Essential Reads

Is Friendship in Decline?

Does social media spell the end of intimate friendship?

Singles, You Can Lower Your Risk of Divorce

The things you can do before you marry that can change your odds of divorce

Empathy for a Child Abuser?

Empathy for the Undeserving Can Be a Useful Strategy for Changing Families

Adolescent Self-Management for a Successful Independence

Graduate your high school senior with basic skills for self-reliance

Recent Posts on Parenting

Does Having a Transgender Parent Make Sons into Better Men?

As transgender sensibility becomes more accepted, and the categories of "male" and "female" are increasingly seen as mutable, "motherhood" and "fatherhood" become more elusive categories as well.

De-stressing Teen Girl Angst

By Ana Homayoun on January 14, 2013 in The Myth of the Perfect Girl
Dealing with stressed out and overwhelmed teen girls? Here are five simple, practical strategies to help promote positive wellness and development.

To Hover or Hope – Tough Calls in a World of Risk

By Peggy Drexler Ph.D. on January 14, 2013 in Our Gender, Ourselves
Reaction to risk plays out everywhere parents gather with children to play.

Choosing to be Childfree in a Changing World

After close consideration, why are more adults choosing a life without kids?

When Did "Best" Become Such a Dangerous Word?

It's important to note the difference!

The Girl Scouts Miss the Boat with Mango Crèmes

Mango Crèmes: the newest cookie in the Girl Scout arsenal is being sold as "healthy." If only they were healthy. If only they were made with mango.

Grandparenthood: A Baggage-Free Relationship

It was hard for me to hear talk of grandchildren when I so much wanted one. At a party, when a couple of friends starting talking excitedly about their grandchildren, I couldn't stand it. I simply walked out of the room.

Speaking God's Name in Bed

By Hank Davis on January 14, 2013 in Caveman Logic
Using the Deity's name as a sign of sexual pleasure is widespread, even among atheists. Is there a culture somewhere that doesn't default to the Deity when the Pleasure Meter hits 10?

Throwing Out the Bratz

Now is the time of year to make sure all of the toys in your home teach your kids what you want them to learn. Sometimes we overlook the toys that sneak in over the holidays. A toy doesn’t have to be labeled as educational to be instructive. A Bratz doll teaches plenty! Just because you aren’t aware of what your kids are learning doesn’t mean they aren’t learning.

Some Advice for the Parenting Experts

By Polly Palumbo Ph.D. on January 14, 2013 in Momma Data
The parenting media is rife with experts and advice. The pediatrician, the educational consultant, the breast-feeding researcher and so many others make a living telling parents how to make kids healthier, safer or smarter. So often we take their advice but maybe it's time parents should be giving them advice.

This New Year, Surprising Resolutions for Stepparents

By Wednesday Martin Ph.D. on January 14, 2013 in Stepmonster
Stepfamilies aren't first families. And stepparents aren't parents. Resolved: it's time to reject the Big Lies about stepfamily life that hamper millions of couples and kids every day.

The Art of Hearing Feedback

By Temma Ehrenfeld on January 14, 2013 in Open Gently
F. Scott Fitzgerald relied on his editor for essential help to write his most famous book. We all need to learn to seek, identify and use good feedback and advice.

A Link Between Sexual Promiscuity and Depression in Teens

By Ugo Uche on January 14, 2013 in Promoting Empathy With Your Teen
Given that sex is a pleasurable activity, it also stands to reason that teens who struggle with depression will routinely seek to engage in pleasurable and excitable behaviors to provide temporary relief from their experiences with chronic sadness, hopelessness and perhaps lethargy.

Still Looking for Christian Grey?

By Peg Streep on January 14, 2013 in Tech Support
Is "having it all" getting more and more out of reach? Are marriage rates falling because men don't like the competition of a wife who earns more? Is marrying "down" even an option for women? The research is sobering....

Self by Consensus

By Robert Taibbi L.C.S.W. on January 14, 2013 in Fixing Families
In our digital age it is others, not ourselves, who try to define who we are, and our anxiety and depression increase. It's time to push back.

My Daughter’s Grief and a Box of Sticks

By Nancy Berns Ph.D. on January 14, 2013 in Freedom to Grieve
My eight-year-old daughter knew that the tree was going to be cut down. Still, when the day came, it was tough on her. A few minutes before we needed to leave for school, she went to the tree for one last good-bye. Crying and grasping the brown needles, she did not want to leave the tree. I prayed and wondered what to do. Do I force her to leave so she can get to school?

Angry Boys: Sometimes, Mom Is Not Enough

Young men can be quite narcissistic. They don't like being told what to do, and if insulted or shamed, some will rage. Whether a family is intact or not, a boy's father can play a unique role in dealing with male rage. Here are some tips on raising a great son.

Positiveness Part II: Encouragement, Appreciation, and Pride

By Kenneth Barish Ph.D. on January 14, 2013 in Pride and Joy
Last month, I discussed ways that parents can strengthen positive feelings in their relationships with their children. In today’s post, I will offer additional recommendations for how we can maintain an attitude of “positiveness,” even when we are frustrated by children’s challenging behaviors.

Finishing High School and "Senioritis" (Academic Letdown)

It's easy for high school seniors, particularly the college bound, to slack off academic effort their final year. But this decision can come back to bite them freshman year in college when weakened study habits make academically catching hold harder to do.

6 Lessons Learned Transitioning to High School

By Kymberly Grosso on January 13, 2013 in Autism in Real Life
My son and I came up with a list of “lessons learned” to date, regarding high school and autism. All autistic kids are different; so our experience doesn’t match everyone else’s. That being said, here are some areas to think about with regards to transitioning to high school:

Eight Steps For Raising A Happy First-born

Firstborns face an enormous challenge when another sibling is born.

How Children Read Mixed Messages From Parents

Parents who are confused over their own roles in life often give out mixed messages to their children about what is expected from them. If children try to point out the contradictions, they are often faced with very negative reactions, so they have to figure this out for themselves I find that they use three rules to heirarchically rank the elements of a double message.

Are You First or Last On Your Own To-Do List?

By Dara Chadwick on January 13, 2013 in You'd Be So Pretty If...
Many women find it easy to put their health last on the priority list...but let’s stop and consider the effect that this “last on the list” placement we give ourselves has on our children -- and even how others see our potential

New Moms Need Social Support

By Darcia Narvaez Ph.D. on January 13, 2013 in Moral Landscapes
Growing up my mom always joked with me, “I wish you could have stayed a baby.” She loved that I needed her, that she could hug and kiss me infinitely without my complaints. But most of all, she jokes her favorite thing was the attention she received.

Trauma Can Spark Change

By Vivian Diller Ph.D. on January 13, 2013 in Face It
While there have been gestures following the Sandy Hook shooting that have brought national attention -- like the one that NBC's Ann Curry began when she created a Twitter-generated program for 26 acts of kindness -- there are small ones within our own families that may go unnoticed. But it's these very actions by everyday people that may contribute most to helping avoid r

The Educative Value of Teasing

By Peter Gray on January 13, 2013 in Freedom to Learn
Teasing gets a bad rap, especially in educational circles, because of its association with bullying. But not all teasing is bullying. In fact, in most settings (maybe not in our typical schools), teasing serves positive ends far more often than negative ones.

Teens, Screens, and Metabolic Syndrome

By Victoria L. Dunckley M.D. on January 12, 2013 in Mental Wealth
We all know there's an obesity epidemic occuring with our nation's youths, but did you know that there's a constellation of health issues now being recognized in teens, that were previously not occuring until middle age? Sometimes called Syndrome X, metabolic syndrome is now being linked to screen-time in teens--regardless of physical activity level.

Why Are Your Kids So Secretive?

Parents struggle trying to make contact when their teens seem secretive and removed. Understanding and responding to your child's sexual needs for privacy and helping them to distinguish privacy from secrecy may change your feelings of rejection to feeling like a trusted confidante--and relieve them from awkwardness.

Five Tips for Living with an Avid Sports Fan

Avid sports fans devote huge chunks of their time and emotional energy to their favorite teams. If your romantic partner seems to care more about sports than about you, there's hope for your relationship with these five simple tips.