Family Matters with Fern Weis

November 12, 2014

Living with a teen can be utterly draining. You might want to trade them in, but there are no returns, no refunds, no exchanges, all sales are final. What's a mom or dad to do? Have you ever noticed the similarities between toddlers and teens? I remember when my son was a toddler. He had ...

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Have you seen the movie, All I Wanna Do? It’s a relatively unknown film from the late 1990s. On the surface, this movie about an all-girls boarding school in the early 1960s is fluff. But as the story develops, we learn that some of the girls are there because they are rebels, hard to handle, ...

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Byron Katie (creator of ‘The Work’) says, “When you argue with reality you lose…100% of the time.” When you think “If only my teenager would…” you are arguing with what is, and it’s impossible to make progress. You are stuck in the land of “if only”. You know many people who complain about ...

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You may shudder when you hear the expression 'tough love'. It brings to mind kids out of control and families standing at the edge of a cliff. You don't have to be in crisis to benefit from a 'tough love' approach. How did you handle the last difficult situation with one of your kids? Odds ...

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Parents are increasingly concerned that they and their children, from toddlers to teens, are losing the ability to focus and stay on task (except when it comes to video games). It doesn’t mean that you all have ADHD, although some may. There are many other causes: * inadequate sleep         ...

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“When in doubt, don’t.” The version that I heard from my parents was, “If you’d be embarrassed to tell me about it, then don’t do it.”  It’s a great message for teens to hear, since they are so impulsive and will do just about anything to fit in. This guideline applies to adults as well. Most of ...

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I didn't realize how much of my life I had to share, (and how messy it was) until we were in the parent program at Hyde School. I didn't understand the incredibly positive impact it could have on my children until then. The key, though, is telling it with humility and without ...

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It's a fact. As your kids grow up, you must grow up, too! If you are the parent of teens, you can't treat them the way you did when they were eight. As they grow, you have to grow. What worked with a child won't be effective anymore. The sooner you accept that, the easier adolescence will be ...

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Many of you are sending your kids off to college soon, and maybe for the first time. I’ve been there, twice. And now my daughter lives overseas! Most of the time I’m okay with it…you get used to it, you know? But sometimes when she sends me little notes, or we chat on Skype, I miss her again.

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“In most ways, kids are pretty much the same as they’ve always been. Nuts. But in most ways, the world around them is incomprehensibly different. And also nuts… It is an adolescent world different from the one you recall… When your son tells you that you “don’t understand,” trust him. You don’t.

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I bet you’ve always thought do-overs are for kids and games. Think again. Do-overs apply to most situations and people, although we really focus here on your relationship with your child. Do you wish you had handled a situation differently with your teen? You never know what will fly out of ...

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“Of course my mother pushes my buttons… she installed them!” This is quoted from one of my coach training weekends. It sounds familiar, doesn’t it? (Moms, please don’t take offense. Feel free to insert “my father” if that is more accurate!) When you read it, do you hear your child talking ...

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No, it's not a typo. It's the truth. Kids don't listen because we've trained them not to. Keep reading and you'll see that we parents have created the monster (and there's still time to tame it). See if any of the following examples sound familiar. I remember when my kids were little and we ...

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At the beginning of each school year, your kids have a chance for a fresh start. And you, their most important teacher, are key to their success. Here’s what you need to know: 1)  Teens are different. You’re not parenting a 7-year old. Your teen wants to be in charge of his time and choices, ...

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My son, 29, moved back home several years ago when he lost his job. The good news is he found another job, and is darn good at it. The bad news is, he has a few habits that drive me up the wall. One of them is leaving towels on the floor after a shower. It looks messy, you can trip over them, ...

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Some time ago I worked with a mom who, as a consequence for some unpleasant behaviors, took away her 13-year old son's cell phone for three days. There was a scene with him (let's call him Scott) with the usual retorts -- It's not fair, you can't do that, it's MY phone, and so on.

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