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What My Son Learned The Day My Car Was Repossessed

  Mom, there’s a guy in our driveway with a tow truck, my son reports. With miscalculated insouciance I reply, No worries, dude, I’m sure it’s Bill. Bill, our neighbor, owns a service station. He’s hooking up your car, mom. I run outside to yell at this man, who’s not Bill, and end up handing […]

Raising Boys to Be Good Sports:  Family Game Night and the Art of Interruption

This is the last in a series of six articles about raising boys to be good sports. I wouldn’t consider this series on good sportsmanship to be complete without saying at least a few words about family game nights—those hotbeds of rivalry disguised as interludes of filial togetherness. The problem of course isn’t in being competitive; […]

Getting Your Teenager to Talk -­ Part II

  Actually, it’s not about “getting” your teen to talk. That’s been part of the problem all along – kids feeling tugged at and interrogated and cajoled into conversations that don’t interest them. I stuck that phrase in the title because, if nothing else, it captures the urgency behind so many parents’ attempts to learn […]

“Like Pulling Teeth…” Getting Your Teen to Talk

monosyllabia – a reactive disorder of adolescence characterized by the tendency to speak only in one syllable words   Just kidding. I made up that thing about monosyllabia.  But the following story is true. Fifteen year old Katie walked in the front door of her home and dropped her book bag on the ground.  She […]

Michael Gurian: If I Were a Parent of a Boy…

For the next several months a group of writers focused on the issues of raising boys to become men are collaborating through the writing and sharing of blog posts in order to bring greater awareness to the unique challenges parents and the community face in the 21st Century.  Twice a month these writers will be […]

Children with Disabilities Have a Right to Be Held Accountable Too

In his blog, Lost and Tired: Confessions of a Depressed Autism Dad (http://bit.ly/18Yafgc), a father recently wrote about why he believes it’s important for him to hold his boys—all three of whom are on the autism spectrum—accountable for their actions. Justly referring only to behavior he knows the boys can control, the dad explained that having […]

Have a Moody Teenager? What to Do When You’re Tired of “Walking on Eggshells”

      “Julia is so sensitive I can’t say anything to her without it causing a big blow-up!” exclaimed Julia’s mom. “How am I supposed to raise this kid? I’ve got to be able to talk with her—she’s only fifteen!”  Julia’s mother had a good point. She did need to be able to “parent” […]

Yelling at Your Teen: A Big Disrespect

It’s a sad day in America when we need a study to tell us that yelling at teenagers to discipline them makes them more depressed and their bad behavior worse. Teenagers themselves would have told us the same thing, for a lot less money. Most parents yell at their kids because they’re frustrated, not because […]

Are We Over-Protecting Privacy Rights at the Expense of Security?: Response to Paul Steinberg’s article, “Our Failed Approach to Schizophrenia”

Good article by psychiatrist Paul Steinberg (http://www.paulsteinbergmd.com/) in The New York Times (“Our Failed Approach to Schizophrenia,” http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/26/opinion/our-failed-approach-to-schizophrenia.html?_r=012/25/12). He writes bravely about the way in which the rights of mentally ill American citizens wind up encroaching upon the rights of other citizens to feel decently safe in public from the more malignant expressions of violence […]