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Susan Stiffelman

'How Did The Tooth Fairy Find Me In New Delhi?'

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 03.26.2014 | TED Weekends
Susan Stiffelman

2013-01-18-TEDplayvideo.jpgChildhood is brief; as the ubiquitous presence of media exposes our little ones to more and more "realities", they are being pushed to grow up at accelerated rates. Despite the arguments one can make about the importance of telling children the true truth, there are times when I believe it is okay to blur the edges of reality, as long as no one is being hurt.

A Boy's Plea About Video Game Addiction

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 03.23.2014 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

The next time you feel a desire to tune out by turning on your game system, pause. Take three or four breaths and just notice how you feel. Tense? Anxious? Excited? Sad? Bored?

Long-Distance Parenting Is Hard On Us All

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 03.16.2014 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

Parenting a teen is difficult enough; trying to do so from afar certainly adds its challenges. Still, location isn't everything.

Perturbed By My Son's Procrastination

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 03.10.2014 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

My son is a horrible procrastinator. I can't for the life of me get him to do homework or even 10 minutes of chores without a major fight. Things end up taking five times as long as they need to. Any advice?

'My Kids Make Me So Angry I Can't See Straight!'

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 03.02.2014 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

We want to be kind and patient, fair and understanding -- even if we are upset by something they have done. But sometimes it takes next to nothing for good intentions to fly out the window.

Am I Crazy to Give My Tween a Cell Phone?

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 02.22.2014 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

Parents delight in the smiles on the faces of the children when a longed-for gift is unwrapped. But in the long run, we want the gifts we give our children to add to their lives, rather than remove something from them.

Does Daddy Time Have to Be Video Game Time?

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 02.16.2014 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

Most parents feel that they are stumbling in the dark when it comes to figuring out how to integrate screen time into their family's lives. We try one thing -- perhaps giving our kids unlimited access to their devices -- only to realize that we have to course correct and set time limits.

'My Daughter Needs to Make a House for Her Fairies... Right Before Bed!'

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 02.12.2014 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

Before the advent of electronic diversions -- video games, ipads, cell phones and "educational" computer games -- children's imaginations provided hours of entertainment.

How Can I Change My Daughter's Negative Thinking?

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 01.25.2014 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

By allowing your daughter to hear you offer alternatives to catastrophic thinking, you'll create a blueprint for her to start doing the same.

How Much Is Too Much Online Time?

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 01.23.2014 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

Today's parents are navigating uncharted territory when it comes to figuring out appropriate guidelines for kids and digital media.

I Can't Get My Husband to Parent MY Way!

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 01.23.2014 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

If you scold him, you will come across not as his caring wife, but as his shaming mother. This will no doubt trigger his old childhood pain, reinforcing his resistance to your input.

Is It OK to Use My Smartphone As a Reward?

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 01.23.2014 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

Relying on your digital device as a bribe, threat or diversion is not a reliable, long-term parenting strategy.

Trickle Down Happiness: Why Mom Needs a Little Self-Care

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 12.22.2013 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

Many parents are so consumed with checking things off their list (dinner, homework, bath) that they stop having enjoying their kids.

6 Tips to Help Parents Put Down Their Phones, Now

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 01.23.2014 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

Our phones offer tremendous stimulation. For parents who are with little ones for hours on end, they can seem like a lifeline.

Checking in Without Checking Out

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 12.01.2013 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

Most children feel shortchanged when it comes to a parent's attention; they never feel they get enough. When they have to compete with your job (or your smartphone), they are likely to feel resentful and hurt.

How Can I Get My Kids to Keep Their Word?

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 11.23.2013 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

Pushing and pulling kids to do things they have to do can be maddening. It is very important that we raise our children to be true to their word.

Stepdaughter's Mom Is Threatening to Send Her to a Distant School

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 11.17.2013 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

13-year-olds are reluctant to confide in their parents. One of the benefits of being a "bonus parent" is that you can act as a sounding board for your stepdaughter to talk freely about the things she's struggling to sort out.

My Kids Can't Eat Out Without Being Plugged In!

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 11.10.2013 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

Let your children know that your decision is not negotiable, and that if they don't think they can join you as pleasant dinner companions, they can stay home with grandma or a babysitter (without access to computers or TV).

Can I Teach My Son to Have Boundaries When Mine Are So Flimsy?

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 11.04.2013 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

There are many ways to help a child establish better boundaries, but the most important one is built upon what he observes in the behavior of those he watches most carefully -- his parents and primary caregivers.

Tired of Fighting My Teen to Wake Up in the Morning

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 10.27.2013 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

Many kids tune out a well-meaning parent's efforts to get them to rise and shine, going back to sleep over and over.

Help! How Can I Get My Kid to Do His Homework?

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 10.21.2013 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

By letting your son know that you're on his side, rather than lecturing him for not being more enthusiastic about his school work, you can help him get his work done without the drama that wears everyone out.

How to Avoid Meltdowns Without Caving in

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 10.13.2013 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

When you see signs of your child heading toward a tantrum and you realize you aren't going to be able to stay cool, calm and collected, there is a way to "give in" to your child (thereby avoiding the meltdown) without teaching her that whenever she wants something, all she needs to do is yell.

Make the Car Fighting Stop!

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 10.05.2013 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

he restrictions that come from being strapped in and stuck in a car are a terrible fit for kids. There are, however, things you can do to make the ride more enjoyable.

Why Can't 'No' Mean 'No'?

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 09.29.2013 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

My 13-year-old son refuses to take 'no' for an answer. No matter how much I explain why I won't raise his allowance or let him watch an inappropriate movie, he follows me around, demanding better reasons. It makes me so angry! Why can't 'no' mean 'no'?"

'You Can't Be Friends With Anyone But Me!'

Susan Stiffelman | Posted 09.23.2013 | Parents
Susan Stiffelman

By helping your daughter honor herself and stand up for what she deserves in a loving friendship, you will be giving her the tools for healthy relationships down the road.