Parenting Tips

What to Expect the First Days of School from Your Kinder to Second Grader

What to Expect the First Days of School from Your Kinder to Second Grader

Schools around the corner or maybe you have already begun.  You have been buying supplies and preparing for school.  You probably have been reading books and talking about school to your soon to be little ones these past few weeks.  You've done it because you understand that if you predict for your child then they will be ready when the REAL thing happens.

What about you?  How are you preparing for the school year?

Vacation Time and Parenting: Steps to Make it Fun

Vacation Time and Parenting: Steps to Make it Fun

Children and parents alike look forward to the lazy days of the summer months.  We imagine happy moments in our family vacations.  Children running and playing and getting popsicle mustaches.  But right around the middle of July we find ourselves screaming, lecturing on the importance of being grateful for the time spent together, and overwhelmed with finding things to do.  The following are tips and ways to manage these days of summer.

Sometimes I Want to Give up on Parenting

Sometimes I Want to Give up on Parenting

The wind is blowing my hat towards my cheek, and I can hear my children laughing with their daddy.  It is an absolutely breathtaking day on Miami Beach, and I feel like crying. My mind is flooded with negative thoughts:  I'm a bad mom because I won't play with them in the water and my children's memories of fun times will always include mom on the sideline watching them looking serious.  It is always painful to sit in a happy place full of remorse and regret.  I know this is universal for most of us as parents.

6 Reasons Why Children Should Be Seen and Heard at Restaurants

6 Reasons Why Children Should Be Seen and Heard at Restaurants

I cringed as my husband told my daughter that he would no longer help her order the next time we went to a restaurant.  We have a hard and clean rule of not disagreeing in front of the children when one of us is setting a boundary, but in this situation I could not hold my tongue.  I had never thought about it, but we disagreed about whether or not our children should order their own food at a restaurant.   

What Your Child Needs to Know to be Ready For Kindergarten

What Your Child Needs to Know to be Ready For Kindergarten

Time and again teachers, parents, and school directors worry and complain about how they are all not on the same page as it pertains to readiness for school.  Most understand that socialization, colors, shapes, and letters are important for children to be exposed to.  That said, there are other aspects of a child's social emotional development that if they are not helped and taken care of by the time they go to their first day of kindergarten, will contribute to things not going smoothly in the school age years.  

How Society Can Break Our Girls

How Society Can Break Our Girls

I watched my daughter’s eyes swell up with tears and thought, “here it is, here is the day I have been dreading.” We spoke while I brushed her hair about an incident she had in her classroom.  The students in her class have begun to point out how intelligent she is.  They react to her with jokes spiced with sarcasm saying, “What’s the magic recipe for getting all the answers right?” This is not bullying.  These are just kids reacting, noticing, moving through the markers of development.  The ones speaking to her this way are defending themselves from embarrassment and fear of my daughter judging their mistakes or their perceived lack of knowledge compared to her.  My daughter has begun to balance with how to be her authentic self:  intelligent, curious, an avid reader and friend, with her need to remain in relationship with those around her.

How Understanding ME, YOU and US Makes for Better Parenting

How Understanding ME, YOU and US Makes for Better Parenting

This process made me analyze and process something that most of us psychotherapists take for granted.  The ability to self-reflect is one that will help all relationships.  It is particularly crucial in parenting, but unfortunately it is something very few parents tend to do.  


Self-reflection takes time to learn and practice.  In development, it should be a marker we reach in varying degrees through the age groups but should master at the end of adolescence.  As Dan Siegel discusses in both of his books, Brainstorm and Mindsight, we need to be able to understand, ME, YOU and US, to make the best decisions as it pertains to relationship.  In parenting this is how I see this breakdown

Tips to Help Parents Answer Sex-related questions from Early Childhood to Teens

Tips to Help Parents Answer Sex-related questions from Early Childhood to Teens

To soothe your fear and discomfort with the topic of sex remember that we develop sexually from the moment we are born, and in this manner it should be approached like when you taught them to walk, eat, go to school, bathe. Here are healthy sexual development markers:

Disney Pixar's Inside Out Challenges All Of Us To Feel

Disney Pixar's Inside Out Challenges All Of Us To Feel

Outside of my office door I hear a little voice talking to her daddy saying, “This one is joy, then disgust, yuk! And that one’s anger.r”  I know this little one does not like to talk about her feelings, but today she is excited and certain, describing the characters from the new Disney Pixar movie Inside Out.  I am overwhelmed with gratitude hearing her use emotional language and thrilled that director Pete Docter and Disney Pixar have taken on the task of bringing to life the amazing world of feelings and the workings of the mind.  As a mental health professional, the debut of this movie has been on the top of my to do list since I saw the trailer.  I am happy to say...