13 Reasons

13 Reasons Why: A Parent and School Guide

Parents, schools and clinicians are bracing themselves for the second installment of 13 Reasons Why, the wildly popular and controversial series documenting high school students and a number of events including bullying, rape, self-injury and suicide.  The first installment of 13 Reasons Why was lauded for highlighting issues that continue to affect high school students at an increasingly prevalent rate as well as preteens (who have the highest increase in successful suicide rates in the United States, an increase of more than 300% over the last 15 years).  The series was also condemned because of the sensationalized manner in which some of the topics were portrayed and the lack of discussion or resources provided by the creators of the series or Netflix itself.  Schools reportedly took different avenues in addressing conversation around the series, from banning any mention of 13 Reasons on school grounds to advising parents to utilize Netflix parental controls to avoid preteens and adolescents from watching the series.  Other schools have taken a more proactive approach by moving their health and wellness curriculum that discusses suicide from high school to middle school.  For parents and clinicians looking for resources to discuss or support their children who may be intrigued by the series or who are interested in viewing it, here are some resources that may help.


Teen Social Media Use – #WhatDoWeKnow


What the heck is my teen doing on social media!?  Teen social media usage has been deemed both a compelling education resource and outlet to an uncensored medium that can have immediate interpersonal consequences to deferred academic costs.  While adult’s consumption of social media has nearly plateaued over the last 2.5 years, teen use has increased faster than any other age group.  As a result, adolescents have become the most studied collection of people regarding the positive and negative effects of social media use through both the amount of social media use and the platforms that are leveraged.  The costs and benefits are well documented and can be persuasive indicators as to whether a preteen’s or teenager’s time on social media can be productive or problematic.  Let’s explore both sides.


The Six Steps To Integrating Mindfulness Into Effective Parenting

The marriage of mindfulness and parenting seems like a great theoretical union and, in practice, can be difficult to achieve.  The idea that we can mindfully stay in the moment and balance the hundreds of tasks and events that involve professional, academic and social demands on top of parenting responsibilities can seem counterintuitive.  While mindfulness has had profound clinical and practical applications across hundreds of child, adolescent and adult domains, mindfulness in parenting has been a relatively neglected focus in research in spite of its popularity in a number of different fields.  We do, however, have a dynamic study evaluating the six components of parent mindfulness that can have a significant impact on parenting effectiveness and adolescent emotional health.

Listening to your child with full attention
Compassion for your child
Non-judgmental acceptance of parent functioning and deficits
Emotional non-reactivity in your parenting
Emotional awareness of your child
Emotional awareness of your self


Top 10 Tips for Effective Parenting

There are a LOT of top 10 lists on the internet.  Here is a nice collection of collective insight learned over the years from phenomenal colleagues and incredible families.......feel free to leave your own tips on the comments section to keep this thread going.

7. Don’t cry ‘wolf’ too often

Just like the fable, when parents cry ‘wolf’ all the time, kids tend to tune them out, leaving parents feeling unheard and ineffective when crises occur.  Work toward finding balance when emotions run high and save crying ‘wolf’ until a situation calls for it.


Help – Digital Devices Have Taken My Family Hostage

The amount of time that is spent on digital devices is a common frustration for parents of kids, pre-teens and adolescents.  Research shows that being online is a choice that transcends kids, adolescent and parents in record numbers, with adults leading the way in terms of internet usage.  With more professional and academic tasks transitioning online, it is a trend that is unlikely to shift in the near future.