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Category: Connection

Parent talking with teens

Talking With Teens

Breathe, listen, and grab a tile

When it comes to talking with teens, a participant in our fall Why Do They Act That Way online class shared this with me, “I think the hardest part is just not knowing if the conversations we are having make any difference. My daughter is NOT a talker, and I seem to annoy her a…  Read More

Parent tucking child into bed with family ritual

Do You Have Family Rituals?

A simple and creative way to stay connected

“Say our important things,” my youngest child reminded me as I told him to turn off his headlamp and close his eyes to go to sleep. “Of course! Do I ever forget?” I asked. “Well sometimes, but not usually. No, I guess not,” he replied, snuggling into his bed waiting for me to begin our…  Read More

Three children walking on a little wall symbolizing balanced parenting styles

The Parenting Style That Best Fits Growing Brains

There is a lot of talk these days about finding balance. Work-life balance. A balanced diet. Keeping media in balance. In general, balance is a worthy goal. Parenting, though, often feels like an exercise in grappling with persistent imbalance. Curve balls are constant. Kids are messy, unpredictable, challenging, and delightful. This is in part because…  Read More

Child's behavior means he is collapsing on ground

Understanding your child’s behavior

Four things to remember when your kid falls apart

“But I KNOW he can do this! He just did it all by himself yesterday! My child’s behavior is too much right now.” An exasperated parent exclaimed as she explained to me how difficult it had been to get out the door that morning for school. Another parent recently lamented, “She CAN manage her anger;…  Read More

Child experiencing anxiety and worry

Stress in Children

Helping Kids and Teens Handle Worry

I was recently asked to try to go back to my own childhood and try to remember the things that I worried most about when I was young. Closing my eyes, it didn’t take me long to channel my inner child and generate a robust list of worries that ranged from, “my basement” to, “an…  Read More

Teenager laying on bed looking at cell phone with parental controls on it.

10 Tips for Building Trust With Parental Controls

It doesn’t work well to install parental controls, close our eyes, cross our fingers, and hope for digital greatness. How we use parental controls has a huge impact on whether or not they are effective in helping our kids build digital skills and whether or not they build or erode trust.

Elementary age child crossing his arms and looking angry

Anger Management is a Big Part of Parenting, So How Do We Do It?

From Calm to Chaos The sun rises, your alarm rings, you roll out of bed and find your way to your first mug of coffee (Not a coffee person? Imagine tea instead). The birds are singing. The world feels full of possibility. You take a deep breath, committed to starting your parenting day with smooth…  Read More

Two children laying on rug playing video games together.

When Are Video Games Good for Kids?

“Yeeessss! There’s going to be another Fortnite Day!” I heard a child exclaim in the hallway of my kids’ school last month. Confused, I turned to a teacher for an explanation. He responded “I think they mean snow day…” The kids were eagerly anticipating yet another giant storm (yes, we live in Minnesota and yes,…  Read More

Child holding single pink rose in the wake of a tragedy like a mass shooting

Helping Kids Cope With Tragedy

Age-by-age advice from early childhood through adolescence

Unfortunately, mass shootings are not uncommon in the United States. Even if they don’t happen in their community, children and teens hear about them from friends and in the news. These events may cause children to fear that an event like this could happen to them or their parents. All of us, including our children…  Read More

Teenage relationship holding hands

Teenage Relationships

The Talk 70% of Teens Wish Adults Would Have with Them

“Just guess!” I would say to the wall, purposely turned away from my mom perched gingerly on the side of my bed. “Honey,” she would respond, “It’s hard to just guess what you want to talk about.” I usually met this gentle resistance with more crying and an insistence that clearly she should just KNOW…  Read More