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Don’t Panic: Your Kid’s “Bad” Behavior Is Probably Normal!

As a parent, it's so tempting to overanalyze every choice we make and try to figure out whether or not we've messed up our kids. It's also tempting to overanalyze our children in an attempt to either put them IN the box of "normal" or out of it. In reality, there's no such thing as normal. There is only "typical" or "common," and you would probably be surprised by what is common amongst kids.

Here are some...


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Stop Taking Your Child’s Behavior Personally


Do you react emotionally when your teenager rolls their eyes at you? Or when your three year old whines for every toy they see in the store? How about when your preteen cries in the fitting room at Walmart because you won't let them buy a teeny weeny bikini like "all the other moms?"

Okay, maybe that last one was a little personal for me. (Only 9 hours removed from that showdown, which was made worse...


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Why I Went From Loving ABA Practices to Hating Them

For those of you who don't know, "ABA" stands for Applied Behavior Analysis. ABA Therapy is most often used on children who have Autism, but it's also with children who are neurotypical. For three years, I used various forms of ABA therapy on children, and I thought it was the one, true, scientific method for changing behavior. I really did. In part, that was because I hadn't gone through enough educational programs yet to learn the...


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The Growing Trauma Epidemic in Children


Being a foster parent gives me more insight into the world of children's mental health than I ever wanted to have. I get to see firsthand just how prevalent the problems are, and, unfortunately, also get to see the lengthy process kids have to go through to get help.

But I want you to know that the growing epidemic of trauma in the United States isn't just a foster kid problem. Yes, kids who are in...


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Why It’s Wrong to Withhold Gentleness to Show Our Kids How “The Real World Works”


How many times have you heard a parent say something like, "If I baby my kids, they'll never know how the real world works."

Or maybe they've said things like, "How will they learn to keep going if I teach them it's okay to stop when things get hard?"

Or maybe they talk about people who are "whiney" because they want their feelings to be validated.

Or maybe they think therapy and counseling are both...


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Why Do “Behavior” Kids Self Sabotage?

If you have a "behavior" kid, then you know what I mean when I call them behavior kids. I don't mean to say that they're defined by their negative behavior, but instead to say that their behaviors often drive the mood of not only their own days, but the days of their family members, as well. These are the kids who have to deal with disorders such as Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Reactive Attachment Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress...


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Helping Kids Identify Where Their Negative Behaviors Are Coming From


How often do our kids act out without realizing why they're doing it or where it's coming from? If your kids are anything like mine, it's pretty much every time.

(Or maybe you have one of those magical children who come to you when they're upset and say, "Mom, I know I'm throwing a fit right now because I'm tired and hungry, but I can't seem to get myself under control. Can you help?")

It's usually easy...


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The D.A.R.E. Program Is Missing the Biggest Piece in the Substance Abuse Puzzle


This week, I got to attend my oldest daughter's program at her public school. In case you didn't know, "" stands for Drug Abuse Resistance Education, and it's a short-term program that 10-12 year olds go through every year to learn about the negative effects of drug and alcohol use.

It's the same program I went through in late elementary school. It still uses the same songs, the same mascot, and the same message of...