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Strangers Groping Gorgeous Hair and Driving Without a Permit

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My 13-year-old daughter has the most incredible red hair with ringlets. It's really striking, and she gets a lot of attention for it. She mostly enjoys the attention. But often, people she doesn't even know feel compelled to run their fingers through her hair. They just want to touch it. My daughter isn't particularly touchy...Read more

How To Tell a Child About a Sexual Assault

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: I was sexually assaulted in college. I never told anyone in my family. It's taken years, but I am not in pain anymore. As my daughter begins her freshman year of high school, I am feeling the urge to tell her my story. I want her to know what can happen to girls, but I also don't want to frighten her. When and how should I ...Read more

A Bisexual Friend and a New IPad

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My daughter is 16, and she has a good friend who identifies as bisexual. I try to be open-minded, but I get the feeling that this girl is hitting on my daughter. I hear certain comments and see some suggestions. This makes me very uncomfortable. What should I do? -- Not Ready for Sex Mom

Dear Mom: You better get ready for ...Read more

Divorced Parents and Choking on a Pea

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: I'm a divorced mom with a 10-year-old son. The arrangement with my ex is my son switches houses every weekend. He often forgets something inconsequential like a uniform or a book at one place or the other. Whenever I get frustrated with him, he tells me I don't understand how hard it is to have divorced parents because my ...Read more

A Book Lover and a Kind Soul

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: I feel one of my great failures as a parent is that my kids are not readers. They spend tons of time on their phones, like most other kids, and they diligently complete their homework. But free time is never spent reading. When I impose reading time, it feels like a punishment rather than a pleasure, which seems ...Read more

Daughter Unties Mom After Robbery

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: Last week, while my husband and 7-year-old daughter were at an amusement, park two young men broke into my house and demanded money and credit cards. After I gave them what they wanted, they gagged me and hogtied me face down in the kitchen. Three hours later, my husband and daughter came home, and they untied me. Luckily, I...Read more

Running After the Mean Girls and an Ignoring Stepdaughter

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My 7-year-old daughter is not very savvy on the playground. She is constantly chasing after the "mean girls" because she says they play more exciting games than her own friends. Should we be helping her understand that it is better to hang with those who appreciate her and want her around, even if the game is a little bit ...Read more

A Shaggy-Haired Grandson and a Young Fan of Rap Music

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My family is throwing a party for my father's 65th birthday, and my mother told me to cut my 13-year-old son's hair or not bring him along. Do I haul my kid to a barber over his objections, or is it OK to leave him at home? Help! -- Dad in the Middle

Dear In the Middle: It must be incredibly sad to see your parents throw down...Read more

Little Miss Know-It-All and a Defiant Boy

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: Sometimes I notice that my child acts like a know-it-all. She is constantly raising her hand in class and telling her friends the best way to do play a game or do any task. Her friends are getting annoyed, and I see how it causes her to struggle socially. How can I help her work better with her peers? -- Know-It-All's Mom

...Read more

The Front Seat and Bickering Siblings

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My wife lets my 10-year-old sit in the front seat of the car. She says it's no big deal, but it freaks me out. Am I overreacting? -- Scared Dad

Dear Dad: You aren't overreacting. The safest place for a child to ride in the car is buckled up in the back seat. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American ...Read more

Costume Dreams and Game Night Resistance

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: Last year, my daughter, who was 8 years old, wanted her own Halloween costume to be her favorite singer, Lady Gaga. The costume was sparkly and glittery and revealed a lot of skin. I was uncomfortable with it and promised to get it next year. I figured she'd forget, but she keeps mentioning her Lady Gaga costume, even though...Read more

Overeating Boys and a Strong-Willed Girl

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My boys, 10 and 11 years old, are terrific eaters. They love fruits and vegetables and trying all kinds of new foods. But their appetites have grown, and they seem to be getting a little chunky. How can I help them lose a few pounds without ruining their love of eating? -- Food Lover, Too

Dear Food Lover: Wow, you've ...Read more

A Gentleman's Club and a Homesick Camper

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My son turns 18 in a couple of weeks, and for his birthday he asked me to take him to a strip club. I'm divorced from his mom, and he knows I go to gentleman's clubs every so often. But this feels sort of ... wrong. How should I handle this? -- A Gentleman

Dear Gentleman: A gentleman? I'm not so sure. As a woman, I have a ...Read more

Unholy Holocaust Remembrance and a Pet Snake

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My grandmother died in a concentration camp in the Holocaust. This might sound weird, but as a tribute to her memory, my 20-year-old daughter wants to find out her camp number and have it tattooed on her body. She views this as a beautiful ode, however, I am beyond horrified. Legally, I can't do anything. But what can I say ...Read more

Homosexual Mothers and a Crier

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: I'm a Christian, and I believe homosexuality is a sin. My daughter is friends with a girl who is being raised by two mothers. They seem like perfectly nice people, but I do not approve of their lifestyle and do not want their choices to rub off on my child. Is it OK for me to not let her see her friend, or at least keep her ...Read more

Picky Preschooler and Star-Crossed Teen

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: Our 3-year-old daughter is insanely picky. She eats nothing! We are serving her chicken fingers, meatballs, noodles, cheese and yogurt most of the time. She won't touch anything green. How do I get her to eat vegetables? -- Frustrated

Dear Frustrated: Your daughter doesn't eat nothing. While it may seem like she refuses ...Read more

Questioning Cursing and a Hickey

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My 7-year-old son says some of the other kids at school are cursing or talking about sexual things that he doesn't understand. He asks me what these words mean. Should I tell him the truth or make something up? I don't want to make a fool of him, but I also don't think he is ready for all of these concepts. -- Not Ready Dad ...Read more

First Sleep-Away Camp and a Break From the Kids

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My 10-year-old son is heading out for his first summer of sleep-away camp. He'll be gone for three weeks. I'm so excited for him but also nervous. He was excited at first, too, but now he seems more nervous and anxious. How can I help him make the most of camp and not waste time being homesick? -- Camp Mom

Dear Camp Mom: It...Read more

A Moody Preteen and a Toddler Hitter

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My daughter is almost 11, and she's a good kid. She's polite, responsible and generally good-natured. But I can see her becoming more moody, and sometimes she can become a bit disrespectful when she's grumpy. I'm trying to figure out what to let pass and what to address. I find it especially hard to ignore when we're in ...Read more

Young Dating Relationships and a Fresh Teen

Parents / The Family Coach /

Dear Family Coach: My son is in sixth grade, and has a girlfriend. Their relationship mostly consists of texts and an occasional movie date. He likes the girl, but he doesn't communicate very well over text. Recently, the girl's mother approached me asking whether I could tell her daughter that I took my son's phone away so she wouldn't be ...Read more


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