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An Afro-Dominican Mom Made A Bilingual Book So Children And Parents Can Discuss Race And Color

Black Latina Negra Bella / Facebook

Dania V. Peguero is an Afro-Dominican mother and author on a mission.

Latina Magazine recently sat down with Dania Peguero to talk to her about her new bilingual children’s book “Niñas Bellas.” The Afro-Dominican mother and author wrote the book celebrating the diverse melanin found in the Latinx community to start the conversation about skin tone and being Latinx. The first thing that Peguero told Latina is that the book was done in part for her daughter and the importance of empowering her and more girls like her. She admitted that she only has so much control in making sure that her daughter has strong self-confidence before going into the world and after that, that self-confidence needs to stay strong. That’s what led the mother to write a bilingual children’s book all about race, ethnicity and a common bond all Latinxs share: heritage. Oh, and making the book bilingual was no mistake.

“I thought it was important to have this discussion in the Latino community, and I didn’t want language to be a barrier. I don’t want this to just happen in the U.S., but in Latin America as well,” Peguero told Latina. “In my country of origin, the Dominican Republic, colorism is very real. I want parents there to have these conversations with their kids, too. I also wanted it to be multi-generational. You can have a youngster reading the book with their grandparents, who can only read in Spanish. And it’s also a good tool for parents who want their children to be bilingual. It’s easy for them to see and translate and read both languages.”

In the end, Peguero wants little ones to remember one thing about her book: Latinxs are not all the same color and that’s okay.

Read the full interview on Latina here.


READ: 13 Celebs You Probably Didn’t Know Were Afro-Latino

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Users On Reddit Are Sharing Their Wild Experiences With Sperm Donation

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Users On Reddit Are Sharing Their Wild Experiences With Sperm Donation

With sperm donations, families of all sorts have access to planning and creating a family. According to the US National Library of Medicine
National Institutes of Health in 2015–2017, 440,986 families were estimated to have used sperm donation to start families.
Of course, while a benefit the circumstances of sperm donations can often spurn questions and odd scenarios.

Users on Reddit are speaking about their own sperm donation stories and the answers are pretty surprising.

Check them out below!

“So, I’m not the dad, but a kid. So my bio-dad donated sperm and gave permission to be identified. Didn’t even have to be after 18. In counting (because we’re not sure if we’ve found all of us yet) there are 53 half-siblings, all his kids. My full sister and I didn’t know we were donor babies until I was a freshman in college, and her a junior in high school. It was a few more years before we found out the scope of our family. As such, I never got to meet the man as he passed away in 2018, but I’ve been getting to know my half siblings and I’m sad to have missed him. He apparently engaged in annual reunions and was interested in getting to know all of the kids if they (and their families) were open to it. We all support each other basically by default even though we didn’t grow up together. What’s even wilder about him is that he got national news coverage for something besides his giant flock of kids. The guy got married to a woman the day he met her as a competition to be his bride in the Mall of America. It was apparently a heartfelt story and the two of them had a 20 something year marriage with 4 kids that they raised themselves. The Mall of America even has a plaque with his name on it now, so you can go find him if you really try. The man was a weirdo, but in the best way. He was kind and generous with his time and really seemed to care about *all* of his kids, or at least the ones he knew about.”-SilverRock75

“Oh hey, I can answer this! I’m not a donor, but I was donor conceived, along with my sister (same donor). I had a great dad and never had any desire to find out who my donor was, but I was always curious about siblings, especially when I learned there’s no legal limit on how many children you can father when you donate sperm in the US.

Well, one 23andMe test later, and the first result on the top of the list is a half sister in Texas. We get in contact, realize we have a TON in common, and it sparked a fire in her to find more siblings. She took an Ancestry DNA test and the top of that list was a man in California, listed as father.

She got in touch with him right away, turns out he’s a fantastic guy. He was adopted himself and also got in contact with his birth mom as an adult, so he had been on our side of the situation and was very open and willing to talk. His wife has been super supportive of us meeting too. He has three, uh, organically made kids of his own (I was especially ecstatic to learn that I’m a big sister), plus we’ve since found three more half siblings who’ve all been very cool and excited to find each other. At this point, I’ve met all but one of them in person, and I got to meet my biological grandmother too.” – racecarart

“A guy I know in his 70s got a call from a guy in his 50s saying ‘hey, I’m your son, oh and I just learned I have a genetic disease so your other kids should probably get tested’”- daxelkurtz

“Totally not an answer but my gf and I were just wondering about whether there were any protocols for how much of one donor’s sperm is allowed to be distributed within a given area.

Like, what could prevent 2 moms from having the donor’s offspring in the same area and having those kids grow up and meet as teens/adults, start a relationship and realize they’re related?”- MightyMaus1

“Some clinics will put a cap on number of families, but there are manh cases of people have dozens, even up to 40, 80, 100 half siblings. It brings up the ethics around this, and many donor conceived people are vehemently against this and believe there needs to be a limit in place.”- TheTinyOne23

“I donated for six months in university. Twice a week. I gave consent to be contacted. That was close to 20 years ago now.

I did call and ask once, my sperm resulted in 24 successful pregnancies. That was all the office could tell me.

I have not done 23andme or anything like that.”- ciroryder

“That’s quite crazy. You have 24 children as far as the spiralling coil DNA goes. They’ve all got half or full siblings they don’t know about (well, the full ones will surely know). That’s really crazy. In 1000 years, you might be the Ghengis Khan where your dna is traced to like 1 in 3 people on mars or something. The dna analysis will just show you, not the fact that your a donor.”- The_Queef_of_England

“My aunts had to get a donor for both children, and he happened to live in the same neighborhood (can’t remember if that was a coincidence or not). But he is a close family friend now! He comes over for their birthdays and other family events. They don’t refer to him as their dad really, only as a joke, but he is very close with our family.”-anniecakes22

“I was donor-conceived. I took a DNA test, his natural-born daughter took a DNA test. So really neither of us ‘gave permission’. There are 28 siblings so far. It was quite a shock. I wasn’t expecting it and didn’t know. I was 38.

I’ve met the donor and most of the half siblings. He’s a cool guy. I think it is eerie how I see many of my mannerisms in him and the other siblings. I know there is a wide range of emotions for people who experience this sort of thing, but for me it was generally positive.”-mynuname

“It is incredible how the similarities are passed down. My father-in-law had a daughter that was the result of a one-night stand and was adopted by a wonderful family. The adoption agency had a registration of birth parents and kids, who could each (blind to the other) give permission to be contacted, and only if both parties did, they’d put them in contact. So this happens in her early 20’s, and they make arrangements for her to fly to meet her birth family, including my wife and her brother (her half-siblings). My wife goes to pick her up at the airport since the parents live out of town. There were no arrangements, no pictures, nothing (this was pre-Facebook) – my wife saw her come out the doors, knew without question it was her, and she knew the same, they had a huge tearful hug without even any words. They just knew, by looks, by mannerisms, whatever.

The incredible thing is, I’ve shown pictures of the half-sister, with or without her birthfather and half-sister, and everyone agrees she doesn’t actually look much like them. But there’s something about the looks and how they act that is so similar between all of them, it really is incredible.

Edit – one more detail. We found out years later that the father and daughter contacted the agency to open themselves up to contact…within 24 hours of each other. A complete coincidence. The agency actually didn’t do it for a couple weeks because they were trying to contact the daughter’s adoptive parents (who had passed away, hence the delay) because they just assumed there had been contact since they were in touch so impossibly close together.”- mrdannyg21

“My step-mom was an early donation conceived baby. She’s done 23&Me and Ancestry. Last I heard she was up to 23 (!!) half-siblings. Their donor father died in the late 1980s and seems to have been a good man.”-MyMelancholyBaby

“My younger bro donated multiple times unbeknownst to me. Years later my wife and I did Ancestry.com to get an idea of how diverse our backgrounds were and wham! Started getting contacted by lots of people (over a dozen) saying we were close relatives. At first I was confused and asked the early ones about their parentage – they all had a similar stories. Single mom went to a sperm bank. Didn’t take long to guess what happened. Call my brothers and asked. Younger one fessed up and said yes – he went multiple times. In fact they told him he had to stop donating because there was a statistical probability his progeny could meet and date (at least they seemed ethical). I asked if it was okay if I gave them his contact – he was fine with it. The weird thing is that they all had his face – like one look at them and it was obvious who their father was. Anyway, this went on for a couple of years and they all connected with each other. Seems there is over 20 now, probably more. He has met a couple of them but it was all casual. The whole thing is super weird to the rest of family to have all these “close” relatives who somehow are part of the family but then again not really.”- ezagreb

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This Month, Isabel Allende Is Releasing a Memoir and HBO Is Releasing a Mini-Series Based on Her Life

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This Month, Isabel Allende Is Releasing a Memoir and HBO Is Releasing a Mini-Series Based on Her Life

Photo via Getty Images

March is a busy month for Isabel Allende. The most successful Spanish-language author of all time released a new memoir, “The Soul of a Woman”, on March 2nd. On March 12th, HBO released a mini-series based on her life entitled “ISABEL: The Intimate Story of Isabel Allende”.

Both of these projects focus on the unifying themes of Isabel Allende’s life. How she has defied the patriarchy, bucked expectations, and pursued her dreams while the odds were against her.

The HBO mini-series, entitled “ISABEL: The Intimate Story of Isabel Allende”, covers a lot of ground. From Allende’s childhood in Chile, to the chaotic years of her uncle’s assassination (who happened to be Chile’s president), and her subsequent flight to Venezuela.

The series will also touch on different phases of her life. Her career as a journalist for a progressive feminist magazine. Dealing with her all-consuming grief when her daughter died in 1992. Publishing her first novel–“House of Spirits”–in 1982.

A scene from the trailer of “ISABEL” sums up the hurtles that Allende had to overcome to create a career for herself in the male-dominated world of publishing. “They are going to raise the bar because you’re a woman,” her agent tells her bluntly. “You’ll have to work twice as hard as a man in order to obtain half the prestige.”

Allende’s memoir, “The Soul of a Woman“, on the other hand, reflects on her life through a distinctly feminist lens.

Her publisher describes it as “a passionate and inspiring mediation on what it means to be a woman.” And it doesn’t appear that Allende is shying away from the label of “feminist”. One of the first sentences of her book states: “When I say that I was a feminist in kindergarten, even before the concept was known in my family, I am not exaggerating.”

Despite being 78-years-young, Allende’s beliefs–about feminism, freedom and intersectionality–are incredibly modern. Throughout her lengthy press tour, Allende has been candid about the life experiences that have shaped her beliefs–mainly how witnessing her mother’s suffering at the hands of her father contributed to her “rage against chauvinism.”

Today, Allende remains incredibly in touch with the progressive issues of the moment, like the #MeToo and Black Lives Matter movements.

“In patriarchy, we are all left out: women, poor people, Black people, people with disabilities, people with different sexual orientations,” she recently told PopSugar. “We are all left out! Because it divides us into small groups to control us.”

Above all, Allende believes that we all–especially women–should recognize that we have many of the same goals and dreams. And we’re stronger when we’re united. “Talk to each other — women alone are vulnerable, women together are invincible,” she says.

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