Big To Do
About Us

“Saving Love Lives The World Over!” e-mail e-mail to a friend in need

November 17, 2010

Unstoppable: Q&A with author Lauren Ruotolo

Filed under: books,issues — posted by Paula @ 11:06 am

laurenruotolo2Lauren Ruotolo is a gorgeous redhead with a great job–Director of Entertainment Promotions for the Hearst Corporation–a glam wardrobe, a cool boyfriend, and a hot new book about getting a leg up in life, no matter what size your legs happen to be.

The 4’ 2” Long Island native was born with a rare disorder called McCune Albright Syndrome that has caused not just her short stature and the use of crutches but a host of other physical challenges, all of which she details in her new memoir, Unstoppable in Stilettos: A Girl’s Guide to Living Tall in a Small World.

In addition to being a funny (anecdotes about LL Cool J!) and moving autobiography about coping with and triumphing over her condition, Ruotolo’s book is an old-fashioned, Dale Carnegie-esque motivational work organized around themes like “Rejection can be your greatest ally,” “Being different is a gift,” and “Avoid the word ‘no’.” She encourages readers of all abilities to get over self-doubt, self-consciousness–just get over themselves, period–and create happiness on their own terms.

laurenruotoloWe spoke to the vivacious author at her office in the Hearst Tower.

So, the advice—both life- and dating-related—in your book is geared towards a mainstream audience.


I’m wondering if you have any specific dating advice for people who have physical challenges or physical differences.

I think that the first piece of advice–and it’s not just for people with physical disabilities or mental disabilities–is that you have to love yourself in order for someone to love you. That was something that I had to learn–that I had to love myself the way that I wanted to be loved by somebody, and I had to learn to be comfortable with knowing that I am different from other people, that my body looks different, that when it comes to sex or being intimate with somebody that it’s going to be a little bit different, so I think that I had to understand all those aspects and love every aspect of who I was before I could allow somebody in. I was always so insecure about it.

And I think that you become insecure when you’re dating, anyway–everybody is insecure! But it really becomes difficult when there’s something different about you. I hope that I teach in the book–for people to really love themselves–and, like I said, love themselves like you want to be loved.

Your experiences with online dating were not very positive.

No! (Laughs.) Not at all! Oh my god, it was such a nightmare! I hope to never have to do that again in my life. When it comes to online dating, yes, you want to put yourself out there, and put as much information about yourself up front. But as I wrote in the book, how I have always seen myself is not really as a “handicapped” person. I knew that if I presented myself as a girl walking with crutches, that’s all anyone would see, and I would be labeled as a “Girl With Crutches”…

You mention in the book that you entered therapy, and the key lesson there for you was acceptance. How would you define “acceptance”?

Acceptance, for me, was when I stopped hiding. I said, “I love myself, I have a family who loves me, I have friends that love me, and the next man I meet is gonna love me for me and I’m not gonna hide behind a barstool, and I’m not going to hide behind a photo online. I’m just gonna put myself out there and see what happens.”

And I did–I met [current live-in boyfriend] Nelson on a staircase. So it was that acceptance and getting rid of that insecurity in my head that got me there. I was always so strong in so many other ways—but when it came to relationships–well, like I said, I think everyone has these fears. Because society is like, all right, you get to a certain age, girls, and you gotta find that husband, and you gotta have babies, and that’s your life! When you’re a child, you dream about your wedding–you know, there’s this idea promoted by magazines, especially here at Hearst, and at Seventeen magazine, that they’re like two of the greatest moments in a girls’ life: her prom, that she’ll always remember, and her wedding.

“Who are you gonna take to your prom? Who are you gonna marry?” (Laughs) So it’s just always a constant conversation that makes us all nervous, but we all have to accept who we are, and that was really what I learned in therapy.

The wedding thing–is that something that has been in your mind pressuring you, or have you let that go?

I think as Nelson and I get closer, and as I get older, it’s something that I’ve thought about a lot more often than I ever did in my life–

–but, because you have the relationship–

Right, because I have the relationship–

–not because you’re thinking about the dress.

Exactly! (Laughs) Well, now that I’m in the relationship, I do think about the dress!

Ha! Tell me about Glamour Gals Foundation.

Oh, Glamour Gals is such a great organization. It’s an intergenerational organization that brings teen girls and elderly women together. The teen girls provide complimentary makeovers and facials and, more than anything, companionship to the elderly women.

My great-grandmother was in a home, so I know–when I would come visit, she would want to get dressed and she would want to put lipstick on and make herself presentable. With women, from the time we’re three years old, we want to wear lipstick ‘til the time we’re 93. We want to wear makeup! It just makes you feel good. And I think that it’s such a great opportunity for community service for girls. You know, when else are you really going to teach them that there are these wonderful older women out there, unless they have somebody in their family. And I think it really makes teens feel good about what they’re doing, and obviously the ladies feel great about themselves. So I’m really happy to be part of the organization.

The way that I found out about it was when my article in Marie Claire came out in March of 2009. The president and founder Rachel Doyle read it and contacted somebody here at Hearst called Susan Schultz who was on the advisory board and was like “Do you know this girl? I would like to nominate her for our Glammy, for most glamorous gal of the year.” And they did, and I accepted, and it was such a wonderful honor!

And now I’m on the advisory board, and I’m heading up their first gala in February.

Do you have any plans for a follow-up book?

I really want to do a children’s book. Children—at least from my understanding and the research that I’ve done on the street where children stare at me—don’t see racial differences these days because it’s everywhere. So, they have black friends, they have white friends, they have Puerto Rican friends, they have Chinese friends, and they don’t see the difference anymore, which is wonderful. But they still see the obvious physical differences of people with different abilities. And I think parents get nervous because kids are just outspoken. Not because they’re mean, because they just want to know!

They see somebody who’s different, and say, “Mommy, why is that lady so short?” or “What are those shiny things that she walks with?” And parents get embarrassed. And I see a lot of times where the parents are like “Shh!” or they just pull them away, and they don’t wanna notice it.

And that’s not the way. I really want to help children understand those differences.

(To read more about people living with short stature, click here.)


  1. great put up, very informative. I ponder why the other specialists of this sector don’t understand this. You should proceed your writing. I’m confident, you’ve a huge readers’ base already!

    Comment by click here — July 26, 2016 @ 3:52 am

  2. Appreciate it for helping out, superb info. “Whoever obeys the gods, to him they particularly listen.” by Homer.

    Comment by Owen Battaglini — July 26, 2016 @ 6:48 am

  3. Hi there very cool website!! Guy .. Beautiful .. Superb .. I’ll bookmark your site and take the feeds alsoKI’m glad to search out a lot of useful information here in the submit, we need develop extra techniques on this regard, thank you for sharing. . . . . .

    Comment by Felica Plocher — July 26, 2016 @ 8:07 am

  4. Thank you a lot for sharing this with all folks you actually recognise what you are speaking about! Bookmarked. Please additionally visit my website =). We will have a link alternate arrangement between us!

    Comment by Melodie Recla — July 26, 2016 @ 8:48 am

  5. Heya are using WordPress for your site platform? I’m new to the blog world but I’m trying to get started and create my own. Do you need any html coding knowledge to make your own blog? Any help would be really appreciated!

    Comment by black magic for love — July 26, 2016 @ 5:15 pm

  6. I simply wanted to appreciate you all over again. I’m not certain the things I would’ve used without those creative concepts shown by you directly on this field. It absolutely was a very distressing situation in my opinion, nevertheless understanding the skilled way you treated it took me to cry with fulfillment. I’m just happy for the guidance and in addition hope that you realize what a great job you are providing educating men and women by way of a blog. I am sure you have never encountered all of us.

    Comment by Minnesota Web Design — July 27, 2016 @ 2:56 am

  7. Some really excellent information, Gladiola I detected this.

    Comment by Minneapolis Web Design — July 27, 2016 @ 3:50 am

  8. Good day! This is my first visit to your blog! We are a group of volunteers and starting a new initiative in a community in the same niche. Your blog provided us beneficial information to work on. You have done a outstanding job!

    Comment by اختبار الذكاء — July 27, 2016 @ 10:35 am

  9. This site is known as a stroll-by for the entire info you wished about this and didn’t know who to ask. Glimpse here, and also you’ll undoubtedly uncover it.

    Comment by اختبار الذكاء — July 27, 2016 @ 11:27 am

  10. I really enjoy reading through on this web site, it holds good blog posts.

    Comment by اختبار الذكاء — July 27, 2016 @ 11:48 am

  11. I think this is among the this kind of lot significant
    info for me. And i’m satisfied reading your article.

    However would like to commentary on some common things, The website style is perfect, the articles is really great : D.

    Good process, cheers

    Feel free to visit my web site ShonNTatom

    Comment by ShonNTatom — July 27, 2016 @ 1:47 pm

  12. They are gortex like rubber, fabrics canvas and leather.. I personally cannot STAND running on treadmills so I only run outdoors.Lifetime of shoes is another aspect which you should look at, while buying a quality pair of boots. For children under 18, sunscreen must be applied every hour. Opt for a service package that meets all of your needs and allows you to remain within your budget. 1. There is a continous feeling of learning and education. The usual suspects are almost there while the only source of drama is whether Guatemala or Trinidad & Tobago will finish second in their group. He mentioned 2 putts for par and I stopped him again.
    Wholesale NFL Jerseys http://www.nfljerseyschinawholesaler.com/

    Comment by Wholesale NFL Jerseys — July 28, 2016 @ 2:10 am

  13. com offers expert advice on how to get those dance auditions and dance jobs. What feels like a mild spoof, tually masks because an authentic film with a thought.Jiang and additionally proclaimed reporters the initial laws delivered via the Japanese People Pavilion should certainly receive visitors in types, a gaggle of approximately 600 , either pay could take1 hour per day, accepted an overall total about 36 given the honor, convention places you’ll see 150 expert services team members moreover say they may have gradually Di Hu. an astrological and occult website has been launched by Abhiek.In these kinds of the situation, your extrely best is always to research websites about the world wide web that will supply coupon codes. Often, of course, this is far from easy and many of us will have spent hours walking up and down the aisles of shops looking in vain for some vaguely decent gifts for children. medical organizations recommend screening mammography for girls forty and more mature, claiming the process lowers breast cancer mortality by twenty to 35 % in females ages 50 to fifty nine and slightly less in females 40 to 49 at fourteen years follow-up.There are nurous possibilities to suit your current needs to get low cost buzzmap.So if you want to chase your love for dance on a greater level, enroll yourself in dance university. Students show their excellence in sports, cultural programs, dance programs, athletics and others.
    Cheap NFL Jerseys http://www.cheapnfljerseyschinawholesale.us.com/

    Comment by Cheap NFL Jerseys — July 28, 2016 @ 4:22 am

  14. You are a very bright person!

    Comment by english teaching jobs south korea — July 28, 2016 @ 5:56 am

  15. Hey there just wanted to give you a brief heads up and let you know a few of the pictures aren’t loading properly. I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two different internet browsers and both show the same results.

    Comment by TEFL courses — July 28, 2016 @ 6:48 am

  16. But it’s possible we played at least a small part in Union Electric’s decision to cancel their proposed Calloway II nuclear power plant. As will be shown, by using the subject device, one automatically will practice the proper techniques of fielding ground balls, line drives and fly balls; of catching a ball thrown by another player and of catching and throwing a ball in one fluid motion. Leuven Peckhke gin with peach juice and Leuvens Nootje, gin with hazel nut are quite popular among jins锘?Baseball training mitts and gloves are not new.Speedo, truly a swimsuit brand name, may be the most popular bathing swimsuit for men. It is also one of the worlds oldest universities.The city of Leuven suffered setbacks during the World Wars and the library of the university was destroyed and rebuilt twice.As mentioned earlier, it can be difficult to find the right hosting service.Tests should be simple and easy to administer. All in all,Leuven is an historically giftedintellectual place for learning and spreading of knowledge.SportsNewsFootball.
    Wholesale NFL Jerseys http://www.cheapnfljerseyssupply.us.com/

    Comment by Wholesale NFL Jerseys — July 29, 2016 @ 7:30 am

  17. Named after Dr. Also remember, make it a point to never swing your club when someone is walking nearby. This is all you need! Keep your back straight, not bent, when doing cable rows. SE Charlotte is the new comer in this party Matthews has been around since 1872. They may be displayed under:Due to the fact We are now getting rid of the the child years as well as have to invest in by myself outfit, nevertheless, the need for less expensive footwear.
    Cheap Jerseys http://www.wholesalechinajerseysnfl.cc/

    Comment by Cheap Jerseys — July 29, 2016 @ 8:25 am

  18. I went over this website and I believe you have a lot of fantastic info , saved to favorites (:.

    Comment by electric fireplaces — July 29, 2016 @ 10:53 am

  19. I likewise conceive so , perfectly pent post! .

    Comment by electric fireplace insert — July 29, 2016 @ 12:06 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment

**Mean or otherwise out-of-line comments will be deleted. That’s just how we roll.


blog | advice | comics | animation | goodies | to do | archive | about us

Breakup Girl created by Lynn Harris & Chris Kalb
© 2008 Just Friends Productions, Inc.
| privacy policy
Cool Aid!

Important Breakup Girl Maxim:
Breakup Girl Sez


Powered by WordPress