Tag Archives: teenagers

Teens: Love, lust, and abuse

Lust or love?  Nature pushes the mating call button early on and lust predominates.   Parents worry and with reason.

The loves of youth, cannot remember her name.


Remembering the intensity of your  first crushes should help you deal better with the crushes of your  teens and pre-teens.  My first true love lasted for three years.  We were stuck on each other like crazy glue for the first two years and planned to marry.

My parents wisely did not try to break us up, but asked that  the wedding  wait until I had gone to college for two years.  He was not college bound and instead joined the army, was stationed in Germany and there met another forever love.

I wept and wept, but soon was dating and thought a few were potential ever-lasting loves.  A few lasted for a few years, but eventually ended. While  my college friends got married the year we graduated, I didn’t marry until in my thirties, but it has been an ever-lasting love.

Which leads me to the best advice I can give parents worried about teens in love.  Do not try to break them up.  Will not work.

The  exception? Abuse and that includes statutory rape.  If a child in your care is being abused, as a parent you are considered responsible for the abuse.  The younger the child, the more you are in danger of being called to task by your local child welfare authorities.

My advice? Learn the laws, particularly those related to statutory rape. If you have any doubt regarding your child seek advice from  a lawyer.

Not ready to do that? Fork out $0.99 for my eBook When Good Kids Have Sex. Cheaper than most cups of coffee and a lot more useful.


Parents have it much harder these days when dealing with teens in general and particularly teens who might be or become sexually active.  Blame the media, but learn to keep your cool.

EFTI’s Twelve Daily Emotional Fitness Exercises  keep you strong  when hurt, anger, or fear visit.  Here’s is a link to a  free EFTI poster coach reminding you of ways to practice those exercises.

daily twelve

Today’s post  was prompted by Valentine’s Day and  this Word Press Daily Prompt: It’s Friday, I’m in Love

As always thank you for all you do to support EFTI’s efforts to help others stay strong. Kindness is karma and comes back to bless you.




Aikido is a martial arts form that focuses mainly on preventing and defusing anger, one reason good kids run away.

hostosthumbAikido  also equips you to protect yourself when needed.  Master teachers of Aikido are also known as Peace DoJos.


I would like to see on-going teaching of Aikido mandatory in all schools.  When my kids were out there, I rested more easily knowing they had been trained to defuse anger and to protect themselves.

I would also like to see  all who carry a gun as part of their job, and  all who seek licensing to own a gun, forced to take Aikido training.

I can’t help but believe that had the Columbine, Newtown, schools taught the lessons inherent in Aikido, the unhappy shooters might have more fully embraced.  One of the main causes of violence is isolation and turning others into objects of condemnation of one sort or another.  Aikido  seeks understanding and connected with those too often seen as the other.

For more information about Aikido go here.  Here is a the Peace Dojo I worked with in Mott Haven. Urban Visions.


Here is my thank you gift if you have just started following me.   It is a free guide to the Daily Twelve Emotional Fitness Exercises. These are easy to learn, easy to practice and helpful to anyone dealing with anger, sadness, stress and other of life’s  every day problems. They will help you stay calm and in control.

All my other  books can be found on my  Amazon’s Author Page.

You can also follow me on the When Good Kids Do Bad Things Facebook page. If you go there please take a moment to like it.

Finally, You might find my Emotional Fitness Training’s Pinterest site helpful. Both of my blog posts are pinned there, and I also share other people’s information that I think will help you stay strong both as a parent and an individual. Take a peek by clicking here.

As I tell myself a thousand times a day,  do not weaken, give lots of love to others and to yourself, be grateful, practice kindness, live now, give and seek forgiveness, and always hope  the blessing of the forces beyond our control are with you and those you love.


DISCLAIMER: FORGIVE MY GRAMMATICAL ERRORS FOR I HAVE DYSGRAPHIA.  If you need perfect posts, you will not find them here. I have dysgraphia which means that sometimes my sentence structure is not that easy to follow or I make other errors. Still, most people understand me. All of my books are professionally edited, but not all of my blog posts are.  If this troubles you, feel free to read elsewhere.  If you persevere, you are practicing kindness by lifting my spirits for that means you find what I say helpful and that is one of my missions. Kindness always repays those who spread it.


School struggles top must parent’s worry list.  Understandable in today’s world.
Hating school points to any number of problems.  School has its down moments for everyone, but hating school points to more serious problems.

parent advice for dealing with school struggles

This advice begins with some “when to worry” tips and ends with tips for how to handle worries.

Tip one: Check out expected age and stage developmental time lines.   Click here for access to the most comprehensive overview of what to expect when.  This list was put out by the Australian Goverment’s Department of Health.  It is the best I have found after much web surfing.

Most children don’t hit all on the times listed exactly, but being consistently at the bottom on any test should raise some concern; the more missed, the more one should worry.

Tip two:  Worry if a child cannot read simple sentences and if he or she reverses letters or numbers after the second grade – by then most have out grown these difficulties.  These are often signs of a learning glitch, disability or challenge. For more information about such struggles visit the web page of  The National Center for Learning Disabilities. 

Worry about a child that hates school to the point that getting him or her up and off has become the major battle of the day, with homework a close second? This often begins in adolescence, but can be seen earlier.

Tip three: Worry about bullying if the hatred of school develops suddenly.  Bullies often make threats that keep kids from sharing that they are being bullied.  This Stop Bullying Webpage is the place to go for more information about bullying, including what to watch for and how to help.

Tip four:   Do this simple ADD test: ask your child to stand without moving for three minutes. Make a game of it for younger children by saying you want to play army.  Without moving means eyes straight ahead, hands at side, breathing regular.  Then ask the child to rate how hard he found standing still on a one to five scale.  One is easy, five couldn’t do it, three so-so.  If the child does not remain still or doing so was very difficult, ADD may be a problem. CHADD is a place to find information and help.

Tip five: If the school is worried, you should be worried – they do know kids.

Tip six: Do not just worry act.  Get a professional and complete psychological and learning evaluation.

Tip seven:  If the school offers an evaluation that is a good place to begin, but it is also wise to persue an independent examination from a psychologist trained to deal test intelligence, learning styles, and educational performance.  If you cannot afford to pay for a private evaluation go to your local mental health agencies specializing in children.

Tip eight: Never go to a meeting at a school without an advocate by your side.  As with the evaluation, the advocate should not be connected to the school. If the school offers an advocate take advantage, but also bring an independent advocate with you.  Independent advocates can be friends or at some point a legal adviser or even a therapist.

Tip nine:  Never lose hope for you child’s future.  School success is important, but studies show others things matter more.  Manners matter, so does finding a passion, so does developing a good work ethic.  Some say these matter far more than academic degrees.

Tip ten: Develop strong emotional fitness skills and teach the same to your child.  My book Parents Are People To, An Emotional Fitness Program for Parents details how to do so.  For a quick start read look at my Daily Twelve Emotional Fitness Exercises.


Parenting is hard work and if a child is struggling with school parents worry and suffer.  Hopefully the above tips and resources will help you and your child move forward.

DISCLAIMER: FORGIVE MY GRAMMATICAL ERRORS FOR I HAVE DYSGRAPHIA. If you need perfect posts, you will not find them here. I have dysgraphia which means that sometimes my sentence structure is not that easy to follow or I make other errors. Still, most people understand me. All of my books are professionally edited, but not all of my blog posts are. Thanks for your understanding and reading my work.

As always thank you for following me. If you know someone else who will benefit from my thoughts, forward this to them. Liking, commenting, and sharing are other ways you can help me stay strong and spread some ideas others might find helpful.

As I tell myself a thousand times a day, stay strong, give lots of love, be grateful, live now, have lots of luck.



Worrying  erodes emotional fitness and destroys what can be enjoyed. When we start setting our children free, sending them out into the world, we worry more.

This has been circulating on Facebook. Love it. Gave me a laugh.

My mother always said the death of a child, was a blow no parent recovered from.  I think the death of her younger sister sent her almost good enough mother over the edge.  When we start setting our children free, we start worrying big time, because bad things happen, including death.  But we can’t tie our children to our apron strings or the bedpost.  What to do?

I always loved this quote and use it to combat worrying.   Still, I am a worrying one.  What I try to do is not let my worrying keep me awake, or have me fussing and fuming about what I cannot control, or trying to keep my kids safe by keeping them at home. I work to own my worrying. Here’s another quote.

There is a time to worry, a time to to be angry, upset  and a time to set such negative feelings aside.

Parenting advice about worrying.

Tip one: Check reality.  The news and media add to worries by inflating the horrors.  The reports about texting and driving are a good example.  But accidents caused that way are few.

Kids are for the most part too smart to text and drive.  Drive and talk on their cell phones—more likely.

Moreover, most people avoid accidents when doing foolish thngs  like speeding, or driving while chatting on a cell phone.  For as my mother often said, “God protects the foolish.”

Tip two: Make peace with what you cannot control, but control what you can.

When I finally finished my education, my first job was as a medical social worker.  I became familiar with people’s strengths, but also with the inevitability of death.  Painful, but forced a reality on me that I knew in the long run, I could not control.  Helped me to cherish life and do my best to enjoy all I had been given.

Both of my parents had also talked in their own way about focusing on what you control and not wasting time on what you cannot control.  Not easy.  I could control giving the car keys to my teens until I was confident they were responsible drivers, but I couldn’t control the risks they took on their snowboards.

I could and did teach and model staying as safe as possible.  Accepting that bad things happen does not mean courting them.

Tip Three:  When you find yourself worrying, try a few emotional fitness strategies. Here are the three  that help me most.

  1. Distraction:  Do something that absorbs your attention and makes you feel good. This can be reading, watching a sit-com, or for me, cleaning out some messy drawers because I love creating order out of chaos.
  2. Calming self talk which can be singing, praying or just repeating a slogan.
  3. Exercising.  When I was younger and light on my feet, jogging or dancing to one of Richard Simmons tapes kept worries from owning me.

Let me know what you do to stop useless worrying.


Parenting is difficult and often a struggle as you must know by now. All sorts of feelings surface.  Worrying is a big one.  Try my tips, they will probably help.  If not,  my advice is not to ignore excessive worrying, but to  get professional help.

As always, thank you for your support, it means a great deal to me.


DISCLAIMER: FORGIVE MY GRAMMATICAL ERRORS FOR I HAVE DYSGRAPHIAIf you need perfect posts, you will not find them here. I have dysgraphia which means that sometimes my sentence structure is not that easy to follow or I make other errors. Still, most people understand me. All of my books are professionally edited, but not all of my blog posts are. Thanks for your understanding and reading my work.


All my books are available on Amazon, and readable on any tablet, laptop, Mac, PC, e-reader or Kindle device.

When Good Kids Do Bad Things. A Survival Guide for Parents of Teenagers
Parents Are People Too. An Emotional Fitness Program for Parents
Tame the Test Anxiety Monster
How to Hold A Successful Family Meeting