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Openness is our greatest human resource.

You Said

 
Dear Rebecca,

I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate your work, your honesty, your general loveliness!

I first discovered Black White and Jewish when I was an MA student in English, seriously thinking through issues ofidentity and race in literature. I was also, incidentally, thinkingthrough my own identity as a Jewish Latina, and so much of what youwrote resonated with me.  Indeed, so much of what you had to say aboutyour own family life, and about being a child of divorce made me feelaffirmed.  After reading your book I was able to feel comfortable articulating just how significant my parents' divorce had been for me.

Recently, I bought Baby Love. I read it at a time when I was thinking about balancing a PhD program with having a child, and I felt desperately torn and conflicted anduncomfortable with my primal mom urges! Thank you, thank you, thank youfor articulating my own anxieties, fears, and longings.

Anyway,I feel like your books are great examples of synchronicity in my life,and they always seem to find me at just the right moment.  Thank youfor always seeming to be several steps ahead of me, lighting the waywith your words!

R

Rebecca,
 
TonightI finished Baby Love and it touched me in a way that most books...justdon't. Not many women write about the struggles associated withbecoming a mother--the decisions, the ambivalence, the assumptions.When I got married and had my first son, most people who thought theyknew me said they were shocked. I was so strong (to them), soindependent, why get married. What they didn't understand was thathaving a family of my own--having a partner that I could trust--andmaking beautiful babies was all I'd ever wanted. EVER! I too, Rebecca,am raising children as a mother without a mother, and while being"motherless" with a mother who lives and breathes as I do, isdifficult, upsetting, and often inconceivable, I work every day to givemy little ones the stability, love, respect, and VOICE I never had. Iappreciate your honesty and willingness to share your story. It hasgiven me inspiration to tell my own without shame and fear.
 
TA

Dear Ms. Walker,

I have just finished Baby Love and I am compelled to thank you for writing it. In reading your book, it felt to me like your words were telling my own secrets. I have, until this moment, lived in fear of my own longings for family, stability and motherhood. I have lived with a feeling that, while it is somehow utterly necessary for me to devote myself to these longings, it is also a betrayal of my hard-won self. I have quietly worried that I will wake up one day, tired out and tied down, with only a distant memory of my former self as an independent, self-reliant and tough-assed woman. Reading your account gave me a much-needed view of the synergy that is possible for me, as it happened for you. The fact that you took the courage and skill to put such a personal narrative into a public space is a gift for women like me. I feel like our generation has finally stood up and taken her voice.

I wish you all of the best,

AC
Alaska



Hello,

I stumbled upon Black, White and Jewish just today andI was amazed at your courage.  I found your website today afterwardsand am even more impressed with your courage in Baby Love from whatI've been reading on what it is about.
 
Thank you for finding the truth for yourself in every stage of life. What a courageous and beautiful quest.  You are a true seeker.
 
I read on articles on-line about what happened with your mother, and Iam a 35 year old female who has gone through a similar episode. Four orfive years ago now, I stopped communicating with her, changed my phonenumber address.  If she calls I have nothing to say to her I just tellher to stop bothering me as she is only concerned with herself and notat all with me as always.  It was something I needed to do as she hasnot been a supportive person and I can relate to when you say that shehad tried to outshine or undermine you.  I like to think that it hasmade me stronger and given me knowledge of the nature of people, butit's hard to reconcile my bitterness with my efforts at being an alwayscompassionate Buddhist. I'm just not that good!  But severing ties hasbeen the thing that I needed to do in order for her to see the truthabout herself hopefully and it was also a toxic relationship like yourswas.
 
Anyway, blessings to you to have found bliss in art, life, family etc.,and to a beautiful person always seeking truth and becoming morebeautiful.  Your writing was a rare find.
 
TR



Rebecca,

After first learning of your latest book in People magazine I knew it was a must-read. I've just finished reading Baby Love, and I had to email you to let you know that after years and years (quite literally) of reading, learning, exploring, analyzing and soul searching that nothing had quite given me the validation of my life that this book has given me. Your frank sharing of experiences, coupled with unbridled discussions with my husband of 2 years has finally given me a peace that I never thought I could find.

Thank you.

JD
Tennessee



Dear Rebecca,

You may not remember me but I asked you to sign What Makes a Man for Gustavo my 21 yr. old son. He had recently shared his take on women with me and I was stunned to hear it. This was not the man I raised my baby boy to become. I felt your book could be a positive influence on him.

Just as I suspected there was a big drama scene when I presented the book to him. He was offended and refused to accept the book. He wanted to read To Be Real. I panicked thinking that I would never see my signed copy ever again. I appeased him by suggesting, “how about you read your book and I will read my book. We’ll swap each other’s books when we’re done. We can discuss both books over a nice dinner with some wine.”

Last Friday, he came over to help me move some furniture. I over heard him tell Eric, “This shit is actually pretty good. Dude, you should read this when I’m done. I’m two hours away from finishing it.” To my surprise, I later saw my son sitting quietly on the sofa reading your book.

Thank you, Rebecca! For the first time my son actually read a book I recommended to him.

Keep on writing!

AH
Miami



Greetings, Rebecca:

It’s a wonder to finally see someone writing the truth. I appreciate that greatly. Parents don't bond the same way with adopted children than they do with natural children. The mother doesn't go through the hormonal changes that happen with a pregnancy in the case of an adopted child. The prolactin and pitocin rush doesn’t occur. With those two hormones having a hand in bonding, an adoptive parent doesn't end up with the same type of bond that they have with a biological child. It's just nice to see someone recognizing that. This is something that the children end up seeing, but often goes unseen by someone who has both an adopted and a biological child.

I myself was adopted at birth, and noticed the difference between how my brother was treated and how I was treated. He's 10 years older and my parents’ biological child. I was old enough to recognize how concerned they were with my brother, his activities, his schooling and the like. For me, everything was "you can do better". I had difficulty with school activities because my parents (then retired) had little time to pick me up from track practice, from swimming practice, and let alone activities like key club, and J.E.T.S. I can count the amount of swim meets, track meets, and soccer games they were at on one hand, but my mother was always present for my brother’s tennis games, and other sports. Anything I excelled at physically, I was told was either too dangerous, or I'd lose interest.

When my friends were all in Hebrew school, after school, I asked when my Bat Mitzvah was going to be. I was told that because I was a girl, it wasn't important for me, so I learned nothing of the Jewish religion and to this day view holidays as an excuse to get the family together to eat. I've found my own path, one that does not regard women as subservient creatures meant to be housekeepers, broodmares, and their husband’s prostitute.

Thank you for writing this book. Don't let the critics get you down. I hope it makes adoptive parents think carefully before making their choices.

YF
New York



Dear Ms. Walker,

I just finished "Baby Love" after picking it up at the bookstore late last week. My boyfriend and I went to look at parenting books after confirming that I am pregnant. I started to look at nutrition books and my hands found their way to your book and I stopped looking after that. I knew I had found the book I needed to read first because we were pretty ambivalent about the situation (I much more than he).

I am 43 and he is 41. I won't go into the gory details but we were briefly married then annulled our marriage due to his subsequent disclosure about an addiction he has (that I knew about but chose to "ignore). After a few soul-searching months apart we got back together to work on our individual and relationship issues. Now here we are, pregnant, doing pro/con lists and discussing some intensely hard, deep questions.

I devoured your book and didn't want it to end. It was so helpful to see some of my thoughts that I couldn't put into words so eloquently put down on paper.

Thank you, most of all, for the last line of the book. I cried happy tears for you, Glen, Tenzin and all mothers when I read that line. I read parts of your book to my boyfriend, and cried the hardest when I read him the last two paragraphs on page 187.

We are going forward with this pregnancy. I terminated a pregnancy ten years ago but this time it does not feel right to choose that option.

A friend said to me that the timing of this couldn't be worse, based on what we went through this past winter. I told her that actually the timing couldn't be better, based on what we have learned about ourselves and about each other in relationship, as well as how a lot of our brokenness started early in our families of origin.

Thank you a million times over for writing your book. I feel so blessed that I discovered it last week. I also feel blessed that I discovered you and your writing as well (should I be embarrassed to say I was not aware of you before then?).

I hope that you, Glen and Tenzin are thriving.

Namaste!

KF
Colorado



Dear Ms Walker,

I had the pleasure of hearing you in Detroit this Friday, my lucky day. I told you in person, but didn't feel I articulated it well: your wisdom was life changing for me. That is still possible at the age of 70! I agree 100% that the extremes of individualism we are living today are detrimental to any thoughts of serious problem solving. The common good is all but dead in our culture. You have made me examine my own "crustiness". There are so many ways my lack of openness is in evidence, but because of your inspiration I am going to start pecking away toward the light. I have seen the divisiveness of which you speak: The constant control of supposed dialogue in the public sphere; people holding on to their little piece of turf whether in business, academia, and even families. I taught at the local university and was shocked when I witnessed the nastiness of women towards women in places like Women's Studies. All of these observations birth weariness and cynicism. I accept that I will never make headline news with some great endeavor, but with your words echoing in my heart I can do something in my small earth-space. Again, thank you. Yours is the voice I desperately needed to hear. Maybe you will consider writing a handbook for openness.

I bow to you in gratitude,

MF
Detroit



Hello Rebecca,

As a recent first time dad at the ripe age of 47, I just loved your new book, "Baby Love." I picked it up and raced through it in a few days and have given it to my wife Pat to read. We both share similarities with many of your experiences, including the general ambivalence for so many years -- the fear of bringing a child in the world, fearing our own abilities to be good parents in the face of growing up with less than perfect parents (in my wife's case) and downright awful parents (in my case).

But Sam, now almost two and a half, is wonderful, complicated, challenging, and offering an experience of love -- both giving and receiving -- that I never knew possible.

Some of your thoughts in your book struck me in ways that I have not thought about in a while. As a highly sensitive heterosexual male (a rarity according to Myers Briggs) I have long had deeply ambivalent feelings about men in this society. The other day, while riding the ferry between New Jersey and Delaware, we sat in the car while our son slept in the back-seat. In front of us was a group of men, whiling away the time, leaning on a pickup truck, sipping beer with their bellies on display, telling stories, laughing about "men-things" as if they were in a cliched beer commercial. I envied them their connection, their easy way of talking, knowing that these are people I have never been able to communicate with in any meaningful way. I feel as if I am another species sometimes.

I love my son with all my soul, would do anything for him. I want him to be himself as he grows older, to be sensitive, and not suffer the isolation that I have suffered. That is something that scares me a bit. Can sensitive men survive -- with joy -- in this world?

These are just thoughts.

Thanks again for your lovely book.

JF
New Jersey



Dear Rebecca,

Thank you for writing Baby Love!

I have a story somewhat similar to yours. My mother is an award-winning writer who always put her work before her children. When I was little, she used to lock herself in her bedroom to write and ignore my knocks and cries. She is a very manipulative, narcissistic person. We no longer have a relationship. Her last words to me about five years ago were: "As far as I'm concerned, our relationship is now over." I was so floored. I didn't know that parent-child relationships could be turned off the way one turns out a light. I have to say that in a way her pronouncement was a gift to me. I had spent so long trying to please her and not ever quite succeeding. I had always felt deficient (partly, no doubt, because she told me that I was). Her declaration was so unbelievably extreme that I suddenly realized that she was the deficient person. What a revelation!

I have two children whom I adore. I agree with you that the relationship between a mother and a child is deep and visceral. I could no more terminate my relationship with my kids than I could cut off my arm. Part of what helped me to heal was nursing my kids. I discovered La Leche League when my first son was a few weeks old. LLL's message of love and tuning in to one's baby was so powerful, so right, that I was able to transcend my upbringing, follow my instincts and BE THERE for my kids. I may not be the perfect parent (who is?) but I have put an end to the cycle of pain. I feel infinitely sorry for my mother who in her self-righteous judgmental way has lost her family. I would probably be baiting my kids with well-timed sarcastic little remarks if LLL hadn't remade me into a sensitive loving parent. I hope you continue to heal and cherish your little boy.

In solidarity,
CD
Arizona



Dear Rebecca,

After I read Black White and Jewish I sat and cried. Your conclusion was a very powerful, thought provoking one. In essence, you challenged your readers to look beyond the labels people confer upon each other. You asked them to see themselves as human beings. You encouraged them to search for the common bonds we share as people. You asked us to rise to the occasion and make this world a better place. Your candor was most appreciated, as was your intellectual honesty. I hope to read Baby Love soon. I like your spirit, and I love your resiliency.

All the best.

Sincerely,

TD, Idaho



Hi Rebecca!

So, I feel totally weird and cheesy writing to you. I don't know you, BUT I just finished reading Baby Love and I want to thank you for sharing you and your families' story. Reading about your pregnancy, your relationship with your mother, your partnership with Glen, and your beautiful little miracle I was moved and touched by your level of sharing. I loved reading your thoughts on partners and family dynamics. My partner and I do not plan to have children, but I have told him that he would LOVE reading Baby Love because of the story you tell, particularly about being in a partnership!

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for sharing! I look forward to hearing you speak in the future.

Best wishes to you and yours,

MG
Harvard



Dear Rebecca,

I grew up in the Middle East with Muslim parents who were very traditional. While living there, nothing ever felt right. Nothing I heard or saw seemed right and I never fit in. It obviously influenced everything about my being. When we moved to Canada after the first Gulf War I had the opportunity to attend McGill University where I studies what else- Women’s Studies and International Development. I was convinced that once I graduated I would buy a one way ticket to some war-torn country (I was hoping for Angola or Sierra Leon) where I would work with the women through a grassroots organization of some sorts. I never wanted to get married “because I was raised around nothing but arranged marriages” and I certainly have never ever wanted children because it seemed to be a given role for women. Well, I graduated not too long after 9/11 and traveling the world as a whole seemed like a different place for me. I ended up staying in Canada and working with refugees through a Resettlement program, and I felt mildly satisfied. I then met the man that I would marry.

I will not bore you with all the details but we did get married on April 28, 2007. The wedding was not even over and all everyone was asking is “When are you having children?” When I got back to the office everyone asked the same thing. Relatives and friends who could not make the wedding called urging us to rush and have children since we were “running out of time” I am 29 and he is 39. I hate this. The thought of motherhood never appealed to me and certainly the thought of children was never a pleasant one for me. I always knew it had to do with the culture I grew up in and my strong sense of Feminism that resulted. My husband has always wanted children and he too has been eager over the past 2 month since our wedding for me to get pregnant.

While at the airport in LA on our way back I picked up your book Baby Love. This is where things changed for me. I am not sure what it was. I can’t say it made me want to have a child now or that it made me excited, but it did let me know that my struggle was okay and that perhaps it is possible to have a child and not feel that I am betraying my Feminist beliefs, or that I was any less of a Feminist. I am slowly coming to terms with the reality that motherhood may be a reality for me.

Thank you for sharing your story and for being so honest about your experience. You are an awesome writer. After reading the book and visiting your website I saw that you were here recently. I am so disappointed to have missed your visit here but I hope to catch you in the near future.

MH
Florida



Dear Rebecca,

I'm thrilled that you were in town and that so many of us got to "meet" you this past weekend. As I told you, having purchased three of your books, I will also purchase What Makes a Man in the near future. I want to read it and then pass it on to my husband and Berkeley freshman son. My friends and I all felt inspired to learn more about you through your writing, to think about issues we would be introduced to or reminded of. One of my friends borrowed Baby Love as she is totally in that place right now, trying to decide about motherhood and if it is the right time. My other friend borrowed BW&J and I've read about 1/4 of To Be Real and loving it.

We all felt a strong heart connection with you, and that you are one of the most lovable, intelligent, thoughtful and thought-provoking people we have ever met. May God bless you always, dear Rebecca! Our struggles do make us stronger, as cliche as that is, and they leave us with greater compassion.

I was deeply moved by all that you shared with us and loved and recognized the wisdom of your 4 secrets to surviving the writing life, especially the last one, about each of us being human, doing the best we can. At 46, I do try to accept people for who they are and not to judge. Who am I to judge anyone? I think everyone I come into contact with has something to teach me. That said, the people I have trouble tolerating are the intolerant and uber-judgmental members of the Religious Right. Maybe I should work on that...

For me race, sexual orientation, and socio-economic status are non-issues in determining whether someone can be a friend, a meaningful part of my life. A loving heart and an attitude of tolerance, acceptance and embracing those who on the outside might seem different, that is what matters to me. We are all so much more alike than we are different and that is what I choose to focus on.

I realize you may not have time to reply to my email and that is okay. I just wanted to let you know that I think you are terrific and that you really moved my friends and me on Saturday. We were honored to be in your company!

Enjoy your precious family!
Love,
LZ
Santa Clara



Rebecca,

Tonight I finished Baby Love and it touched me in a way that mostbooks...just don't. Not many women write about the struggles associatedwith becoming a mother--the decisions, the ambivalence, theassumptions.

When I got married and had my first son, most people whothought they knew me said they were shocked. I was so strong (to them),so independent, why get married?

What they didn't understand was thathaving a family of my own--having a partner that I could trust--andmaking beautiful babies was all I'd ever wanted. EVER!

I too, Rebecca,am raising children as a mother without a mother, and while being"motherless" with a mother who lives and breathes as I do, isdifficult, upsetting, and often inconceivable, I work every day to givemy little ones the stability, love, respect, and VOICE I never had.

Iappreciate your honesty and willingness to share your story. It hasgiven me inspiration to tell my own without shame and fear.

 TC



Hello Rebecca,

I am on page 59 of your book Baby Love, and it has brought me to grateful tears. I wanted to write and say THANK YOU. Thank you for writing my experiences and thoughts. I am 32 and seriously considering having a child on my own. I have struggled with my sexuality (finally accepting that I am bisexual and don't fit into any box, no matter how comfy they may be), with being an adult child of divorce (count 'em, 7, between my biological parents), with my financial battles (been on my own since 15). I have had the motherhood ache since a very young age, but like you, was thoroughly indoctrinated with the feminist values and ideals of education and independence. So I educated myself, moved to a bigger and brighter city, established a career I love (children's library services), found and lost or ran away from love several times, and now I feel the clock ticking and the desire for a child taking over my mind/body/life in a truly heart-and-soul-shaking way. I am terrified to do it, and terrified not to.

Your book is beautiful. It asks the questions that run through my mind on repeat daily, hourly....

I don't know what is to come in the remaining pages.... but I am here with my glass of wine and my gratitude, savoring every word.

THANK YOU for writing it down. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

BG
Minnesota



Dear Rebecca,

I was so moved by your article. Thanks for having the courage to be honest and to communicate something so integral to my life. I have a multicultural background as well (Mom is Mexican American, Dad is Haitian and Cuban). At an early young age, I saw through the fallacy of race and the myth of a racism-free multicultural home. I do think our generation has seen through the myth of feminism. I do believe and advocate for woman's rights but I never confuse that with feminism. I grew up dreaming of business suits never a wedding dress. I was told you don't need men. But we do and they need us. I felt so guilty just being at home with my daughters as if I wasn't contributing to society. I am now content and feeling fulfilled in changing the world by raising strong discerning women. Thanks for affirming so much of my personal beliefs in your article and best wishes to you and yours!

M
St. Louis



Dear Rebecca

I just finished reading Baby Love. It fed and nurtured every need I had regarding motherhood, and my recent decision to try to become pregnant for the first time at 41. Thank you for writing such an honest and beautiful work. As a biracial lesbian and author and a Buddhist, I feel a deep kinship with your work. I also loved Black, White & Jewish and was profoundly moved by your ability to be so true. Truth is a rare commodity both in our current political climate of media lies and distortions but also in my personal life and family.

I am also so curious about how things are going now with Tenzin and the next phase of motherhood. Is it as fulfilling as you dreamed it would be? No question could capture the nature of my own anticipation and curiosity about the reality of raising a biological child. I have custody of my partner’s 9-year old daughter until she is released from prison but I have to say that I am eager to become pregnant with my own child in the next year.

Thank you for your truth and the poignancy of your work.

SH
Houston



Rebecca:

I applaud your courage. This evening, I'll be telling my writing class some of the lessons that I've learned from your two books that I've read.

Best wishes.

TG
Claremont University



Hello Ms. Walker,

I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to meet you last night. As I am sure you have heard this numerous times, I had so much I would have loved to say, but became tongue tied and was unable to articulate my feelings. I will try to do this now.

I enjoyed the intimate feeling you created by sitting in the chair instead of using the podium. It reminded me of the way classes are conducted at Naropa. We sit in a circle all facing each other. The professor is at the same level as the student. Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche believed that the professor had just as much to learn from the student. We start each class with a bow and end each class with a bow. Thank You for being a part of my experience. It felt as if we were enjoying tea and just having a wonderful conversation.

I follow the Kagyu tradition of Buddhism. I first read the book "Shambhala Sacred Path of the Warrior" when I was 18. This is where I was introduced to the Buddhist path. This led me to attend Naropa University. I miss Naropa daily, but I do believe I am where I need to be at this moment in my life.

I am looking forward to reading "Baby Love". Thank You for sharing your life with us. I look forward to many more wonderful books.

You gave me a gift last night, and I am so very honored.

Namaste,

SH
Pheonix



Dear Ms. Walker:

Thank you for your book, Baby Love. I was captivated on many levels and I hope that it doesn't sound too weird to say that I wish I could have called you when I finished it. I was struck by the grace with which you chose motherhood, where as I most often have the sensation of having fallen into it; of having been swept up-even at 35-into some prevalent cultural narrative about what my journey should include as a woman. Anyway, my daughter is here now-surely divine-and I am committed to her love and protection.

I am writing because I related to the difficulty in the relationship that you have had with your mother. I once gleefully phoned my mother in full anticipation of her eager island blessing when I told her that I had a lunch date with a fine, Stanford educated, successful attorney. She told me-without hesitation- that he had too much education for me. Yep. It's been that kind of ride. I wonder if you intend to further explore your relationship with your mother, its implications for your experience in parenting and possibly its link to your depression in any future writings. Those are issues with which I am currently grappling and I'm just wondering.

Anyway, if this e-mail actually finds you, I hope that it finds you well. Thank you for your time and thank you again for a wonderful book.

Sincerely,
YM
Maryland



Greetings,

I just finished "baby love" and I had to jump online and pray that there was a way to get a message to you...I hope you get this. I just had to let you know how much I appreciated your honesty. It was refreshingly necessary. Funny how we think we know people because we read sound bites about their lives, or their parent's lives, over time. Through almost each page, I was transported back to a time in my own life...different characters...same story. Particularly the primary focus, how your son came to you. Each page you wrote brought me back to my own personal revolution six years ago after giving birth to my son Jah. All the decisions, all the anxiety, all the pain. I was a vegetarian prior to becoming pregnant...by the second month, I was craving Park Sausages!!!!! While I did not give in to that temptation, there were many that i did ,and I would beat myself up for them. I vividly recall the moment that I thought I would literally die without the epidural....this after all my fantasizing about home births and such. (major beat myself up moment). I have learned that this life thing, this pregnancy, this mother daughter thing, this relationship thing is what it is and at any point, at every point, we have the right and the obligation to choose. As mother's our choices have much greater impact and life after becoming a mother is never ever the same...our cheese has been moved forever! But like you, I have learned, that if we roll with it rather than try to control it...it's a really, really good thing.

Again, thank you so much for sharing...you did good.

KH
Brooklyn



Hi Rebecca—

Just sending an email to let you know how much I enjoyed your book.

I read it prior to the birth of my daughter and shared a lot of the same sentiments that you expressed. As a 26 yr old mother of 2 (both under 2, yes I’m nuts) I have found my ambivalence has put me in a space where some days I feel as if I’m doing everything I can as a mother but then there are other days where I find myself second guessing if I truly am. My boyfriend and father of my children has always expressed to me that I have not adjusted well to motherhood (asshole!), and before reading your book, I truly felt like I was the only one questioning if motherhood was truly my life’s path. Yet your book helped me to appreciate that motherhood and parenting comes in forms and that it is ok to question one's role in life.

Thanks again.
Sincerely,
DC



Ms. Walker,

For some reason I cannot possibly imagine that you will be the person actually reading this email regardless of the email address potentially tricking me--but nonetheless.

I am a 30 yr. old ambivalent woman on the career "track" and like you--feel blessed in my chosen partnership. My sister, amazing woman of two beautiful boys, lent me a copy of BABY LOVE which I just finished reading last night. We were struck by the description of your relationship with your mother--it is strangely similar to ours--I cannot possibly begin to explain to you how engulfed I became in your memoir and journey to motherhood. My spirit and I sincerely thank you for your work and look forward to reading more of yours (and yes, people do read your blog). Your words give me hope, confidence, laughter and inspiration.

At the chance that you are reading this--thank you, thank you, thank you. You must keep writing!

Cheers,
RK
Dallas



Hi, Rebecca. I have been a huge fan of your writing since I was in college and my (white, Jewish) mother bought me a copy of your autobiograpy. Even though I was in my early 20s, I was still shocked that there was someone else out there like me, black and Jewish. Even though I knew Lenny Kravitz, Lisa Bonet and others were mixed and part Jewish, you were the first one to embrace Judaism and the effect of the culture on your life. I am still a proud Jew, though in fairness, not really a practicing one! :-)

Anyway, I know you are busy but I just wanted to write and tell you I devoured Baby Love over the weekend. I am 3 months pregnant with my first baby. I never thought I wanted to be a mother and was so ambivalent about the whole thing. I secretly wished for a miscarriage just so I wouldn't have to actually make a decision as to whether or not I would keep the baby! I decided to go ahead with the pregnancy. It was a sort of Sex & The City Miranda moment. "Is this my baby?" But seeing my little doodlebug floating around in his amniotic sac for the first time a few weeks ago was one of the most beautiful moments of my life. I just wanted to thank you for telling your pregnancy story and for your honesty in the book. I am struggling with some of the same questions (OBGYN or midwife? to epidural or not to epidural?) and it was nice to hear that you, too, felt rushed by your doctor, but were still skeptical about giving up access to Western medicine during your labor. There are so many questions and such conflicting answers, but it's good to know you dealt with these things as well. I look forward to reading more about the life you've created for yourself with Glen and Tenzin in the future!

Best,
E



Hi Rebecca,

I stumbled across Baby Love recently when I was searching on "motherhood" in our local library and have just finished reading it. Recently I made the hard decision not to return to work, so as to continue caring for my 16 month old daughter, after 13 years as a full time worker and activist, so I am interested in reading about what other mothers are going through/have been through. Like your mother, my mother also resigned from her position as a mother and also grandmother (2 yrs ago). She has emotionally and physically cut herself off from myself and my three sisters and all of her grandchildren. She casually discussed with me the year before she did it that she didn't believe in unconditional love and that it was possible for a mother not to actually like their children.

She has since I was in my teens threatened to cut me off if I don't live by her rules. My father supported her with the threat of physical violence towards me. You have eloquently described how that feels so I won't go into my reaction except to say that it has been traumatic for all of us but has also liberated us all from a very controlling, hurtful and narcissistic mother. Your honesty and ability to tell the truth about motherhood has inspired me to be more open (although I am obviously not quite there yet). I also am trying to be the best mother I can be to my beautiful son. My sisters and I have decided to create a loving family and to stop the generational memory of emotional abuse. It is working - all cousins, nephews/nieces and aunties etc are happy and healthy. This would definitely not be the case if my mother were around.

I feel like I have a lot in common with you but then I read your guestbook and discovered that others feel the same – maybe it’s the raw honesty in your writing that connects us with your experiences? I conceived my son when I was 34. I had an abortion when I was 30 and had a strong sense that he had returned to me. I started strategizing about how to find and maintain a stable happy relationship and have a child, which I did.

If you ever come to France I would love to meet you. I could probably arrange a small book launch - I live in an area with a great bookshop.

With warmth and compassion,
ML
Fay de Payence



Dear Ms. Walker:

Just thought I'd drop you a line to thank you for writing Black White Jewish. As an emerging writer and a multiracial person of Jamaican, Ecuadorian, and Polish ancestry, I am very much encouraged by people like you who are not afraid to delve into the untidy subject of growing up in a mixed family. Unfortunately, it seems that some of the mixed-race writers currently on the scene gloss over the whole topic with a stance like: I’m black. I’ve always identified as black, but I do feel that as mixed people we have a different experience than both Blacks and Whites. And I believe that if more of us were forthcoming about our experiences, we would contribute a great deal to the discussion of race in America. Thank you again for your honest, moving, wonderful book.

All my best,
RA



I haven't yet finished "Baby Love" but it has been a transforming read thus far. I keep thinking that this book is the book my daughter must read when she comes of age ... to begin to understand what it is like to be a mother-in-waiting and now, a mother. My daughter Liza is three months, and I am so blessed to be reading your book at this moment. It is framing my days differently, and I am grateful for your insight and unabashed passion for motherhood.

I also appreciate your candor about your depression - this was an issue for me as well during and now in the post-partum period. There is comfort in kinship, even with a stranger.

This is my first exposure to your voice; you are an amazing writer. This book is such a gift. Thank you for writing it. It's the rare occasion when I hope like hell the book won't end.

Best to you -
J



Hello Rebecca,

I haven't quite finished reading Baby Love yet, but I wanted to say it's a great book. Being an adopted individual raised in a home with a biological child, I too felt the difference in the love doled out by my parents. To this day, I am now thirty years old, and it sits between us. I've walked around it several times but there is no mistaking that it is there.

Unlike my sister, who was also adopted, I have been able to acknowledge this difference and move on. It's still wrecking her life. I agree that becoming a mother has taught me, truly, what love is. A mother's love for her child is just indescribable (I think I made that word up) and so deep. Having my children taught me what love is and how it can be unconditional.

You mention in the book that you're a Buddhist. I took a class on Buddhism at Hunter College and the teacher was fabulous. I loved that class and the way it made me feel. I was just elated. I felt like one with the world. I was extremely happy. Buddhism touched me in a way that Christianity never did. Then the class ended and the books were put away and I lost that joy; not right away but over time. I seeped out and I didn't realize that it was leaking. Years later, I recalled that feeling and I often wonder how it got away from me. Your book reminded me that I must try to find that anew - it might be different this time.

Anyway, my struggle with my daughter is to be able to feel free to show her the love that was not shown to me. It's funny, but I don't have a problem with this with my son (I guess because the model was not based on mother son but mother daughter). So, I am constantly re-evaluating my interactions with my daughter, making notes as to how I could be more giving of affection, kind words, encouragement etc. Constantly going over the days picking out seeds of negativity before they bloom and spread. And yes, I had made the same decision as you, to keep my children away from my family for these reasons. I too, thought it was the best thing to do and it was and still is. Sometimes, especially in the beginning, I wished that I had support but I wasn't willing to trade their spirits for some off time.

Thanks for listening.
All my best to you and your family,
T



Hi Rebecca,

You signed a book to my boyfriend and I last week at the University of Puget Sound. Your talk really touched me at a time when I myself am struggling, learning, and loving the art of creative writing. Just this year I became an English Creative Writing major. What mostly interested me about your talk was the issue you presented to us about being a memoirist and how it affects the people you are writing about. The reason I want to write is because of my family and because of my mother. My family has become the source of my inspiration to write. I am most interested in telling my mother's story, the story of a woman who grew up in the south and ran to San Francisco to escape an abusive husband, the memory of rape, the death of a child, religious fanaticism and so much more, several years before I was born. Even so, my mother's experiences intertwined themselves with my own, causing me to learn about terrible secrets and evolving my perception of my family throughout my entire upbringing. Her story is one of survival and extreme triumph, but about both of us as well. Do you see the problem? Our stories are inseparable but in my opinion they must be told. If I were to write a book about it my mother would be upset and it could potentially leave my family in shambles. While I am not close to my extended relatives and mostly only have feelings of contempt towards them, I am not sure I want to be responsible for such an upheaval. I am half and half right now because also have an overwhelming urge to write it down and tell the world about what happened. And like you said, I realize that there is no easy solution, you write and make a sacrifice, or you don't, and make a sacrifice.

It was moving and inspiring to hear you speak because of this similarity. Ben and I have been reading your book, BWJ, aloud to each other, and ironically he's Jewish. We love it and can't wait to get to the end!

Your Friend,
AS



Hello Rebecca,

I am on page 59 of your book Baby Love, and it has brought me to grateful tears. I wanted to write and say THANK YOU. Thank you for writing my experiences and thoughts. I am 32 and seriously considering having a child on my own. I have struggled with my sexuality (finally accepting that I am bisexual and don't fit into any box, no matter how comfy they may be), with being an adult child of divorce (count 'em, 7, between my biological parents), with my financial battles (been on my own since 15). I have had the motherhood ache since a very young age, but like you, was thoroughly indoctrinated with the feminist values and ideals of education and independence. So I educated myself, moved to a bigger and brighter city, established a career I love (children's library services), found and lost or ran away from love several times, and now I feel the clock ticking and the desire for a child taking over my mind/body/life in a truly heart-and-soul-shaking way. I am terrified to do it, and terrified not to.

Your book is beautiful. It asks the questions that run through my mind on repeat daily, hourly. I don't know what is to come in the remaining pages, but I am here with my glass of wine and my gratitude, savoring every word.

THANK YOU for writing it down. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

B



Hi Rebecca,

I recently read your book, it was so amazing! I am a 32 year-old teacher in Georgia (from Boston originally) and I REALLY enjoyed reading and relating to your book. As a light complexion black woman I understood time and time again different feeling you conveyed in the book, of not belonging or trying to belong.

I was raised by my mother and step father, my mom is brown and my step dad is even darker. So when standing together it looked like I was adopted. My biological father is deceased. I take after him.

Because my mom wanted me to be able to gel in the real world I went to different schools, both private and public. I could relate to white kids, black kids and latinos. I liked white music (hall & oats) but also knew all the words to Run DMC's latest song. That balance is so tough to deal with! I went to white summer camps where we rode horses to black summer camps where we let boys chase us. Your book was like reliving so many experiences.

I shared the book with a coworker who grew up in New York and she too is enjoying it. Thank you for adding some spark to the lives of teachers, we affect the lives of children everyday, your story was a clear reminder of the things that have shaped and effected me.
THank you
Ayanna Cooper
Black, Light and Christian



Rebecca,

Years ago, Black, White and Jewish was given to me as a gift and it's words echo still echo in my mind. For the first time someone was able to put on paper all of the things that I felt as a bi-racial woman growing up in the 70's and having to split oneself between two worlds, neither of which felt quite right.

Now as a 38 year old lesbian in a deeply committed relationship, I'm excited to read Baby Love and experience your journey all over again. Having children rarely crosses my mind and when it does, the yearning is brief. Sometimes I imagine what my life would have been like if I had not "come out" at 28 - if I had remained within the straight world and did what came next after dating. I suppose I feel fortunate. I know a few lesbians who married men and had children before coming out and who are now dragging their teenagers into one same-sex relationship after another looking for Ms. Right.

Again, many thanks for your voice. I am truly a fan of your work and your evolution.

Regards,
TE



Dear Rebecca,

I was so moved by your article. Thanks for having the courage to be honest and to communicate something so integral to my life. I have a multicultural background as well (Mom is Mexican American, Dad is Haitian and Cuban). At an early young age, I saw through the fallacy of race and the myth of a racism free multicultural home. I do think our generation has seen through the myth of feminism. I do believe and advocate for woman's rights but I never confuse that with feminism. I grew up dreaming of business suits never a wedding dress. I was told you don't need men. But we do and they need us. I felt so guilty just being at home with my daughters as if I wasn't contributing to society. I am now content and feeling fulfilled in changing the world by raising strong discerning women. Thanks for affirming so much of my personal beliefs in your article and best wishes to you and yours!

JG



I just finished reading your article and I felt compelled to drop you a note of appreciation and affirmation ... so I searched Google till I found your email address.

As a father of two and grandfather of five who in his early years worried more about saving the world than enjoying his family, I wish every parent and parent-to-be on the planet could read the article.

Thank you for your insights and your magnificent ability to express them.

SR
San Antonio



Dear Ms. Walker,

I just read your interview regarding your relationship with your partner, son, and mother. I think you are very courageous and have made the right choice. Protecting one's heart is critical to happiness. Thank you for sharing your story.

I wish you much continued happiness and that you are soon successful in bringing a second child into your loving home. Your children are very blessed to have such a wise and loving self-taught mother. Congratulations on passing along the good parts of life's lessons to your family.

Sincerely,
Maggie



Dear Rebecca,

I never respond to writers so this will be my first time, but after I read your interview I was just so impressed by it and decided to write a little email to you.
I am so glad that finally you spoke up and acknowledged that feminism is not so great and that it actually hurts families and takes away a special gift that G-d gave to women - their femininity. Women need to finally understand that being a wife and a mother is wonderful and that being a mother is the most rewarding job we can do. In the end, when we no longer have our careers and when our bosses have replaced us by other more qualified and younger workers, we are left with nothing. On the other hand, mother's work is carried on and remembered for generations and a mother can never be replaced by "a younger and a more qualified" worker :) How we have raised our children and what kind of a job we have done with them will always matter.

After all, a woman is the one who brings a life into this world. So really, what other job can be more important than this? Again, thank you for writing this beautiful article and may G-d grant your wish for another child.

Best regards,

DR



Hi,

I just read your interview and I loved it!

I'm 34 at the moment and grew up reading heaps of books by various feminists - so much so that it influenced my life tremendously and sent me down a path which was ultimately soul destroying. I did well in high school, university, law school, etc. and had what I thought was heaps of fun being promiscuous and pretty much doing whatever made me feel good, whatever made me look like a strong, confident modern woman. But things always felt a lot different on the inside and I got tired at the amount of sheer hard work it took to project this image I thought I was meant to be.

As the Brits like to say, what a load of bollocks! I feel like I was conned! You know what I wish? I wish someone had sat me down and told me about self-respect and love and acceptance and that true freedom lies in doing what FEELS right for YOU, even if that doesn't entail following a 'modern woman' agenda as set out monthly in Cosmo magazine. Instead of ramming down my throat that all that mattered was a career and money and independence (even my mother who was a good mum believed I would be happier this way) I wish I had focused more on finding out who I really was. Maybe I can't place all the blame on Steinem et al but they were my influences.

Fast-forward a few years and by the grace of God I met my husband. We dated for about 9 weeks before we got married - crazy, happy times! But by the time I'd met him I was starting to crack. I didn't want to be a high-flying lawyer, I didn't want to keep sleeping around and going to endless clubs and drinking ridiculously expensive cocktails in my very tailored suits. I wanted to be me. And for whatever reason I didn't feel the need to be like that with him, I could just be me and that for me was so liberating. He didn't care if I practiced law or walked dogs or stayed home doing needlepoint. We've been married now 7 years (and 9 weeks!) and it's been the happiest time of my life. And despite being raised on a diet of 'men are bastards' I found one that isn't. Was I just lucky? Maybe. But I suspect there are millions more like him.

Sorry if I've babbled but your article really hit home with me. Besides feeling an ache in my heart when I read it, not only for your childhood, but for your brutal honesty and the pain of losing a mother that way. I'm so glad you love being a mother. I became a mother last November. My little girl is named Shana and there just aren't enough words in my vocabulary to express to you the joy and love I feel. I suspect you know anyway. I'll be 35 in August so a big family is going to be out of the question for me. I just wish I'd known.

My hope for Shana is that she grows up healthy and happy and confident in the fact that she is loved above all else by her parents who in turn love each other as well. I hope that in the end this love will see her through whatever decisions she makes later on in life. I truly wish the same for your son.

God bless,

BG



Hi Rebecca,

I just finished your book Baby Love. I loved it. Having had two babies of mine own, I found it to be very realistic and honest.

I wanted to have a baby around the age 25 when a friend of mine had her first. I met my husband right before my 26th b-day and we got married when I was 29. It took 4 1/2 years for us to conceive the child we so wanted. I did the shots and clomid, but stopped short of IVF. The day we were to go to find out more about adoption, I found out I was pregnant. As happy as I was, I did not enjoy pregnancy. I got sick every time I smelled chicken, any kind of meat or fish for the whole pregnancy.

With my daughter, Lily who will be 4 next month, I was in labor for 49 hours, had the epidural after 20 some odd hours, and then ended up having an emergency C-Section because she was in distress. No one told me about the pain I'd be experiencing either. Everyone on TLC's A Baby Story looked so calm as they had their babies compared to what I went through.

I had my son, Joshua last July. It was a much different experience, because I had a scheduled C-Section. The hospitals where I live do not do V-Bacs for insurance reasons. It was strange knowing exactly when he would grace us with his presence.

You sound extremely healthy after your experience. With my son, I ended up with post-natal depression, which I did not experience with my daughter. It was so bad that I ended up needing to take Lexapro, something I never thought I'd have to do. At 6 weeks, he ended up with Piloric Stenosis, which is what I think your friend's baby had, where he threw up everything I fed him. He needed surgery. Luckily that's right about when the Lexapro kicked in, because I don't think I could have been as strong as I was if I didn't have the medicated help I needed.

I don't really know why I'm writing you to tell you all of this, but as an "older" Jewish mom (I was 35 when Sarah was born and 38 with Jacob), I felt like I bonded to you in some weird non-stalkerish way.

Best wishes from one mamma to another,

DS


Dear Rebecca,

Thank you for Black, White and Jewish. I look forward to Baby Love.

I am a Mother, Jewish and White (I think....). In reality we may all be of many different 'origins' but most importantly I hope I'm just a good person. That is my goal for my four children to be 'good people' and that is what I always tell the teachers at school conferences.

Our Norwalk Hadassah Book Group is doing Black, White and Jewish next week. I look forward to the conversations this will create. Our Chapter is made of many woman from a variety backgrounds, primarily Jewish, but with families created in many different manners.

Thank you again,
TF



Dear Rebecca.

Its so funny saying "Dear Rebecca" but after just finishing Baby Love, (and I mean like five minutes ago) I felt compelled to write you. Felt compelled to call you DEAR because you are now dear to me.  I am a single parent. And I wanted to read your book because while my story is different...You spoke to so much in me about the process one goes through becoming a parent.

I grew up in Houston. I was given everything I ever wanted and worked hard in school. I was the apple of my parents eye, and even when they hated each other, they adored me. I had a perfectly lovely childhood. My parents did alot to make sure I didn't see to much of the disintegration of their marriage.

My mother died twelve years ago. She was a passionate, sad, beautiful alcoholic who died next to a container of her own bile that her liver could no longer process. She gave me my love of books and theater, and was the one who convinced me to move to England to go to Drama School. She made me feel a love so strong that when she died I was somewhat aimless. I felt myself wondering around. Like I'd been smacked in the head with a frying pan that "WYLEE COYOTE" left for me to run into. Some how something in me told me that I needed to have a baby. That a baby would calm the dizziness.

Needless to say, my family did not approve. Through most of my pregnancy, I was alone. My family made no bones about the fact that having a child without a husband was against everything they believed in. And when I had my son, finally, I was even more alone than before. David was born six weeks premature, and spent ten days in the NICU. I sat by his bed and watched him breathe, wearing the little fake sun glasses they put on the jaundice babies. I didn't know what to do. Didn't know how to do it. Except I knew that I would hold my hands to a hot stove if it meant my son would be healthy and safe.  Oh if I could take away his pain and his rough start on this planet!

Eventually things got better, and when the glasses came off I looked into those blue eyes, and saw my mothers eyes. I saw how connected we all are, and how we come back in different shapes and sizes. And I knew, that however tough it got, I could do it. That he was a way of remembering the past, while experiencing a brilliant new future.

BABY LOVE was wonderful. I got to see I wasn't alone in my journey. I know that of course I wasn't alone, but when you are there, in the thick of it, the loneliness can be overwhelming. The fear can be paralyzing. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving that period of life a voice. As I said, not my story, but oh so familiar.

Peace for you and your beautiful son.

GF



Rebecca,

I just read your interview in the Daily Mail.  I am not sure I can quite find the words to tell you how powerful I found it.

I am a writer and a journalist as well, and have found that being forced to articulate how I became who I am today involves introspection at every step, much of it uncomfortable even when the topic at hand seems benign.

I will confess to you now, I am politically conservative (which is often a deathknell when talking to other writers...it seems many forms of diversity are embraced unless you are a conservative) and your experiences spoke to some of the road I have traveled.

My mother, though a flower child, is a very maternal woman and I am blessed to have her.  But my family as a whole was steeped in the politicizing of any and every issue.  My grandmother, though good to me, sounds very much like your mother.  When she caught me with Barbies one day, they were marched off to the garbage.

While my mother balanced the messages of pop culture and Gloria Steinem, and frankly your mother, it left me very torn and confused.  Were they not all telling me to be empowered?  Listen to my inner-voice?  My inner-voice screamed motherhood...stay at home Betty Crocker motherhood, and yet I felt guilty.  I felt that somehow, I was letting down the sisterhood.

When I became pregnant at 25, newly married, I had my daughter and still could not embrace what I wanted and needed to do.  I worked for 3 years, crying in the parking lot of daycare almost daily.  When I became pregnant again, we made the downsizing moves needed to keep me home.  I was able to stay home for 10 years, raising my 3 to school age, before returning to work.  Even now I wish I were home (divorce and remarriage to a man with an angry feminist ex-wife who screams I am woman hear me roar but demands alimony...don't get me started) but my job is second to my family in every way and I would tell them to pound sand before missing a baseball game or back to school night.

I am not sure why I felt such a need to write to you...but I was terribly moved by your story and so proud to see someone from my generation stand up to the culture war.

You will get a great deal of attention from conservatives...please know that there are many of us who came to our ideological conclusions because of the very path you walked.  I hope you will come to find that many of us are not what the media and the political parties would like to portray.  We all have freak flags to fly...

If you are interested in an interview, let me know and I would be happy to do a piece for Human Events.  That might not be the audience you are seeking, but I think that the message you have to offer is so powerful and can do so much for our generation.

You mother does not speak for this woman, Rebecca, she never did.  But it seems that you just might.

Enjoy your journey in motherhood...my oldest is 15 now and I almost weep at how quickly it is all going.

Thank you for your powerful story...it was deeply effecting.

Regards,
MK


Hi Rebecca,

I just happened on an outdated issue of Real Simple and grabbed to read on my elliptical trainer, and I read your article on neatness.  My life is that exactly. After reading your story, I finally feel validated and also see that there is an in between, as hard as it may be to see.  I hope that makes sense to you. By reading your story, I feel that it is alright to be neat, but you don't have to be ALL the time.  I thank you, and I know my family (husband, two boys 5 and 3 and one beautiful little girl 6 months) thank you, too.

GH
Boston


Hello Rebecca, I've just finished reading Baby Love and I was absolutely blown away. It is definitely my intention now to read every memoir, essay, article, anthology, commentary, criticism, pamplet, scribbled note, etc. you've ever written and will ever write.

Your writing is so honest, and you take so many emotional risks. You have the courage I want; the self-awareness I long for; the inner beauty and freedom I only dream about having. You are beautiful in every sense of the word. Our paths may never cross as we live and work in two different worlds, but I would like to say thank you for sharing your truth with the world, for in doing so, you have encouraged me to do the same.

I pray blessings upon you, Tenzin, and Glen, and I pray that God would surround me with people who sharpen me like iron as you have.

Take care Rebecca.  

Hi Rebecca,

I just finished reading your book Baby Love and felt compelled to send out a big thank you. Reading about your experience was so refreshing and beautiful.  I am a new mum, my daughter River Marika is 9 months and I have a partner who has blessed my life.  Looking back I am shocked how scared I was to have a baby, and also how I now want to be a participant in my own life, rather than watch others.  You said it so well!

I too, had a nomadic mother who believed that her kids should be adaptable to her lifestyle no matter what.  I found it interesting to read how you need structure as I feel the same way. I thought this was due to my mothers personality, but now think it has some generational stuff mixed in too.

Oh, baby is waking up from the nap, must go.

Anyways, thank you for sharing your journey.

All the best to you,

LC, Canada

Check out the guest book from the original site for more thoughts from readers. 

Comments:

Comment #1 by Anonymous on November 23, 2011 - 10:29pm
Comment #2 by Tina Rizzetti on December 2, 2011 - 10:51pm

I read Black White and Jewish two years ago and just read Baby love and I learned a lot from it. I'm Black on my mom's side Italian on my father's side and could really relate, and I've had a complicated relationship with my mother as well and with being a mother now myself I sincerely hope that your relationship with your mother can be resumed even if you have to make the first step like I did and am glad because she is lo longer living now.
Best wishes from a big fan : )

Comment #3 by sct on December 5, 2011 - 2:00am

Ms Walker
This is in regards to your opinions about bonding and adoptionin the book Baby Love.. It is because of prejudiced remarks like yours that I do not tell most people that my children are adopted. I am black . I have a teenaged son and a preteen daughter. I have had teachers ask me what do I know about my son's mother-is he a crack baby(he has ADHD-he is an honor sttudent). When my daughter was 10. Her music teacher asked her in front of the class was she Really adopted-it couldn't be true because she looks just like me. I have had mothers ask me do I really love my son like if he were my real baby. I could continue...
My husband and I are both physicians. We married just after college. During the first 10 years of marriage I had 4 miscarriages. I became depressed. One day I had a vision of two brown skinned kids climbing a tree and saying. "Look at me Mommy". I had hope. I went on a mission to build our family through adoption not IVF. The day Catholic services called and said there's this baby boy who was abandoned on delivery- I knew he was my baby. Love site unseen. Then I saw his picture and starting crying. We changed our home,work schedules for the new baby. I got reemed by my female colleagues for taking family leave when he came home because I hadn't reallly had a baby. I used that time to bond - us lying in bed with him on my left breast. Same with my baby girl.

Oxytocin is not just produced during delivery and nursing. And some adoptive women even nurse via injections. There is more that if one is the birth mother or not the birth mother which goes into bonding and devotion. If it was all just biology why. Are there so many children abused by birth parents.

I do congratulate you on your book and on deciding to be a mother. When I was in med school it was eiither or -top physician/researcher. Or mommy/community doc. I am glad to see women creating careers and families.
Being a mother adds a wonderful but often difficult dimension to married life. And wait until your son is a teenager..that will be enough for two books.

Good luck and God Bless
SCT

Comment #4 by Isabella Marchiolo on January 4, 2012 - 7:34pm

Dear Mrs Walker, I'm an italian writer and journalist. My novels and short stories analize love family and motherhood, and especially about different way of being a family beyond traditional structures. After a long searching, now I'm finally reading your books... but in English because they're never translated in italian. I really don't understand: How possible you don't have an italian publisher? Incredible! More than ten years ago I read about your works on an italian magazine (it was a reportage about "Baby Love"), and all along this time nobody thought translating this and other books...
Anyway, it's just to thank you for your words and experience. Well, I can read English, but what a pity for other italian readers...
If you can afford Italian and want to have a look, this is my personal blog:
http://sparladeipescicani.blogspot.com

You'll find some ideas about motherhood (I have two children), short novel of mine and information about my books.
Thank you
Isabella

Comment #5 by Chantal PRost on January 24, 2012 - 9:43pm

I just read the article you wrote about you mother. It was very touching. I have a mother who is very similar to yours. I was taught the same, children are to be seen and not heard and how it is better to not have children because they hold you back. I was 29 - a month from 30 when I called my mother and told her I was pregnant. She said, "Well are you going to have an abortion?" Needless to say I spoke to her for a few months after that until she snapped. I have asked her to apologize and she refuses. My child is now 17 months and she has never seen her. It is a sad world we live in. I can't imagine life without my daughter. I hope one day your mother will find the error in her ways and come back to you. I hope the same for myself. If not, we have wonderful people in our lives and that is all we need. Thank you for posting about your mother.

Comment #6 by Jessica F on February 1, 2012 - 9:41pm

Thank you, Rebecca, for giving us your love in its most raw form. You came to speak to our class today at The Evergreen State College and your words moved past all ideologies and insecurities, right to my core. I feel grateful for every word you spoke to us, to me, and will carry each word with me from this day forward. You are a visionary and a true sister to me and mine. Thank you for all you do.

Comment #7 by Cornelia Hicks on February 19, 2012 - 8:17pm

Hello Rebecca,

I just read the NPR review about Black Cool. I look forward to reading it in its entirety. I will buy a copy as soon as I can. In the meantime, I will check it out from the library. I just read the article in the Daily Mail regarding your relationship with your mother. How devastating. I had a horrible childhood experience that marred my life and outlook and I thank you for your honesty. In fact, I met your mother when I was a TV producer in Portland, Oregon and she was on a book tour for the Color Purple. I did not even know that she had children because it was not a part of her biography. You do give a different perspective to feminism and I am so grateful that you shared it. Many events shape us and clearly the feminist movement had both positive and negative impacts. May God bless you and your family and grant you the peace, joy and happiness that only he can give. Psalm 27 upheld me through it all. I hope that you have time to read it and you will see why. Be Blessed.

Comment #8 by karan on March 7, 2012 - 12:45pm

Rebecca,
Thank you. I was on Facebook. A friend had a post of yours. It was about your mother's work, 'The Color Purple." It was more directly about the affects of your mother's feminism on your life. How I saw your words in my heart. I knew them, I had not said them. How my mother never relished my accomplishments. How she was jealous of mine. I have a University degree; she has a nineth grade education. I am glad her education was lower than mine. She would have used it to every advantage against me had she had that weapon.
Her words for 20 years? I don't need a man! She WAS the man. Indeed, where was my mother? She feed me, clothed me, etc. but where was my mother? Too busy making the man's living. Never heard, "I love you." Never felt her hugs.
When I read your article I lost my breath. I am not jewish, I am not black. I am simply white. How odd when I hear those not of my race say that the white race has so many advantages. The greatest advantage is love and family and no race has that trumped. Cars, degrees, jobs, have not the power of love and family. People either withhold love to the hurt of others or share it to edify.
Thank you Rebecca for sharing.
With love and appreciation,
Karan

Comment #9 by Anonymous on March 16, 2012 - 1:27am

Hello,

I've spent hours today scanning articles on the description of verbal & emotional abuse to show my in-laws. My husband is an adopted only child
and we are now full time care givers for his parents. They want to be in their own home (of course), but at 88 & 93 are unable to care for themselves. They repeatedly tell him they're not his 'real' parents and he should treat them better because "we've given you everything, a car, a college education and we took you when 'she' didn't want you". They've convinced themselves that his actions toward them are because of 'her' not them. I stepped in and told them he's the way he is because of how he was raised not because of a 'rotten gene pool' but of course I don't know what I'm talking about. Not that seeing anything in print will convince them otherwise but I have found many articles that prove my point.

What brought me to your sight was reading that adoptive parents bond is not as strong as with a 'bio' child. No I've not read your books and I could be talking out of line but did want to add I have two 'bio' children and one adopted child. I myself feel no different bond between either child, in fact, it was the easiest 'delivery' of the three! No morning sickness, no weight gain, etc. I had always wondered if I could love a child that was 'not' my own, but when a situation arose (within my family) that required me to make a decision within 3 days, I chose 'yes'. When I first saw her, I was a bit disappointed as she was not a very pretty baby and thought to myself what have I done, but from the moment I first held her the bond was set, I knew she was mine, dreams really do come true.
My dream of having 'my own' daughter ended 14 years prior when I had my tubes tied after two difficult pregancy's and C-Sections.

It is now 26 yrs later and she's grown into a 'beautiful', sweet & loving daughter and am proud to admit she's mine.

Comment #10 by Anonymous on March 16, 2012 - 1:27am

Hello,

I've spent hours today scanning articles on the description of verbal & emotional abuse to show my in-laws. My husband is an adopted only child
and we are now full time care givers for his parents. They want to be in their own home (of course), but at 88 & 93 are unable to care for themselves. They repeatedly tell him they're not his 'real' parents and he should treat them better because "we've given you everything, a car, a college education and we took you when 'she' didn't want you". They've convinced themselves that his actions toward them are because of 'her' not them. I stepped in and told them he's the way he is because of how he was raised not because of a 'rotten gene pool' but of course I don't know what I'm talking about. Not that seeing anything in print will convince them otherwise but I have found many articles that prove my point.

What brought me to your sight was reading that adoptive parents bond is not as strong as with a 'bio' child. No I've not read your books and I could be talking out of line but did want to add I have two 'bio' children and one adopted child. I myself feel no different bond between either child, in fact, it was the easiest 'delivery' of the three! No morning sickness, no weight gain, etc. I had always wondered if I could love a child that was 'not' my own, but when a situation arose (within my family) that required me to make a decision within 3 days, I chose 'yes'. When I first saw her, I was a bit disappointed as she was not a very pretty baby and thought to myself what have I done, but from the moment I first held her the bond was set, I knew she was mine, dreams really do come true.
My dream of having 'my own' daughter ended 14 years prior when I had my tubes tied after two difficult pregancy's and C-Sections.

It is now 26 yrs later and she's grown into a 'beautiful', sweet & loving daughter and am proud to admit she's mine.

Comment #11 by Anonymous on March 16, 2012 - 1:27am

Hello,

I've spent hours today scanning articles on the description of verbal & emotional abuse to show my in-laws. My husband is an adopted only child
and we are now full time care givers for his parents. They want to be in their own home (of course), but at 88 & 93 are unable to care for themselves. They repeatedly tell him they're not his 'real' parents and he should treat them better because "we've given you everything, a car, a college education and we took you when 'she' didn't want you". They've convinced themselves that his actions toward them are because of 'her' not them. I stepped in and told them he's the way he is because of how he was raised not because of a 'rotten gene pool' but of course I don't know what I'm talking about. Not that seeing anything in print will convince them otherwise but I have found many articles that prove my point.

What brought me to your sight was reading that adoptive parents bond is not as strong as with a 'bio' child. No I've not read your books and I could be talking out of line but did want to add I have two 'bio' children and one adopted child. I myself feel no different bond between either child, in fact, it was the easiest 'delivery' of the three! No morning sickness, no weight gain, etc. I had always wondered if I could love a child that was 'not' my own, but when a situation arose (within my family) that required me to make a decision within 3 days, I chose 'yes'. When I first saw her, I was a bit disappointed as she was not a very pretty baby and thought to myself what have I done, but from the moment I first held her the bond was set, I knew she was mine, dreams really do come true.
My dream of having 'my own' daughter ended 14 years prior when I had my tubes tied after two difficult pregancy's and C-Sections.

It is now 26 yrs later and she's grown into a 'beautiful', sweet & loving daughter and am proud to admit she's mine.

Comment #12 by Anonymous on March 16, 2012 - 1:27am

Hello,

I've spent hours today scanning articles on the description of verbal & emotional abuse to show my in-laws. My husband is an adopted only child
and we are now full time care givers for his parents. They want to be in their own home (of course), but at 88 & 93 are unable to care for themselves. They repeatedly tell him they're not his 'real' parents and he should treat them better because "we've given you everything, a car, a college education and we took you when 'she' didn't want you". They've convinced themselves that his actions toward them are because of 'her' not them. I stepped in and told them he's the way he is because of how he was raised not because of a 'rotten gene pool' but of course I don't know what I'm talking about. Not that seeing anything in print will convince them otherwise but I have found many articles that prove my point.

What brought me to your sight was reading that adoptive parents bond is not as strong as with a 'bio' child. No I've not read your books and I could be talking out of line but did want to add I have two 'bio' children and one adopted child. I myself feel no different bond between either child, in fact, it was the easiest 'delivery' of the three! No morning sickness, no weight gain, etc. I had always wondered if I could love a child that was 'not' my own, but when a situation arose (within my family) that required me to make a decision within 3 days, I chose 'yes'. When I first saw her, I was a bit disappointed as she was not a very pretty baby and thought to myself what have I done, but from the moment I first held her the bond was set, I knew she was mine, dreams really do come true.
My dream of having 'my own' daughter ended 14 years prior when I had my tubes tied after two difficult pregancy's and C-Sections.

It is now 26 yrs later and she's grown into a 'beautiful', sweet & loving daughter and am proud to admit she's mine.

Comment #13 by Anonymous on March 16, 2012 - 1:27am

Hello,

I've spent hours today scanning articles on the description of verbal & emotional abuse to show my in-laws. My husband is an adopted only child
and we are now full time care givers for his parents. They want to be in their own home (of course), but at 88 & 93 are unable to care for themselves. They repeatedly tell him they're not his 'real' parents and he should treat them better because "we've given you everything, a car, a college education and we took you when 'she' didn't want you". They've convinced themselves that his actions toward them are because of 'her' not them. I stepped in and told them he's the way he is because of how he was raised not because of a 'rotten gene pool' but of course I don't know what I'm talking about. Not that seeing anything in print will convince them otherwise but I have found many articles that prove my point.

What brought me to your sight was reading that adoptive parents bond is not as strong as with a 'bio' child. No I've not read your books and I could be talking out of line but did want to add I have two 'bio' children and one adopted child. I myself feel no different bond between either child, in fact, it was the easiest 'delivery' of the three! No morning sickness, no weight gain, etc. I had always wondered if I could love a child that was 'not' my own, but when a situation arose (within my family) that required me to make a decision within 3 days, I chose 'yes'. When I first saw her, I was a bit disappointed as she was not a very pretty baby and thought to myself what have I done, but from the moment I first held her the bond was set, I knew she was mine, dreams really do come true.
My dream of having 'my own' daughter ended 14 years prior when I had my tubes tied after two difficult pregancy's and C-Sections.

It is now 26 yrs later and she's grown into a 'beautiful', sweet & loving daughter and am proud to admit she's mine.

Comment #14 by Anonymous on March 16, 2012 - 1:27am

Hello,

I've spent hours today scanning articles on the description of verbal & emotional abuse to show my in-laws. My husband is an adopted only child
and we are now full time care givers for his parents. They want to be in their own home (of course), but at 88 & 93 are unable to care for themselves. They repeatedly tell him they're not his 'real' parents and he should treat them better because "we've given you everything, a car, a college education and we took you when 'she' didn't want you". They've convinced themselves that his actions toward them are because of 'her' not them. I stepped in and told them he's the way he is because of how he was raised not because of a 'rotten gene pool' but of course I don't know what I'm talking about. Not that seeing anything in print will convince them otherwise but I have found many articles that prove my point.

What brought me to your sight was reading that adoptive parents bond is not as strong as with a 'bio' child. No I've not read your books and I could be talking out of line but did want to add I have two 'bio' children and one adopted child. I myself feel no different bond between either child, in fact, it was the easiest 'delivery' of the three! No morning sickness, no weight gain, etc. I had always wondered if I could love a child that was 'not' my own, but when a situation arose (within my family) that required me to make a decision within 3 days, I chose 'yes'. When I first saw her, I was a bit disappointed as she was not a very pretty baby and thought to myself what have I done, but from the moment I first held her the bond was set, I knew she was mine, dreams really do come true.
My dream of having 'my own' daughter ended 14 years prior when I had my tubes tied after two difficult pregancy's and C-Sections.

It is now 26 yrs later and she's grown into a 'beautiful', sweet & loving daughter and am proud to admit she's mine.

Comment #15 by Anonymous on March 16, 2012 - 1:27am

Hello,

I've spent hours today scanning articles on the description of verbal & emotional abuse to show my in-laws. My husband is an adopted only child
and we are now full time care givers for his parents. They want to be in their own home (of course), but at 88 & 93 are unable to care for themselves. They repeatedly tell him they're not his 'real' parents and he should treat them better because "we've given you everything, a car, a college education and we took you when 'she' didn't want you". They've convinced themselves that his actions toward them are because of 'her' not them. I stepped in and told them he's the way he is because of how he was raised not because of a 'rotten gene pool' but of course I don't know what I'm talking about. Not that seeing anything in print will convince them otherwise but I have found many articles that prove my point.

What brought me to your sight was reading that adoptive parents bond is not as strong as with a 'bio' child. No I've not read your books and I could be talking out of line but did want to add I have two 'bio' children and one adopted child. I myself feel no different bond between either child, in fact, it was the easiest 'delivery' of the three! No morning sickness, no weight gain, etc. I had always wondered if I could love a child that was 'not' my own, but when a situation arose (within my family) that required me to make a decision within 3 days, I chose 'yes'. When I first saw her, I was a bit disappointed as she was not a very pretty baby and thought to myself what have I done, but from the moment I first held her the bond was set, I knew she was mine, dreams really do come true.
My dream of having 'my own' daughter ended 14 years prior when I had my tubes tied after two difficult pregancy's and C-Sections.

It is now 26 yrs later and she's grown into a 'beautiful', sweet & loving daughter and am proud to admit she's mine.

Comment #16 by Anonymous on March 16, 2012 - 1:27am

Hello,

I've spent hours today scanning articles on the description of verbal & emotional abuse to show my in-laws. My husband is an adopted only child
and we are now full time care givers for his parents. They want to be in their own home (of course), but at 88 & 93 are unable to care for themselves. They repeatedly tell him they're not his 'real' parents and he should treat them better because "we've given you everything, a car, a college education and we took you when 'she' didn't want you". They've convinced themselves that his actions toward them are because of 'her' not them. I stepped in and told them he's the way he is because of how he was raised not because of a 'rotten gene pool' but of course I don't know what I'm talking about. Not that seeing anything in print will convince them otherwise but I have found many articles that prove my point.

What brought me to your sight was reading that adoptive parents bond is not as strong as with a 'bio' child. No I've not read your books and I could be talking out of line but did want to add I have two 'bio' children and one adopted child. I myself feel no different bond between either child, in fact, it was the easiest 'delivery' of the three! No morning sickness, no weight gain, etc. I had always wondered if I could love a child that was 'not' my own, but when a situation arose (within my family) that required me to make a decision within 3 days, I chose 'yes'. When I first saw her, I was a bit disappointed as she was not a very pretty baby and thought to myself what have I done, but from the moment I first held her the bond was set, I knew she was mine, dreams really do come true.
My dream of having 'my own' daughter ended 14 years prior when I had my tubes tied after two difficult pregancy's and C-Sections.

It is now 26 yrs later and she's grown into a 'beautiful', sweet & loving daughter and am proud to admit she's mine.

Comment #17 by Anonymous on March 16, 2012 - 1:27am

Hello,

I've spent hours today scanning articles on the description of verbal & emotional abuse to show my in-laws. My husband is an adopted only child
and we are now full time care givers for his parents. They want to be in their own home (of course), but at 88 & 93 are unable to care for themselves. They repeatedly tell him they're not his 'real' parents and he should treat them better because "we've given you everything, a car, a college education and we took you when 'she' didn't want you". They've convinced themselves that his actions toward them are because of 'her' not them. I stepped in and told them he's the way he is because of how he was raised not because of a 'rotten gene pool' but of course I don't know what I'm talking about. Not that seeing anything in print will convince them otherwise but I have found many articles that prove my point.

What brought me to your sight was reading that adoptive parents bond is not as strong as with a 'bio' child. No I've not read your books and I could be talking out of line but did want to add I have two 'bio' children and one adopted child. I myself feel no different bond between either child, in fact, it was the easiest 'delivery' of the three! No morning sickness, no weight gain, etc. I had always wondered if I could love a child that was 'not' my own, but when a situation arose (within my family) that required me to make a decision within 3 days, I chose 'yes'. When I first saw her, I was a bit disappointed as she was not a very pretty baby and thought to myself what have I done, but from the moment I first held her the bond was set, I knew she was mine, dreams really do come true.
My dream of having 'my own' daughter ended 14 years prior when I had my tubes tied after two difficult pregancy's and C-Sections.

It is now 26 yrs later and she's grown into a 'beautiful', sweet & loving daughter and am proud to admit she's mine.

Comment #18 by Anonymous on March 16, 2012 - 1:27am

Hello,

I've spent hours today scanning articles on the description of verbal & emotional abuse to show my in-laws. My husband is an adopted only child
and we are now full time care givers for his parents. They want to be in their own home (of course), but at 88 & 93 are unable to care for themselves. They repeatedly tell him they're not his 'real' parents and he should treat them better because "we've given you everything, a car, a college education and we took you when 'she' didn't want you". They've convinced themselves that his actions toward them are because of 'her' not them. I stepped in and told them he's the way he is because of how he was raised not because of a 'rotten gene pool' but of course I don't know what I'm talking about. Not that seeing anything in print will convince them otherwise but I have found many articles that prove my point.

What brought me to your sight was reading that adoptive parents bond is not as strong as with a 'bio' child. No I've not read your books and I could be talking out of line but did want to add I have two 'bio' children and one adopted child. I myself feel no different bond between either child, in fact, it was the easiest 'delivery' of the three! No morning sickness, no weight gain, etc. I had always wondered if I could love a child that was 'not' my own, but when a situation arose (within my family) that required me to make a decision within 3 days, I chose 'yes'. When I first saw her, I was a bit disappointed as she was not a very pretty baby and thought to myself what have I done, but from the moment I first held her the bond was set, I knew she was mine, dreams really do come true.
My dream of having 'my own' daughter ended 14 years prior when I had my tubes tied after two difficult pregancy's and C-Sections.

It is now 26 yrs later and she's grown into a 'beautiful', sweet & loving daughter and am proud to admit she's mine.

Comment #19 by Anonymous on March 16, 2012 - 1:27am

Hello,

I've spent hours today scanning articles on the description of verbal & emotional abuse to show my in-laws. My husband is an adopted only child
and we are now full time care givers for his parents. They want to be in their own home (of course), but at 88 & 93 are unable to care for themselves. They repeatedly tell him they're not his 'real' parents and he should treat them better because "we've given you everything, a car, a college education and we took you when 'she' didn't want you". They've convinced themselves that his actions toward them are because of 'her' not them. I stepped in and told them he's the way he is because of how he was raised not because of a 'rotten gene pool' but of course I don't know what I'm talking about. Not that seeing anything in print will convince them otherwise but I have found many articles that prove my point.

What brought me to your sight was reading that adoptive parents bond is not as strong as with a 'bio' child. No I've not read your books and I could be talking out of line but did want to add I have two 'bio' children and one adopted child. I myself feel no different bond between either child, in fact, it was the easiest 'delivery' of the three! No morning sickness, no weight gain, etc. I had always wondered if I could love a child that was 'not' my own, but when a situation arose (within my family) that required me to make a decision within 3 days, I chose 'yes'. When I first saw her, I was a bit disappointed as she was not a very pretty baby and thought to myself what have I done, but from the moment I first held her the bond was set, I knew she was mine, dreams really do come true.
My dream of having 'my own' daughter ended 14 years prior when I had my tubes tied after two difficult pregancy's and C-Sections.

It is now 26 yrs later and she's grown into a 'beautiful', sweet & loving daughter and am proud to admit she's mine.

Comment #20 by Sage S. on March 29, 2012 - 10:58am

Greetings Rebecca,
Baby Love is so open, honest and inspiring...but on page 60 you list a few intellectual African American men with your political views. You say that Black men only dominate in jazz, hip-hop and sports...What?! Never fear for Tenzin having role models if you a willing to broaden politically the list of leading black men. (We won't count the leader of the free world because you published this in '07) Let's start alphabetically...A is for astrophysics...j/k. But seriously, the most respected living astrophysicist is Dr. Neil Degrasse Tyson (Stephen Hawking might be the most famous, but he's a jerk), I'm a nerd, so bear with me...
Dr. Ben Carson is to me the most famous neurosurgeon, and leading economists Dr. Thomas Sowell, Dr. Roland Fryer, Dr. Walter Williams and Dr. Glenn Loury are intellectuals that have inspired and educated for years. My son has aspirations to go to Harvey Mudd and I don't allow television and popular culture it infect our home life, I am so blessed to live in a time that I can show my son the pathways that have already been carved out by these great men. Thanks for all you do,
Sage

Comment #21 by AppleBrain on April 3, 2012 - 6:02pm

Being "out there" makes you a target for all, good and bad. I wonder what it feels like to have someone identify with you so much based on what you write that they feel emotionally connected with you. If you don't maintain a certain amount of aloofness, it can be as if anyone can plug in and plug out of you at will regardless if their assessment of you at that moment is accurate or not. When I think, black, white, jewish I think Rebecca and I see the pictures posted of you in my head. Yet, is this you, or just aspects of you at a given moment. I think we all have to remember that when we get tempted into summarizing people based on what they say about themselves, that whatever is being portrayed was true at that given moment, and that since you are not the one living that moment your perception of what happened is probably not the same as the one living it. I definitely take what I read with a grain of salt, even when people put themselves online to be examples of a particular group.

I feel like that sounded random, but it just sort of fit the gumbo of reactions I was observing when I read and watched reviews of not only Rebecca's book, but people coming out of the wood works to judge her life. I find it offensive that a person, a black mixed woman, can't define herself without someone having a problem with it. Where does this authority come from that some women have towards each other who deems them acceptable and not acceptable with such confidence? Who is there to judge them?? Although I am saying this, it is difficult to cocoon yourself from the madness when your trying to stay in touch with the world and care about other people's opinions. Sometimes I think you just have to choose the old "agree to disagree" route.

But, through all the rain and storms I still see her here, writing books, getting booked for speaking engagements, updating her webpage and keep on doing what's she doing. She finds the like minds and focuses more on those now then just anybody coming off the street acting as if she shouldn't exist.

See I was one of those women too who stood there in silence (or asked why?) as women would tear me down with their words and actions and I would try to figure out, how is this productive and why me? I spent too much time trying to figure out why they didn't like me, and not enough time flourishing with those who wanted to fly above the madness and focus on their creative work. Maybe we all go through that? Or maybe some of us catch on later then others how to navigate people and their opinions. They had the gall to act like my opinions didn't matter, shouldn't I return the favor? Or better yet, focus on things that I enjoy and see what happens.

I haven't been keeping up in detail what you have been up to these past 3 years, but in my mind you represent someone who kept going despite the negativity that was trying to wrap you up and to that, I say yeah! I don't know if I agree with all your opinions, but somebody who still acts like the care about the state of relationships and race is still nice to see. Although the race thing is very tanglely and confusing, right? It's like trying to count grains of dirt by hand. I think we all just throw our hands up to a certain degree and just live without explaining or believing so much along the way. Who is keeping track of all this anyways?

What day you have sex, with what, with who, who you marry, your children's teeth, the way they walk, you eat vanilla one day and chocolate the next, I mean at what point does it need to be scrutinized by someone else as needing a label that defines YOU? I guess you could say history comes into play, and if a particular behavior repeatedly lead to a strong outcome, good or bad, then a person wants to define someone by it in order to feel better rather then reading and experiencing the full story. Personally, I am over trying to expect highly specific things from people. People vary for all kinds of reasons. If they do something I don't like I will choose not to be around them, and that's about it. I can read what they write about themselves, but was I there, no. It's a story.

Alright then, peace to you and yours Rebecca and all who read this. PEACE:)

Comment #22 by Tracey on April 20, 2012 - 4:12am

Rebecca:

I want you to know that I share your pain of not really ever having had a normal mother's love and support. In fact, like you, she has probably hurt me more than anyone on this earth.

I have read a book called "The Borderline Mother" by Christine Lawson and you would really find it helpful in understanding your mother's mental illness. It totally blew me away, in that I could see my mother in this book and did not feel so alone any more. I am sure your mother has "borderline personality disorder". It's a way messed up illness that cannot be cured with a pill, and not even therapy very easily....

Take Care,

Comment #23 by Sheila on May 15, 2012 - 5:28pm

Dear Rebecca,

I just found your work through my friend's Facebook page. I read the article you wrote in 2008 about your mother and your struggle to met her ideals of feminism and your own. I could identify instantly with your experience raising yourself, growing up with divorced parents, your multicultural heritage and your views of feminism. I am Filipina and Black and grew up between two parents in the San Francisco Bay Area and Southern California. My mom worked several jobs at once to provide for us, but in her free time, she wanted to be with her friends and party. She loved to be the life of the party. When I was in 4th grade, she left my brothers and I for three days and went to Las Vegas with her friends. We didn't know where she was. She finally came home wearing a skimpy dress and repeatedly saying that she went to the "HOP" while she hopped through the door.

I am now bent on providing a loving, stable and secure childhood for my children, but my life vacillates between being the ideal 50's mom and wife and super smart women's college grad and med student. I've found few women who are able to come to terms with strong feminist values and strong beliefs in family life. Many of the women I meet ascribe to one camp or the other or were in one camp then switched to the other. Everyday is a constant struggle to be true to myself and my family values.

I believe that feminism needs a new voice and I feel that you have started that movement. It was never appropriate for women to put on men's pants and deny our true femininity and the power it holds. Yes, there are a number of great things that have been accomplished through the feminist movements of the past century, but I agree with you that it is now time to analyze those ideals and reconcile this generation of motherless children.

Sheila
Miami

Comment #24 by Eri mirfenderesky on May 20, 2012 - 12:03pm

Dear ms. Walker

I am a journalist from an Asian country . I would like to appreciate your great book and your great powre in narrating your life. It was amazing. I also would like to ask you for an Interview with the magazine I am working for. It is " Eastern Women " magazine and is published for the purpose of making women directed in true life. I hoe you to take my request garnted and I thank you for the time you have taken to read may comment. I look forward to hear from you soon.

Comment #25 by interviu on June 14, 2012 - 1:30pm

Hi Rebecca. I love your site and your stories. I read your site every morning and I can not stop. It became a habit for me. thx

Comment #26 by Wally on July 12, 2012 - 3:05pm

Hi I read Baby Love and I found it amazing. Thank you!

Comment #27 by Anonymous on July 12, 2012 - 8:04pm

Hi Ms. Walker,

I just read a 2008 interview in UK's Daily Mail after seeing you quoted in a US online daily regarding mental illness in the African-American community.

I don't usually write to strangers, but I'm completely thunderstruck -- from the information you gave in the 2008 interview -- by how common this all must be.

My experiences are like a MIRROR (treated abusively and negligently as a child; brushed off while pregnant; ignored after giving birth and with babies; disowned and cut out of a sizable will for no reason).

Although nobody (friends, etc) in my own life ever had such bizarre, painful and outlandish experiences, I can now only assume this all happens a lot to women at the hands of mentally deranged mothers or mother figures.

I came to understand that the woman who treated me this way had suffered from a severe personality disorder, well hidden from those who weren't targets of it, and well supported by the equally sick friends and associates she chose to have around her).

I should have known much earlier than I did (hindsight is 20/20, yet we're emotionally captive as children and young women), but I'm happy to know now. I acknowledge with great relief and joy that the woman is dead!

Through an enormous amount of work on my 'self' (as we say in these Oprah days), I 'deactivated' the woman's twisted hate, invective and profound bitterness by not replicating it onto those I loved. Instead, I purposely poured more-than-usual love into my children and husband. I came to realize the extent of the woman's self-loathing and mental illness. And then I slowly put it all behind me. You seem like a woman who will do the same.

I wish you the very best luck and steel-beam sanity in your journey with yourself and with/out your mother. I wish this for all women who have been put in this position.

ZL

Comment #28 by Rebecca Ryan on July 26, 2012 - 5:58pm

Rebecca,

Though I'm 20 years behind, I just read "Becoming the Third Wave" which you wrote following the treatment of Anita Hill. I was so moved yet also dismayed to note that these two decades have not brought us the radical changes that we all hoped for. I too have realized that I must "undergo a transformation if I am truly committed to women's empowerment," as you yourself stated. We still have a long way to go.

Best,
Rebecca Minardi

Comment #29 by Joyce on July 26, 2012 - 10:41pm

Hi Rebecca,

I discovered your books just about when I was having serious self doubts as a writer, a daughter, friend, and individual.

You have inspired millions around the world, including myself, and your words and body of work transcends age, gender and skin color.

I want to say thank you, and may you continue to do what you do, for it inspires people to do better and be better.

Thanks,
Joyce (Manila, Philippines)

Comment #30 by Anonymous on August 2, 2012 - 5:56pm

Dear Ms Walker just finished Black White & Jewish it was amazing and your growth process was wonderful to encounter. I am the "white" mother to an inter-racial man my husband is the renowned Jazz producer and musician James DuBoise founder of Studio We. My son married a beautiful black artist and they have a 3 year old child. You said so many things in the book that are unspoken but are felt. I was on a bus one day in New York and a little kid said "my father is a black sheep and my mother is a white sheep and I am a half sheep. It broke my heart. I struggled to make sure that my son did not feel this way. Living on the lower east side people would constantly come up to me and him and speak Spanish. I've had a wonderful life as an artist been married 40 years and yes we have seen the world change, complete with Barack Obama as president of the United States. Never thought the Berlin Wall would fall, or see South Africa change but here we are. God Bless you and thank you so much for the book. I cried when I finished it.
Sincerely, Andrea DuBoise

Comment #31 by hang hieu on August 16, 2012 - 9:26am

thanks you for share.

Comment #32 by moving animations and backgrounds for powerpoint on August 31, 2012 - 4:25am

it takes lot to understand the meaning of being human. we all are human beings by birth but we truly become humans when we begin to act and think human and as of now what rebecca have expressed, openness is truly the greatest human resource

Comment #33 by click here on September 24, 2012 - 12:14pm

It is great to read about what people has to say about Rebecca, a great personality with a lot of great ideas to make the world a better place to live in. What the readers have to say is clearly a testimonial to what she has been able to achieve so far.

Comment #34 by here on September 24, 2012 - 1:58pm

The article you posted here is very motivating. Your words made my heart open; it made me think about only success not about failure. I am sure that following your ideas will make success in my life.

Comment #35 by anonymous on September 25, 2012 - 5:14am

Dear Ms, Walker,
I really don't know where to file you. I'm almost your age, similarly bright and probably going to be a successful author as well. But I find I can no longer listen to politics of any sort, and I seem to be turning inward and divorcing myself from world issues. I don't know: I read that 6,000,000 children starve to death every year. Every year, the same number of Jews who died in the Holocaust. I don't have the energy to fight anymore. I'm thinking the human race is losing, maybe has already lost. Most people ignore the situation because they'd feel horrible to think about it too much, so this idealism and activist zeal--I want to be that way, but I don't know if it's even possible. I just don't know what to do. I feel badly because I'm like, "Well this is someone who could be President, etc. so let people like this try to deal" and really I should figure out something I can do to contribute to the world, but I'm like "I don't know" about this. I'm discouraged enough as it is. I think everyone is like this a little bit. We could change the whole world if only everyone agreed to do it, but for some reason this is the most difficult thing to do. I don't think I could hardly stand it.

Comment #36 by Perx on October 5, 2012 - 2:22pm

Hi Rebecca,

I really like the uniqueness of your style in writing your books. I have read a few of your books and will check on your other books.

Comment #37 by Olivia on October 6, 2012 - 2:50am

Ms. Walker,

I am an undergraduate student in my second year of college and I just completed "Black, White and Jewish" for one of my classes. I just wanted to say thank you to you. It touched me in ways nothing else has; finally, after a lifetime of never being able to fully identify with one of aspect of my heritage, of dealing with ignorant comments of people around me, and of constantly feeling like I was floating in between racial identities, I found someone who understood. I found someone to identify with, someone who was able to put into words feelings and struggles I have faced my entire life.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart, I did not even realize I needed this book until I had read it--it has changed my life.

Warmest Wishes

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Comment #39 by Marcos Baker on October 17, 2012 - 11:55am

i am new user of this blog but i like your writing style and i appreciate your writing style.

Comment #40 by Softphone on October 26, 2012 - 10:38am

I would like to thank you for the efforts you have put in writing this blog. I’m hoping the same high-grade website post from you in the future too. Actually your creative writing skills has inspired me to get my own website going now. Actually blogging is spreading its wings and growing fast. Your write up is a great example.

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Comment #42 by Laurel on November 3, 2012 - 6:14pm

Dear Rebecca. Your 2008 article in the Daily Mail regarding your mother (I'm sorry, I don't remember the name of it) is circulating on the internet. Is there any update you don't mind sharing? Has your son met his grandmother yet?

Comment #43 by Anonymous on December 13, 2012 - 5:53am

Hi Rebecca,
I have just read Baby Love, I like so many of your other readers loved it, i thought I wished I had read it earlier, but I also believe books find me when I am receptive to their content.

I found myself laughing outloud one moment at the trials of how to make molasis paletable, I remember it well. Then the next moment I was thinking about how hard it is to separate yourself from the child you have carried and then tried to protect against all odds.I just started What Makes a Man and One Big Happy Family, but I have no doubt that they will be sources of great inspiration.

Thank you for so much,

Comment #44 by Anonymous on December 13, 2012 - 5:54am

Hi Rebecca,

I am new at your blog. But I have to say that it is wonderfull. Love the way you writte. I found friends who didn't care what I was and if they did it was because they admired me for it.

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Comment #49 by Carmen Martinez-Tittmann on February 3, 2013 - 7:57pm

Dear Ms. Walker,

I just read a couple of old articles that spoke to your relationship with your Mother. It's such a complex thing, and this kind of format hardly can begin to touch it. I just want to say that I was moved by your insight, your courage to speak your truth and the intellectual shape you gave and continue to give to your experience. I always felt something from watching your Mother speak reading her books and articles about her. I did not know what it was. Her writing is clearly brilliant, but there was a lack of connection for me. I was reading about her in relation to some research about India and Kashmir, she was introducing Arundathti Roy. Again, I had that feeling. One site lead to the other when I found an article you wrote and read it. It all made sense. I too had early abondonement by my Mother. I thought how difficult it must be for you because as you describe, your Mother is like an Archtype of Mother in the world, through her art, her beautiful presentation, her clear words. But she was unable to nurture, care for, or prioritize your needs in the stead of her own. She was unable to see and mirror you. The irony is profound. In my own case, my Mother's deficits are obvious to most people. This is to say that the lack of early mirroring and attachment creates a loss that is there for the life time. At 56, I still grieve. And, I think for women it's a different experience. To be estranged from our Mother as a women is almost counter to nature. When someone can shine light on the truth of this experience, it's helpful and healing for all of us who share it with you. Thank you. You are a brave soul.

Comment #50 by Respuesta inteligente on February 9, 2013 - 11:17am

Hello Rebecca
Actually I admire your style, I like how you write is interesting and the context in which you move. Many successes in your way.

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