7 ways to end the commercial sexual exploitation of children

7 ways to end the commercial sexual exploitation of children

Introduction  When I wrote a post during Human Trafficking Awareness Month, I was exasperated once again with the “slavery” rhetoric of the trafficking movement (to catch up new readers on my opinion on slavery rhetoric, see the post, The trouble with trafficking). In last month’s post, I dumped the emotional weight of seeing young people every day who are abused and … Continue reading

The Real “Modern Day Slavery”

The Real “Modern Day Slavery”

The day after human trafficking awareness day (January 11th), the Clinton Global Initiative posted a status with a statistic: “21-36 million people are enslaved worldwide.” I glimpsed the post on the tail end of the Monday that involved a heavy dose of hearing about my girls’ sadness and pain: gang rapes, attacks, black eyes, homelessness, … Continue reading

A poem for trauma-anger

A poem for trauma-anger

For anyone who has worked with teenagers with trauma histories, what sticks out for me is the pain that is anger, defensiveness, which lies just above a deep-seated craving to be loved and believed. I wrote this for the strength and healing that lies in anger, for the protection that lies in defensiveness and for … Continue reading

Sorrow you’re allowed

Sorrow you’re allowed

A social worker’s guide to the Israel-Palestine violence, July 2014** Gaza. Israel. I’ve seen just about every opinion from all sides, editorials, pro-Israel rallies, Free Gaza demonstrations. Each side has equally passionate claims. If the conflict were clear-cut, we wouldn’t be here. Today, I wonder, how am I supposed to react as a social worker? If … Continue reading

On seeking employment

On seeking employment

“You start to question your self worth” in the silence, and short emails, and meaningless “thank you for applying” replies. My friend Laura and I are eating bagged lunches on the Elevated Acre in the financial district, over the East River. I’ve told her I’ve stopped allowing myself excitement. Laura relates how she doubted her … Continue reading

Humans.

Humans.

This is FoodSpark. In February, it was snowing on our cars outside and the streets were slushy in the neighborhood. We dragged chairs up from the basement. We mashed ingredients together.  We  talked. We made things. At this FoodSpark, I mostly-not-seriously mentioned the idea of doing a Humans of St. Louis page modeled after the Humans of … Continue reading

snowfall.

snowfall.

On the plane home to Saint Louis from my family on the east coast, I am two days delayed and anxious. Planes sliding off runways and polar vortexes prompted thoughts of never getting home. Then, there was the thought of my bags not arriving at the airport, the fifteen minute walk from my metro stop through … Continue reading