Category: Parenting

  • The 1step2life Podcast

    The 1step2life Podcast

    Do you enjoy podcasts? Follow the 1step2life on Spotify, Google Podcasts, and other major platforms.

  • Beating yourself up about parenting?

    Beating yourself up about parenting?

    I have studied parenting on five continents for close to four decades. I’m also a mom — the mom of two sons, one of them who is very sick. I know what it is to beat yourself up about not being a perfect parent.  But too many parents beat themselves because they are trying to meet two entirely different, incompatible, and […]

  • Podcast: Parenting a Child With Migraine

    Podcast: Parenting a Child With Migraine

    I am so honored to be interviewed for the Living With An Invisible Injury podcast.  Listen here:

  • Why did a psychologist who studies families develop an app for tracking pain?

    Why did a psychologist who studies families develop an app for tracking pain?

    The fact that the 1step2life app grew completely out of our experience as a family is so deeply ingrained into the fiber of my being that I forget to tell people about it. Hence this post. I was asked for information about 1step2life by the editors of MyChronicBrain – an online magazine and newsletter for […]

  • Chronically Ill Teen? Fighting the Dread

    Chronically Ill Teen? Fighting the Dread

    I remember that sick feeling in the pit of my stomach every Sunday afternoon. Sunday at 3:00 was youth orchestra. When my son first developed migraine disease, attacks came like clockwork. Every Sunday around 2:30, he’d begin to yawn. Then the auras would start. I’d see him start wincing from light and then, just as […]

  • Challenge, Support, & Love

    Challenge, Support, & Love

    Helping my son get out of bed when he was in pain was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I knew how much he hurt. But we both knew that the worst mistake we’d made when he first got sick was to let him withdraw from the world and into his bed. The light hurt […]

  • How Do Doctors Build Trust?

    How Do Doctors Build Trust?

    Doctors, patients, and caregivers all bring something different to the table. All contribute to healing. The patient has the lived experience. It is their body. Their life. It is their decision what they decide to do and take from the relationship in the hope of moving forward. The caregiver brings support. Often – especially when […]

  • When Your Child Says They’re In Pain, Believe Them.

    When Your Child Says They’re In Pain, Believe Them.

    One of the hardest things about invisible illnesses is that they’re – um – invisible. No one can see them. Only the person who has them knows they exist. The most common chronic pain conditions in children and teens – headache, migraine, gastrointestinal problems, skeletal issues – are trivialized. That’s pretty awful. Anyone, anytime, can […]

  • Supporting Parents of Teens & Children In Pain

    Supporting Parents of Teens & Children In Pain

    I’m reading a book called The Midnight Library, by Matt Haig. It’s a fantasy – a parable really – about regret and depression and building a better life. Sounds odd for a book I picked because it was billed as ‘a feel good novel’ about a life well lived, doesn’t it? Did I mention that […]

  • Balancing Challenge & Support

    Balancing Challenge & Support

    Urie Bronfenbrenner was one of the giants of 20th century developmental psychology. One of the founders of HeadStart, Urie had many favorite sayings about raising children. In additional to studying children for more than half a century, he also had five of his own. One person who is crazy about you One thing that fascinated […]

  • Quieting Your Inner Voices So You Can Hear Your Child’s Pain

    Quieting Your Inner Voices So You Can Hear Your Child’s Pain

    Nothing is more distressing than listening to a baby cry. I’m not just saying that about me. There’s a lot of research on the topic. When we hear a child in distress all we want to do is make it stop. Their hurt makes us hurt. I don’t think that ends when they’ve grown. I […]

  • How To Help When Your Child’s in Pain: Listen

    How To Help When Your Child’s in Pain: Listen

    When my child’s in pain, my first instinct is to try to fix it. That’s my job right? But it’s not always what they need. Sometimes they need to vent and blow off steam. This is hard for us. It’s worse for them. If we jump in too fast we’re not giving them permission to […]

  • Can Stoicism Make You A Happier Parent?

    Can Stoicism Make You A Happier Parent?

    Confession time I feel guilty. Why? Because there are times I feel I’m failing at my most important job: being a mom. My son hurts all the time – and I can’t protect him. He is having a hard time transitioning gracefully to adulthood. He struggled to make it through high school – it’s tough […]

  • Following Doctor’s Orders

    Following Doctor’s Orders

    When teens don’t believe parents or doctors have the right to set rules, they don’t follow them.

  • Kids Who Go To School In Pain

    Note: I wrote this years ago, when my son’s migraines first when chronic. Much has changed in our lives. Sending him to school with his pain remains one of the hardest things my husband and I – and certainly our son – has ever had to do. But every single day he went – maybe […]

  • Pain, Ambiguous Loss, & Acceptance

    Pain, Ambiguous Loss, & Acceptance

    Acceptance means holding both a painful now and a hopeful future in our minds· Death can be a harsh shock, as someone is ripped from us and is no longer present in our lives.  It has a finality to it – that’s part of the shock and much of the pain.  But it is real […]

  • Caregiver Mode: Unique to 1step2life

    A mother’s despair This app began as a search for a tool. My son was in horrible pain – in bed, in the dark, barely holding on to school. When I looked at him, my first thought was always the same – How much pain is he in? Then I’d wonder if he’d taken his […]

  • You Can Curse

    You Can Curse

    How do you cope when things feel their worst? You can cry. Or laugh. Or curse.

  • A Life Changing Event

    A Life Changing Event

    When do I get my old life back? The answer is, you don’t. That’s why they call it a ‘life changing event.’

  • School: The Big Picture

    School: The Big Picture

    Families need to work together towards a shared goal: helping children grew into healthy happy adolescents and adolescents make successful transitions to adulthood.