Laura Prepon's second book 'You and I, as Mothers' is a 'raw and honest guide' to parenting during and after the pandemic

Prepon is an actor, author, director, and mother of two.Laura Prepon
  • As a new mother, actor Laura Prepon felt scared and unprepared, as parents often do with their first child.
  • But now a mother of two (and a noted meal prep master), Prepon is sharing everything she's learned about pregnancy and parenting in her second book, "You and I, as Mothers: A Raw and Honest Guide to Motherhood."
  • The half-memoir, half-handbook is an intimate look at Prepon's own experiences paired with advice from fellow moms and experts on topics like stress, survival, and reproductive health.
  • "I'll tell you my truth, and not in a whisper," Prepon admitted in the book's opening chapter. "I felt blindsided by motherhood. In the early days, I — someone who generally considers herself confident — felt insecure, clueless, and scared."
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Like Fiona Apple's "Fetch the Bolt Cutters," Laura Prepon's second book, "You and I, as Mothers: A Raw and Honest Guide to Motherhood" wasn't written for the pandemic. But in light of recent events, her level-headed advice for staying healthy and sane in uncertain times feels even more urgent. "You and I, as Mothers," Prepon said, is the book she needed as a new mother struggling with stress, guilt, isolation, and, of course, the age-old problem: how to get dinner on the table.

"It's really interesting, because I've had so many people reach out to me saying that a lot of the things they're dealing with — from isolation, lack of community, anxiety, stress, feeling like they're out of control because nobody knows what's going to happen...So many things that we're dealing with now, are also what we deal with as mothers."

Welcoming home our new bundle of love. Overwhelmed with gratitude. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

A post shared by Laura Prepon (@lauraprepon) on Feb 26, 2020 at 7:31am PST

Prepon may not have all the answers, but she's certainly done her research, offering expert-approved tips, never-before-shared anecdotes, and, mostly importantly, a hearty dose of reassurance for people at all stages of parenthood. In addition to tapping a top neuroscientist and her own obstetrician, Prepon draws upon the fount of wisdom that is her "mom squad," a group of "badass friends" who "work unorthodox jobs while bringing up their kids." Among the interviewed are "Orange Is the New Black" creator Jenji Kohan, actress Mila Kunis, author and activist Amber Tamblyn, and chef Daphne Oz. Advertisement

"Even the chapter on partnership, I can't tell you how many people have been using tools in that chapter because people are quarantined with their partners now," Prepon said. "And a lot of things that might not have been coming to the surface before — because they were distracted with work or being out or whatever — now, being home, all those things are magnified and coming to the surface."

One of the book's most moving passages explores Prepon's difficult relationship with her mother, Marjorie, from whom she learned how to binge eat and purge. Prepon would go on to battle bulimia for more than a decade, until wanting to have children motivated her to heal. It wouldn't be the last time she'd feel shame and anger towards her body.

Later, Prepon was forced to terminate a high-risk pregnancy in the middle of filming "Orange Is the New Black," a loss she privately dealt with at the time but has since decided to share her experience at the encouragement of her husband, actor Ben Foster. The pair were already planning to be hunkered down at home this month, following the arrival of their newborn son in late February. But the pandemic has, undeniably, changed the mood of the moment.
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"Trying to be okay with the not knowing is one of the scariest things. Because that is something that we're all dealing with, with our respective industry and with our families and having to negotiate this. And we just don't know. So what we talk about is just, how we're dealing with that — with the not knowing, and how to stay present. How do we take care of our kids during this time?"

Wash hands and hold the ones you love.

A post shared by Laura Prepon (@lauraprepon) on Mar 19, 2020 at 10:17am PDT

For Prepon and her family, the key to staying positive has been staying busy. "I try to look at what I can control," she said. "And another thing that really helps me, too, is just being creative however I can, whether it's writing or coming up with new recipes or doing some kind of artwork with my kid. I try to do something creative, and that really helps me."Advertisement

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