Since a couple of dear friends have just had babies, I decided to reprint this letter I wrote to my son, Leor for his 30th birthday. As a parent and a family counselor, I know how challenging it is to raise a child with little or no training or knowledge on what it takes to […]
Someone once told me that the definition of “coincidence” is God’s desire to remain anonymous. It really resonated for me since there have been so many times in my life where chain of events were just too freaky to be viewed as mere coincidence. It is happening again. Ever since I declared that I […]
In a prior blog I discussed my fear of bees and how I overcame it when I realized that I was exposing my son, Leor, to my fear. I developed this fear because I saw my sister’s terrified reaction to getting stung by a bee. The curious thing is that I developed that fear vicariously […]
I. Listening vs. Lecturing Children, like most of us, don’t like to be lectured. When a child does something “wrong,” the last thing he wants is to hear his parents’ authoritative voice rambling about his mistake. Children will naturally shut out their parents when they are lecturing to them. A child will respond positively to […]
In past blogs I spoke about our Reactive and Creative Selves and our need to intercept the reactions and replace them with thoughtful responses. There is no place that this intervention is more important than when we are dealing with our children. Young children are greatly influenced by our verbal and non-verbal communication. From a […]
Being a parent can be the most rewarding experience in our lives. It can also be most challenging, lonely and misunderstood role we undertake. Unlike other “jobs,” becoming a parent does not come with a “how to manual.” Parents are expected to know what it takes to raise their children. The unfortunate outcomes of this unreasonable expectation are two fold; children’s emotional, psychological and spiritual needs are not successfully met, thereby, limiting the expression of their full potential in adulthood; producing adults who are unable to enjoy full and true intimacy with themselves and their loved ones.
While the significant role parenting plays in the ultimate development of an individual is widely known, there is still a void in educating parents and facilitating their ability to optimize their success.
Until the middle of the twentieth century, parents’ primary focus has been on physically nourishing their children, keeping them safe and healthy, and making sure they receive proper education. There was little or no understanding and appreciation for their children’s emotional, psychological and spiritual needs and development, and their significant role in shaping the overall health of the human being. The extraordinary achievements made in medical, industrial, technological, and educational fields resulted in Western industrialized societies’ increased ability to meet its members’ essential survival needs. As these needs became easier to fulfill, greater attention was given to understanding the emotional, psychological and spiritual needs of the individual. Research in neurology, physics, biochemistry, and psychology have generated ongoing dialogue, theory, data, practice, and further research in the relentless pursuit of how we operate. Consequently, we now have a better understanding of what motivates our feelings, thoughts, and behavior. Although most researchers, scientists and students of the human behavio agree that our knowledge is still in its infantile stage, nonetheless, we currently possess critical information that can increase our appreciation, and therefore, our ability to better meet our children’s need as well as our personal and collective needs.
This evening I went to have dinner with my parents, as I have done on most Friday nights for the past three decades. My mom is probably one of the greatest Yemenite cooks and having Shabbat dinner with her and my father is always a treat. Usually Leor, David, my brother and his son, Eric, […]
NEW “Guilt-Tripping” Ad Campaign Asks Parents to Turn Off PDAs and Spend Time with Family Sans Technology A new campaign, ‘Offlining, Inc.’, an in-your-face campaign nudging us all to turn off our mobile devices and computers for a while in order to devote a little time to a good old face-to-face conversation or family dinner, […]
Sorry to have been MIA for the past month. As I began writing my last blog, which was going to follow up on the Transcending Fear one, I was gripped by a compulsion to write about parenting. I am not sure why. Maybe it’s the insecurities and fears present with all the parents I am […]