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A Friend's Birth Control and Teen Chats

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: I've always been close with my 16-year-old daughter's best friend. Recently, she confided in my that she is sexually active and would like to acquire some birth control. Her mother is a strict believer of abstinence and won't entertain the idea of birth control. Would it be wrong to take her to the doctor myself without ...Read more

A Classmate's Suicide and an Unfriendly Mom Friend

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: A child in my daughter's high school committed suicide over the holiday break. My daughter didn't know the child and doesn't seem particularly bothered by the incident. I'm not sure if I should discuss this incident or just let it blow over. Any advice? -- Scared

Dear Scared: Teenage suicide is certainly cause for alarm. ...Read more

A Square Peg and Walking to School

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My wife and I are raising three kids. We are a sporty high-achievement family. As parents, we have been instilling the values of hard work and persistence. Unfortunately, my youngest son doesn't seem to be fitting in with the rest of us. Every time I try to work with him it feels like jamming a square peg into a round hole. ...Read more

Party Pooper and Sleepovers

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My family has been invited to a New Year's Eve party. There will be lots of food, kids and karaoke. My 14-year-old daughter doesn't want to go. She wants to stay home by herself. She often tries to opt out of family plans she isn't particularly jazzed about. I think she should be forced to join the family sometimes. Is this ...Read more

A Cheater and a Gaming Spender

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My 16-year-old daughter was caught cheating on a test. She was overwhelmed and made a bad choice. Now it seems like it will ruin all of her hard work because it will be reported to colleges. She is beyond distraught, and I'm worried about her. What can I do to minimize the damage here? -- Panic-Stricken

Dear Panic: This is ...Read more

No Present Christmas and a Bogus Girlfriend

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My 14-year-old son has told me to get him nothing for Christmas. He says he doesn't need or want anything. Meanwhile, his brothers have long lists. Money isn't an issue, yet I'm struggling with not getting him something. I don't want him to miss getting presents, but it seems weird to force presents on a kid who doesn't care...Read more

Santa Surveillance and Checking Bedtime at College

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My kids' behavior has been dreadful lately. I've tried everything, and I feel like I can't make a dent. The kids love Christmas and Santa, so I'm thinking about getting The Elf on the Shelf to encourage good behavior. Even though I've totally resisted because I have no time for this, I'm hoping the behavior will at least ...Read more

Sabotaging College and Emotional Meltdowns

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My son is a senior, and he is slowly throwing away all of his options for college. He has excellent SAT scores, but his grades are erratic. He isn't going to class and is missing a lot of assignments. When confronted, he is remorseful but still can't get his act together. He's sabotaging himself, and I'm heartbroken watching...Read more

A Homebody and a Christmas Tree

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My son is strongly considering a college close to us so he can live at home. It's not a financial decision, as we have set aside enough money for dorms. My wife and I love our son, but we feel it would be best for him to experience college away from us. We are his crutch. How wrong or hurtful would it be to forbid him from ...Read more

An Older Boyfriend and Comic Fans

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My daughter is a very mature and responsible 20-year-old. She lives at college, works part time and is involved in many community programs. Recently, she told me her boyfriend is a 31-year-old lawyer. I usually trust her judgment, but this boyfriend seems like another generation to me. How can I discourage this relationship to...Read more

Back to An Unstable Mother and Quitting Baseball

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: I've been raising my granddaughter for almost 17 years. My daughter wanted very little to do with her. Now she has money coming in, and she wants her daughter to come back. I have legal custody, and I'm afraid that if I let her go back, she will be subjected to an unhealthy environment. They both have mental health issues, ...Read more

Unsupervised Parties and A Control Freak

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: This year we moved our two high school kids to a new area. Both kids report having no friends. It's been a difficult transition. They say the only way they can make friends is if I allow them to go to parties. But all of the parties are unsupervised. Do I have to let them go? --Feeling Guilty

Dear Guilty: I'm guessing the ...Read more

Undesirable Music Major and Biking Around Town

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My son is applying to colleges to be a music major. He has visions of a career on Broadway or in the music business. He's talented, and I've always enjoyed his music. However, I think he isn't good enough to make a career out of it. He says he doesn't mind having little money as long as he can make music. My husband and I ...Read more

Procrastination King and Family Dinner

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My son is the king of procrastination. He often manages to complete his work at the very last minute. Other times he doesn't. But every time there is arguing, stress, nagging and at least one total freakout. How can I help my son break this habit? -- Procrastinator's Dad

Dear Dad: Procrastination in and of itself isn't a ...Read more

Snapchat and a Bossy Daughter

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My almost 13-year-old daughter is begging for a Snapchat account. I am resistant, but she is wearing me down. I am not even sure why I am unwilling. Should I hold my ground? -- Not Sure Parents

Dear Not Sure: Parents have been drilling into their kids' heads that anything that is put on the internet is forever. A text, a ...Read more

A Follower Making Poor Choices and Consequences

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My 9-year-old son seems to be getting into more trouble at school this year. He's not the one who starts the fooling around, but he is definitely a joiner. He doesn't want to miss out on being with his buddies. His behavior is not affecting his grades, as he is a good student. But what's the best way to remedy his ...Read more

Angel At School Hits At Home

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My 6-year-old daughter hits either me or her brother when she gets frustrated or doesn't get her way. I've tried everything to teach her that hitting isn't acceptable. She always has excellent behavior at school. I'm a single mother who works, and I try my best. What am I doing wrong? -- Punching Bag Mom

Dear Mom: Your ...Read more


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