Parenting Articles

Avoid These 3 Toxic Conversations With Your Kids

Wednesday, May 7th, 2014

5 Tips To Help Parents Worry Less

Think before you speak! Three conversations that you should absolutely avoid with your kids.

You feel it coming. You’re at your breaking point as a parent. Your kids have pushed every single button you have ever had and are verging on demolishing your sanity.

You have tried every parenting trick known to you, and you are still getting nowhere with them. You have silently counted to 10 in your head and realize it’s way past the point of no return.

A Tale of Two Defiers

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014

A Tale of Two DefiersShelley, a college sophomore, is an actively aggressive defier. She prides herself on being a fiercely independent person who doesn’t need or want anyone to tell her what to do. She often resorts to fighting words in her verbal outbursts:

– “How could he give me such a crappy grade?”

– “He’s tormenting me with that ridiculous assignment!”

– “Doesn’t she know I have better things to do with my time?”

It’s not just her words that display her defiance; it’s also her actions. She feels no guilt about petty acts of defiance, like returning library books late, ignoring due dates for essays, and refusing to pay parking tickets.

The Masks of Trauma

Saturday, April 26th, 2014

The Masks of TraumaSometimes I receive emails from acquaintances I knew in my early years. They usually start by expressing their deep concern for me and what I went through.

Each message like this is healing because validation and concern for my situation was something I desperately needed as a child.

But their next questions are more challenging. “Should I have known?” “How did I miss the signs?” The answer has always eluded me. I really have no response.

Helping Your Kids Set Boundaries

Friday, April 11th, 2014

Helping Your Kids Set BoundariesI’ve interviewed various experts about boundaries, and one of the running themes is that most of us aren’t taught how to set boundaries as kids.

That’s because our parents didn’t know how to set boundaries, and they didn’t know because their parents didn’t know either, said Fran Walfish, Psy.D, a child and family psychotherapist in Beverly Hills, Calif. “This is really a generational repetition of patterns.”

Why No One is Talking About the Possible Overdiagnosis of Autism

Friday, March 28th, 2014

Why No One is Talking About the Possible Overdiagnosis of AutismWith the latest CDC figures out, it appears autism is now appearing in about 1 in 68 children in the United States. The disorder — now officially known as autism spectrum disorder — is being diagnosed at a rate that represents a 30 percent increase from 1 in 88 two years ago.

What’s amazing to me is that I couldn’t find a single media report that floated the idea that this increase represents an overdiagnosis of the disorder. While “overdiagnosis” seems to be the first thing suggested when the topic is attention deficit hyperactivity disorder’s (ADHD) huge jump in diagnoses over the past two decades, it’s not mentioned in any description of autism’s increase.

Why the double-standard?

Suicidal Ideation & Cyberbullying

Saturday, March 22nd, 2014

Suicidal Ideation and CyberbullyingBullying probably is as old as mankind. However, being a longstanding part of human behavior does not make it acceptable.

Studies have shown many problems associated with being a victim of bullying, including delayed growth and development; mental health problems; medical issues; poor academic performance; and more. Many of the problems caused by bullying can last into adulthood.

It is estimated that between 5 and 20 percent of children worldwide are victims of physical, verbal and exclusionary bullying. Suicide also is a significant problem, with almost 20 percent of adolescents in America having suicidal thoughts and five to eight percent attempting it.

In Order to Heal, We Must Be Willing to Hear

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

In Order to Heal, We Must Be Willing to HearWhen my son was diagnosed with bipolar illness, he desperately wanted someone who would listen. Someone to acknowledge the validity of his experiences when he was manic, psychotic, depressed, someone to “meet him where he was in his illness.”

I regret that I was not always that person.

I was so scared and confused myself that he worried that speaking to me about his own fear and confusion would make things all the harder for me.

The Mother Who Never Was

Saturday, March 15th, 2014

The Mother Who Never WasI don’t write about my mother often. Of all my dysfunctional childhood relationships, my experience with my mother is the most painful.

I believe that small children have a disproportionate need for the feminine nurturing energy. When it’s not available, I think the pain runs deeper.

I am not suggesting that fathers are not needed. They are desperately needed. And their interactions with their children are critical to shaping that child’s future belief systems and relationships.

But for me, the lack of nurturing maternal energy seemed to leave a deeper mark.

What Role do Sibling Struggles Play in Adult Relationships?

Thursday, March 13th, 2014

What Role do Sibling Struggles Play in Adult Relationships?Were you the winner or the loser in your sibling dynamic?

Many parents believe that sibling rivalry is healthy, natural and unavoidable. There are many causes of sibling rivalry (age, developmental stage, personality), but a main cause is the need for power, attention or protection from parents.

Children, as young as infants, find comfort in routine and predictability. The family dynamic is a source of familiarity and certainty, including the ways in which parents react to each child during sibling struggles.

When one sibling picks a fight, he usually knows what type of reaction it will trigger from the parents. In that moment, the aggressor is seeking the feeling that reaction provides — negative attention if he is punished or power that he succeeded as the dominator if the parents take a hands-off approach.

Giving Your Child Some Power

Sunday, March 9th, 2014

Giving Your Child Some PowerI am reading The Three P’s of Parenting by Jennifer Jones, Ph.D. Are you thinking patience, potty training or poop?

Those elusive P’s are: power, protection and prediction. Jones explains that the P’s correspond with the chief insecurities that plague children.

She states that “when a child lacks power, he feels helpless, so he will assert himself or try to control others. [...] When a child cannot predict what will happen or what those around him will do, he will focus his energy on controlling the behavior and responses of others so that his world feels more certain.”

Sounds like common sense, right? How come, as parents, we don’t follow these models? Why do only formally trained mental health professionals and doctors look deep into our children’s behaviors when the reasons behind the behavior seem so simplistic?

Co-Parenting with a Partner on the Autism Spectrum

Saturday, March 8th, 2014

Co-Parenting with a Partner on the Autism Spectrum

With as many as 1.5 million Americans having some form of autism, including milder variants such as what used to be called Asperger Syndrome, many of those on the autism spectrum are also parents. What are the challenges associated with co-parenting with an ‘Aspie’ partner?

When you have a family member on the Autism Spectrum Disorder, it can be the ordinary things that cause life to grind to a halt. Ordinary things, such as: getting enough sleep; asking your spouse to pick up a child from soccer practice; or having a little family chitchat at the dining table.

4 Tips on How Parents Can Help Their Child Heal After Trauma

Sunday, February 23rd, 2014

4 Tips on How Parents Can Help Their Child Heal After TraumaWhen children, teens, and young adults experience trauma, life feels different for them. Seeing someone get injured, or being the target of violence, can be a life-altering experience, even for adults.

It’s no wonder then that a threatening event or overwhelming experience may greatly affect how a child perceives the world around them. It may also impact their development and personality.

There are several ways parents can learn to help children heal after trauma. Here are four tips parents can try that should help.

Family &
Parenting



Recommended Books

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