Welcome to the Examined Family! It’s a weekly newsletter for people who get all twisted up inside about the brokenness of the world, and wonder how to actually live in it, loving and humble, but brave as hell. I send an essay every Wednesday to everyone, and a crib sheet of sorts for the The New York Times on Sundays, plus two Q&As a month for my paid subscribers.

It’s a twist on “the examined life,” which is what my favorite professor in college (shout out Dennis Dalton!) told me was worth living (he stole it from Plato). The family part is because I’m now a mom…I guess. (Six years in, still getting used to the title.) In any case, I’ve realized it comes with a whole new raft of questions and that’s part of what I’m yammering on about here much of the time.

These are the ones that made me a mom. Stella is usually way more into life than this.

Thank goddess I’m not doing it alone. The only thing more White and patriarchal and, well, annoying than being angst-ridden is thinking you’re going to solve moral quandaries all by your triumphant lonesome, so we do it as a community here. The comment section is lit! The community is wise and engaged! Nuance is encouraged. Disagreement is enlivening.

So subscribe.

Pay if you can. If you can’t, who cares? I’m excited to learn from you just the same.

FWIW, I give a percentage of my subscriber revenue to every person I profile in my Q&As—a little experiment in redistribution.

This is what I look like when I’m not covered in kids and instead sitting in the courtyard of my cohousing community and laughing at something my friend and collaborator Wendy MacNaughton said and then she says, “You look so pretty, I’m taking a picture.”