Posts filed under ‘childrearing’

Staying Sane While Parenting Teens

Diverse Group of Teenagers - IsolatedRadio Show with Lon Woodbury (September 30, 2013)

With the lack of communication between parents and their teens in homes today, today’s guest on Parent Choices for Struggling Teens, C. Lynn Williams shared some “time tested tips” and strategies for parents to “stay sane” while raising their tweens and teens with host Lon Woodbury. In order for parents to stay sane, to keep their cool and not lose their temper, the first thing parents need to do is take care of themselves! With the life changes parents are also going through, it is important to take care of yourself, get out and get some exercise and get more sleep (rather than getting by on less.) In addition, having healthy meals together as a family is a must. There are great discussions and conversations that can come up, plus you get a visual on how your teen is doing- both physically and emotionally.

Some general tips that C Lynn recommends include: consistency. Especially on this brink of adulthood, parents need to have a wall of structure and consistent follow through. “No idle threats…if you say it, then you mean it” shared Lon. Another tip: you have to remain and remember that you are the parent. You are not their friend and as a parent there are standards you have to uphold. Lastly, you need to build individual relationships with each child. Spend time exclusively with each child and get to know them because each one is different. When they need to talk, they can then come to you to talk, from building the relationship and trust together. “Find out what their ‘love language’ is, ways your child receives and accepts love, whether it is attention, gifts or words of affirmation. Yet be appropriate in praising your teen, don’t praise them unless they have truly earned it…be honest with your teen.

For those with tweens, remember they are at the age where their hormones are in full force. “They still want to please you and then the next second, they don’t like you.” During this puberty stage there are lots of influences in your child’s life. The girls want to belong and the boys are centered on sports. This is a good time to get your child involved in extracurricular activities. They need to be kept busy and they need to be in a structured setting. And the good thing that comes out of this is the friendships they make, they want to please their coach, they are not sitting on the couch becoming a couch potato and they get a chance to explore their different interests.

When it comes to a parent needing to seek help for their out of control teen, “you should do so when you notice a drastic change in their behavior, their temperament, if they are quite and morose, depressed or you notice weight gain or weight loss” says C Lynn. And the first step to take is to contact the school and make an appointment with the school psychologist. “Just talk to your kid and if they won’t talk, seek help.”
“Parents need support, like in the old days; everyone on the block would look out for each other’s kids. We need to get back to that again. Involve the teachers, involve the neighbors, give them your phone number and have them call you if they see something not right with your child.

To listen to the full interview, go to Staying Sane While Parenting Teens on LATalkRadio

Contact:
Lon Woodbury, MA, CEP, IECA
208-267-5550
lonwoodbury@gmail.com
http://www.strugglingteens.com

Featuring:
C. Lynn Williams
Parenting Coach, Author, Speaker
224-357-6315
cgwwbooks@yahoo.com
www.clynnwilliams.com

October 14, 2013 at 11:03 am 14 comments

It Doesn’t Matter if You’re Black or White

bboy

Let’s take an honest look at an ugly topic – RACE. There I said it! Not just race itself, but what happens when we allow race to permeate our thoughts, feelings and our perceptions. Think about your son or, or if you’re younger and sans kids – your brother. Did it ever occur to you that your child (brother) is held responsible or labeled because of his race? Let me give you an example. When you are walking down the street and you see a black boy walking in your direction, do you a) Cross the street; b) Clutch your purse tightly or c) Continue walking without fear? Or, what would be your first thought if you heard that an altercation occurred between your child and another student? Would you assume it was the other child’s fault? How about if the other child was a black child? What would be your assumptions?

When my son was three years old, his daycare provider (a friendly, white woman) took care of him and several other kids, including her own. We lived in the same neighborhood and our older children attended school together. She was fanatical about cleanliness and that was okay because who wants their child in a pig sty. She loved her family and believed in God. Important points for me! We were off to a great relationship! At least that was what I thought. One day I after work, I picked up my son and she told me that he bit her son. What? Biting was not new to me because my son bit another child at the previous daycare provider. I was very concerned because biting is aggressive act and I needed to know what was going on in my young son’s mind that made him think biting was acceptable. My husband and I would address those concerns with him once we got home. What I wasn’t prepared for were the next words out of my daycare provider’s mouth. She said that he was an aggressive kid and that he would probably grow up and kill someone someday! WHAT?!? At the previous daycare provider, her toddler son (white) started the biting phenomenon and bit our son. I’m not sure if he was punished, but one thing I know, his mother did not decide that he was aggressive and would grow up and one day kill someone. As a matter of fact, she apologized for his behavior, kind of laughed and said “boys will be boys”.  Two different kids, same behavior was judged differently. The only difference is that one kid was black (African American) and one was white. boy-white

More recently I was talking about parenting to a business partner of mine who has three sons. Her sons go to predominantly white schools and the youngest tends to show his feelings (good or bad) though facial expressions. He has not learned the art of masking those feelings yet. In any case, her son’s teacher told him to stop doing something and he continued to do it. She told him a second time and he made a face and said okay. She wrote him up and called his mother. Okay! When my business partner asked her son why he didn’t stop when he was instructed, he told her he wasn’t ready to stop. He also told her that Johnnie (white) did the same thing but he was not told to stop. Now you can spin that anyway you like. Should both sons be admonished equally? Of course, but what is happening in many classrooms is that behavior is viewed differently and punishments, suspensions, and expulsions are more severe for children particularly boys of color. WHY IS THAT? And WHAT can we do about it?

Race may not be an issue in countries where people physically look the same. In those instances you are most likely judged by socio-economic standards like who your parents are and whether you have money or don’t. In this country, the United States, race is an out of control issue that is based in fear and needs to be addressed personally as well as societally.  In Michael Jackson’s song – Black or White, I have to say – it does matter if you’re black or white. You ARE judged by the color of your skin and not necessarily the content of your character. Isn’t that a shame…

C. Lynn Williams
Author & Speaker

http://www.clynnwilliams.com

cgwwbooks@yahoo.com

September 13, 2013 at 11:43 am 5 comments

Surviving Loss

One of my former students lost her mother yesterday. Her daughter, (also a former student) told me about it today and it took me back five years ago when I lost my own mother. My initial feels of numbness and grief, turned into days of feeling lost and disconnected. Then I could hardly put two thoughts together without being reduced to tears. Weird huh?

What was funny about my reaction after losing my mother was that my sister was closest to my mom; they talked regularly throughout the day, and were cooking and drinking buddies.  My mom and I talked daily but relied on each other in different ways. Being more private in my thoughts I didn’t feel the need to share everything with my mom. She taught me how to be resourceful, so I shared problems that I couldn’t figure out alone. Yet when I did share my secrets with her, I could count on her to keep them secret forever. Yes, we were mother & daughter, but we were also good friends, quite different from our relationship during my years as a teenager! Mom was my chief strategist in many ways. Her suggestions and ideas guided me through relationships, both work & personal, childrearing, and through all of my entrepreneurial pursuits. Mothers are a part of our lives in so many ways, is it possible to exist when that relationship comes to an end?

To read more about my thoughts (personal & parenting) about mother & daughter relationships, preorder a copy of my soon to be released book, “Raising Your Daughter Through the Joys, Tears & HORMONES!”…

C. Lynn Williams
Author & Speaker

http://www.clynnwilliams.com

cgwwbooks@yahoo.com

September 11, 2013 at 10:35 am 1 comment

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