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10 Life Skills Your Teen Needs Before Leaving Home

Over the last few years, I’ve watched all 5 of my kids grow up and head out into the world.  Though I can’t be with them as they journey into life after high school, I worked hard to prepare them.  Be sure to share these life skills for teens with them if they’re about to leave the nest.  First, make sure they know some basic cooking skills.  They’ll be much better off knowing how to prepare a few simple, healthy...
May 21, 2018 / Life Stage: Pre-Teens and Teenagers

The 3 C’s to Guiding Your Kids through Peer Pressure

Every child faces pressure from peers.  While some of those pressures can be harmless, or even positive, there are a number of negative peer pressures that your child will face over time—being offered drugs, or being encouraged to sneak out of the house with a boyfriend or girlfriend.  To help your child avoid serious consequences, here are 3 C’s to guide your child through peer pressure.  First, communicate. ...
May 15, 2018 / Life Stage: Pre-Teens and Teenagers

Parent or Pal?

A lot of parents have a hard time telling the difference.  And that’s a problem.  You’ve seen it…a mom dressed like her teenage daughter.  A dad who offers his teenage son a beer while they watch the game.  When mom or dad becomes a buddy, the child loses out on the most important relationship…that of parent and child.  Your kids have plenty of friends, what they need from you is guidance, love, and boundaries....
Aug 26, 2015 / Life Stage: Pre-Teens and Teenagers

How to Help Your Teen Deal with Disappointment

Think back to your teen years.  It seemed like everyone had their eye on you.  Everything was a big deal.  When things went wrong, it seemed like the sky was falling and the world was coming to an end.  Dealing with disappointment is hard at any age, but especially during those teen years. Here’s how you can help.  Begin by listening first, not talking.  Your teen needs to know first that they are heard.  When you...
Aug 06, 2015 / Life Stage: Pre-Teens and Teenagers

Am I Pretty or Ugly?

Girls in their tweens and teens are posting videos on YouTube asking the question, “Am I pretty or ugly?  It’s no secret, the teenage years are full of insecurity. But the Internet is a dangerous place to seek affirmation and attention. It opens your child up to cruel, damaging comments as well as sexual predators. As a parent, it’s your job to affirm and love your child well so she doesn’t look for it in all the...
Jul 17, 2015 / Life Stage: Pre-Teens and Teenagers

5 Ways to Prepare Your Tweens and Teens for the Unexpected

Life can be fun.  But, life is also hard. . .disappointing. . .and a little frightening. So, as a parent, you need to prepare your child for the unexpected. First, financial. When your child receives a gift or earns some money, sure. . . they can spend a little on themselves and they should share with others in need. But, they should also save a portion to learn to prepare for an unexpected need. Second, social....
Jul 15, 2015 / Life Stage: Pre-Teens and Teenagers

What to Do When You Catch Your Teenager Drinking

You thought you had all the right conversations. You thought you were on top of things as a parent. You thought you could trust your child. Then it happens. What do you do? First, don’t react in anger. Second, when you’re calm, sit down with your teen and ask open-ended questions to determine why they were drinking. Maybe it was curiosity, peer pressure, or a means of escape. Third, talk about the consequences and...
Jul 14, 2015 / Life Stage: Pre-Teens and Teenagers



The Family Minute is a daily radio feature that offers everyday advice on marriage, parenting, and family relationships.

Mark Merrill

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