Let's Connect Coffee Time

Marissa Bader spreads joy to the world

Linden Hills writer and mother of three embraces community in everything she does


Be a kind human. That has been Marissa Bader's life goal since her dad taught her that how we treat others matters, that no human is less or more important than any other, and to always treat everyone with kindness and respect. Now, she is passing these lessons down to her kids and spreading the word as a writer in every aspect of her work.

The mother of three young girls (two 7-year-old twins and an 11-year-old) and author of two children's books ("The Only Me" and "Stella's Brave Voice"), Bader was the first guest of "Let's Connect," a new Southwest Connector community speaker event series that spotlights great local people in Minneapolis doing great things. During an in-person conversation with me in front of about a dozen people at Everett & Charlie art gallery in Linden Hills on Dec. 1, Bader highlighted the importance of connection when it comes to parenting and building strong communities.

"It's really about community," said Bader. "So we're not parenting in a vacuum. We're not living in a vacuum. We're reaching out to our tribe, to other parents, to our friends, to our community that we're not doing it alone. Because on the days where I felt or feel like I'm in it alone are my hardest days. But when I know I have a support system of other parents, of other people that kind of get it, I feel so much better. 

"So to me, it really is about that. We don't know what we don't know, and we don't what we're feeling. Someone else is probably feeling it too. So it's really important to reach out and to just be connected."

Bader, who lives in Linden Hills with her husband Robb (part of Bader Development) and their children, has always been driven to connect (and feel connected) to others. It's why she writes. Her tagline is "connecting hearts through stories," and Bader wants to spread joy and kindness with her writing and show that despite our differences, underneath it all, we are all just human beings having a shared human experience.

Connection is the key. 

"We are all in relationships with others all the time," explained Bader. "We are not on an island. We're not meant to be on an island. Human beings are meant to be connected."

Bader is also a writer/editor for Lucie's List, a website that is a survival guide for new parents. With a master's degree in marriage and family therapy, she weaves the theme of connection into everything she does.

"Kind of how our relationships mold us and how they lift us up, they can affect us in any which way. So the underpinning of everything that I write about in children's books is that notion that we're all connected, the shared journey, if you will, we're all human beings underneath it all experiencing one common shared journey despite our seeming differences. It just impacts everything that I do and write about."

Nowadays, with the last few years, the pandemic, and everybody shutting off and opening up again, it's important to get more people connected to rediscover and restore our shared humanity. Bader sees the bright side of this moment and appreciates all the people who are doing good things and who really have people's best interests at heart.

"We're so used to turning on the news and seeing these terrible stories all the time, violence and all the things that are wrong, but what about the things that are going well?" said Bader. "What about the positive things that are happening in our community and the relationships people are building? 

"To me, that would go such a long way in restoring that sense of humanity because I think we're all at this crossroads now. We're like, what is happening in the world? And it feels like it's upside down. And maybe if we are less saturated with all the negative and had a little bit more positive, it might feel different. Maybe that's a pipe dream. But that's how I feel."

That's how a lot of people feel today. Everyone has the capability to be a little bit more positive, a little bit more kind, a little more human. We just have to do it more. 

In other words, be a little more like Marissa Bader.

You can watch the whole "Let's Connect" conversation with Marissa Bader on the Southwest Connector YouTube channel. The next "Let's Connect" is with Lana Gendlin Brooks and Karina Muller, the artisans and founders of HeartCentric Divine Creations, on Friday, Jan. 12, 9-10 a.m. at Everett & Charlie. Let us know if you want to be a future sponsor or speaker.


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