Compliance is a Choice

Parents of young children tend to place a high value on compliance; they just want their children to do as they are told. Now, this is a great idea. Raising obedient children was all the rage for many centuries, and hey, what could be so bad? Well, for better or for worse, that has changed […]

Color Blind

I had visions of cute little black leggings with chic printed tops, sparkly sandals with peddle pushers and sassy little dresses, with flounces and fraying in just the right places. I had visions of adorably cute tomboy ensembles, with skinny jeans paired with sparkly AC/DC shirts, beanies and teeny Doc Martins. My kids were going […]

How to Talk to Teens…Don’t!

Most parents like to talk to their kids. This may have started out with the baby boomers who grew up largely in homes with parents who didn’t talk at all. Today, we have swung the other way, and maybe to an extreme. I meet parents very often who tell me their teenagers want them to […]

Keep ’em Talking

In my first semester of grad school, I took a mandatory course called Clinical Interviewing. It taught the therapeutic skills necessary for the initial meeting a patient, and how to obtain information without leading them. One of the skills emphasized time and again was using a technique called “open-ended questioning.” If I got nothing out […]

S.L.A.P. ™ Your Teen!

  Parenting teenagers can be very frustrating, but no, we are not suggesting you slap your child. We’ve developed a method called S.L.A.P. ™ for helping parents and teenagers learn and practice better communication. Here’s how it works: STOP         When your teen slams the bedroom door, stomps away or says something that pushes your buttons, reboot your […]

Teens are Just Tall Two-Year-Olds

Do you remember when your toddler threw himself on the floor of the supermarket because you wouldn’t let him eat dog food? Yeah, me too. Well, your teenager is not so much different from that toddler. According to Margaret Mahler’s Separation-Individuation theory of child development, toddlers experiment with their growing independence by testing both distance […]


It could have been the weather. Or the lack of sleep. Or the million and one things I had on my mind, the emails I needed to respond to, the timers going off, the dishes in the sink, the bickering, the puddle of milk left on the table which I put the mail onto. Or […]

Is Your Home a Hub of Teen Angst?

Does your living room look like this? Because mine does. Nearly all the time. And this is a very, very good thing. When teenagers find a place they feel comfortable, loved, fed, safe and not judged, criticized or harassed, they tend to make themselves a fixture. So if your house is full of teenagers who […]

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