Psychoanalyst Erik Erikson noted that grade school children demonstrate a sense of industry, wanting to help out with tasks. They are eager to grab a snow shovel or mow the lawn! It takes a lot of patience when we have little helpers joining in, but their sense of pride makes the effort well worth the extra time. Once kids hit the teen years and are competent in completing chores, much to our dismay, that enthusiasm is gone. To be fair, as adults we don’t always look forward to chores either; we just know they need to be done.
We have signed up to be foster parents, and our first child will be arriving soon. How do we make a foster child feel at home?
My kids’ dad and I are divorced. They don’t want to go to their father’s house for Christmas, but it is his turn. How do I help them have a good holiday experience?
My daughter is really stressed at her first job. What can I say to help her handle this new reality?
After graduation from college, my daughter told me she no longer believes in God. What can I say to her that will help her think more deeply about this decision?
I know you usually answer questions from parents – but I’m a 14-year-old with a question about my mom. She spends all her time on her phone checking Facebook and Instagram – I’d really like to be able to talk to her without her being distracted. How can I bring this up?
My son came home for the summer after his first year at college, and announced that he was no longer going to attend Mass, including when he is home. How do I talk to him about this without resorting to, “You have to go because I still pay your bills,” which would probably do nothing but lead to resentment?
Our son is constantly disobeying us. The last straw was this week when he gave some friends a ride even though we’ve expressly forbidden it. Grounding hasn't worked, lectures haven’t worked — I’m thinking of having him stand on a corner with a sign the way I’ve seen on Facebook. Is this effective? Is it accountability or shaming?