Topic: Resilience

Raising Resilient Kids and the Role of Distress Tolerance

Sharon and James struggled with infertility for years before they finally adopted a newborn they named Ross. An adorable bundle of energy, he filled their lives with light.  But when the child was four, the couple came to me with a concern: Ross wouldn’t accept “no” for an answer. He always expected things to go […]

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Amid the Pandemic, Going Easy on Our Kids — and Ourselves

There has rarely been a time that’s more universally challenging for parents. Amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, families across the globe are sequestered at home. While this is the best way to stay safe and keep others safe, it comes with its own difficulties. As a child psychologist, I’m fielding daily calls and emails from […]

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Home Together: How to Use This Unique Opportunity to Strengthen Children’s Resilience

Few of us ever imagined a situation as pervasive and scary as the Coronavirus pandemic, but I have hope that we can turn this crisis into a unique opportunity for our children and for us to build the special kind of resilience that comes from facing adversity. Crises like this one give our innate emotional […]

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How To Cut Stress in Kids’ Transitions from School to Summer

The end of the school year can ban bring both fun and challenge for both parents and children. Some parents find it easy to transition their children to beloved and familiar settings such as local summer programs, day camp, or sleep-away camp.  But others experience stress and scramble to find appropriate options for their children […]

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Considering these Popular Parenting Techniques? Proceed with Caution

As anyone who has ever struggled to manage a toddler’s meltdown in a busy supermarket line can attest, parenting can be both confusing and humbling. To make matters worse, seeking out advice from so-called experts can often lead to even more confusion since their wisdom can be contradictory and bewildering. So it’s worth a quick […]

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How Anger, Tantrums, and Meltdowns Protect Your Child

Anger, meltdowns, and tantrums get a bad rap. As parents, we worry that these behaviors indicate that our child is choosing to misbehave or that we’re somehow failing as parents. The judgmental stares and glances we get from onlookers only increases those insecure thoughts. We read books about what to do and try to tame […]

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Children’s Mental Health: Everyone’s Responsibility

Amelia’s parents contacted me because of a problem in Kindergarten. Her teachers reported that she often began to cry around lunchtime, and when they asked her why she was crying, she couldn’t answer them.  They tried to distract her, and even offered her a trip to the class “store”, (stocked with fun prizes) if she would […]

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The Power of Hope from Childhood Professionals

Several years ago at a professional training I conducted on parental stress, an 80-year-old mother raised her hand to share an insight. A psychologist and mother, she explained that she had a 50-year-old son with special needs. “Everyone told us to institutionalize him,” she said, “that he would be functioning at the lowest levels, and […]

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The Expectation Gap: When Do Toddlers Have Control Over their Behaviors?

Toddlers are wildly and wonderfully unpredictable. One minute, your little girl might be happily conversing with you, and the next, she’s out of control, rolling on the floor in agony because she can’t have that cupcake she just spotted on a TV commercial.  For parents, this seemingly unpredictable lack of emotional control can be exasperating […]

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