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7 Super Secrets to Raising Super Teens

Mackenzie Freeman

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The most important part of being a parent to small children is having the motivation to do a good job. Fortunately, nature takes care of a big portion of that by making small children very cute and endowing us with a strong desire to care for them. So, when children are small, the question of how to be a good parent is largely about finding the energy to keep up with that adorable, mess-generating, little bundle of trouble. Manage to get through those years and we run into the temptation of feeling like we’re done because your teens are now brushing their teeth, pouring bowls of cereal, and the like.

But a parent to teens has to be more strategic, more psychologically astute, and much more attentive than the parent of a small child. So, we’re going to cover seven key strategies, not just for managing your teens, but to raise them to be the magnificent young adults that they have it in them to be.

Love Them Like Their Lives Depend On It

When they were small, you established that you loved them unconditionally. This is important so that they understand that when you say ‘no,’ when you admonish, and sanction, that you do it from a place of love and not from a place of rejection. Now, that they are teens, they need you to love them just to overcome the background noise of confusion and angst. So love them and never let up.

Listen Actively and Be Attentive

Being a teenager requires massive amounts of trial and error. You can explain the meaning of life to them fully and accurately, but they still have no way of knowing anything without finding out for themselves. Therefore, they have to think independently and to explore, despite your guidance. Listen to them. You might just learn something.

Use “No” Strategically

Remember the flood of temptations that plagued you as a teen, and even now. Understand that humans have a limited capacity to resist temptation. Let them indulge themselves enough to have sufficient self-control in reserve to tend to what’s important. In time, they will expand on the small disciplines you reinforce consistently.

Embrace the Power of “No”

In a world full of evils, temptations, and folly- the power of ‘no’ is your sacred weapon against the forces of dissolution. When your teens hear you use that word, it should have authority. Don’t overuse it. Use it at the right time, and no more. Don’t beat them over the head with it, or their heads may become hard.

Pour Food Down Their Necks Liberally

Teenagers are engaged in the most grueling Olympic sport on Earth- growing in size, strength, intellectual, emotional, and sexual maturity. The energy required for that and earning a High School degree at the same time is huge. If someone put that kind of strain on us, we would vaporize. So feed them lots and LOTS of GOOD food.

When in Doubt, Cool Your Jets

Children are the way they are because biology has made them that way. The process of maturing is a process of trimming all the excess neural links that make children such a grab bag of potential. Understand that they are far more full of potential than we can even understand. As a rule of thumb, if it’s something that you’ll forget about in a week, don’t sweat it.

Observe, and Admire

Like most people, your teens are doing the best they can with what they have… probably. Keep that in mind, and remember how stressful and confusing that time of life is. When you can, take a moment to admire them for enduring and overcoming all that weird, wild stuff that teen life throws at them.

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Parenting

How a Single Mom Is Approaching Dating as She Cares for Her Kids

Mackenzie Freeman

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Dating when you’re younger and without kids can already be a real challenge. Finding that special someone is no easy feat.

Sometimes, you can tell right away that there’s no spark there from the first date. On other occasions, you will only find out that you two are incompatible after you’ve been going out for a while.

Dating is complicated, to say the least. Now imagine how tougher it becomes when you’re a single mom with young kids to take care of at home.

For many single mothers, dating is simply off the table until their kids are older, but that doesn’t always have to be the case. Recently, one woman shared her story about how she has managed to strike a great balance between being a mother to her young kids while also looking for love.

In a post on ‘Little Things,’ single mom Sarah Bregel offered a bit of insight into what it’s like to date when you also have young kids to watch over.

Early on, Bregel says that she also questions whether or not she should hide her dating life from her kids. She talks about meeting other single mothers who work hard to keep their dating lives a secret from their children.

Bregel admits that she thinks about doing that too, but then, she recognizes that she probably wouldn’t get away with doing that anyway. According to Bregel, her 10-year-old daughter has a keen sense for when she’s being honest or not.

On one particular occasion, instead of keeping her plans a secret, Bregel openly admits to her daughter that the reason she is getting all dolled up is because she is about to go on a date. It’s a revelation that is met with disinterest by her daughter.

Bregel shares that there’s a routine of sorts that she has to follow after she comes home from her date. Usually, the routine involves her daughter asking questions about her date. Sometimes, her 5-year-old son has questions of his own. She answers honestly too, though of course, there are certain things she keeps to herself.

For those who may be curious about why Bregel has chosen to approach dating this way, she has some very sensible reasons.

First off, she says that she wants to avoid leading a kind of double life. As a single mother, she does not want to hide the fact that she dates from her children. Her kids don’t seem to mind that either.

Bregel also notes that part of the reason why she is open about dating and why she doesn’t want to hide it from her kids is because she doesn’t want to surprise them. Similar to many other people who are currently involved in the dating scene, Bregel wants to find someone she can eventually enter into a relationship with long-term. Because her kids are already aware that she’s dating, it won’t come as a shock if she does find her special someone sometime in the near future.

Lastly, Bregel believes that her dating life is not just her business, which makes a lot of sense when you think about it. If a new man does become a bigger part of her life, that will also affect her kids. Bregel insists that her kids deserve to know if something like that is about to happen and how that could change things for them.

The reality is that dating for single mothers will not always be easy. Oftentimes, simply finding someone who wants to go on a second date is difficult.

What Bregel’s experiences show though is that kids don’t have to be stumbling blocks to your dating life. It’s possible to continue seeking out love while also remaining honest with your kids and that’s an important lesson for many people out there.

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Life

Parents Leave Their Daughters Home Alone to Watch The House, Return to a Jaw-Dropping Surprise!

Lea Lomas

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If you’ve paid even a lick of attention to Hollywood during your life, you’ll know that kids at home alone are prone to throw a party. At least, that’s what the movies tell us, right? When Karen and Chip Schoonover decided to take a much-needed vacation, they opted to risk their home turning into the set of Party X by letting their daughters watch the property. While they enjoyed their vacation, their daughters got busy creating the surprise of a lifetime. Are you ready to hear how four daughters change their parent’s lives forever?

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Life

7-Year-Old Uses Illness to Promote Cancer Awareness

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It happens quite often that children end up on the business side of the media in order to promote a cause whether it’s political or otherwise, and whether or not the child actually wants the attention. But this is not the case with Emerson Hoogendoorn who has chosen to use her story as a child diagnosed with a normally deadly form of cancer to promote the cause of finding a cure.

One would expect that just about anyone diagnosed with a terminal brain tumor would resign his or her self to living out their remaining days in the comfort of entertainment, family, friends, and massive doses of painkillers. But Emerson has decided that she wants to raise awareness and more. She has also begun raising money entirely on her own by becoming a small business owner, working tirelessly to make her business a success, and using the money she earns to promote cancer research as well as to donate to the cause.

She sells bracelets, cookies, lemonade, wind chimes, and just about anything else she can market online. She makes most of what she sells herself, adding to the appeal of her online shop. She was first taken to see her family doctor when she started experiencing double vision, severe headaches, and nausea. Soon, she was diagnosed with a deadly form of cancer that was eating away at her young brain.

However, she has since been taking an experimental medication, and since that treatment began, when Emerson was first given her deadly diagnosis- her tumor has shrunk to an amazing 12% of the size it was originally at when it was first discovered in an x-ray. That is an unprecedented result. Not only is Emerson giving hope to other children with similar cancer conditions with her generous endeavors, but she is also giving them hope with her continually improving prognosis!

In addition to this, her case is giving invaluable data to researchers who will be looking for ways to use the treatments which seem to be working for Emerson on other children.

According to Cancer.org, as many as 11,000 children in the United States are anticipated to have been diagnosed with cancer before the end of this year. These are children under the age of 15, who have barely had a chance to experience life and the fullness of their own potential.

Due to major advances in cancer treatment, as many as 80% of these children will survive their fight with the dreaded disease. In the 1970s, the survival rate for children with cancer was roughly 58%. The progress has been substantial, and researchers are always doing their best to push those numbers forward another fraction of a percent. It is due to thousands of professionals working diligently largely on donated funds that the science and practice of cancer treatment become gradually more effective over long periods of time.

With the help, the critical data, and the inspiration provided by brave and wonderful young people like Emerson Hoogendoorn, it is possible that even those numbers can be further improved.

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