APSGO Parenting Blog

Dear Sue, It is a rule that there are no drugs or drug paraphernalia in the house (aka marijuana, grinder, and bongs). My son seems to think the rules don’t apply to him, and so I have repeatedly confiscated and destroyed what I find. He is also engaged in risky behaviour like driving after smoking pot. I don’t want to kick him out because I can keep a closer eye on him in my house, but I cannot sit by and watch him destroy his life with drugs, and I can’t tolerate the crap laying around. Frustrated Dear Frustrated: I […]
(Notes from the Youth Group on Connecting/Disconnecting) We talk about connecting and disconnecting behaviour in terms of relationships – with ourselves or with others. Fair enough. But what if you don’t like the other person? What if you don’t want anything to do with them? Then what? In the workshops, we’ve been working with the idea that, when we get frustrated, we try to satisfy our need for power by trying to control everybody around us. When we’re unsuccessful (and we usually are), that leads to more frustration, which leads to escalating our attempts to control others, which leads to […]
As a parent, are you invested or involved in your child’s or teen’s life? They may seem similar, but they aren’t. Invested parents are focused on the child’s goals: outcomes and achievement. The parent has an agenda that is more concerned with the destination than with the journey. Involved parents are focused on the child’s role: identity and character. The parent has no agenda and is more interested in the journey than the destination. Invested parents concentrate on the flowers, nurturing for results – goal oriented. Involved parents concentrate on the roots, nurturing for character and a sense of self […]
The things our children need to be happy and to become well-adjusted, responsible citizens aren’t necessarily the things we think they need – or what they tell us they need. So what do they need most? Safety and security: You may be thinking a roof over their head, food on the table, a warm bed to sleep in, and clean clothes to wear. Those are important when they’re young, but become increasingly less important as they grow. What I’m talking about is feeling safe and secure with us. I’m talking about being the kind of people that our children can […]
Dear Sue, Our son lives at home rent-free. His father and I pay for his car and insurance, and although he has a full-time job, he squanders every cent he makes. He’s also borrowed money from us, but whenever we ask about repayment, all we get is excuses. Is there some course in managing finances that he could take? What about counselling? Wits’ End Dear Wits’ End: Let’s start at the beginning. When our children are young, it’s our job to provide for them and protect them. But the other part of our job is to prepare them to live […]
By Sue Kranz What’s a parent? And who gets to decide? In other words, who writes your job description? I’m stunned by the number of parents who explain, “But my teen says it’s my job!” Expectations include, but are not limited to: driving them out of town to a friend’s and picking them up again – at the teen’s convenience waking them up in the morning, packing their lunch and driving them to school (even when the parents know they’re not going to school) buying them designer clothes cooking all their meals waiting on them hand and foot picking up […]
By Sue Kranz I’ve never yet met a parent who welcomed frustration. In fact, most of us would rather do whatever it takes to prevent our kids from experiencing frustration. And so we minimize how they feel: “It’s not that bad!” We threaten: “I’ll give you something to cry about!” We distract: “Let’s go for ice cream!” What we haven’t been taught is the importance of frustration in our children’s development: Frustration helps our kids develop resilience and adaptability. In his book Hold Onto Your Kids, Gordon Neufeld explains the value of frustration and provides a better, more useful way […]
by Sue Kranz “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me.” This experiment tests whether or not that’s true, or whether our words − and perhaps even our thoughts and indifference − actually have an impact on our teens. I first read about the rice experiment in The Hidden Messages in Water by Masaru Emoto. It piqued my curiosity, so I tried it for myself − 3 times. And each time I got the same result. Here’s how I did it: When I made rice, I made a bit extra, and put equal amounts of […]
by Sue Kranz In the last article, I shared ways to get a clean kitchen, and mentioned there’s a difference between compliance and cooperation. What I’ve learned over the years is that, while parents say they want compliance, they’re seldom satisfied with it. It isn’t inherent in compliance that your child will want to do what they’ve been asked to do, just that they’ll do it, often accompanied by whining, complaining, sullenness, arguing, or anger. In those moments, what parents want is for their child or teen to comply willingly and cheerfully. But is that reasonable or even achievable, especially […]
In this episode, Kim Olver interviews Choice Theory parenting coach, Sue Kranz. Kim Olver: “Sue is a phenomenal parenting coach, having raised six children of her own as a single parent and is now weighing in on some stellar ideas for grandparenting, as well. In this interview, we discuss how to help children with frustration, to self-regulate and to help out around the house. Sue also has some great insight about teaching children about thinking and delineating between helping and rescuing. We also talk about the distinction between compliance and cooperation and how to set your child up to keep track […]
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