Technology, culture, and psychology come together and create new social customs. In the 1960’s, color televisions and TV dinners brought families together to eat dinner in front of the TV. Video games in the 1980’s created a new form of social connection for kids. Personal computers transformed the social landscape of communication—email and on line chats. The Internet launched all of us into an information age that we could barely imagine. Facebook changed the meaning of staying in touch. Now smartphones have taken us into an entirely new social universe—texting and instant... Read More
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Family Talk Blog
When I was young, walking home from school, two larger boys, with several girls looking on, started pushing me backwards. I didn’t see the low wooden fence behind me. I fell on my rear onto the grass. Everyone laughed at me. Humiliated and furious I ran home.
I plotted revenge, which I hoped to exact over the next few days. Fortunately, I never had the opportunity. That afternoon is etched in my memory, even though it happened over four decades ago!
How many of us have experienced bullying? One recent study found that 23% of boys and 18% of girls have been victims. Often... Read More
With a diagnosis of cancer, your life changes on a dime. Everything else comes to a screeching halt — work problems, family issues, and relationship concerns.
For women, besides skin cancer, breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer. Over the course of their lifetime, 12 percent of women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. In 2015, it's estimated that 231,840 women in the United States will develop invasive breast cancer.
The good news: Since 1989 the death rate from breast cancer has been decreasing. Women under 50 have had the biggest decreases in mortality,... Read More
As a child growing up, I felt that few adults really understood me. It wasn’t that I didn’t feel loved—I did. But everyone was so busy. I didn’t think that they really “saw” me. I remember my youngest daughter expressing the same thought when she was a child. And, I have to admit that there were many things about her I didn’t really get. She was right.
Our role as parents obscures our vision. Parenthood is filled with responsibilities, demands, and challenges. These pressures and our inherent lack of objectivity blocks our deeper understanding of our children.
When I was 10,... Read More
A recent survey of the National Sleep Foundation (www.sleepfoundation.org) found that, on average, Americans sleep 6.9 hours per night—6.8 hours during the week and 7.4 hours on the weekends. With 8 hours as the recommended average, we are losing one hour a night!
There is no doubt about it, parents are up late at night folding laundry, checking email, making meals, emptying the dishwasher, paying bills—hours after they put the kids to bed. They want to go to bed, but they also don’t want to wake up to a pile of dirty dishes or dirty... Read More
Joe and Mary sat on the love seat, tense and angry. “He never tells me he loves me! He doesn’t give me a hug or a kiss. He comes home, nods at me, plays with the kids, watches TV and falls sound asleep”. Joe is confused. “Of course, I love her! We both agreed that our kids come first. I shouldn’t have to tell her something she should know!”
But Mary feels taken for granted. She wants Joe to show her how much he loves her. He feels that she should know how he feels. This kind of conflict is like a jet circling around an airport endlessly. It seems like it will never come in for a... Read More
Larry, a middle aged man, sits in my office, talking about Al-Anon, the 12-step program fashioned after Alcoholics Anonymous for family and friends of individuals with alcoholism or chemical dependency. He tells me his story---“I got a phone call from my son’s school when Joey was 14 years old. He was caught drinking at school with his buddies. At the time, I thought --“boys will be boys”, and didn’t think much of it. The progression of the disease is slow, so it was hard to see. But as time went on, more signs of his drinking problem appeared. I got called in the middle of the night that... Read More
Since January 1, 2011, 10,000 adult have turned 65 years of age every day. This will continue for the next 20 years! By 2020, only 8 years away, 54 million Americans will be 65 and over. During the same year, there will be over 23 million Americans who are 75 and over. These statistics show the ballooning number of aging adults in the years to come. But these numbers do not reflect what this will mean for their adult children, who will be in their midlife.
I had coffee with a good friend and his wife the other day. They wanted to talk to me about some of the challenges they were... Read More