1. Struggles with Kindergarten Remote Learning

    Q: Last spring my daughter was in kindergarten when COVID hit. Her teacher was accessible and did her best to provide meaningful online learning, but mostly it was a stressful, difficult, emotionally draining experience. There was lots of tantruming, “stomach aches,” melting off of chairs, and other forms of non-cooperation. I am dreading this September; imagining a similar scenario with first…Read More

  2. What’s the Connection Between Attachment Disorder and Oppositional Defiant Disorder?

    What is Oppositional Defiance Disorder (ODD)? An ODD is a complex and serious disorder that is diagnosed in about 10% of children seen by a mental health professional. Kids with this disorder are typically argumentative, irritable, angry, and (occasionally) vindictive to an extent not seen in the average rebellious child, and the behavior is seen for at least six months in one or more settings.  …Read More

  3. Role-play Games Build Confidence and Keep Kids Connected

    Are you worried the stay-in-place efforts to keep our community safe are leaving your kids lonely and isolated? You’re not alone. In a study on the impact of social isolation and loneliness on the mental health of children and adolescents, Dr Loades and her researchers found that children and adolescents can experience high rates of depression and anxiety during and after forced isolation, addin…Read More

  4. Is your teen locked behind a mask of COVID-19 indifference? Five tips to help you get behind the mask.

    We are all moving from one coping strategy to another as we settle into the long grind of dealing with the implications of COVID-19. One minute we’re laughing at dark humor, the next we’re crying, or snapping at our spouse. Our teens are doing the same thing, but they’re teens, so we may not recognize their process. Instead of watching hours on end of news coverage about the virus, they may …Read More

  5. Are Video Games Addictive?

    Originally published in our Laudable Life advice column in the Lakelands Leader Q: My 15-year-old son loves playing video games. It feels like that’s all he ever wants to do and although we sometimes joke that he’s “addicted,” I do worry that he spends too much time in games and not in real life. Can you really be addicted to video games? Are there specific signs I should look for?  A: Ac…Read More

  6. School Pressure: Gift & Talented, Magnet, and IB Programs

    Question: My child is considering applying to a magnet program for middle school. It seems like a great opportunity if he is accepted, but are there any negative consequences for children in these advanced schools? Answer: Gifted & Talented, Magnet, and IB Programs are often dream schools for hardworking students looking to pursue a more rigorous course of study. While these programs can be en…Read More

  7. College Student Living at Home for the Summer

    Q: I’m a college student living at home for the summer, and I’m starting to get annoyed with my parents. Even though I lived independently on campus, they’re enforcing rules that I had to follow as a high schooler. I understand that they want to keep me safe; so they limit my ability to hang out with friends at night or don’t let me have girls over but it feels like I’m losing the freedo…Read More

  8. Playdate Gone Wrong

    Originally published in our Laudable Life advice column in the Lakelands Leader Q: Last week my daughter and I had the worst playdate ever! She’s two and a half and an only child. She likes other children but sometime she can get anxious or shy around them and sometimes she has trouble sharing. Probably all very normal for kids this age. We’re trying to help her by scheduling more play dates. …Read More

  9. Having a safe halloween with food allergies

    Q: Our son has food allergies, peanuts, dairy, and gluten. It’s bad and it’s a pain, but we manage. We cook a lot at home and we know which treats he can eat. I send him to school and friends’ houses with his own cupcake when there’s a party; but Halloween is tough. He loves the costuming but he can’t eat much of what he gets. It’s a bummer. Sometimes people get offended when he’s pi…Read More

  10. Stopping Tantrums By Nipping Them in the Bud

    Originally published in the Lakelands Leader in our advice column the Laudable Life Q: I love my daughter so much, but she's a tough cookie. It's very common during a play date, or when we're have company over, or when she's with me and we're out shopping together, for her to have a full on meltdown.  It's so stressful and embarrassing.  The worst times have been when it happens in front of my i…Read More