Pregnancy, Birth, Mat-Leave, Motherhood & Social Media

Founder of Man Repeller, Leandra Medine Cohen reflecting on motherhood alongside her two children playing.

“I recall leaving home one morning around 7:30am for a meeting and getting no further than the corner of my block before I started throwing up the Saltine Crackers I had just eaten. A young woman came over with a plastic bag and handed it to me and whispered into my ear ‘How far along are you?’ It was such a warm woman-to-woman moment.” 

Leandra Medine Cohen, Man Repeller

by Leandra Medine Cohen, Man Repeller

Highest High, Lowest Low

It sounds corny as hell, which is perhaps another way that parenthood has changed me, but I mean it when I say that 8am every morning is my highest high. The sound of their voices shrieking from their cribs and the immediate shift from whiny to absolute thrill the minute they see a familiar face is genuinely reason enough to want kids. It reminds me almost every day how little it takes to be happy, how central human connection is to the mechanism of survival. My lowest low was the night I got home from the hospital — I remember sitting on the toilet, after having wet myself for the third time since I’d been home (an hour, maximum), in excruciating pain from the delightful hemorrhoids I obtained as a literal push gift when I heard one of the twins start to cry from their room. I got up and looked in the mirror in my bathroom and thought: how am I going to do this — keep those kids and myself alive?

Social Media

It has forced us to confront some new and uncomfortable questions i.e.: will my children resent me for eschewing their privacy and presenting them to the world? Morally speaking, is it just that I am doing so at all? The way I see it, I am their primary caretaker and functioning as their agency until they are old enough to make decisions on their own, so until then, the best I can do is what I deem best for them, and what’s best for them, really, is a weekly social check-in. No?

Man Repeller Mat-Leave

We offer 16 weeks paid in full; I took 12 weeks and did not technically work through my leave, but voluntarily popped in on several occasions. It was like the ideal set up — knowing that the trains are coming to and departing from the station whether or not you interject, but being able to come in willfully to add the cherry on top? Heaven.

Man Repeller is a media brand that connects women with eccentric taste, smart opinions, and a come-as-you-are, balls-to-the-wall attitude. Leandra Medine Cohen is its founder, doesn’t use deodorant, and likes to call it a non-literal, heartwarming group text.