"Children show respect for parents by obeying them. Parents show respect for children by expecting them to obey. "

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On Attachment Parenting

Posted yesterday

“So, what do you think of attachment parenting? My inquisitor was a 30-something mom. I sensed she was testing me, trying to determine whether I was worth her time. “Not...

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You Can't Win 'Em All

Posted 2 weeks ago

I’ve been writing this column for forty-three years and speaking publicly for nearly as long. If there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s that when it comes to my subject matter, you can’t win ‘em...

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Parenting Should Not Be About Instant Gratification

Posted 3 weeks ago

A friend of mine named Scott shared an absolutely brilliant thought with me when I dropped in on him unannounced at his workplace, a bank, the other day. Everyone thinks all I...

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A Look at the Biggest Mistakes Parents Make

Posted 1 month, 2 days ago

A journalist recently asked me for the single biggest mistake being made by today’s parents. I was tempted to say, “Having children,” but stopped myself because even if I’d followed up with “Just...

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Out With 'Parenting,' in With Child-Rearing

Posted on 1/29/2019

There is “parenting” and then there is bringing up, rearing, or raising children. The difference is night and day; so are the outcomes, short- and long-term, to all concerned, meaning every single...

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The Children-Need-Lots-Of-Attention Myth

Posted on 1/22/2019

One of the more difficult facts for today’s parents, as a rule, to wrap their heads around is the…I’ll say it again, with emphasis…FACT that children do not need (as a general rule) a lot of...

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What Should Grandparents Do When Children Won’t Listen to Good Advice?

Posted on 1/16/2019

Q: We have ten grandchildren, spread between three of our kids. They all live within an hour’s drive, so we see them often. We want to be involved in their lives and to be good influences. Our...

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Feelings: To Express or Not to Express?

Posted on 1/2/2019

Feelings are a wild card. On the one hand, the ability to experience deep emotion is one of the things that defines us as human. On the other, feelings can be and often are destructive to...

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Separating Feelings From Facts

Posted on 12/25/2018

Rosemond’s Pithy Philosophical Snippet of the Week: Crazy is believing that feelings – yours and other’s – define and should therefore govern external reality. It is one thing...

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Parenting of the Past Is Better Than Today

Posted on 12/19/2018

A Wisconsin pediatrician wants his newspaper to eject my column, giving as one of his complaints that I hew “to the idea that the world of the 1950s was the be-all and end-all of...

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One Reason Why Marriages Go Bad: Postnatal Marital Amnesia

Posted on 12/12/2018

Just about every marriage has its share of bad times; then again, some marriages simply go bad. The reasons for the latter include abuse, adultery, alcoholism (and other forms of chemical...

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The AAP on Discipline

Posted on 11/20/2018

The prestigious American Academy of Pediatrics has just released (November 2018) a policy statement claiming that "Aversive disciplinary strategies, including all forms of corporal punishment and...

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Public Schools in Decline Thanks to Discipline Fads

Posted on 11/13/2018

For the record, I believe in the concept of public (aka, taxpayer-funded, government, “free”) schools. I attended public schools and obtained an excellent education that challenged my intellect...

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Go Ahead and Send Kids Outside

Posted on 11/11/2018

Several years ago, I wrote that my mother's favorite after-school activity for me was "go outside and find something to do." I said it was then, and still is, the most valuable way a child can...

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There’s Something Happening Here …

Posted on 11/7/2018

One of my favorite rock songs of all time (“Hello, I’m John, and I’m a rock ‘n’ roll addict”) is “For What It’s Worth,” written by Stephen Stills and originally recorded by Buffalo Springfield. It...

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Foundation to Parenting Begins With Marriage

Posted on 10/31/2018

In an opinion piece recently featured on FoxNews.com, Jonathan Pokluda explicates his Ten Habits of Extraordinary Parents. Pokluda, a teaching pastor at a mega-church in Texas, and his wife are in...

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Determinism Muddies Parental Judgement

Posted on 10/24/2018

As the current school year kicked off, I began hearing the same-old, same-old report from teachers and principals: children who have never lied. At least, that is what the parents of said children...

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The Realities of Parenting

Posted on 10/10/2018

PARENTING REALITY, PART ONE: It is all but inevitable that after rattling off a list of provocative, sociopathic stuff his or her child is doing and usually has been doing for quite some time, a...

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More Musings Over Morning Coffee

Posted on 10/2/2018

More musings over morning coffee: FROM THE TRUTH VS. “YOUR TRUTH” DEPARTMENT: The former is grounded in verifiable facts; the latter is the deceptive product of emotion. The...

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A Few Thoughts Over Morning Coffee

Posted on 9/18/2018

A few thoughts over morning coffee… From the Feedback Department: Certain recent columns of mine have drawn a spike in reader responses, both pro and con. My comments on the...

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The Problem of Parent-Child Codependency

Posted on 8/22/2018

An early childhood educator of thirty-eight years standing left a message asking if I had advice for encouraging cooperation from parents. She reports what every veteran teacher (defined as having...

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Putting Child First Can Ruin Marriage

Posted on 8/8/2018

Q: I am stepfather to my wife’s only child, age 8, from her first marriage. My wife always and in every way puts her son before our marriage. We went through counseling several years ago and...

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Friendship Isn't a Vital Aspect of Parenthood

Posted on 8/1/2018

When Baby Boomers get together we often talk about our observations of parenting in these postmodern times, one of which is that today’s parents seem, as a rule, to want to be liked by their...

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Kids Acting Up? Relax, It's Normal

Posted on 7/24/2018

Most of the stuff today's parents worry about - and let's face facts...the worrier in question, the worrier supreme, is almost always the mother (not because of some weakness, but simply because...

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Happy Campers: Why Summer Camps Are Good for Children

Posted on 7/17/2018

If your child isn't attending an organized camping program this summer, he or she may be missing out on opportunities for growth in a several areas. There are now more than 14,000 day and...

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Let’s Revisit ‘Psychological Thinking’

Posted on 7/17/2018

I call it “psychological thinking,” referring to the tendency among parents of the last fifty years or so to attribute bad behavior on the part of a child to so-called “issues” that are thought to...

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Adults, Children Must Maintain Relationship Boundaries

Posted on 6/20/2018

A column of mine that originally appeared in January of 2017 has been circulating on the Internet ever since, accumulating over a million hits to date. In a nutshell, its message is simply that...

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Respect for Adults Is Good for Kids' Mental Health

Posted on 6/6/2018

Rates of child and teen depression and suicide continue to rise, as they have for fifty years. As regular readers of this column know, I do not agree in the least with current explanations, much...

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Children's Hearts Rule Their Heads

Posted on 5/16/2018

When I was in college and grad school, other students – mostly the “jock” and fraternity crowds – called me all sorts of names because, being the lead singer in a popular campus rock band, I...

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We Have a Child, Teen Mental Health Crisis in U.S.

Posted on 4/11/2018

Do we – here in the USA, that is – or do we not have a child and teen mental health crisis and if the answer is yes, we do, then what should be done about it? Without doubt, the...

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'Gentle Parenting' Just a Rebrand of 'Parenting'

Posted on 4/4/2018

Upon arrival on-site for a recent speaking engagement, I am told that several rather vocal parents refused to attend because I am not an advocate of “gentle parenting.” That implies that I...

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The Power of Words

Posted on 3/21/2018

When I began reading “The 9 Words Parents Should Never Say to Their Kids” (January 5, 2018, www.fatherly.com), I was skeptical that essayist Patrick Coleman’s point of view would line up with my...

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Choose One: High Achievement or Good Morals

Posted on 3/14/2018

Parents of children who habitually lie can breathe a huge sigh of relief – The New York Times says that budding Pinocchios are more intelligent than kids who tell the truth (“Is Your Child Lying...

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Yes, I Am "Old-Fashioned"

Posted on 3/6/2018

An individual who occupies a fairly high-level position in the mainstream media recently told one of my associates that I’m “old-fashioned.” She meant it as a slight, but I hardly took it that...

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Let Kids Run Their Own Sports Programs

Posted on 2/28/2018

Thirty-something years ago in this column, I offered a free (expenses-only) speaking engagement to any community that would abolish all adult-organized-and-run children’s sports programs...

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Child Talk Therapy Is Largely Unproductive

Posted on 2/13/2018

Q: You seem to be opposed to putting children into any sort of psychological therapy. That’s curious, especially given that you’re a child psychologist. What is your explanation for this and are...

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Try the 'No-Talking Cure' for Childhood Fears

Posted on 2/7/2018

A true story: When my daughter, Amy, was a pre-teen, she became anxious about going to sleep because of fears of dying in the middle of the night. When I tucked her in (I was her preferred...

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In Gun Debate, Therapy Is No Substitute for Firm Discipline

Posted on 1/31/2018

We’re a month, more or less, into the new year and America has already suffered two school shootings. As usual, the usual voices are calling for increased restrictions on the buying and selling of...

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Love Is Necessary to the Proper Discipline of a Child

Posted on 1/24/2018

In Raleigh, North Carolina, on the backside of the Department of Education building is a structure known as the Education Wall. Completed in 1992, the EW was conceived and created by artist Vernon...

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Today's Parents Don't Know How to Properly Convey Authority

Posted on 1/17/2018

Four sentences into her Wall Street Journal article on recent research into spanking (“Spanking for Misbehavior? It Causes More!” December 17, 2017), the author, Susan Pinker, makes two grievous...

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Connecting Dots Unsettling to Some

Posted on 1/10/2018

My critics are providing me much material of late for this column and my weekly radio show (Saturdays, 6:00 ET, AFR). Most recently, a family therapist in Kentucky pleads with the Lexington...

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Respect Is Claimed, Not Owed by a Father

Posted on 12/26/2017

Is a father owed respect from his children? Actually, the question, from a father, was rhetorical: Isn’t a father owed his children’s respect? The dad in question maintains that because he loves...

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Every Child Has a Mind of His Own

Posted on 12/6/2017

In a letter to the editor of the La Crosse (Wisconsin) Tribune, psychologist Afton Koball and two colleagues raise objections to a recent column in which I asserted that one can be parented badly...

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My Views on ADHD Reflect the Facts

Posted on 11/29/2017

An interesting, and telling, tale: As part of a recent speaking engagement sponsored by a regional medical center in the west, I was scheduled to address a gathering of local pediatricians. Two...

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Children Need Unconditional Love and Unequivocal Authority, Not Respect

Posted on 11/20/2017

I was fresh out of grad school when psychologists and other mental health types began recommending that when speaking to a child, an adult should squat down to eye level with said child....

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Strike While the Iron Is Cold

Posted on 11/17/2017

Recently, a mother asked how she and her husband could make their 16-year-old son stop talking disrespectfully to them. So far, she said, they'd complained, threatened and occasionally taken his...

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Are Many Cases of Autism Wrongly Diagnosed?

Posted on 11/8/2017

Q: In the school district where I used to teach, I attended many meetings concerning children with special needs. Many of the kids in question were said to be "on the [autism] spectrum." In...

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Stepfamily or Just "Family"?

Posted on 11/7/2017

A journalist called me the other day wanting me to make some pithy, erudite comments on the subject of the so-called "stepfamily." I am eminently qualified, I propose, to remark on the subject...

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Overcoming Bad Parenting

Posted on 10/31/2017

I was standing in the lobby of an auditorium in which I’d just spoken, talking with a small group of attendees, when a 30-something woman took me aside and told me that her parents were bad role...

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Keep Facts About 'Donor Dad' Mum Until Child Is 15

Posted on 10/25/2017

Q: My son just turned 5 and is starting to ask various questions about parents including why some people have two parents and he only has one. About two months before he turned two, his "donor"...

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