Conversations with my teenage daughter, a 14-year-old post-millennial, often start with me knocking on her bedroom door. It usually doesn't get better from there. Until it does. Knock, knock Me: Hey there. Her: What. Me: Can I come in? Her: Do you need to? Me: Yes. Her: Want to take a minute and think about it first? And that's how many conversations with my teenage daughter end ... without resolution. + + + Knock, knock Her: (No answer.) Me: I’m coming in, OK? Her: I’d rather you didn't. Me: I don’t want to talk to you through a door. Her: … [Read more...]
I knew the parting had begun when a “playdate” became “hanging out.”
+ + +Have you ever been turned into an audience? That is how my tween daughter, Lindsay, and I started feeling a few years ago when my teen daughter, Lauren, began squabbling with her mother more frequently. During one of their particularly heated exchanges in our upstairs bathroom, Lindsay sat on my bed with me and said, “This is interesting to watch.” With a chuckle and a pass-the-popcorn gesture for me to move over so she could enjoy the show more comfortably, she added: “It’s … [Read more...]
So when she told me about LGBTQ Appreciation Day at school and that she was going to volunteer at a table in the quad, I was proud of her … and nervous.
+ + +This month, I am 5. In Gay Years. I came out in March 2011. One of the things I’ve learned since then is not how to be gay (not a problem -- I read the handbook, and totally aced the exam), but how to be seen as gay. In other words, after decades of trying to avoid presenting any identifiable gay evidence in my words or actions, I had to learn how to relax with my true sexual orientation, be … [Read more...]
Keep your kids close, dads -- even if you are moving away from their mother. Fathers being absent in their teens' lives as a result of parental discord appear to contribute to their children having more symptoms of depression -- at least in the first several months, according to a new University of Montreal study. In the first four to six months following a parental split, by divorce or separation, those teens studied who were not living with their dads were more likely to report depressive symptoms than those whose parents were still together, says the study published in the October … [Read more...]
A friend of mine from college was in town so I messaged him immediately to if he’d have time to get together. It was great seeing him again because it brought back some great memories and encouraged me about today’s young people. For the record, I feel like I’m 90 years old when I write ‘today’s young people,’ but in this context it’s true. My friend’s son is in his senior year of high school. My kids are 3 and 5. I don’t feel like an old dad, but suddenly, seeing a good friend from college talking about his life and what he does as a dad made me feel weird. Having a child forces you to … [Read more...]