Bullying

Family Matters: Self-Preservation Tips

“Maybe when he is older, he will understand mental health’s impact. He will have a girlfriend and, one day, he will get it,” my late mother whispers to me.

I nod, more to appease my weary mother. Her eyes glow when discussing her three sons. With an infectious cackle and mischievous smile, she would tease me about my eccentricities. When I absentmindedly misplaced that night’s homework assignment, she would endearingly refer to me as “Barnacle Breath.”

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Books

5 Tips for Doing It All–Really!

We often hear and read that we can’t do it all. We must pick and choose. We need to make serious sacrifices. We can either have a great career or a great family. We either volunteer or have a side business. But we need to resign ourselves to the fact that we can't have everything. It’s a message women regularly receive.

However, writer and author Linda Formichelli asserts that we can do it all. For instance, if your version of doing it all means cultivating a connected family, building a fulfilling career, enjoying fun hobbies, and traveling regularly, you can have that.
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Family

Why Narcissistic Parents Infantilize Their Adult Children

One trait that nearly all narcissistic parents have in common is the need to infantilize their children. This can be as direct as making the child feel incompetent every time they try something new, or it can be as subtle as always stepping in and offering to do something they can clearly do for themselves.

Unfortunately, this behavior rarely stops even after the child becomes an adult. In fact, it can sometimes become worse as the narcissistic parent fears their children’s growing independence and the end of their narcissistic supply.

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Aging

How to Deal with Difficult Parents

As kids, we put our parents on a pedestal. When we were growing up, they could heal every wound, solve every problem and fix anything that was broken.

As adults, we realize they don’t actually know everything and also have shortcomings. Sometimes, the tables turn -- our parents begin to come to us for financial help, relationship advice, or career guidance. We may start to feel like we are their parents and have come into a role of supporting them much sooner than we expected.

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Children and Teens

7 Ideas for Date Night When You Have to Stay in with Your Kids

Maybe your babysitter cancels. Maybe you’re trying to save money. Maybe you’re not ready to leave your baby. Maybe you don’t trust anyone else to watch your child. Maybe you’re too exhausted to leave the house. Maybe there’s some other reason. Either way, the end result is the same: You’ve got to stay home with your kids, and you’d like to spend some quality time with your partner.

“Nourishing your connection with your beloved is essential in your relationship and ultimately, your family thriving as a whole,” said Lily Zehner, EdD, MFT-C, a Denver-based therapist who specializes in sex, intimacy and relationships.

But date night doesn’t have to mean going out. As Zehner said, staying in “just gives you an opportunity to think outside the box.” Below are seven connection-strengthening, stay-at-home ideas.
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ADHD and ADD

Confidence-Building and the Special Olympics

Tommy was terrified to travel to Columbus. He was scheduled to compete in the Special Olympics that weekend. Tommy has anxiety disorder, ADHD and autism, and anything out of the ordinary such as a road trip to a place he’d never been before threw him way off. “Talk to Daddy,” he kept telling me. “I don’t want to go. Can you tell him I don’t want to go?”

Steve was not surprised at Tommy’s resistance to going to a new place and doing a new activity. It was the story of our lives.

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Caregivers

How to Promote Your Child’s Good Mental Health

Everyone knows the importance of good mental health, but how do you help your children achieve it? Here are some points to consider.

1. Give your child unconditional love.

Every child deserves and needs unconditional love from his or her parents and other family members. Love, security and acceptance form the bedrock for a child’s good mental health. Make sure your child knows that your love doesn’t depend on them getting good grades...
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Anxiety and Panic

Spirituality vs. Mental Disorders: God Doesn’t Hate Medication

I grew up in a family that had high expectations of me, and I have personally struggled with anxiety. For several years, I thought that my anxiety was a normal part of life. I didn’t realize that I should not have been having full-blown anxiety at the age of nine, but I was.

My family didn’t believe in mental illnesses, besides those that were obvious to the untrained eye. We did, however, attend a church regularly. I was highly interested in Christianity and studied it on my own. I was able to combat the unnatural anxiety through my relationship with God, and was able to overcome the anxiety throughout middle and high school. College, however, was different.
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Depression

Maternal Mental Health Screening: What I Wished I’d Had

When I was pregnant back in 1997, I wish my doctor had told me I might be at risk for postpartum depression. Her words wouldn’t have alarmed me. They would have prompted me to get treatment when the darkness did indeed hit.

During my six-week postpartum checkup when I was at my worst, I wish my OB/GYN had handed me a mental health screening and explained the difference between the “blues” and depression.

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Children and Teens

5 Tips for Reducing Ever-Growing Mom Guilt

Moms tend to feel guilty for all sorts of things. They feel guilty for working full-time or part-time. They feel guilty for not breastfeeding or for stopping too soon. They feel guilty for not being able to join their child’s field trip. Again. They feel guilty for taking time for themselves. For not cooking from scratch. For the dirty clothes in the corner and the dirty dishes in the sink. For not making enough money. For making mistakes. For being too tired. For anything.

As psychotherapist Krysta Dancy, MA MFT, said, guilt “begins in pregnancy and childbirth -- all the different ways to give birth -- flows through infancy -- feeding choices, sleeping philosophies -- and never lets up.”
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Brain and Behavior

Mom Knows Best: Overcoming Life’s Hardships

Life bruises. For others, it cripples. And, for a select few, it empowers.

As we marvel at others’ resilience during uncommon adversity, what lessons are applicable to our lives?

On a gloomy October day, the doctor’s diagnosis numbed us. “Pancreatic cancer,” he spat out. My aunt and I recoiled. The word -- cancer -- buzzed in our ears. Shoulders slumping, our mist-filled eyes met. We were dazed; cancer happens to others. Not our familial matriarch.
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General

Navigating the Tricky and Often Triggering World of Social Media as a Mom

For many moms, social media can be a triggering space. It can be a breeding ground for comparison, which so many moms are already prone to in their offline lives. Comparison only creates more and more doubt about everything from your parenting choices to how you are as a person.

Maybe you compare yourself to the mom on social media who makes creative meals, has a spotless home and entertains her kids with fun activities and adventures. Maybe you compare yourself to the mom who gushes about every part of parenting, while you’re crying and covered in throw-up. Maybe you compare yourself to the mom who’s back to her normal routine only days after giving birth, while you’re lying in bed in excruciating pain from your C-section.
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