Relationships

Family Conflict: An Opportunity for Growth and Change for All

by David Lipschutz, LCSW, Director of Adult, Child and Family Services

Conflicts happen at school, at work, and in homes. Arguments, big and small, occur in all families. There are many causes for these conflicts. The pressures on families are endless. Financial, cultural, traumas, school, employment, and relationships are some examples of stressors that families face on a daily basis. All these stressors create a complex environment for raising children in our society. This article highlights the potential for growth and change by acknowledging that verbal conflicts occur in families and looks at ways to be less reactive in these conflicts.

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Getting Through the Holidays During Divorce or Separation

by Tami Sollo LCSW, Divorce Specialist

When a family is going through a divorce, everything changes, including the comfortable tradition of how they spend the holidays. Thanksgiving may have been celebrated with one side of the family, and Hanukkah or Christmas with the other, or a blending of the two families. That very first holiday season is the most difficult. Often the divorce does not just affect the immediate family, but may include extended family and friends as well. If there are children, it is very important to find a way to establish a new sense of normalcy. This can be complicated by the loss of one side of the family, or the children having to spend different holidays with a different parent.

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Cuffing Season, Ghosting, Hooking Up: Teen Dating Slang That Every Parent Should Know

Here’s a rundown of some of the most popular terms that teens use to describe modern romance, from the tamest to the riskiest. Just to be clear: We’re definitely not suggesting that you violate your child’s privacy, but if you hear or come across any of these terms, there might be more going on than meets the eye. Don’t see the term you’re looking for? Try this comprehensive list of acronyms or this guide to teen slang.

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Sibling Relationships

by Erica Aten, M.A., Pre-Doctoral Clinical Psychology Intern, Psychological Services

Although parents are typically a child's first source of human connection, sibling relationships are also an important factor in development. As of 2010, 82.22% of youth lived with at least one sibling(1). Sibling bonds are unique in that they often last a lifetime and are typically people’s longest relationships in life(2). Sibling relationships are influential in many ways.

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How Glick Family Camp Has Inspired Me

by Melissa (Mimi) Goldberg

At Jewish Child & Family Services’s Glick Family Camp, parents, their children with disabilities and siblings enjoy a family-oriented, nature-filled camp experience – together! The camp is offered once each spring at Jewish Community Youth Services Camp Henry Horner/Camp Red Leaf in Ingleside, Illinois. The weekend is filled with a variety of social, creative, recreational and supportive activities. A family camp worker is assigned to each family.

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The Road to Healing—During and After Divorce

by Tami Sollo LCSW, Coordinator of the Divorce Specialty Center

I encounter many couples experiencing the early phases of divorce. Marked by the tearing down of comfortable routines, fear of the future and its unknowns, and sadness over the loss of a familiar way of life—no matter how unhappy it may have been—the early stages of divorce are chaotic and emotionally overwhelming. Like any time of grief or great loss, recovering from divorce is a process. How quickly couples move towards healing depends upon several factors:  how well spouses work together to co-parent or make decisions for their separate futures; the level of conflict between the couple; the couple’s financial situation; how well developed the couple’s psychological coping skills are; and the external support systems of the soon-to-be ex-spouses.  

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The Divorce Specialty Center at JCFS and The Collaborative Law Institute of Illinois Introduce Low Cost Divorce Program

by Tami Sollo, LCSW, Divorce Center Specialist, Mediator and Collaborative Divorce Coach

As the Coordinator of the Divorce Specialty Center at Jewish Child & Family Services, one of my first tasks was to research affordable ways for low-income families to divorce.  I discovered that the services are limited, and to qualify a family has to have a history of domestic violence and/or be very close to poverty.  For those families that make too much money to qualify, but not enough to pay for a divorce, there was nothing available.  Many times couples stay married, often leaving the family in very difficult circumstances.  

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Parenting and Girl Drama

Your 4th grade daughter comes home from school upset and crying. At first you don’t know what is happening. Then it becomes clearer; she is upset about something that some other girls said to her at school. Your mind swirls as feelings of helplessness, anger and protectiveness rise within you.

You are now in a parenting moment, desperately wishing for a book to tell you what to do. You certainly don’t have any magic answers for your daughter. You wonder…

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