What do you do when you’re bored? In the 19th century, perhaps you went for a long walk by a flowing river or read a book. In the 20th century, maybe you listened to the radio or watched television. Now, in the 21st century, it’s likely that you flip through your Facebook or Instagram feed. What did Charlie have for dinner last night? Where did Louise go on with her husband? Or perhaps you turn on your computer, grab your joystick, and play— “World of Warcraft” with folks in five different countries. It goes without saying that in earlier times in history just surviving took up all of our... Read More
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Family Talk Blog
Several days ago I sat with a group of adults who lost a colleague to suicide. As we talked about his death, several of the group started crying. Despite the passage of time, simply talking about him brought waves of grief. But unlike other causes of death, the group also felt guilt. Why didn't they know how depressed he was? Why didn't they see his pain?
Sadly, suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United State. Over 45,000 individuals die of suicide yearly. It’s the 4th leading cause of death among adults between the ages of 35-45. Despite advances in the treatment of... Read More
Social media and smartphones are a vital part of 21st-century life. Even I, a veteran device scoffer, have a Facebook page, a smartphone, and an iPad. (I draw the line with Twitter!) So, I’m part of the internet revolution, like it or not. My social media life is limited to family and close friends, despite friend requests from colleagues, acquaintances, neighbors, and people I hardly know at all. My main social media interest—pictures of my grandchildren.
But, the other day I encountered something new. An old family friend posted a video of herself sharing a personal story. I was... Read More
I’m old enough to remember when TV dinners were first introduced in the early 1950s. Wow! They were revolutionary at the time. They were packaged in aluminum plates with little compartments for the turkey, peas, mashed potatoes, and desert. Just throw these pre-cooked, frozen meals in the oven, set them on TV trays, and you could eat a piping hot meal while watching television. And no dishes to wash! What could be better? My mom loved them.
Human beings are engineered to find easier and more convenient ways of living, surviving, and thriving. Rubbing two sticks together every time... Read More
Today, I am sitting on a beautiful beach in Kauai, soaking up the sun, making up for months of darkness and clouds that our Pacific Northwest brings. Bring on the Vitamin D! Getting out during the winter and finding a sunny spot somewhere is a great pick-me-up during a Northwest winter.
Winter vacations, whether they be for skiing, sun, or just going somewhere else are always appreciated. But what if it rains in Mexico? What if it’s too windy at the beach? What if the temperature warms up the snow turns to slush? What if the kids get sick? What if you get a bad cold? There is a long... Read More
No doubt, one of the hardest jobs I ever had was parenting. Of course, once you have kids, you are always a Mom or a Dad.
But during the first 20 plus years of life, parents have huge responsibility—not just to provide for their children but to help them become independent, decent adults.
Finally, when children do become independent, we can sit back and relax a little. But it takes a long time to reach that moment.
As both a grandparent and a child psychologist, I can see how today’s parents feel particularly stressed. Two full-time working parents have become the norm... Read More
It’s hard to write about New Year’s—so much has been written about this holiday. Some years, pundits suggest that making resolutions is a good thing. But then the next year, we’re told that no, it’s a bad idea. Of course, like most adults, I’ve made scores of New Year’s resolutions. Some lasted one week, some persisted for several months, and a scant few have been helpful, launching me forward on a chosen path.
New Year’s Eve is an opportunity to dance, connect with friends and family, drink champagne at midnight (if you can stay up that late), and watch the ball float down on the... Read More