"As children grow older, parents must give them greater freedom, including greater freedom to make mistakes. "

Rebellious Behavior

John's Most Recent Articles

Parents Should Sweat the Small Stuff

Posted on 6/7/2016

Q: While exploring your website, I ran across a column you wrote a while back about a 13-year-old who wanted a Mohawk haircut. You told the parents not to allow it, pointing out that if you give...

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Recent Questions

Post divorce parenting struggles.

Posted 1 week ago

I have a son (14) and daughter (16) who I share custody (40%) with my ex wife (60%). We have been divorced 5 years. We live about a mile apart. Daughter has decided now that she’s 16, she doesn’t...

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Toddlers & the word "no"

Posted 2 weeks ago

My 18 month old daughter laughs whenever she is told "no" or not to do something. She usually goes into a fit of laughter and runs away giggling yelling "no! no!" Or she does something she knows...

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Single parent struggles.

Posted 3 weeks ago

I could probably be considered guilty of putting my kids in the center of the family. Giving too much consideration to their feelings... I'm a single parent of boy/girl twins that are 10 and...

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Reestablishing Relationships with Rebellious Young Adults

Posted on 3/21/2017

Unsuccessful in how I stated this a week ago, so trying once more. Have one of our ten children, adopted from Eastern Europe, who after many infractions, was thrown out of the house by my husband,...

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Disorganized parenting leads to...

Posted on 3/17/2017

I need help with my 15 year old daughter. I'm a single mom and I also have a 10 year old son. She has a boyfriend, and his parents are drunks and do not care where their son is or what he's...

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Disobedience or Addiction?

Posted on 3/1/2017

Dear John, Our almost-15-yr-old son has been disobeying our rule of no Xbox on school nights but last week was a doozy. When we were away for the weekend, he got his 16-yr-old sister to drive...

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Troubled Young Teen?

Posted on 2/5/2017

This question is in reference to the October 2016 question regarding my 13 year old's act of vandalism. Fast forward 8 months later. He has completed his punishment, but not without having to...

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Immature Teen Has Cursing Problems

Posted on 1/18/2017

We have an immature 16-year-old with a potty mouth. This son of ours has mental delays as well. Strikes us as closer to 12 or so mentally. We have ten children, some adopted with handicaps. This...

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Out of control 5 and 3 y/o boys

Posted on 1/3/2017

Hello, I am doing a miserable job as a parent to my two boys (aged 5 and 3). They are out of hand entirely. We can't get through prayers at the dinner table without at least one of them being...

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Distraught dad of tweens

Posted on 12/30/2016

Please help - i am the father of a 12 year old girl and a 10 year old boy. They are both spoilt brats who only care about their enjoyment. 1)They are very rude and dont listen. 2)They dont...

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