#thecumulativeeffectThanks To Ryan Murphy and GLEE

4 comments | November 24th, 2011


As many a rock-star has said as their show has ended "THANK YOU."  Today, we're reprinting a story we first put up on Huffington Post. IN it we give thanks for Ryan Murphy and Glee.  Here we go:

I practically assaulted Ryan Murphy the other night.

Not in a bad way -- though he might have thought so. But I did pretty much hit him over the head and punch him in the stomach with effusive praise and adoration. And I'm not even a Gleek. No, my sycophantishness (sic) wasn't because of the show per se, but because of what the show's done. In my opinion, Glee's one of the most culturally important TV shows -- ever. And ever is a long time.

Why so much love for a show I don't really watch? Because Ryan's used the show and his platform as a creator to change the world. Hyperbole? Nope. He's saved lives and made lives better. He's given kids (and people) of all shapes, sizes, colors, persuasions, orientations, abilities and disabilities, the permission, and at least some measure of comfort, to be themselves, to withstand peer pressure, and to break-free of ...

#chestismsBuddha, a Chestism

10 comments | November 24th, 2011


We first posted this Chestism in August.  As we go into the Thanskgiving holiday, we're reposting some of our OOC Faves, some of the thoughts we're thankful for having been able to share, and this is one of them. Happy, happy, you guys.  XO, OOC








"Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment."


Buddha has wisdom and game.  Presence is hard.  For us any way.  We also consider it one of the most important parts of living fully and happily, and not spending untold amounts of time on worry and wonder.  But that's just us.


What about you?  You as present as you want to be?  When you find yourself less than present, what brings you back to the moment?  Any tips on presence and NOW you care to share with the crowd?   

Off Our Chests Kids StoryTees: Holiday Collection

2 comments | November 23rd, 2011

Bear Double Hearts

Our store will be open one day.  We're almost certain of it.  Can you stand the anticipation?

Happy MakingToday, brought to you by the word: Thanks

7 comments | November 23rd, 2011


Gratitude is considered by many to be one of the keys to happiness...or at least to being happier. 

And while it's always appropriate to find the things in our lives to be grateful for, it's of course seasonally appropriate too. 

So, dear Chestists, while we give thanks for you and all you're helping us do, we ask...who and what do you give thanks for? 

Anyone you want to say "thanks" to...even if anonymously?  Anyone you should've said thanks to a long time ago but for some reason didn't?

Go on, share it, and feel more better.

Oh, and of course, happy, happy Thanksgiving form all of us her @ OOC HQ.

#lifestagesEnding Generations of Family Violence

20 comments | November 23rd, 2011


(story and picture submitted by Mama's Tantrum, a Chestist)

We first posted this beautiful story about 6 weeks ago.  As we go into the Thanskgiving holiday, we're reposting some of our OOC Faves, some of the stories we're thankful for having been able to share, and this is one of them. Happy, happy, you guys.  XO, OOC

Message Body:

Ah, the bedtime ritual. Oh how I love the constant interruptions of a good movie, dinner or maybe even a make-out session because my little one has decided to defy sleep.


Something happens to her sleepy body when I leave her bedroom. My absence acts as an amphetamine for her. I put her down. I leave the room. She gets outta bed. Sometimes she fakes exhaustion to get her little game going, and I fall for her deception every time.


Generally, I'm snuggled up on the couch with a trashy magazine, a book or Sweetie when I hear what sounds like Darth Vader in the hallway. The loud sucking sound of her paci gives her away and when we spot her, she always, always has a proud smile behind her paci.


The other night this went ...

#lifestagesPerfection Not Required

16 comments | November 22nd, 2011

chestist soup

(story by Mir, from Woulda Coulda Shoulda) I know that holiday mishaps are the things family memories are often made of. Heck, you see it in the movies, read about it in books, and everyone's got a story or two about the time so-and-so passed out cold in a plateful of mashed potatoes or some relative took a wrong turn and by the time they showed up, the turkey was a charred hunk of sawdust. Holiday disasters are pretty much the reason they invented the phrase, "Someday we'll look back and laugh." But my family never seemed to look back on holiday mishaps fondly, growing up. We most often traveled over winter break to see relatives, which meant spending a lot of time in airports on some of the busiest travel days of the year, and for Thanksgiving we usually stayed at home and had a traditional dinner, just the four of us. Only, instead of dinner being cozy, it was usually incredibly stressful. My mother---who is probably reading this right now, and is poised to be embarrassed by something I ...

Yes to the Self-Esteem Act

comment | November 21st, 2011

via HealthyIsTheNewSkinny.com: http://su.pr/1Fd0ue

An Homage to the Penn State Victims

6 comments | November 21st, 2011

chestist black scratch

(story submitted by Mama's Tantrum, a Chestist)

The tragedy that are the events we've all heard so much about these past weeks has inspired a lot of conversation, consideration and emotion.  Here's one chestists' thoughts, seen through 2 prisms...her role as mom, and her past as a victim of abuse.  Here's her story:

I’ll ‘fess up that when I see Nugget skillfully kick a soccer ball I think that she may be the next Mia Hamm. Or when she places the “tethescope” on my belly and provides the diagnosis that I have squirrels in my stomach I conclude that she will be a brilliant doctor. Or when she attempts to negotiate every term of her dinner it’s clear to me that she’ll be a damn good lawyer. Or when she jams on her guitar like Ani Difranco it’s just a matter of time before she’s a total rock star, but only after she gains a good sense of herself so that she doesn’t Lindsay Lohan her life.

Regardless, we’re one of the few lucky American families that have just enough disposable income to sock away a ...

Teaching Good Sex to H.S. Kids

comment | November 20th, 2011

Read it here via NYT

Love, Self Esteem, and Harassment. Amongst Other Things.

1 response | November 18th, 2011

week in review tape

You may have noticed we've cut down on the total # of stories we're putting up each week, as we try and figure out how to keep improving what we do here @OOC.  As always, please let us know what you want more of, less of, differently.  Just hit us @ TalkToUs@OffOurChests.com with your feedback, ideas, comments and critiques.

That said, this week's most discussed article was (not surprisingly) by our old friend @Mir, who encouraged her young daughter to get mad.  Seems most of you took Mir's advice too.  if you missed it, here it is: http://offourchests.com/get-mad/

One of the stories we put up this week also generated some of the most thoughtful and generous advice of any story we've posted in our first 11 months here.  Check out the comments and the original piece which was sent in anonymously: http://www.feelmorebetter.com/married-to-a-meth-addict/

Clarisse Thorn shared her story of chemistry and the questions that surround it here: http://www.feelmorebetter.com/chemistry/

Clarrise wasn't the only one thinking about chemistry this week, as one of you sent us this love story to falling in love: http://www.feelmorebetter.com/falling-in-love/

Here's  a story that came from ...

My Thanks to GLEE and Ryan Murphy

comment | November 17th, 2011


25% of Women Take Prescription Mood Meds

comment | November 17th, 2011

25% of women are on prescription "mental health" meds, compared to 15% of men.  via HuffPo.

#lifestagesFeels Like A Failure

11 comments | November 17th, 2011

Chestist typewriter 2

(story submitted by Liz, a Chestist)

I feel like a failure.

All the time.

Despite the fact that I pull solid As in half my classes and mostly Bs in the others (a few C+s to date). I look at my 4.0 roommate, my friends with jobs and great grades, and I look at myself, struggling to pass some classes and excelling without trying in others. I just see failure.

I can't see that I'm a good person, or that I've known what career I'm made for since I was 11.

I can't see that I help my friends with their struggles. I just see failure. {end story}

Little can hate on your happy more than comparisons that serve no purpose other than, seemingly, to hate on your happy. 

How often do you compare yourself to others? 

When - and why - do you do that?  It's worth taking a look at, so we all have a better sense of what not to do.  Let's #discuss.


#bodiesI Cut Myself

4 comments | November 17th, 2011

black explosion chestist

(story submitted anonymnously, by a Chestist)

We're guessing this was sent to us by you, one of our younger Chestists.  We're old enough here 2OOC HQ, that we don't recll cutting being anything anyone we knew gorwing up did.  Now it seems almost epidemic...whether it's physical cutting or emotional cutting.  Here's a story from one of you:

Every morning, i wake up feeling terrified.

I get scared.

I get worried something bad is going to happen.

I  feel invisible, and a waste of space. I guess i have gotten to an age where you start realizing things.

I cut myself, hoping that i will get attention. Obviously, not. After a counselor called from the school, i was a bit overwhelmed and worried that this was it. My mom was going to find out, and i was going to die.

On the bright side, i talked to a psychiatrist. Then from there, they told me that i needed extra help, so my mom took me to see a therapist.

I'm actually very thankful for all the support i have been getting. Although this is killing me inside, i know that this ...

If You’ve Got It, Charge For It

comment | November 16th, 2011

The Feminism 2.0 Manifesto