By Dr. Meg Meeker
The New Year is well underway and now that the novelty of having a fresh start has worn off, let us not forgot that in the eyes of our Lord, we have a new beginning opportunity every single day. So considering this, will you continue to join me on my venture to become a nicer person? We have talked about changing the way we talk and finding more restful time during the day by slicing hours with electronics away from our days, so let’s keep going.
I know that many of you will be mad at this post so I ask you to dig deeply and ask what makes you mad. Is it because you disagree or because you know that what you want to see really does hurt women and children? Of course we have the right to see what we want and I don’t argue that. But we must always remember that our right to be entertained by certain things- like 50 Shades of Grey- may cost innocent people a lot of pain.
Daniel Day’s new book, Ten Days Without is an extraordinary lesson in life, discomfort, love and change. If you need to shake up your life in order to get unstuck, read the book. You will never put your coat on the same way.
Friends, I have a challenge for each of us. Let’s make 2015 our best family year ever! At Family Talk, we genuinely want you to enjoy being a parent and feel encouraged in your journey to be kinder, more deliberate and more confident in your parenting. Most of all, we want you become the parent that God wants you to be. And we’re here to help.
My husband, Brian, and I are on the same page about everything. Politics, music, food, we’ve ridden the same wavelength for more than a decade. Even when we were ambivalent about having a baby, I always knew he’d be an awesome dad, and the idea of him feeding a newborn a bottle or rough-housing with a little kid helped push me into the “we can do this” column.
Here’s the million-dollar question every conscientious parent asks at Christmas: How can I get my kids (and myself) to focus on the real meaning of Christmas? Well, if you are asking those questions, kudos to you. You’re off to a great start because you can only find answers to questions if you ask the questions.
By Meg Meeker, M.D.
Let me ask you, friends, “How did it go? You know- Thanksgiving?” What would you say? Could it be that many of you would answer, “Ugh, I’m so glad it’s over?” Or how about, “Next year, we’re definitely not including Uncle Jim- he’s out of control.”
Helping kids avoid sex is no longer a moral or religious issue; it is a medical one. If I didn’t believe that we can be effective in helping our kids delay their sexual debut, I would stay silent. But we can help. You can help.
With Social Media being so popular these days, anything you say can be viewed by millions of people in a matter of minutes. Parents are concerned about what their kids are seeing online, but they should also be concerned with what they themselves are posting online.
Allow me to let you in on a frightening secret about physicians. While we are in residency training to be specialists, we work horrific hours. A typical week includes eighty to ninety hours of work in the hospital, often more. Under pressure, we learn to do procedures quickly.
I know it sounds like an oxymoron to say that humility will make your daughter feel more significant, but here’s why it’s true. To fulfill her potential, your daughter needs to understand who she is, where she comes from, and where she’s going. And her understanding needs to be accurate.
One of the toughest aspects of being a hero to your daughter is not just deciding what is good and right for her, but also keeping her on track. Fathers can demand tremendous discipline from themselves, but they can find it much harder to stand firm with their children. Fathers get tired. Daughters can become defiant, manipulative, and wear their fathers down. This is where perseverance comes in.
Boys need strong relationships with their parents. Period. Every boy, without exception, wants a better relationship with his mother and his father because his physical and emotional survival depends on you.
Once again media reporters have successfully extracted information from one story and created a completely unrelated narrative for one reason: to pit one group of parents against another. Sorry, but I won’t bite.
I have a three and a half year old son who is a very anxious little boy. It seems to be getting progressively worse...he is now biting his nails non-stop and having a hard time functioning in any new situation. When he is in his routine with family he is just fine and thrives. When we are in new social situations he has severe anxiety.
An important part of adolescence is separating from one’s parents, in a process called emancipation. Teens usually embark upon this around puberty, beginning with baby steps (driving, getting a job, developing their own opinions) and ending with the giant leap into college or on to other adult endeavors.
The tragic death of Robin Williams unnerved many Americans. Sure, we are sad to lose a talented man but on a deeper level, those who have loved ones struggling with sadness, irritability or who are just “not themselves” have wondered if those loved ones have depression. We are frightened because we don’t want to miss any cry for help from one who is struggling because depression is a very serious illness.
As a doctor, I can probe, culture, prescribe antibiotics, and aggressively treat and track contagious STDs. But depression is different. It’s more elusive, yet equally, if not more, dangerous. It can come and go, or it can settle in, making itself so comfortable in an adolescent’s psyche that it’s nearly impossible to extricate. There, just as many STDs do, depression causes permanent damage that may not become apparent for years. To many teenagers, depression can make them feeFor the thousands of teens I’ve treated and counseled, one of the major causes of depression is sex. I consider it an STD with effects as devastating as—if not more—HPV, chlymadia or any other.
So you think you know the NFL? Think again. There are great dads in the league but you won’ t hear about them because they don’t leave scandals that titillate reporters looking for juicy stories to boost their careers. My buddy Benjamin Watson (below) sent me this photo as he was leaving for training to start the new season. He left his beautiful babies through tears and anguish, worrying what cost their dad’s separation might have for them.
Controversy and intense emotions surround breast feeding. Mothers who breast feed successfully enjoy satisfaction that they are promoting good nutrition and bonding with their babies. Other mothers, however, struggle with breast feeding and feel guilty if they offer a bottle. This should not be. Breast milk is best for babies but we need to keep nutrition and feeding practices in a healthy perspective and recognize that babies are born into a world which is larger than just their mothers.
Connect With Dr. Meg Meeker
Visit Dr. Meeker's Resource Page
Pediatrician, mother and best-selling author of six books, Dr. Meg Meeker is the country’s leading authority on parenting, teens and children’s health.
Dr. Meg writes with the know-how of a pediatrician and the big heart of a mother because she has spent the last 25 years practicing pediatric and adolescent medicine while also helping parents and teens to communicate more deeply about difficult topics such as sex, STDs and teen pregnancy. Her work with countless families over the years served as the inspiration behind her new groundbreaking book, The Ten Habits of Happy Mothers, Reclaiming Our Passion, Purpose and Sanity out from Ballantine Books. Visit Dr. Meg's Resource page.
Dr. Meg’s popularity as a speaker on key issues confronting American families has created a strong following on her blogs for Psychology Today. She has also spoken nationally on teen health issues, including personal appearances on numerous nationally syndicated radio and television programs. Additionally, Dr. Meg lends her voice to regular features in Physician Magazine and Psychologies (UK) and was a contributor to QUESTIONS KIDS ASK ABOUT SEX: Honest Answers for Every Age, The Complete Book of Baby and Child Care (Tyndale House Publishers) and High School Science text, Holt-Rhinehart and Winston, 2004.
Dr. Meg is presently re-certifying with the American Board of Pediatrics and is a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics as well as the National Advisory Board of the Medical Institute, Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics and Human Development at Michigan State University; Munson Hospital Family Practice Residency Training Program 1998-present.
Dr. Meeker lives and works in Traverse City, MI where she shares a medical practice with her husband, Walter. They have four grown children.
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