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Even though your teenager is growing up, and in a sense, growing away, there are still ways you can reaffirm and maintain family unity — now and in the future. How can you do this? • Face your problems together as a family. Don’t let denial or blame come between you. Facing pain together can enhance your closeness. • Let […]

Hope, renewed strength, and the reassurance that you are not alone are major advantages of participating in parental support groups. These may be informal networks of friends, or they may be more formal groups, such as “Toughlove” or “Mothers Without Custody”. These are not therapy groups, but groups run by the participants who tend to share some kind of unifying […]

There are an estimated one million teen pregnancies each year in this country and not all of them are accidental. Many children have children to have someone to love, to be important, to prove love, or for a host of other reasons. Most don’t realize what parenthood really means. Communicating a realistic view of parenthood to your teen can be […]

Babies spend most of the first year in ignorance of the fact that they’re individual people separate from their parents. As they learn that objects and people do have an existence of their own, separate from themselves (as they learn what psychologists call object competency), so they discover that separateness. It’s a huge intellectual leap in understanding, but not an […]

If a therapist has recommended psychiatric hospitalization or other in-patient therapy for your teen, The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry recommends asking the following questions: 1. Why is this treatment being recommended? 2. How will it help? 3. What are the alternatives and how do they compare? 4. What does the treatment program include? 5. How will my […]

There are ads in most magazines and newspapers exhorting parents of difficult, rebellious and obstinate teens to bring their kids to one or another residential treatment facility. But treating a teen residentially isn’t always the most appropriate choice. A teenager who is trying to withdraw from an alcohol or drug addiction may find a residential setting helpful. A therapist may […]

It’s sometimes sad that the only life experience as difficult as being a teenager is being the parent of a teenager. Much of this difficulty comes as the result of a teenager’s ambivalence toward his parents. One minute he may be loving, fun and affectionate and the next, uncommunicative, unreachable and impossible. He may alternate between insisting he’s old enough […]

Many parents dismiss teen love as love that’s not real, but all feelings are real. Some feelings of love are infatuation, some are immature and some signal a mature love. People of all ages can feel any of the above, and teens especially need to know the difference. Infatuation means being in love with love, when being in love is […]