Pamela Cytrynbaum

Pamela Cytrynbaum has been telling other peoples' stories as a journalist for more than 25 years. She has taught writing for nearly that long. She teaches reporting, writing and multimedia storytelling at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, where she received her bachelor's degree. She blogs as Woman on the Verge for NBC Universal's site FamilyGoesStrong.com, where she explores issues of social justice, teaching, writing, parenting, midlife, divorce, relationships, grief and healing. She writes for TeachingTolerance.org, the educational project/website/magazine for the Southern Poverty Law Center. She is also a blogger for Psychology Today at Because I'm the Mom.

She is a former staff writer for The Chicago Tribune and her work exploring the criminal justice system, education, family life, relationships and women's issues has appeared in publications including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The (New Orleans) Times-Picayune, The Oregonian and Chicago Parent. She taught at Brandeis University where she served as associate director of the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism and director of the Justice Brandeis Innocence Project. She has reinvented herself professionally as a high school teacher, investigative reporter,  college career adviser and writing coach. She spent 13 years living, parenting, writing and teaching, hiking and complaining (about all the hiking) in Oregon and recently moved with her daughter back to her hometown in suburban Chicago to begin a new life,

And the Oscar Goes to: Women With Real Bodies!

My mom and I watched the 84th Academy Awards last night as the grandmother and mother of a tween girl. And it wasn't pretty. Don't get me wrong. The gals were gorgeous. The gowns were glam. The jewels were bedazzling. The hairdos were spectacular. Mothering and Media But if you're the caretaker of a young girl's psyche, watching the parade of dress hangers posing as human beings was deeply disturbing. It was a barrage of dysfunction....more

My Midlife Birthday Wish List

Today is my birthday. It's a juicy one. Since I'm a mom, I rarely take time to think about what I wish for, what I really, really wish for....more
I wish you the best birthday ever!more

Living With Death's Great Ache: No Dad on Super Bowl Sunday, Again

We will have another all-girl Super Bowl party Sunday, for Super Bowl 2012, except for my delicious nephew who, at 3 and a half, knows why peoples' eyes well up when they see him. "My daddy died," he says. His daddy, my best friend and greatest hero, younger brother, and former proud member of the Evanston Township High School football team, will not be here Sunday to thunder around the house with his li...more
I'm sorry for your family's loss...this is very poignant :(more

Caregiving Parents Lose a Daughter Whose Life and Death Offer Cherished Lessons

Fostering Love: Caregiving Parents Lose a Daughter Whose Life and Death Offer Cherished Lessons After 30 years of caring for a disabled daughter, time for parents to grieve and care for themselves Thirty years ago, as their newborn foster child, doctors told Tom and Maryjane that Bridgette would die soon....more

A Bill of Rights for Grief and Loss: Don't Tell Me How to Mourn

Grief is a shape-shifty bastard. On Monday it feels like a tsunami of unendurable waves of pain. On Tuesday it feels like a low-grade fever you can't shake. It makes you hyper productive to avoid the pain or puts you in a sleep-filled coma where every waking moment is agony. And it can blow all the feeling right out of you like a gust of numbness and you feel nothing at all. And it's a very real, horrific psychological experience all its own. A new report just came out that's driving mental health professionals INSANE....more

What Does Living Dr. King's Dream Look Like Today? Like This....

‘Coming Up Friends’: Why Integration Still Matters When my daughter pulls hard on the heavy glass doors of the Martin Luther King Jr. Laboratory School, and races upstairs into her classroom, she is living my dream. Thirty two years ago, when my friends and I pulled hard on those very same glass doors, we were unwitting foot soldiers in the second wave of a revolution we knew nothing about. But it changed our lives. Why, how?...more

Parents: Here's What to Say and Do if You Think Your Child Has an Eating Disorder

Eating Disorders Can Be Fatal: Here's What Parents Should Say and Do If They Think Their Child Has an Eating Disorder College students have tremendous pressures on them these days. As parents and grandparents we read, hear and worry a lot about binge drinking and drug use on college campuses....more

Holiday Engagement? Top Do's and Don'ts for Millennial Brides to Be

Got enaged over the holidays? Now what? Here's what all Millennial brides and their mothers should know... Top Do's and Don'ts for the Millennial Bride Pamela Cytrynbaum Check out: Woman on the Verge on NBC Universal's Family Goes Strong site...more

What Makes a Life-Changing Teacher?

They Change Our Lives. Why? How? So many inspiring stories of lives turned around or promise delivered start with this sentence: "I made it here because one teacher had faith in me." Why is that?...more

Top 10 New Year's Resolutions for Peace in The Year of the Divorce

  To Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher and all the rest of us regular folk who inhabit Divorce Land, 2012 offers a new year for turning over a new leaf in our dis-unions. For those of us no longer married, if you share anything – children, pets, family, real estate – (but most importantly children), every year is The Year of The Divorce. Divorces are as varied as the folks who get them. There are the Kramer vs....more