This one is for all the parents of toddlers out there. I started doing it three weeks ago and since then, no tantrums (from her, or from me!). So I thought it was my civic duty to pass it on.
This was a question that came up on my Facebook author page among some mothers who’d read my book, “Don’t Try to Find Me.” Yes, my novel represents a very particular case but the desire to protect your kids is pretty universal.
Do all teens require online monitoring? How do you monitor? And what do you do with what you find out?
There are numerous studies showing narcissism is on the rise, and altruism and empathy are declining. When that’s the greater social context in which we live, what’s a parent to do?
In my novel, “Don’t Try to Find Me” (out today!), Rachel’s 14-year-old daughter Marley runs away, and during the social media campaign to bring her home, many secrets are revealed. Among them: What Marley thinks about her mom is radically different from what Rachel believes she’s communicating.
While my novel presents a high stakes fictional situation, many parents can relate to the idea that we don’t necessarily know what our teens are thinking about us as parents and as individuals, and that can really cost us in terms of our relationships. So what’s a parent to do?
Parents a generation ago didn’t have to worry about online predators, but today’s parents need to be aware. What are the signs your teen is getting in over her (or his) head in social media? How do we keep our kids safe?
In my novel, “Don’t Try to Find Me” (due out July 8), 14-year-old Marley runs away, leaving her mother Rachel wondering how she missed all the clues. Did she really know Marley at all? And has Rachel’s oblivion put Marley in harm’s way?
For those answers, you’ll have the read the book! But if you have a teenager of your own, here are some ideas of how to assess where you are in your relationship.
Toddlers can be mystifying beings. You’re cruising through a good morning, and then suddenly, they melt down at what seems like an entirely insignificant event (the loss of a sock would not be unheard of.) What’s happening in that toddler brain?
For some of my adult clients, Mother’s Day is painful. That’s because they are surrounded by exhortations to tell their mothers how much they love her. But what if they don’t feel that? What if they missed out on the kind of mother they deserved?
I’m assuming that if you’re reading this, you’ve had similar feelings. Perhaps your mother was absent, or neglectful, or abusive, or narcissistic. Maybe she’s in your life, maybe you’ve had to cut her out in order to thrive.
Here are some suggestions for handling those painful feelings.
Teen suicide is way more common than you’d think. 1 in 12 teenagers have attempted suicide, according to a 2012 report. And the idea that people who talk about killing themselves are not actually going to try has long been proven to be a fallacy. If someone is talking about it, then they’re thinking about it, and thinking about it is a step toward doing it.
But if your teenager is talking to you about those thoughts, consider yourself lucky. That’s an opportunity for you to get help and instill hope.
What if your teenager seems unhappy but isn’t talking to you? You probably want to create an opportunity.
I’ve mentioned before in this blog that my daughter’s had some delays. Recently, she had an occupational therapy evaluation where the possibility of apraxia (a lifelong motor processing issue that needs heavy-duty therapy for years) was raised.
I went into a bit of a panic as I learned more about it. Then I started educating myself and speaking up to my current speech therapist, as well as making calls to explore the possibility of a change. The up side is, we’re going to start on a new, intensive treatment plan.
I don’t know how this is ultimately going to turn out. But I do know that more advocacy is probably in my future. And I think that whether your children are experiencing delays or not, as parents, all of us will be confronted with situations where we need to stand up for our children when they’re not yet ready or able to do it for themselves.
That can be a daunting prospect for many. So here are some suggestions that I hope will help.