“Speak Softly … & less”, Plus 8 other Tips for Talking to Teens

Flowering Cactus “How was lunch?” I ask, venturing into conversation with one of my teens who isn’t much into conversing with parents these days. He had just come from lunch with one of his professors… a Saturday lunch. “Fine.” “What did you talk about?” “I dunno,” he replied. “… stuff.” “Yeah? Anything worth sharing?” I should have stopped. I should have known the well was not producing. “Just stuff,” he looked up from his afternoon bowl of cereal and gave me a little raised-eyebrow nod. If nothing else, at least I had been patient, not bombarding him the minute he came home. “Well, okay,” I give up – knowing that information will flow at another time. I’ve learned that timing is everything with my kids

When Headlines Have You Down…

Headlines can sometimes make me all verklempt. Especially ones that have to do with my kids. I try not to look. But sometimes, they’re handed to me on a silver platter with utensils so I can eat it all up and feel sick. Thanks to social media we see them all the time – with links – and likes and shares. I happened to see a few this weekend. They both left me wanting life on a secluded beach or in the country – away from technology’s sneaky, ever-expanding grab for my kids. But we don’t live on a beach or in the country. We live smack dab in the center of all that’s good and bad. So I read the headlines … and feel a bit sick. The first one I see informs me of the latest app waiting to claim my child in its evil scheme. Yik Yak Chat App Stirring Up Trouble in High Schools From Chicago, to Georgia, to Southern

In the Name of Love

Screen Shot 2014-02-20 at 10.46.42 AM I don’t know about you, but I never knew I could love anything like I love my kids. Each one. The other day Jack asked me if I loved Fury or him more. This was after he snuggled into me and whispered a hushed confession, “I love you more than Dad.” It was as if a burdene had been lifted off his guilt-ridden soul. It’s not right to love someone more. “You’re so warm,” he continued, “and squishy.” Okay, so – I could have lived without the last bit. But, he was talking about how he relishes scooching close and burying his feet under my legs. So what if I’m a bit squishier than his fit father … it’s on my list of follow-through’s. I laughed and hugged him. He loves his dad. But somewhere along the way he has equated certain things that I do as signifying more

“Bad Parenting”

mean mom “She said she hated me and I was the worst mother in the world,” my friend told me after recounting her daughter’s response to a “so not fair” grounding that resulted from some seriously bad choices. It’s funny, because I had just left another mom experiencing the same push back and harsh word choices. “You’re not the worst mother,” I told her. “You’re a good mother – who loves her kid enough to set boundaries. … And you know, she doesn’t mean it. She loves you. And, her words, though seemingly aimed at you, might not be about you at all.” We both thought about that for a second – and I wondered if what I was saying was true. I had lived through a similar barrage days earlier. In the moment of my child’s huffing, I stuffed a strange
Page 1 of 32123456...Last »