Talking about school shootings with your kids – tips from the experts

Credit: getty / Future

Talking about school shootings with your kids isn’t something covered in first-time parenting classes. 

But these days news – good and bad – travels far, wide, fast and it’s really accessible.  And, following the horrific news where 18 students and two adults were killed after a mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde Texas, you might want to know how to navigate gun violence conversations with your kids. We chat to parenting expert Kirsty Ketley and Tetyana Denford, translator, mother, and author of Motherland: War and Hope in Ukraine who tells us; “I grew up in 80s in NY, and when I was going through the American schooling system, we never had active shooter drills. We had fire drills and the occasional tornado drill, but nothing of what’s happening now, nothing of what I see my children having to face.” 

We know that every family is different and you know yours best, here we spoke with parenting experts, mums and psychotherapists to share the tools you may need to have a helpful and honest conversation with your child about, quite frankly, a terrifying topic.

How to talk to your kids about school shootings

Have the conversation

Parenting expert Kirsty Ketley says; “Unless it’s brought up by your child, talking about school shootings isn’t necessary.” Though Heidi Scrimgeour,’s consumer editor and mum-of-three disagrees, “I never used to mention bad news to my kids. I would hope that it would fly under their radar.

“My reasoning was why alert them to something awful if they might not hear about it. But more than once my kids have come home with a very particular version of a news story that is not the account I would have given them and I’ve had to ‘undo’ what another child has said. 

“So now my approach is that where possible I want to be the one to break the bad news, whether it’s a TV headline or something closer to home. I had to tell my very young child that his classmate had died in tragic circumstances and I broke the news of a grandparent’s sudden and unexpected death to my 7yr old – these things taught me that kids can handle hearing anything if it’s in the safe embrace of a loving parent or carer. And I’d always rather they got that version of events first.” 

While Tetyana says; “My husband and I don’t let our kids watch the news, because the news in America is quite shouty, biased and dramatic. But we talk to them about humanity, about history, about good and evil, about mental health issues, and about how the country tends to marginalise a lot of people based on race and financial status.

“They *still* do not understand why people kill people, and why people have guns to be honest. But they do understand how to creatively barricade themselves in their school, why police presence is there, and why these things are important for the modern world. Their school keeps them safe, but unfortunately, that safety comes with specific conditioning for them to shoulder the burden of a country’s ills.”

Either way, whether its you or your child who kick starts the conversation, embrace it. And, it’s important to validate your child’s worries and not dismiss them with a well-meaning but misplaced ‘you’ll  be fine’. Statements like this shut down the conversation and make your child feel unheard and their worries not valued.

Kirsty suggests that if your child does ask, tell them truthfully in a way that is appropriate to their age. “In this instance perhaps reinforce that guns are dangerous and highlight that here in the UK we have such strict laws that this doesn’t happen. Also refer to the security measures in place at their school as an example of how the UK keep their children safe and that in the US it isn’t quite the same.” 

“Like how to talk to children about war, or any other awful event, you only need to explain as much as your child asks.”

Adapt for their age

Under 7’s – With this age group and their understanding and developmental stages – i.e. they may not understand the news their seeing is a replay – it’s best to limit media exposure as much as possible. Kirsty agrees, “I think it is unlikely for this age group to properly pick up on what is going on. But, if they do overhear your conversations or see the news and ask questions, it’s important to make sure they know they are safe and that what is happening is not in our country.”

She suggests showing under 7’s on a map or globe, so they can grasp the distance. “This will be the thing that they are most worried about. Kids of this age don’t need to be burdened with news that they are unable to understand, so if they don’t mention it, don’t bring it up. Let them be blissfully unaware.”

Tweens (8-12) – Talking about school shootings with this age group is a bit trickier as they are at an impressionable age and are more aware of the world around them. If left unchecked their minds could wonder, and they could make scenarios up in their heads as to what could or could not happen, Kirsty tells us. “With this in mind it’s important to reassure them that they are safe and not to overload them with information. Keep it appropriate to their level of understanding and to what they can cope with, as all children have differing thresholds.”

Credit: Anna Mathur / Future

Kirsty suggests leaning on child-friendly platforms such as Newsround. “This is a brilliant programme for children age 6-12 which explains things in an appropriate way, so if you are worried about how to go about things, watch it with your child and then have a discussion about what you have watched. – If they report on it, obviously.”

Teens – Ask them what they already know and then give them reassurance if they are worried –  let them know that you are there to talk through things. Kirsty says; “You can talk to Tweens and Teens about what happened in Dunblane as a point of reference, to explain why we have the laws in place here.”

Above all you need your children to see and understand that you are open to having conversations about school shootings. Encourage them with lines like ‘great question’ and ‘thanks for coming to me with this question’. Statements like this will show that you are open and ready to help them understand.

“[my children] want to be safe,” Tetyana tells us. “They still trust that their school is safe. Their innocence isn’t gone completely, because we want them to remember that the world is full of magic, full of hope. But the more this country doesn’t create stricter gun laws, the more they erase that hope. And that is the saddest thing of all. Because children are born with so much hope, surely our job is to protect that, and to let it flourish.”

Check In

Talking about school shootings is hard, so it’s really important to check back in with your kids in the days following the initial conversation. To find out how their thoughts and understanding has evolved as the days have gone on. Find out what their friends are talking about in relation to this news, it will help to get an understanding of whether your kid is coping. You need more than a ‘one-and-done’ conversation.

If you think your child may be struggling to process this – which may look like problems with sleep, problems with attention and focus, and increased irritability, reach out for more help. Maybe speak to their school or to charities who have helplines in place.

NHS – Every Mind Matters
Young Minds

Be kind to yourself

Being a parent is hard work. And, even though we don’t have such easy access to guns in this country – when we see horrors like this unfolding it can really stoke our anxiety and the need to protect our children can spiral into panic mode. Anna Mathur author and psychotherapist tells us; “Introduce some self-compassion as you navigate these conversations. Traumatic events like this are a lot for children to compute, but are also a lot for adults to make sense of too. They can amplify feelings of anxiety due to the challenge of safety and increased uncertainty.

“I find it helpful to remind myself not to write myself into the stories of others, as we can find our hearts responding as if we were going through it too. A reminder to keep healthy distance if you need to, or mute the news as you process what you’ve heard, so that you don’t feel overwhelmed. 

“The important thing is that you don’t pressure yourself to have the ‘perfect response’. You can equip yourself with tools and insights like the ones helpfully shared within this article, but nobody can control how a conversation will go, or be received. It’s okay to admit that you don’t have the answers. Children don’t need perfect parents as they learn to navigate this imperfect world. It can be helpful for children to see that it’s okay not to be able to make sense of everything.

 “Everyone has different stories and experiences, and they inform the way we feel and navigate news events such as this. So, if you are struggling, please do seek support by talking to a friend who has historically been kind and supportive.”


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Prince Charles’ extremely rare royal privilege the Queen’s other kids missed out on

Prince Charles once received an extremely rare royal privilege during his childhood that the Queen’s other children sadly missed out on. 

The Prince of Wales got to witness his mother’s coronation when he was just four years old after receiving his own children’s invitation.
This was a royal first and sadly his siblings never got to enjoy this huge moment. 
This royal news comes as the Queen delighted royal fans with her ‘frugal’ habits as they spotted the ‘ugliest’ item in her living room.

With the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee bank holiday weekend now just days away the excitement is building over the celebrations where Her Majesty and other members of The Firm will mark this milestone. Already this year the Queen sparked nostalgia several times over as the Royal Family are currently sharing 70 throwback photos over the 70 days in the lead-up to the weekend. As many people reminisce about some of the biggest royal moments over the past seven decades, it’s hard not to think about the Queen’s coronation

Taking place on June 2nd 1953 at Westminster Abbey, the Queen’s coronation is understood to have been watched by 27 million on TV in the UK. And Prince Charles got to enjoy a rare royal privilege that day that his siblings didn’t… 

At the time of Her Majesty’s coronation, Charles, who is first in the line of succession, was just 4 years old. But that didn’t stop the future Prince of Wales from taking a historic part in the celebrations in what was a major moment for the Royal Family.

According to their official website, Charles became the first child to witness their mother’s coronation as Sovereign that day. The young Prince even received his own hand-painted invitation and was seated between the Queen Mother and Princess Margaret for the ceremony. 

This special royal privilege was granted only to Charles, whilst 2-year-old Princess Anne was considered too young, but appeared on the balcony of Buckingham Palace afterwards.

At the time of the Queen’s coronation she hadn’t yet welcomed her youngest children, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward, meaning they also missed out on seeing their mother’s big moment. 

Though Charles’ presence wasn’t necessarily quite so calming as the royals might’ve hoped on the day as he reportedly almost caused a terrible mishap.

Getting candid about this on Annoushka Ducas’ podcast My Life in Seven Charms, Princess Margaret’s former right hand woman Lady Anne Glenconner revealed the curious 4-year-old got hold of the Imperial State Crown. 


“Prince Charles got his paws on it, however old he was, when we got back to Buckingham Palace,” she claimed. “Because [the Queen] took it off, put it on a table, and Prince Charles made a beeline for it.”

Lady Glenconner added, “We thought he was going to drop it. We thought, ‘Oh my goodness, that would be a bad omen’. But luckily, I think my mother, as a lady-in-waiting, seized it from him and took it away.”

Thankfully there was no harm done and this historic day remains one of the biggest moments in the Queen’s 70 year reign and a moment Prince Charles likely remembers very fondly to this day.

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Who is Countdown’s new presenter? Colin Murray is taking over from Anne Robinson

Countdown is having a shake up this summer as it looks set to get a new host and viewers are wondering who is taking over the reins of the popular word and number crunching show to become Countdown’s new presenter.

The Channel 4 gameshow which has been running since the first episode aired back in 1982 is in its 84th season but in July there will be a change to the show.

Rachel Riley took some time out from Countdown when she went on maternity leave and now there will be another change to the line up.

Who is Countdown’s new presenter Colin Murray?

Colin Murray is the new presenter of Countdown. The Northern Irish radio and television presenter has confirmed that he is taking over as presenter of Countdown on Twitter when he tweeted, “I’m like the assistant manager, given the job until the end of the season. Earn respect of dressing room (@susie_dent @RachelRileyRR), get some points on the board, try to win a trophy! 75 games to get it right!  Absolute honour. Fav show ever. July 14 to start of Nov.”

Colin became the host of BBC Television’s Match of the Day 2 on BBC Two in 2010, while still anchoring shows on BBC Radio 5 Live, including 5 Live Sport and Fighting Talk and was still presenting on BBC Radio Ulster.

It is understood that he has already started filming for the new shows and a source has hinted at the possibility of him being a permanent replacement.

Credit: Getty Images

A source told The Mirror, “Colin has agreed to be a stand-in host for us, which is brilliant news.

“He knows the team and gets on really well with Rachel, they are good friends off-screen. No one knows what is going to happen beyond the autumn in terms of hosting, but if Colin does want the job, he is in the right place to show why he should get it.”

I’m like the assistant manager, given the job until end of season. Earn respect of dressing room (@susie_dent @RachelRileyRR), get some points on the board, try to win a trophy! 75 games to get it right!

Absolute honour. Fav show ever. July 14 to start of Nov.#Countdown

— colin murray (@ColinMurray) May 10, 2022

Fans and former Countdown stars alike are delighted by the appointment of Colin.

Nick Hewer, former Countdown host tweeted, “Colin, I’m truly delighted for you – a true fan of the show and a great presenter. I sense that this time, it’s permanent and you’ll be in that seat for years to come. Congratulations”

Meanwhile a loyal fan put, “So pleased to hear this, wish it was permanent though, can’t wait until July 14th!!”

“Great news Colin. I was honestly disappointed you didn’t get the job when Nick left. I hope the powers that be install you permanently. Enjoy your tenure however long it lasts,” another chipped in.

Is Colin Murray still married?

Colin Murray is married to his wife Carly Paradis. The couple have been married since 2012. She is a Bafta nominated Canadian-born British composer, songwriter and pianist. She composes soundtracks for movies, TV series and her own albums.

She has written music for The Line of Duty and has composed music on the BBC’s upcoming drama The Control Room.

I wrote the @Line_of_duty theme on piano after reading the brilliant scripts (forgive my timing I’m not using a click ) Tonight @BBCOne 9pm #LineofDuty series 5

— Carly Paradis (@carlyparadis) March 31, 2019

Who is currently presenting Countdown?

Anne Robinson is currently presenting Countdown and will remain on screen as host until Colin takes over on July 14th. Anne has hosted the show in 2021 to become the show’s sixth presenter and the first female to take on the role but after 265 episodes she is leaving.

Anne hosts alongside Susie Dent who is in Dictionary Corner, while Rachel Riley who returned to work after giving birth to her second daughter, hosts the numbers segment and picks the letters for the contestants.

Susie is known to tweet a word of the day to her followers, along with an explanation of its meaning.

Word of the day is ‘misken’ (15th century): to refuse to recognise something by pretending it’s not happening.

— Susie Dent (@susie_dent) May 25, 2022

Why is Anne Robinson being replaced on Countdown?

Anne Robinson is being replaced on Countdown because she announced that she was quitting the gameshow so she could spend more time with her family in New York.

At the time she issued a lengthy statement to announce her departure and it reads, “I’ve had a blast hosting this wonderful show. And I stayed longer than I signed up for. Now it is time for an older woman to take the reins. I hope too I’ve encouraged TV bosses to realise that not all women at the wrong end of their seventies are in care homes playing bingo and watching conjuring tricks.”

She added, “In fact the genius of Countdown is that it’s a brilliant way to keep the brain exercised. I run 5k most days of the week. And I can now do an anagram at twice the speed I could this time last year. But I have grandchildren, a large garden and a home in New York, all deserving more of my attention.”

You can watch Countdown weekdays on Channel 4 at 2.10pm with Anne Robinson hosting until Countdown’s new presenter Colin Murray takes over on July 14th.

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Tesco recalls popular breakfast item as it begs customers ‘please don’t eat it’

Tesco has recalled a popular breakfast item and begged shoppers ‘please don’t eat it’ as its consumption could prove fatal for some.

The supermarket has issued the urgent recall after it discovered that a manufacturing error means a batch of Tesco’s All Butter croissants may contain almond croissants – and the nut ingredient will not be declared on the packaging, with a risk of causing harm to some shoppers – particularly those who may have a nut allergy and need to eat nut-free recipes.

Tesco made a Facebook post which reads, “We’re recalling one batch code of Tesco frozen All Butter Croissants x6 as they may contain Tesco frozen Almond Croissants. This means that almond won’t be declared on the packaging.”

The news Tesco recalls popular breakfast item comes after salmonella fears over contaminated sandwiches that affected supermarkets earlier this month and last month Tesco warned shoppers ‘do not eat these biscuits‘.

Anyone who has bought the item and has a nut allergy is advised to “please don’t eat it”. The croissants can be returned to any Tesco store where a full refund will be given – even without a receipt.

The affected batch details are: Tesco frozen All Butter Croissants x6 (255G). The batch code is LL 111 and it has a best before September 2022. No other batches are said to be affected.


Customers who have any further information are advised to call Tesco Customer Services on 0800 505 555.

The Food Standards Agency has listed the recall online and it warns, “This product contains almonds (nuts) making it a possible health risk for anyone with an allergy to almonds (nuts).”

Allergy alerts are made when there is a problem with a food product that means it should not be sold. Then it might be ‘withdrawn’ (taken off the shelves) or ‘recalled’ (when customers are asked to return the product).

Sometimes foods have to be withdrawn or recalled if there is a risk to consumers because the allergy labelling is missing or incorrect or if there is any other food allergy risk. When there is a food allergy risk, the FSA will issue an Allergy Alert like this one as Tesco recalls popular breakfast item.

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Emma Raducanu’s special ‘pinch me’ moment she had thanks to the Queen

US Open winner Emma Raducanu has opened up about her “pinch me” moment caused by the Queen following her big sporting success.

Emma Raducanu has revealed the sweet gesture from the Queen that gave her the ultimate “pinch me” moment.
Emma famously took to the court with Kate Middleton last year, while Her Majesty the Queen reached out to her after her epic victory.
This royal news comes after it was revealed that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Jubilee experience is set to be even more special than most – all thanks to Lilibet!

Since Virginia Wade in 1977, Emma Raducanu became the first British woman to reach a Grand Slam final. After qualifying for the prestigious event as a qualifier, she went on to win the US Open 2021 becoming the new British women’s No. 1.

Since her sporting success, Emma has received a flood of support from high-profile supporters, including Her Majesty the Queen, who wrote her a personal letter of congratulations.

Credits: Getty Images

Emma talked about her winning moment last year in the July/August edition of ELLE UK, sharing, “When I won the US Open, there was nothing big or amazing that my parents did to celebrate – we just came home and ate dumplings, and that was it,” she revealed. “We are very normal.”

While Emma’s career has taken off, she admits that the Queen has given her the best “pinch-me moment yet”.

“Definitely when I stepped off the court at the US Open, and when I received a letter from the Queen,” Emma admitted when asked about her most surreal memories so far.

Credit: Getty Images

Emma previously told the BBC she was “very honoured” that Her Majesty reached out to her.

Her Majesty and Kate Middleton both publicly congratulated Emma after her huge win, taking to social media to issue official statements after her victory.

Huge congratulations @EmmaRaducanu on your stunning performances and historic Grand Slam victory! Incredible –we are all so proud of you,” the Duchess, who previously took to the court to play with Emma, penned, signing the message off personally with “C”.

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The Queen delights royal fans with her ‘frugal’ habits as they spot ‘ugliest’ item in her living room

The Queen’s ‘frugal’ habits has sparked delight among her royal fans as they spot ‘ugliest’ item in her living room.

The Queen has proven she can be ‘frugal’ after fans notice she’s still using a ‘tiny TV’ on the ‘ugliest TV stand’.
Her Majesty has given fans an insight into her room at Windsor Castle.
This royal news comes as Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Jubilee experience set to be even more special than most – all thanks to Lilibet!

The Queen uses a ‘tiny television’ which she stands on the ‘ugliest’ TV stand as she delights fans with her ‘frugal’ habits.

Her Majesty celebrates 70 years on the throne this year and in the run up to her four-day bank holiday weekend, she has resumed work and met with the Amir of Qatar, who visited the Queen at Windsor Castle.

A snap of the moment they shook hands has been uploaded to the Royal Family Instagram page and fans are going wild for the very dated decor detail that they’ve spotted in the background.

One fan praised her majesty for being ‘frugal’, “It’s the simplicity for me with all the money in the world she has access to yet look at the little tiny TV she looks at ” they commented.

Another fan added, “The Windsor castle tv stand deserves attention.”

As a third fan agreed, and added, “Elizabeth!! That is the ugliest TV stand I have ever seen!!”

You can see the ‘tiny’ flat screen TV stood on the silver oval shaped TV stand in the photo below…

Others were delighted to see her Majesty up and about after she attended the Chelsea Flower Show on a buggy after fears over her mobility.

One fan praised how ‘good’ she looked following her health concerns. It read, “So lovely to see Queen Elizabeth feeling good!”

And another royal fan added, “Just wonderful to see how she is looking so well and doing activities. ”

But one fan was concerned ahead of the Jubilee celebrations.

They added, “She should be wearing a mask so that she stays healthy for the jubilee and in general!”

It’s not the first time the royals have shown their ‘normal’ decor, as Princess Anne fans urged her to ‘de-clutter’ after she gave fans a glimpse inside her home.

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Who is Vick Hope? All you need to know about who Calvin Harris’ new fiancée

Credit: Getty Images

Fans of Calvin Harris are wondering who is Vick Hope after the Scottish DJ, producer and singer-songwriter got engaged to the Radio 1 star. 

The couple attended Chelsea Flower Show earlier this week, which was attended by the Queen, and here Vick showed off a huge diamond ring as reports surfaced that Calvin had popped the question under his favourite tree on his Ibiza farm.

The romantic proposal, which is said to have come taken place two weeks ago, comes just five weeks after the pair started talking to each other, as we look at all you need to know about Vick Hope…

Who is Vick Hope?

Vick Hope is a Radio 1 DJ who presents the Going Home slot (3.30pm-6pm) alongside Jordan North. Before joining the BBC, the multi-award winning TV and Radio presenter is best-known for her work on the likes of Capital Breakfast, The BAFTAs and The X Factor.

The British beauty was born in Newcastle, she studied at Cambridge University where she graduated with a BA Honours in French, Spanish and Portuguese and took part in the 16th series of Strictly Come Dancing 2018 where she competed with professional partner Graziano Di Prima.

She worked alongside Roman Kemp on the Capital Breakfast Show but left in February 2020. Since then she presented Classic FM’s Revision Hour and joined BBC Radio 1 to present Life Hacks and Official Chart: First Look on a Sunday afternoon.

Vick, 32, previously hosted a replacement spin-off of I’m A Celebrity… which was aired online in 2020, it was called I’m A Celebrity…The Daily Drop and it was available to watch exclusively online on the ITV Hub.

And she is involved with Amnesty International – a charity she has supported since she was just 16 and Vick has worked closely with the charity Help Refugees and volunteers at a weekly refugee project near her home in London.

Vick has also written two children’s book with Roman Kemp – the first called Listen Up: Rule the Airwaves, Rule the School and Shout Out: Use Your Voice, Save the Day which was published in 2021.

Who is Calvin Harris dating?

Calvin Harris – real name Adam Richard Wiles – is dating Radio 1 DJ Vick Hope and after just five weeks getting to know each other, the Scottish DJ has reportedly proposed to the star.

An insider told The Sun, “Calvin proposed to Vick under his favourite tree on his farm Terra Masia in Ibiza. Vick said yes immediately, she is madly in love with Calvin and could not be any happier.

“She has been wearing her ring for weeks now but no one really noticed. Of course her Radio 1 colleagues spotted it immediately and it’s been an open secret there. Everyone is so happy for her.

“Vick has been telling people they are going to be getting married in Ibiza. It’s a really special place for them both now and where they want to spend their lives together.”

Calvin Harris has previously dated model Aarika Wolf for four years before splitting earlier this year due to his regular trips away from their US home to his Ibiza farm.

His past romantic links include Ellie Goulding, Rita Ora but he announced the split in a tweet and Taylor Swift whom he dated for 15 months.

Calvin Harris is due to perform at Radio 1’s Big Weekend this weekend.

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What is pansexuality? This is what it means to be pansexual today

Credit: Getty

If you’re wondering what being pansexual means, you’re likely not the only one. While the term has been around for decades, it’s only in recent years that celebrities – including Miley Cyrus and Sam Smith – have brought the word into the mainstream. 

Film and television can represent sexual orientations like being gay, lesbian or bisexual fairly well these days. But other minority sexualities – such as pansexuality – still receive little attention, despite the fact that an estimated 2% of 18 to 34 year-olds identify with the orientation according to research from GLAAD

So if you’re planning on talking to kids about coming out, want to open up discussion and talk to your child about sex in general, or just want to get clued up on the term yourself, this is what you need to know about pansexuality.

What is pansexual?

Being pansexual is experiencing emotional, romantic or sexual attraction to people of any gender, the Human Rights Campaign says. “Though not necessarily simultaneously, in the same way or to the same degree. Sometimes it’s interchangeable with bisexual,” they say. 

But it doesn’t mean the person is attracted to everyone, rather they have the potential to be attracted to anyone. It’s for this reason that the phrase “hearts not parts” pops up fairly frequently when some people explain the identity. 

Many people who identify as pansexual will also describe how they feel attraction to people based on their personality or character rather than what their gender is. So, for example, someone who identifies as male and is pansexual could find any female, male or non-binary genders attractive.

Pansexual vs. bisexual: What’s the difference?

While many people define bisexuality as attraction to men and women, and pansexuality as attraction to all genders, that’s not really the case. As Molly Houghton, communications expert at The Proud Trust explains, “The difference between bisexuality and pansexuality is something that can be confusing. The definitions of them have changed over the years.” 

Speaking on behalf of the charity, who work specifically with LGBT young people and the adults who support them, she says “we define bisexual as attraction to people the same gender as you and other genders. Whereas pansexual is attraction to anyone – regardless of gender. The gender doesn’t matter to them, they don’t see it.” 

When it comes to definitions though, Molly warns, it’s all about personal choice. “Nobody has the right to tell you ‘no, that’s not your sexuality’. If you think that’s the one for you, that’s okay. That’s the thing about labels, you’ve got to be comfortable with the thing you’re labelling yourself as.” 

Some people who may have used the bisexual label, for instance, may now call themselves pansexual as it fits better for them Because just as demisexual sits under the asexual umbrella, “pansexual exists under a bisexual umbrella.” 

“So I think that’s why people find it confusing. Bisexual is sometimes a sexuality in its own terms, otherwise it’s an overall term.” 

Pansexual flag

The pansexual flag consists of three thick, horizontal lines in the colours of a bright magenta (top), yellow (middle) and cyan blue (bottom). It’s been around since a Tumblr user invented the symbol in 2010, according to an archived post. Often utilised within the LGBTQ+ community to express a difference between pansexuality and bisexuality, which has its own flag.

Credit: Getty

 But what do the colours mean? 

Magenta: Attraction to woman (or it represents people who find women attractive)
Yellow: Attraction to non-binary people, such as those who are agender, bigender or genderfluid. 
Cyan: Attraction to men (or those people who find men attractive) 

Pansexual vs. omnisexual: What’s the difference?

The main difference between the two is that pansexuality describes attraction regardless of gender. While omnisexual, a relatively new term, describes someone who is attracted to people despite their gender. So they’ll take more of a note of someone’s gender but it won’t factor in the decision of whether or not to be with them. 

Pansexual people are considered “gender blind” which means someone’s gender isn’t even a notable factor. And it’s definitely not part of the decision of whether a pansexual person wants to be with them. Some people in the community use omnisexual and pansexual interchangeably, however.

Pansexual meaning

What it means to be pansexual will be different for every person who identifies with the orientation. But two singers, Miley Cyrus and Janelle Monáe, have spoken openly about why they feel the label fits them.

In an interview with Rolling Stone, Monáe said that she initially identified as bisexual but felt that pansexuality was a better fit after learning more about it. “Oh, these are the things that I identify with too,” she said. “I am open to learning more about who I am.” 

Janelle is one of the most famous celebrities who have come out as pansexual, Credit: Getty.

She also said that “being a queen Black woman in America, someone who has been in relationships with men and women” meant that she was “free” in terms of her sexuality and not caught up in gender restrictions. 

‘Wrecking Ball’ singer Miley Cyrus helped to bring the idea of pansexuality into the mainstream media in 2015 when she spoke to Elle UK. “I’m very open about it – I’m pansexual,” she told the magazine. 

Later in an interview with Variety, the star said that she struggled to understand her own gender and sexuality. “I always hated the word bisexual because that’s even putting me in a box. I don’t ever think about someone being a boy or someone being a girl.” 

She also revealed that her first ever relationship was with another girl. And growing up in a religious, Southern family meant that she didn’t have a total understanding of LGBTQ+ topics when she was younger. “Once I understood my gender more, which was unassigned, then I understood my sexuality more. I was like, ‘Oh – that’s why I don’t feel straight and I don’t feel gay,” she said. 

Sam Smith, who came out as non-binary in 2019, also revealed that they didn’t rigidly define their sexuality. “I’ve never really kind of played by the rule book,” they told The Sun. “I love people and whoever I fall for, that’s going to be who I fall for. I don’t know who that’s going to be.”

They said they’d be open to dating all genders, that it was a “freeing thing” to not have to stick to “one category of person”. 

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Sweet Kale Vegetable Salad

The Sweet Kale Vegetable Salad is my newest favorite salad. I don’t do a whole lot of copycat recipes, but this one, I can’t even tell you how much this one needed to be made.

This is a copycat recipe for Costco’s Sweet Kale Salad and I’m telling you now that you’re going to love it.

Sweet Kale Salad

The crunchy greens, sweet-tart cranberries, and crunchy-salty pumpkin seeds are tossed in a creamy poppyseed dressing to make this salad.

All of the flavors work together to make this salad worthy of our Thanksgiving table, and likely at least a dozen more tables as well before the end of the year.

I would have never guessed that this combination of flavors would work so well, but it does! My kids don’t typically love the “green stuff” in this salad, they watched me make it and were skeptical. However, one taste and they were sold; my middle son even asked for seconds.

Costco Kale Salad

A couple of weeks ago, while I was grocery shopping, there were two women standing in the icy cold produce room at Costco chatting about how amazing this salad is.

I don’t even remember the last time I bought a pre-made salad, (I have a thing for making salads, and rarely am I impressed with the store-bought varieties.) However, these ladies were so enthusiastic, I picked up a bag to try for myself.

Holy smokes. I loved it. Absolutely, positively, loved the Costco salad.

But I knew right away that we could improve on it. I’ve been making this poppyseed dressing for a few years now and every single person that tries it raves about it.

I knew that the homemade poppyseed dressing would take this salad combination right over the top and I wasn’t wrong. Plus, making the salad at home lets me add more of my favorite ingredients.

I went back to the grocery store the next day and picked up the ingredients to make this salad for myself. I made it that night and ate it for dinner, I ate it again the next day for lunch, for a snack, and with dinner again.

Even after tossing the salad with the dressing, it kept nicely for as long as it lasted in my house, about 36 hours.

All of my ramblings are simply to say that you really want to try this salad. If you’re not a big fan of kale, if Brussels aren’t your thing, if broccoli doesn’t thrill you, you just might like this salad anyways.

Sweet Kale Salad Recipe

Combine all the kale, broccoli sticks, Brussels sprouts, cranberries, and pepitas in a large bowl.In a smaller bowl or jar, whisk together the mayonnaise, milk, vinegar, sugar, poppy seeds, and salt.Pour the dressing over the salad and toss well to thoroughly coat.Let the salad rest for at least 5-10 minutes before serving.

How To Make Broccoli Matchsticks

You might be tempted to skip the broccoli matchsticks in this recipe, but please try them. They offer the soft crunch that plays a big part in making this salad so unique. It is easy as can be and well worth the extra minute or two.

Slice the long thick stalk off of the head of broccoli.Peel the outside of the stalk enough to remove the brown areas.Slice the stalk into thin rounds.Stack a few of the rounds and slice them into matchsticks.


Sweet Kale Vegetable Salad

If you love the Sweet Kale Salad at Costco, you’ll love this recipe even more!
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword Sweet Kale Vegetable Salad
Prep Time 15 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 125kcal


Salad Ingredients

4 cups shredded and chopped curly kale2 cups thinly sliced Brussels sprouts1 cup broccoli matchsticks1/2 cup dried cranberries1/4 cup roasted and salted pepitasoptional: chopped cabbage and/or chopped endive

Dressing Ingredients

1/4 cup mayonnaise1 1/2 tablespoons milk1 1/2 tablespoons white balsamic, champagne, or white wine vinegar1 tablespoon sugar or honey2 teaspoons poppy seedspinch of kosher salt


Combine all the kale, broccoli sticks, Brussels sprouts, cranberries, and pepitas in a large bowl.
In a smaller bowl or jar, whisk together the mayonnaise, milk, vinegar, sugar, poppy seeds, and salt.
Pour the dressing over the salad and toss well to thoroughly coat. Let the salad rest for at least 5-10 minutes before serving. Enjoy!


You might be tempted to skip the broccoli matchsticks in this recipe, but please try them. They offer the soft crunch that plays a big part in making this salad so unique.

To make the broccoli matchsticks, slice the long thick stalk off of a head of broccoli, peel the outside enough to remove any brown areas, then slice it into thin rounds. Stack a few of the rounds and slice them into matchsticks. Easy as can be and well worth the extra minute or two.


Calories: 125kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 68mg | Potassium: 307mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 3585IU | Vitamin C: 69.1mg | Calcium: 79mg | Iron: 1.2mg

{originally published 11/17/14 – recipe notes and photos updated 5/25/22}

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Prince William dubbed ‘Dr Cambridge’ as he swaps his suit for scrubs during hospital trip

Prince William looked every bit of the professional as he swapped his suit for scrubs during a royal hospital trip, prompting royal fans to call him ‘Dr Cambridge’.

The Duke of Cambridge visited The Royal Marsden Hospital on Tuesday to learn more about their pioneering cancer treatments and care.
During his visit, he even tried on a pair of surgical scrubs which sparked a major reaction amongst royal fans
This royal news comes after Prince Harry and Meghan Markle showed fans they’re ‘thriving’ with public kiss

Prince William was dubbed ‘Dr Cambridge’ by royal fans as he ditched his classic suit for a set of red scrubs, surgical mask and hair cover during his latest royal visit.

The Duke of Cambridge stopped by The Royal Marsden Hospital, a specialist cancer research centre of which he is president. He met with medical practitioners to learn more about their groundbreaking research and patient care.

At one point during his tour, he was even shown robotic-guided procedures which help diagnose cancers faster and in a minimally invasive way. For this portion of the visit, William ditched his ‘princely’ clothes and wore a pair of very smart scrubs.

As a series of photos were shared on The Duke and Duchess’s official Instagram account, royal fans just couldn’t help but share their thoughts on his new attire. 

One commented, “Paging Dr. Cambridge!”

While a second continued the joke writing, “Paging Dr. Cambridge!! Dr. Cambridge to the E.R!! Stat!!”

And at third wrote. “Dr Cambridge in the house Fantastic recognition for the hard work they do for us all

The red scrubs made him look right at home alongside the other medical experts and clearly, fans felt if he wasn’t second in the line of succession, he would have made an excellent doctor.

In his post, he also took a moment to praise the care ‘bowelbabe’ aka Deborah James had received while being treated there. The caption read, “it’s clear to see the efforts all of the Marsden’s staff go to in ensuring their patients feel at home during difficult times. It was great to meet some of the team who’ve cared for @bowelbabe and to take a moment to thank everyone here for their inspirational work.”

William previously visited the mother of two at her home, to present her with a Damehood. Deborah was diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2016 and has so far raised over £16 million for Cancer Research UK.

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