When her mom came to pick her up for drug court that morning, Stacy Nicholson was still high. She staggered to the door, fumbled with the bungee cord that kept it closed, blinked back the sunlight. "You ready?" asked her mom. Stacy and two of her cousins had been holed up for months in this rundown house, shooting crushed-up pain pills. A young woman struggles with oxy addiction and recovery
Finding Oscar: Massacre, Memory and Justice in Guatemala Oscar Alfredo Ramírez Castañeda had plenty to lose. Although he was living in the United States illegally, the 31-year-old had built a solid life. He worked two full-time jobs to support his three children and their mother, Nidia.
Navigating Love and Autism
What I never told anyone about her death - Mortifying Disclosures Dead bodies do get a grayish blue/purple hue because blood pools in the capillaries and the body starts to decompose. It’s not smurf blue, but it’s not a pleasant shade. The ultrasound technician moves her transducer over my almost six-month-pregnant belly, sliding easily across the thick gel she’s spread there. The gel works as a conductor for the sound waves the transducer is producing in my uterus. Think of bats, a friend told me before the procedure.
MOSCOW — "Russia needs babies" may as well be the unofficial slogan of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's ruling United Russia Party. The country is in a demographic crisis, shedding 2.2 million people (or 1.6 percent of the population) since 2002, and the government is trying to encourage more women to bring Russian citizens into the world. This year, when I unexpectedly got pregnant soon after receiving my visa to work in Moscow, I became a test case. Pregnant in Putin's Russia - By Natalia Antonova
Abortion saved my life There’s this lawmaker out of Kansas, Rep. Peter DeGraaf, who has a lot to say about abortion. He’s currently best known for saying that women should plan ahead in case of rape and not expect their regular insurance to cover an abortion after an assault. And I could spend a lot of time discussing the flaws in his logic, or even hashing out when life begins, but what I’m really concerned about is the idea that anyone besides a pregnant woman should have a say in what she does with her body after finding out she’s pregnant. I’m a mom, and I love my sons more than anything.
My stillborn child’s life after death The official pronouncement of Thor’s death came an hour after his delivery, but I’d known he was dead since he’d come out without a pulse. If they’d been able to resuscitate him, someone would have told me. The hospital staff said we could have him for half an hour. Once upon a time, stillborn babies were whisked away and the mothers didn’t see them.
I became an adult at the age of 38 when I held my dead daughter in my arms. Until that moment my husband and I had led a breezy sort of life, taking nothing terribly seriously. We moved to New York, had two children in swift succession and raised them in a loving if chaotic household where nothing was so bad it couldn't be laughed off with a shrug, a bad joke or a fatalistic, "Oh well, it'll work out next time." The child I lost | Life and style | The Observer
Update, March 16, 2011: Back in October, GQ correspondent Nadya Labi took us into the shadowy cyber-world of "Li Dao," a seemingly sweet nurse doling out advice in suicide chat rooms on how to best end one's life. With the investigative sleuthing of a few people from all over the world, that nurse—who turned out to be a middle-aged man named William Melchert-Dinkel—was charged with assisting in two suicides. Yesterday, a Minnesota judge found Melchert-Dinkel guilty on two counts of assisting the suicides of 18-year-old Nadia Kajouji and 32-year-old Mark Drybrough. "Check Your E-mail" Nadya Labi Reports on William Melchert-Dinkel's Suicide Chatroom Case: Newsmakers
I have breast cancer. A week ago, I had breast cancer, and the week before that, and the week before that. Maybe five, eight, even ten years ago, the first bad cell split inside me, secretly. But I didn't know. This is how I arrived at knowing. Two friends of mine were recently diagnosed. The diagnosis
Only a fellow executioner like 59-year-old Jerry Givens would know how crushingly hard it will continue to be for those who put Troy Davis to death last week even as he continued to insist on his innocence. “The executioner is the one that suffers,” Givens says on the day after Davis’s execution in Georgia. “The person that carries out the execution itself is stuck with it the rest of his life. I Committed Murder
The Plano Suicides | Online Only Photo by Mr Thomas. My mother has a theory about the ideal mode of Texan architecture: When you live in a place like Florida, it’s all about having views of the sea. When you live in Colorado, it’s all about looking out at the mountains. But, in Texas, what you want most is a house with a view of all that blue, blue sunny sky. My family’s house, a slight variation on essentially the same blueprint for the tens of thousands of McMansions of Plano, Texas, is an expression of my mother’s sunny aesthetic: the second floor is mostly confined to the periphery, allowing space for the fifteen-foot windows that fill the rooms with relentlessly cheery light.
Dharun Ravi grew up in Plainsboro, New Jersey, in a large, modern house with wide expanses of wood flooring and a swimming pool out back. Assertive and athletic, he used “DHARUNISAWESOME” as a computer password and played on an Ultimate Frisbee team. At the time of his high-school graduation, in 2010, his parents bought space in the West Windsor and Plainsboro High School North yearbook. “Dear Dharun, It has been a pleasure watching you grow into a caring and responsible person,” the announcement said. Tyler Clementi’s Suicide and Dharun Ravi’s Trial
In your sleep: 'If you have to die, this is a great way to go' It was the phrase "died peacefully in his sleep" that made me hesitate. Only a few hours had passed since my 88-year-old father failed to wake on the morning of April 23. He was a stickler for accuracy, and not much on euphemisms, so I paused when writing that in his obituary. As a journalist, I try to avoid any details I can't verify.
Photo by Random Letters. Perhaps because I was born in the middle of the night I never have really associated the hours of darkness with wasting my time in sleep – more with being up and about and ready, I sometimes think much more ready than I manage to be in the day. Insomnia started early for me, but it wasn’t about not sleeping, it was about being full of other things, being too delighted to let go and drop away. I’m told that when I was little I would go to bed quite obediently, but then for a while I would sing – small person in under blankets and singing, happy to elongate the day and perhaps fond of music, I suppose, I’m not sure. I had no work to engage me, no social calendar, no pressing concerns, I only wanted to be me, with my own restless skin, just following along behind my thinking. Insomnia | Online Only
by Ken Murray| Years ago, Charlie, a highly respected orthopedist and a mentor of mine, found a lump in his stomach. He had a surgeon explore the area, and the diagnosis was pancreatic cancer. This surgeon was one of the best in the country. How Doctors Die « Zócalo Public Square
Things I have learnt from and about IVF
Lisa Chase Parenting Advice: My Father’s Magical Parenting - ELLE
issue 3: Sex & Death - Orphans
Now That Books Mean Nothing
A Message from Prison
My dungeon shook
To My Old Master
Will’s Choice | BU Today
The Art of the Obituary
My Kasual Kountry Weekend With the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan
What goes on in the mind of a sniper?
Not an Ike and Tina Thing | Vela
Interview With My Bully: When I confronted my bully about racism
The Long Goodbye - Features - Atlanta Magazine
Sick and Tired - February 8, 2012
How a routine jab sent me so mad I sobbed (and saluted) through the Royal Wedding - then became convinced I was the Messiah...
Daddy Issues - Magazine
My Mother, My Daughter
My So-Called Ex-Gay Life
Pain Is A Gift, And Other Notes From A Terrified Father During A Seven-Week-Premature Birth
Twenty Citizens' Worth Of Blood Flowed Through Him: A Medic Confronts The Open Wounds Of Afghanistan
Susan Gubar's Closing Chapters - Faculty