13 Reasons Why is Not Going Away

I can’t believe it.  Five weeks later and people are still talking about 13 Reasons Why. Amidst all the critique, teens have risen up to create hope.  This week, Oxford High School students created “13 Reasons Why Not.”  If this doesn’t speak to the power of teens helping teens, I don’t know what does. I am still […]

More 13 Reasons Why

It’s hard to believe, but two weeks later, 13 Reasons Why is still a huge topic. I recently wrote a guide for parents and educators that you can find on the main page of our website. If you’re interested in learning or discussing more, I encourage you to reach out through this blog, or “like” […]

13 Reasons Why: Helpful or Harmful?

  13 Reasons Why (13RW) was released on Netflix last week (3/31/17) amid much fanfare. Jay Asher’s 2007 book had a large following, and the idea of a show based off that book took off. Trailers were everywhere, and many, including myself, were intrigued. 13 Reasons Why is about a teenaged girl, Hannah Baker, who […]

The Power of a Simple Letter (#xplan)

  One of the best pieces of parenting advice I’ve seen lately is the X Plan, from Burt Fulks, a father of three. In a nutshell, the X plan enables a teen to text the letter “X” to their parents or siblings when they are in a potentially dangerous situation. The parent or sibling will […]

Making Peace with “Good Enough”

Accepting what is, parent the child you have, remember your child is not you. These are the themes I stress in parent talks as ways to cultivate your child’s positive self-image and improve the parent-child relationship. Why then am I finding it so difficult to follow my own advice? Not surprisingly, it’s much easier for […]

The Importance of the “Soft Skills”

How is it that so many people who didn’t go to “Ivy League” colleges manage to be very successful? And how do some “average” students manage to be more well-rounded and successful than overachievers? The answers can be found in the “soft skills.” In today’s dynamic world, the ability to interact well with others, to […]

We Can’t Ignore the Dangers of the Online World

  In the last two weeks, I have heard of a rape and sextortion case both related to the app Kik. The rape involved a college student who met up in person with a man she had been corresponding with online. Their meeting took a tragic turn when he drove her to a secluded area […]

It’s Hard to be a Girl

I was honored to be the keynote speaker at a teen girls’ empowerment workshop this past weekend. Coincidentally, the workshop was the day after I attended the Los Angeles Woman’s March.  Regardless of your politics or beliefs, the sheer volume of people who showed up for the march proves what I saw written on so […]

Suicide Rates In Young Adults: Education And Prevention

This week, we are grateful to Pat McGraw at the Prevention Coalition for a guest post on such an important topic.  You can reach Pat at Photo via Pixabay by Cparks Suicide affects many families across the U.S. each year, and unfortunately it has a long reach; far from being a serious problem only for adults, […]

Reflections on a New Year

  Another year has come and gone.   Another opportunity to make (and if you’re like me, break) New Year’s resolutions. Maybe this will be the year I exercise more, eat more vegetables, or yell less at my kids. Sound familiar? One thing I am going to commit to more this year is being “present.”   If […]

For Many Men, the Struggle is Real

In the last year and a half, I have been connected peripherally to 4 deaths by suicide. All four were white, middle to upper socioeconomic class men in their 40s, all four of them fathers. The statistics say that this specific group’s rate of death by suicide is rising. I don’t have intimate knowledge of […]

A “Perfect Parent” is Different Than You Might Think

As I’ve written about before, there is so much pressure to be a “perfect parent.” It begins before your child is even born, sometimes even conceived. Books and opinions proliferate about how to discipline, what to feed them and when, the best toys for learning, etc. I could go on and on, but you probably […]

How a Dance is Preventing Suicide

Wow, it has been an amazing week! A teen and I were featured on the Lifetime series Dance Moms on 10/18. We spoke about teen suicide and Teen Line as a resource. Check it out! The response has been enormous. Our calls, texts, emails, message board, and social media following have all skyrocked. People have […]

Parenting is NOT an Olympic Sport

Many of us live in a society where parenting has become competitive, almost like an Olympic sport. Competition starts early with “where is your child going to preschool?” As they get older, it becomes “how many activities do they do after school?”  “How many APs are they taking?  What was their ACT/SAT score?”  The answers […]

Finding Calm in a Culture of Busy

We are all too busy for our own good (I’m including myself in this). Most of us are scheduled from the time we wake up until we go to bed, often later than we’d like to because we have “so much to do.” What’s even worse is that being busy has become competitive, as in who […]

Why We Need to Talk About Suicide

In honor of Suicide Prevention Month (which is September), I am re-running a blog post from last October about not being afraid to talk to your teens about suicide. Parents: Please don’t be afraid to discuss suicide with your teens In the last two days, I have heard of two teenage deaths by suicide. In […]

Preparing Your Teen for College

  August is almost over (how did it come and go so fast?), which means back to school and off to college. Everywhere you look there is another article on what kids need to know before college. I’ve complied my own list as it pertains to mental health. Here are nine things that parents should […]

Love as a Communication Tool

“Tolerance is the wrong way. Tolerance says I’m just going to stomach your right to be different, that if you disappear from the face of the Earth, I’m no better or worse off.” -Sen. Cory Booker (D) New Jersey As we turn the calendar from July to August, we find ourselves squarely in the middle […]