parenting

Should I hold my kid back?

My daughter, The Girl, was born at 10 p.m. on November 30th. She was six weeks early and all I was concerned about that night was counting fingers and toes, unaware of how the timing of her birth affected her scholastically. Having just squeaked under the district deadline, she is currently the youngest junior in her high … Continue Reading →

A financial education is a must for teens

Did you know that only four states in the country require personal financial management courses in high school? Knowing that my daughter, a.k.a. The Girl, is leaving for college in two years, I’ve been casting about for some financial education tools. We all know she won’t listen to me, but I can hope that I can … Continue Reading →

'Astronaut's Guide' a must read for teens and parents

I started following Col. Chris Hadfield on Facebook while he was commanding the International Space Station. His photographs of Earth were profound and his videos of life in space amusing. I was one of the many people who “liked” and “shared” his version of David Bowie’s “Space Oddities” performed on the ISS. After he returned to … Continue Reading →

When dealing with teens, don't be Tom Cruise

I admit it. I’m worried about my daughter’s geometry grade. It is pretty low and if The Girl doesn’t do well on her final, it could easily slip into darkness. Forget having to repeat the semester, I’m already two years out envisioning the pitying looks of admissions advisors across the Midwest. “She would have been … Continue Reading →

Midnight homework hysterics might be a thing of the past

I was curled up watching TV when the blood curdling scream of frustration came from the study I share with my daughter. It was 11 p.m. and it was chemistry. Specifically, it was some weird electron-bond-equation-balancing thingy that I only distantly remembered. Frankly, even if I were a chemical engineer, my kid wouldn’t take my … Continue Reading →

Don't offer new parents advice

I recently ran into a woman who was pregnant with her first child. It evoked many memories and consideration on what I’ve learned over the last 15 years. This was entirely internal. I never discuss my own pregnancy or give any parenting advice. My pregnancy was horrifying. I was sick almost the entire time and it … Continue Reading →

Why are parents so afraid of sex in the media?

A friend recently asked me if she thought the movie, “A Winter’s Tale,” would be appropriate for her 11-year-old daughter. “I’m more worried about the sex than the violence,” she said. Her message struck a chord with me. After reading “The Hunger Games” trilogy and more recently, “Divergent,” it had become apparent to me that culturally, … Continue Reading →

Parenting conflict: How much can we really protect our kids?

“If to enjoy even an enjoyable present we must have the assurance of a happy future, we are ‘crying for the moon.’ We have no such assurance. The best predictions are still matters of probability rather than certainty, and to the best of our knowledge every one of us is going to suffer and die. … Continue Reading →