, along with a few market researchers, think the two trends might be linked:
“Can’t we talk about something more pleasant?” asks New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast’s aging parents, whose hesitance to discuss End of Life issues Chast captures in her upcoming graphic memoir. They are not alone: No one wants to talk about a subject that inspires either boredom (What will happen with our Social Security checks?) or terror (Who will raise the kids?) or some toxic combination of both (In what exurb will our bodies be interred to spend eternity alongside cars roaring by?)
The story of Mickey Rooney, who shuffled off this mortal coil on Sunday, is a good reminder to face down boredom and terror alike in an effort to keep one’s affairs in order. Otherwise your family members might turn into grave-robbing lunatics, claiming everything, including your corpse – especially perhaps if that is all you have to leave, as the Los Angeles Times reports:
Rooney’s trust didn’t have a dime. He owed back taxes to the IRS and the state Franchise Tax Board. He was estranged from most of his nine children and separated from his wife. He had disinherited everyone except one stepson, according to a will filed along with court papers that showed assets of just $18,000. …
After his death, his wife, Jan Chamberlin, and her son, Christopher Aber, contacted Forest Lawn and tried to move Rooney’s body against his expressed wishes, Augustine alleged in court papers filed Tuesday morning. Charlene Rooney said she and Mark received a call from Forest Lawn about the attempt a few hours after Rooney’s passing.
“Mickey was not even gone for a few hours, he had just left here on a gurney, and this ugliness started,” she said.
Rooney updated his will as recently as March 11th but missed the opportunity to include certain crucial details. Granted, he had a lot to remember. The actor had more wives than Henry VIII.
Whew, Moira Donegan has a doozy of an essay over at the New Inquiry, whose issue this month is all about MONEY. In “Over Easy” Donegan talks about the work that goes into egg donation and the taboo of acknowledging the financial incentives for doing it. The matching process often brings together wealthy couples with women who, when ideal candidates, are often the financially struggling, aspirational versions of themselves.
When Theodore Ross’s son was born, he received two weeks of paternity leave. Was it enough? In an editorial for Al Jazeera America, Ross says no.
Ross Douthat (“When I became a father, I expected to change in all the predictable ways … What I didn’t expect is that parenthood would make me such a whiner”) or Slate’s Ruth Graham (“My Facebook feed is an endless stream of blog posts and status updates depicting the messy, tedious, nightmarishly life-destroying aspects of parenting”). Raising kids in our contemporary world is, as Jennifer Senior’s new book puts it, All Joy and No Fun — and, as Lori Gottleib recently told us, no sex.
I started reading these daily routines of different mothers around the world yesterday (via Jessica Stanley’s lovely blog) and now I CANNOT STOP READING THEM
Janet Yellen was finally confirmed as the Federal Reserve Chair, which means she and her flawless bob will be gracing the cover of this week’s TIME.