The-Last-Taboo-Final-CoverSeven billion humans on planet Earth, and we’re struggling to feed them, but that doesn’t stop women who opt out of motherhood from being viewed with suspicion, scorn and pity.

How have these women resisted the biological and social imperatives to get out there and make more and more babies? Surely such a woman, if she can truly be called woman, is some kind of witch or cyborg or unlovable troll to turn her back on the forces of destiny and purpose. Motherhood is the most important thing a woman can do, right?

Mother of two and author of nine books Rosemary Agonito says no.Rosemary Agonito And in her book “The Last Taboo: Saying No To Motherhood,” Agonito throws down a mighty gauntlet against “unthinking” motherhood and reminds us chapter after chapter about the real challenges and responsibility of parenting which, due to the invention of the nuclear family and the abandonment of the “village” culture and mentality, frequently falls upon one person, Mom.

Still, the child free woman’s choice, which Agonito acknowledges is the biggest choice a woman can make, is questioned and negated all around her, every day, by her politicians, religious leaders, and entertainment media. Even total strangers feel entitled -or obligated!- to assure her she can’t possibly feel the way she feels, telling her again and again, “you’ll see.”

With “The Last Taboo: Saying No To Motherhood,” Agonito encourages making the decision to parent with eyes open and an honest awareness of what it really means and what happens when real motherhood doesn’t look like a pretty, soft-focus diaper commercial. (The fact that those diaper commercials never show poop is one clue as to how far we as a society go to downplay the hard work of parenting.)

Agonito is opening a dialogue and who knows, maybe one day the script will flip and we’ll start asking people “why DID you have kids?”

To listen to and/or download Emma’s conversation with Rosemary Agonito click the following link:     11-24-2014 Emma_Rosemary Agonito

Please note: this episode of TTEOW was edited by Katie Whiteside.

Caitlin_DoughtyCaitlin Doughty had a degree in Medieval History.  What do you do with that?  Why, go into mortuary work, of course.  At the age of 23 Caitlin found her first job working in a mortuary.  Finding she could handle it, she decided to make it a career.  Smoke Gets In Your Eyes mech  Reprint 2p.inddHer new book, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes & Other Lessons From the Crematory, describes her journey from newbie to opening her own practice.  She is the founder of The Order of the Good Death and the YouTube series, Ask a Mortician.

For more information about Caitlin Doughty visit the website

To listen to and/or download Kathleen’s conversation with Caitlin Doughty click the following link:     11-17-2014 Kathleen_Caitlin Doughty

Can tapping into your intuition change your life? How do we unlock creativity and embrace our full potential? For most of us, it’s easier said than done. Jill Willard says that we ALL can tap into our intuition in a way that can empower us to be more creative, fulfilled, and reach our potential. Jill Willard is a Los Angeles based intuitive/medium who has a special gift to see beyond what we typically see and focus on what truly matters.

Jill Willard is an Intuitive Base in Los Angeles

Jill Willard is an Intuitive Base in Los Angeles

She says we all have something within that can guide us to lead a more fulfilling life. Find out how to trust your intuition and find power in your inner voice. Jill explains the chakras and how to tap into your own energy to embrace your power:

“We all have a knowing,” she explains. “It’s really just a question of whether we’re willing to acknowledge and honor what we know, and act on it in a positive way. Often, we let our fears get in the way, or we shut it down because we don’t want to believe there is another way, and we don’t want to listen. I have been there, too, trust me. I have completely ignored what I knew to be true because I didn’t like the truth—it wasn’t what I wanted.” Sound familiar?? Her interview on goop is available to read here:


For more information about Jill Willard, go to her web-site at

To read the goop article that inspired this interview, go to:

To listen to and/or download Lynette’s conversation with Jill Willard click the following link:     11-10-2014 Lynette_Jill Willard

coparent bookRelationships are challenging. Parenthood is challenging. And sometimes, two terrific people are not able to successfully manage both of these major ventures together till death do them part. It happens.

Until recently, parents working through the complexities of “conscious uncoupling” and raising a child with an ex could at least comfort themselves with the fact that “it’s not like we have a handbook for these things.” Well, no more!

Nurse, divorce coach and co-parenting coach Karen Bonnell has created a literal handbook, “The Co-Parents’ Handbook,” with the aim of getting the entire family through this life transition with a minimum of scarring, from telling the kids that mommy and daddy will not be living together any more, to formulating a workable schedule and plan with your co-parent, to navigating family court, to the whens and hows of introducing a new romantic partner into the mix.

Parents and children who survived “broken homes” in generations past may twist their guts in envy as Bonnell presents sane coping mechanisms, gentle guidance and a virtual blueprint for surviving and thriving the entire journey. This hopeful picture for positive parenting (plus strategies for the less-than-positive times), makes it seem certain that these uncoupling parents can take care of their well being and their childrens’. As Judy Blume told us forty years ago, “It’s Not The End Of The World.” Karen Bonnell’s “The Co-Parents’ Handbook” presents a beginning.

To listen to and/or download Emma’s conversation with Karen Bonnell click the following:     11-3-2014 Emma_Karen Bonnell

Marci HamiltonMarci Hamilton is the Paul R. Verkuil Chair of Public Law at the Benjamin L. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University in New York City, and a widely regarded scholar in constitutional law. She is an expert on and advocate for the U.S. Constitution’s required separation of church and state.   Her book, God vs. The Gavel: The Perils of Extreme Religious Liberty, teaches us about the First Amendment, it’s history, it’s effects of promoting the greatest good for greatest number of people, and how it is being co-opted by extreme religious concerns in ways that can be very harmful to others through the Federal and State legislative passage of Religious Freedom Restoration Acts.  She cites incidents of polygamy, child abusing clergy and parents denying their children life-saving medical care as examples of harmful religious actions hiding behind supposed religious liberty. God v Gavel As a religious person herself, she says religious belief and harm caused by belief, are separate things and protecting those who do harm in the name of religion is a dangerous trend in interpretation of constitutional law.

When Dr. Hamilton  is not teaching and arguing cases before the Supreme court she promotes adequate protection for minors, individuals and landowners.

Professor Hamilton has been honored as one of Pennsylvania’s Women of the Year; received the National Crime Victim Bar Association’s Frank Carrington Champion of Civil Justice Award; the E. Nathaniel Gates Award for outstanding public advocacy and scholarship; and the Lifetime Achievement Award for Pro Bono Legal Service to veterans groups. She clerked for Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.

To learn more about Dr. Marci Hamilton and her book, God vs. The Gavel: The Perils of Extreme Religious Liberty, go to

To listen to and/or download Kathleen’s conversation with Marci Hamilton click the following link:     10-27-2014_Kathleen_Marci Hamilton

THE SITTING ROOM- A COMMUNITY LIBRARY started  in Cotati, California in the early 1980’s and in close proximity to one of it’s founders,English Professor JJ Wilson of Sonoma State University.

THE SITTING ROOM has grown into: a vast library; a community gathering place; a space for women’s oral and written herstory projects ; and a do-it-yourself publishing entity.

In 2003 THE SITTING ROOM began producing a small publication every Spring based on a particular theme. The Publication Party coincides with the Sitting Room Birthday Celebration, usually the first Sunday afternoon in June.


Listen to JJ Wilson address the liveliness and excitement of these wonderful readable anthologies. The 2014 theme was “This is what a Feminist looks like…” and the 2015 theme is “An overlooked female author”.


JJ Wilson reads aloud a passage from the book "Rumors of Peace" at The Sitting Room. photo by Beth Schlanker

JJ Wilson reads aloud a passage from the book “Rumors of Peace” at The Sitting Room. photo by Beth Schlanker

JJ Wilson states, “seems to me a long overdue conversation in many close knit communities and that the results will be bright bits of fabric which can be pieced together in a warm quilt of understanding, a kind of quilting bee over the internet, open to all interested who follow the guidelines of civil discourse and candid talk.”

THE SITTING ROOM is now located in Penngrove, California. If you are ever in the area stop by!


For More information go to:

To listen to and/or download Brenda’s conversation with JJ Wilson click the following link:     10-20-2014 Brenda_JJ Wilson

Rachel DeWoskin Rachel DeWoskin has written three critically acclaimed novels for adults.  BLIND is her first novel written expressly for young adults.  With BLIND she has taken a leap into the world of teenagers, their small and large tragedies, their relationships, their concerns, their hearts and their minds.

BLIND’s central character,15 year old Emma Sash Silver has been blinded in an accident.  And so the novel begins as weBlind live with Emma for a year in her life.  She has adjustments to make, to her new blindness, to her family’s concerns and new dynamics, to mainstreaming back into ‘her’ school, and to another tragedy in her small community that is not her own.

Rachel DeWoskin’s essays and articles have appeared in Vanity Fair, The Sunday Times Magazine of London, Teachers and Writers, and Conde Nast Traveler.  She has published poems in journals including Ploughshares, Seneca Review, New Delta Review, Nerve Magazine and The New Orleans Review. She teaches memoir and fiction at the University of Chicago, and divides her time between Chicago and Beijing, with her husband, playwright Zayd Dohrn, and their two little girls.

Rachel lived in China working as an interpreter in her twenties and became the unlkely star of a Chinese soap opera.

To learn more about Rachel and her writing visit her website

To listen to and/or download Kathleen’s conversation with Rachel DeWoskin click the following link:    10-13-2014-kathleen_rachel-dewoskin.mp3

sarah billinghurstSarah Billinghurst is the Assistant Manager, Artistic of the Metropolitan Opera. Her career in opera administration started at the San Francisco Opera in 1972, when she became the assistant to the Artistic Administrator. In 1982 she was named Artistic Administrator, and in addition to her duties in that position, she undertook numerous special projects including co-productions with the Kirov Opera, producing concerts, recital and special presentations sponsored by the San Francisco Opera.

Sarah moved to the Metropolitan Opera on August 1, 1994. She reports directly to General Manager, Peter Gelb and Music Director, James Levine. She is responsible for the running of the artistic departments, presentations, media, recording and touring. The artistic department is responsible for casting, conductors and new productions. As head of the media department, Sarah oversees the radio and television broadcasts and is involved in the current efforts to preserve past broadcasts.

Sarah has also organized all the tours of the Metropolitan Opera in Japan and the MET Orchestra in Europe, within the United States and the season at Carnegie Hall. The special events she has organized include the James Levine 25th Anniversary Gala, Pension Fund concerts, New Year’s eve celebrations at the Met and the anniversary celebrations of celebrated artists such as Placido Domingo and Luciano Pavarotti.

“I wouldn’t stay working in opera unless I was constantly stimulated by it and felt that I could still add something to it, but I’m very much behind the scenes.”

Sarah Billinghurst was born in Wanganui, New Zealand and graduated from Victoria University with a degree in political science. “I quickly learnt in opera that dealing with politicians and opera singers wasn’t that different. They have big egos but fragile egos.”

To listen to and/or download Corinne’s conversation with Sarah Billinghurst click the following link:     10-6-2014 Encore_Corinne_Sarah Billinghurst

This interview will air in the near future.  Please stay tuned.

Unknown-1Jenny Scheinman is a renowned violinist/fiddle player who grew up in Petrolia, California and moved to NYC pursuing her career as a musician. She has played with some incredible artists – Nora Jones, Madeline Peyroux, and Bill Frisell (just to name a few of many). She has eight albums – mostly instrumental,  all pictures of her complex and lively inner world. Jenny recalls while playing with friend Madeline Peyroux she felt a pull to find that part of her own creative voice to step up to the mic and sing. Now Jenny has a new album, The Littlest Prisoner. In this record she writes, sings and pretty much knocks it out of the park with a heart-felt, reflective album about love, relationships, and childhood. Listening to the songs one can see the slideshow of stories revealed in every verse and chorus. Jenny candidly talks about her creative process, how she survived living in NYC busking, and the transition of being a mom and a musician. Jenny recently moved back to Humboldt County with her husband and two young children, and we are lucky to have them here.


Jenny is having a CD release party at the Arcata Playhouse October 2nd. To find out more go to:

You can purchase “The Littlest Prisoner” on iTunes or Amazon.

For more information about Jenny Scheinman and her upcoming tour with Ani DiFranco go to her web-site:

Here’s an intimate look with Jenny Scheinman and Rodney Crowell practicing on the tour bus just before going on at Van Duzer theater!

To listen to and/or download Lynette’s conversation with Jenny Scheinman click the following link:     9-29-2014 Lynette_Jenny Scheinman


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