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Mark's Parenting Articles

What if Adolescence Doesn’t Exist?

When you hear the word “adolescent” what leaps to mind? For most adults some pimple-faced mash-up of a sullen, surly almost adult wrapped up in selfish pre-occupation, angst, drama and permanent ear buds pops up. A whole menu of anti-social behaviors, ranging from substance abuse to gangs is quickly tacked on before the whole issue
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Cheech, Chong and Gone!

Remember Cheech and Chong and their druggie comic rendering of late 1970’s and 80’s drug culture? Their routines of two drug addled pals bumping a bewildered path through life were common fare in campus dorm rooms. Their 1979 film “Up in Smoke” was followed by the comedy album, “Let’s Make a Dope Deal”. Plenty of
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Corporate Creeps Set a Tone: Don’t Let Your Family Follow Their Example

It’s been a tough few years for American families. In fact, with near financial ruin of Wall Street, the triumph of nastiness in national civil society and now an ecological catastrophe that reads like it is straight out of a Hollywood horror film playing out in the Gulf of Mexico it’s been tough for America,
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Dealing With the Blackmailer in the Basement

It happens several times a month. A worried set of parents hauls a sullen adolescent (usually a boy) to my office because of concern about falling grades, nasty attitude and substance abuse. The substance is usually marijuana and in many of these households a wacky compromise has been forged; though the parents object to pot
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Give Your Child the World This Holiday Season.

It is – we are repeatedly told – the season of giving. But what is it, really, we are giving? Sometimes we are trapped in the quid pro quo gift exchange of social nicety; the weighty fruitcake to the neighbor, cute napkin rings to your child’s teacher, a bottle of brandy to a business client.
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Moving That Teen From Texting to Lawn Mowing

Nothing heats things up around the dinner table (or the counselor’s office for that matter) faster than the issue of teen family chores left undone. Parents will turn shades of scarlet as they splutter on endlessly about responsibility, survival in the real world and tales of milking camels in snowstorms when they were growing up.
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No Doubt About It – Time to Stop Dissing Dads

As I write I am about to leave for Seoul, South Korea for my son’s wedding. By the time you read this I will be back and a milestone in my son’s life and my journey as a father will have been achieved. I’ve been blessed to be able to do many things in my
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Six Simple Steps Toward Meeting the Needs of Children in Divorce

When two powerful forces collide it is those caught between who suffer; whether the conflict is between political parties, nation or a family. Sometimes the collision just pinches those caught in the middle. Often it can annihilate those who can’t get out of the way. Even in the best of divorce and separation situations children
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What Parents Need to Understand About the Porn Problem

No doubt pornography is unsettling to many, but the topic raises issues affecting parenting and the culture of the communities our children are raised in. To begin, consider a few facts: One-third of all internet downloads and a quarter of online searches are for pornographic material. Despite risk of unemployment, 25 percent of American employees
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