Katie Arnold-Ratliff is a writer, editor, and novelist. At Scary Mommy, she explores the thorny aspects of parenting—from what to do when your daycare royally screws up to the tricky task of un-spoiling a child—and contributes personal, reported, and humorous pieces about the daily struggles of both raising kids and being a human being.
Katie attended Mills College, earned her MFA in fiction at Sarah Lawrence College, and then went on to work as a magazine editor for fifteen years. As the Articles Editor at O, The Oprah Magazine and the Senior Features Editor at Parents, Katie wrote and edited works of journalism on an array of subjects related to the complex interior lives of women and the difficult (but wonderful) work of parenthood. In addition, Katie’s writing has appeared in such publications as Slate, Time, Tin House, Salon, New York, the New York Times Book Review, Wired, The Believer, Poets & Writers, Runners World, and Best American Food Writing. She is also the author of the novel Bright Before Us.
An unrepentant book snob, middling drummer, native Californian, and mother of a young son, Katie lives in suburban New Jersey with her husband and child. You can find out more about her work at her website, katiearnold-ratliff.com.
Does It Matter If Your Child “Fits In”?
Every school year, countless parents find themselves struggling to strike a balance between teaching their kids it's OK not to fit in and hoping they discover their people.
What Will The Kindergarteners Of Today Name Their Kids?
An investigation into the weird ways baby names change over time.
How To Get Sunscreen On Kids Who Hate Getting Sunscreened
Ever tried to bathe a cat? It’s almost as impossible.
Kid Music Is Stupid. Play Your Kids What You Listen To.
It’s a chance to reveal to them the joys of the wider world, to let them begin to form their own taste — and to get to know you a little better.
Can You Unspoil A Child?
The short answer: Yes, but it takes some doing, say experts.
When To Raise Hell At Your Kid’s Daycare
And when to (maybe) let a transgression slide.
I Went One Week Without Correcting My Kid’s Behavior. Here’s What I Learned.
I worried it would be impossible. Actually, it was kind of freeing.
Say Hello To The Real Rules Of Elf On The Shelf
Your step-by-step guide to the season’s most relentless task.
Hold Up: Why Does My TP Have A Scalloped Edge? Does Yours?
A very serious investigation.
You Just Got A Text Saying Your Kid Did Something Awful. What Now?
Some practical advice for handling this tricky (read: dreaded) situation.
4 Things To Normalize If You're An Introverted Parent Raising An Extrovert
You find large groups exhausting, but your kid is the life of the party. Recipe for disaster, or totally navigable? (Good news: It’s the second one.)
What Is Revenge Sleep Procrastination? Why Moms Stay Up Way Too Late, For One
On the self-defeating phenomenon of parental “RSP.”
Are You Raising A Misogynist?
The world is full of awful messages about women. Here’s how to help your kid avoid internalizing them.
How To Help Reluctant Readers: 8 Expert Tips To Get Your Kid Into Books
They might balk at the sight of a book — but that doesn’t mean you can’t stealthily instill a love of storytelling.
When It Feels Like Your Kid Is The Only One Who Does Something Weird
On the terror of feeling like your child is one in a million — in a bad way.
How To Raise Your Little Kid To Be A Great Teenager
What you can do now to help ensure your child will thrive later.
Why Are All Gray Hair Shampoos Purple? Inquiring Minds (& Hairs) Need To Know
What does “brassy” even mean? And why can’t going gray mean less work, not more? And is all this stuff just made up to sell us things we don’t need?
The Perimenopause Info You Need — And Likely Haven’t Heard
Ever felt like your torso was suddenly roasting under the devil’s heat lamp, though you’re “too young” to have hot flashes? If so, this one’s for you.
Can Kids Get Monkeypox? What Parents Should Know About The Viral Disease
Don’t panic — but do stay vigilant.
You Probably Don't Know The Mysterious History Of Postpartum Mesh Panties
Their origin story says a lot about society’s perception of female bodies.