parenting

How My Old Band Director Influences My Family Life Today
Sometimes you get a life-changing lesson from an unexpected source. My 8th-grade band director taught me something really important about relationships. Last week, my old band director passed away. Pat Wylie (it’s still hard to think of him by his first name) was a major part of my young life, for two years in middle…
Talking to Kids About Disasters
  The news is full of alarming stories - hurricanes, flooding, wildfires, and more - and it's nearly impossible to shield our kids from hearing about it. How do you help your children understand natural disasters and bad news with concern but not panic? Do you talk with your teenagers differently than your young kids?…
Hard Conversations
Hal had a friend in college that he’d known for many years. Like good friends do, they shared a lot of interests, opinions, and experiences in common. Yet an unexpected break happened – the friend made some lifestyle changes that Hal was uncomfortable about. At the time, they seemed like a really big deal, and…
It’s a Shame…
We've all seen them: the viral videos of parents smashing their kids' computers or sharing their stupid mistakes. Some of them are pretty funny and most of us have been tempted to do something outrageous some time or another, but is this really a good idea? Public shame has been a form of punishment throughout…
How Do You Sort Out Conflicting Stories?
One of our webinar participants asked a simple but significant question: When two children have an argument, how do you determine the truth when the two disagree? What do you do when you get two different stories? "Mama, would you please lower the boom on somebody?" Often when the kids have a disagreement, we only…
Talking to Your Kids (All of Them) About Choking
A dear sweet friend of mine nearly lost her son the other night. Just a few seconds, maybe a minute more and she'd be planning a funeral right now. Here's her story: Sam, our fourteen-year-old, came stumbling into my bedroom on Saturday night at ten, crying pretty hard and saying, "Mom, I don't know what happened,…
Q&A: How do I stop my son from stealing?
A reader asks, "I am having a problem with my 8 year old stealing things. He takes small things from people at school as well as things from his little brothers. A few weeks ago he took one of my diamond rings to school. I need some advice on what to do to help him…
Q&A: My Son is Being Picked On … What Do I Do?
A reader asks, "I am looking for some advice to help my son deal with children who are unkind. He is 6 years old and in 1st Grade now. He is a very bright and kind child. He is having difficulty learning to stick up for himself. He tells me that he is not brave…
It Seems I’m Always Yelling
A reader with four boys 8 and under called for help: I feel like when I talk, no one hears me. So then I yell. My friends call me "The Drill Sergeant Mom". I am so frustrated. Wow, do we ever sympathize! One time, we had a friend -- a mother of several girls --…
What’s Your Son Got to Say Tonight?
Recently we asked our Facebook page what people wanted us to write about. Several asked "How can mothers have a good relationship with their sons?" Our friends Marilyn and Rick Boyer helped us a lot with this topic in the articles they called Learning to Delight in Your Children. It helped us to clarify something we've…