Much like we used pig latin when we were growing up, teens these days have a very specific text language they use in an effort to keep parents guessing. This slang involves numbers or symbols replacing certain letters in words, abbreviations and, most commonly, acronyms.
The pervasive availability of online pornography might just be the scariest of all the relevant sexual health topics we need to be discussing with youth. When discussing porn with our youth comes up in my sessions with parents they often look both terrified and relieved to finally be talking about it.
Our daughters are bombarded with images in the media of what’s hot and what’s not at younger and younger ages. Models are still unrealistically thin, reality TV is anything but real, and the fashion industry preys on little girls feeling pressure to be adult. It’s no wonder parents feel helpless in their struggle to combat these negative messages.
A few months ago, a mother told me a story of her 6 year old daughter who came home after school, jumped on the treadmill and started running as fast as she could. Watching in disbelief the mother asked her daughter, “What are you doing?!”, to which the daughter replied “I am just trying to burn away these fat thighs!”. Gulp. The dreaded moment...
Over the winter break I was looking through some books in my office and came across one of my all time favorites. It’s called The Essential 55: An Award-Winning Educator’s Rules for Discovering the Successful Student in Every Child. While written a number of years ago, it offers timeless insight for parents and others working with children.