The most adaptive parent-child relationships provide children with three conditions over time—an abiding message of being accepted emotionally, a sense that certain behaviors (e.g., hurting others) will not be tolerated, and values-based leadership from parents’ example and guidance. Many parents I work with have children who are behaving in defiant and disruptive ways. Parents […]
If asked, “What are your goals as a parent?”, I suspect most folks would speak to the outcomes they want for their children. There will likely be fair agreement on the big issues: to be safe, to be loved, to be healthy, and to be successful or content with their life choices. Most will […]
Try this the next time your children come to you with a complaint or a problem that isn’t completely outside of their ability to solve: Listen without interrupting, take a moment to acknowledge their emotional state (“I can tell that you’re mad”), and then offer this question, “What are you going to do?”
In my […]
Some of the more practical parenting information that science has produced pertains to risk and protective factors.
A risk factor is any attribute or characteristic that increases the odds that a child will experience a bad outcome. For example, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism estimates that children of alcoholics are between 4 […]
The anniversary of my mother’s death is just before Thanksgiving, so at this time of the year my thoughts go to her—Erin McLavy Cavell.
On the day she died, we drove to Louisiana for the funeral and I sat down and wrote these words, which my siblings asked me to read at her funeral:
This year, […]
In a study done over 30 years ago, researchers pulled first graders from different classrooms and had them interact in a new play group several days in a row. Selected were children who well liked by classmates and children who were actively disliked. Also in the play groups were children who were less extreme […]
Today’s post is the tenth and final post in a series that I call “The 10 Most Useful Facts about Emotions”. I wrote this as part of a forthcoming book about parenting (You’re Not the Worst Parent in the World). My goal is to help parents appreciate what I call the “emotional hazards” of […]
Today’s post is the ninth in a series that I call “The 10 Most Useful Facts about Emotions”. I wrote this for a forthcoming book about parenting. I was trying to find a way to help parents appreciate what I call the emotional hazards of parenting. So, the 10 most useful emotion facts are […]