Violence: How to Respond When It Feels Like It's Everywhere

Violence.  It’s everywhere these days.  In fact, I would go so far as to say that we have a real violence problem here in the Chicago area.  Whether it’s the rampant street violence we hear about or live with every day, or whether it’s bullying behavior towards others that persists despite all of the attention and educational programs that have been put in place, violence is an everyday fact of life in our worlds.

Read more

Online/Offline: 10 Techno Tips for Parents from Response

The good news is, we can do most anything more efficiently and connect with friends and family members 24/7 with the wonders of technology!  On the other hand, technology follows us everywhere; from brushing our teeth in the morning to turning in for the night.  There is, literally, no escape!  For tweens and teens, this sense of being attached to an “electronic leash” can have negative consequences, including bullying behavior, sexting, online dating, etc.  Know how to set reasonable boundaries around the use of technology in your family and you’ll be way ahead of the curve. 

Read more

More than Baby Talk: Talking to Baby Helps with Brain Development

According to a recent study by the University of Washington’s Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences (I-LABS) in Seattle, babies as young as seven months old are mentally working out the mechanics of how to form words with their mouths — well before they’re able to utter their first recognizable syllable. And, as ABC News reports,  that means speaking “parentese” to your baby can help with brain development.

Read more

Youth Addiction Prevention: What Works?

As the old adage goes, “the best defense is a good offense.”  That is no less true when talking about problematic drug use by young people.  So how do we build a strong offense to help the youth in our community resist the pressures and temptations to begin using drugs and alcohol?  For youth drug prevention, what works?

Here are four insights to get you and the burgeoning young adults in your life on the right track. 

Read more

The Case for Handwriting vs. Typing

The debate about whether handwriting is obsolete (in favor of going straight to the keyboard) continues to bubble as technology becomes more ingrained in daily life at younger ages.  It's been a hot topic in the news, with articles in the New York Times , Good Morning America, and more.  But, aside from Johnny not being able to read Grandma's hand written letters, what other developmental implications are there if handwriting is foresaken?

Read more

Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Having "the Talk"

Everyone knows about the “sex talk” – also known as the conversation with your children about sexual health.  Some parents and guardians dive right into the talk, while others avoid it at all costs. If you’ve been practicing avoidance, which response below best describes your philosophy?

Read more

Mental Health Therapy for Children? Why?

Life in general presents us with ongoing challenges, many of which we feel unprepared to handle- parenting, divorce, interpersonal issues, etc.. At times, we need outside support to help us make sense of the challenges we face.  And so do children.  Pursuing counseling for a child, either as a primary service or an addition to current services, can foster positive change on a number of levels. It probably looks much different than you think.  However, knowing when a child might need this type of help can be challenging.

Read more