"Good parents take very, very good care of their marriage, lest their marriage become a mirage. "

Older Teen/High School (16-18 years)

John's Most Recent Articles

Celebrate Son's Chosen Education, Career Path

Posted yesterday

Q: Our 18-year-old son made only slightly better than average grades in high school and finished in the top half of his graduating class. He could have done better, but has a history of...

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Micromanaging Weakens Child's Success in School

Posted on 8/22/2017

Q: Our son attends first grade at the local public school. At the beginning of the school year, all the parents were basically told that we are expected to go to the school’s parent website every...

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Teen Using Pot Should Lose Car, Phone

Posted on 8/16/2017

Q: A few months after he got his driver’s license, we found a bag of marijuana in our 16-year-old son’s car. He swore it wasn’t his and that he didn’t know whose it was and that he’s never used...

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Stay the Course With Rebellious Teen

Posted on 5/23/2017

Q: Our 18-year-old daughter is a month away from high school graduation and she is failing nearly every class! About six months ago, she took up with a group of young adults who are less than...

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Teenage Boys Need Healthy Adult Role Models

Posted on 5/3/2017

When my son, Eric, began showing interest in girls, I reflected back upon the foibles and fiascoes of my adolescence and promised myself he would be better prepared for datinghood. Undertaking...

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Don't Fret About Teen Son With Average Grades

Posted on 4/18/2017

Q: Our 17-year-old son is an unmotivated student. A junior in high school, he is clearly capable of making straight A’s, but typically makes B’s and C’s. He plays on both the football and tennis...

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Bring Back Vocational Education in High Schools

Posted on 4/11/2017

During my sophomore year at Proviso West High School in Hillside, Illinois, my guidance counselor, Mr. Gusloff, refused my request to take auto shop because I was, he said, college-bound and my...

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Success Is a Matter of Character, Not Grades

Posted on 2/15/2017

There must be some relationship between aging and the “You’ve got to be kidding me!” response, if I am any indication, that is. What was once occasional has become almost daily. ...

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Stay Dispassionate yet Approachable During Teen's Experimentation With Vaping

Posted on 1/18/2017

Q: I found a vaping pen hidden in my 13-year-old son's room and am at a loss as to how to deal with it. He is very susceptible to peer pressure and wants very badly to fit in with the "cool"...

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Take a Time-Out Before Engaging With Argumentative Child

Posted on 11/22/2016

Q: In last week’s column, you advised parents not to argue with teenagers. That’s fine and dandy advice, John, but you failed to tell your readers how to stay out of or end these arguments. For...

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Recent Questions

Too many chances leads to deceit.

Posted yesterday

My 15 year old asked if she could have Netflix. We told her we’d like to see her show us that she can manage her time better before we say yes. Gave her some thoughts on what we would like to...

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17 yo daughter looking for a fight

Posted 2 weeks ago

Thank you for your previous advise. Me and my 17 yo fight alway, no days go by without hatred. I am concerned about a lot of things and afraid I cant change them. I let them go then I start fight...

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To Medicate, or Not

Posted 3 weeks ago

I've wrote to you a year ago, now I need your advice on this situation. My 17 yo daughter was upset a lot, cried for an extended period so I took her to a psychologist. My daughter likes her...

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Teens dealing with "a constant barrage of negative things"

Posted 3 weeks ago

Hello! This is not exactly a child-rearing question but it pertains to everything about being a parent. How do we keep from drowning in the pain we witness our children going through? I have a...

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Teens and the Telephone

Posted 4 weeks ago

I have noticed that parents writing in about problems with kids and phones are repeatedly told to take the device away and the child can have it when they can purchase their own device. I don't...

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Online School is a Privilege Not a Right

Posted on 11/3/2017

We have homeschooled our 3 kids for all of their school years. Last year we enrolled our son (now 16.5) in online public schooling because he refused to be cooperative with school work. Online...

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16 yo Defiance

Posted on 10/31/2017

My wife and I are having trouble with our oldest 16 yr old son. He is very selfish, defiant and manipulative. My wife says I need to do something now but I am having trouble knowing the right way...

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The Phone is Not the Problem

Posted on 10/4/2017

So, in response to the answer to my question I have a few other questions. In the past few days a lot has transpired and my husband and I really had it out over my son. I understand a lot of his...

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Lower the Boom on 18 year old son

Posted on 10/1/2017

My son has just turned 18 and is a senior in high school. He had his first job this summer doing construction work with some people we know. He did well getting up early and they said that he...

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AP Classes and Motivation

Posted on 8/31/2017

Hi! My son started high school a couple of weeks ago. He was placed in an advanced program where they start taking some AP classes in 9th grade. He has been against the program since we went to an...

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Audio

Parenting the Strong Willed Teen Audio File

Posted on 1/8/2015

This is an entertaining and informative talk on understanding and managing even the most petulant of today’s teenagers. The talk was recorded live before an audience in San Diego, CA and is based...

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