6 Steps to Psychological Development in Children

For any parent, raising a child is a lot of work. You have to feed them, clothe them, get them to school, keep them occupied when they get home from school. The list of responsibilities goes on! Amidst all this, like any good parent, you are trying to help them become good, upstanding members of society.

However, at times it seems a sisyphean task to help your kids understand the “whys” and consequences of their actions. As such, we set boundaries, rules, and limits that help to guide children in the way they should act. By they time they are grown and leaving for college, though, most of those rules begin to be shed. How do we get to this point of having responsible, moral children who become responsible, moral adults?

All children go through a developmental process. We can think of the obvious physical development, such as learning to walk, talk, grow, etc. Another realm is their cognitive development, such as the acquisition of words in their vocabulary and their ability to learn new and abstract concepts.

Another element of their psychology would be their moral development. Just as they begin to understand how letters form words and numbers can create math problems, so must they begin to understand that rules and morality exist and they also exist to serve a...

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21 Positive Group Activities for Teens this Summer Season

It’s that time of year again – school is out for summer, and you’re wondering how to keep your teenager busy so that they do not spend all of their free time glued to their devices. Thankfully, there is an abundance of group activities for teens that they can participate in!

21 Positive Group Activities for Teens


Learning to invest in the lives and welfare of others, is one of the best uses of time for anyone but especially for a teenager.

Teens can get so caught up in the drama of social circles, striving for perfection in grades, zoning in on things that they are lacking in life, etc. that it provides a really nice reset to those concerns when they devote some time to serving those who are less fortunate.

Is your teen an animal lover? A great way to feel a sense of purpose and contribution to a greater need than themselves is by signing up to volunteer and help out at a local animal shelter. Your local Humane Society will point you in the direction of where to go and how to help:

The American Red Cross has an entire youth section called the Junior Red Cross. Through this organization, teens can organize a blood drive, be...

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After the Affair: Recovering from Infidelity

Surviving an affair and recovering from infidelity is a very unique struggle. Those who have been through this traumatic event will tell you there is really nothing quite like it. One of my callings as a counselor is to help people on all sides as they work through both the causes and the effects after the affair -- the pain, separation, confusion, grief, and conflict that can result.

Throughout our sessions together, I will emphasize the importance of building trust. This is because trust is widely considered to be one of the most important foundations of a “healthy relationship” -- so much so that without trust, there can hardly be any kind of relationship at all apart from an adversarial one.

Infidelity Damages Trust

First let’s talk about trust. Trust is like a glass sculpture. It takes time and careful skill to make. It can also be smashed into hundreds of pieces with the momentary strike of a hammer. It can be rebuilt, but it takes time. The shards of broken trust can easily cut and cause bleeding. Broken trust hurts, and it is nasty stuff to wade through without guidance.

It is difficult to rebuild trust, especially in the aftermath of infidelity. It is possible, but often without skilled guidance of a counselor, those “quicksand moments” when ev...

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Premarital Counseling: Why Should We Seek Counseling Before We Say I Do?

Congratulations! You’re getting married! This is surely one of the most exciting seasons of your life and for good reason. You are about to embark on a journey with your best friend, and the person you envision growing old with.

A great adventure is about to begin! However, just like any adventure in life can be better prepared for, rather than just showing up and seeing how it all plays out, so too, can you take steps right now to ensure a smoother journey ahead for you and your beloved.

I am sure you have a million questions, and unfortunately, most of those will go unanswered until you actually see those events in your mind playing out in real time. There are a few things that no one can teach you or provide a “How To” manual for, but thankfully, God is always present, He is all-knowing, and He promises to never leave you or forsake you – whether the season of life be favorable or challenging to your faith and relationship.

What are some of the things that do not come with an instruction manual? In-laws. We all hope and pray that we will be blessed with the ideal in-laws, don’t we? In our hearts, we yearn for marriage to consist of adoption into a second family; an enhancement to our lives, harmonious relationships that are effortless and present, etc.

I ...

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3 Most Common Problems All Geriatric Caregivers Should Be Aware Of

In the past 50 years, the life expectancy in the United States has risen nearly 10 years, from around 70 years in 1969 (which yes, was already 50 years ago) to Around 79 in 2016 (the most recent year I could find data for). With advances in medicine and many general health practices that have improved in recent years, we are living longer and longer.

However, we are not always thriving and this can mean many years of struggling health and mental decline. For our families, then, this means that there will be many changes that occur that can cause stress and the job of caregiving will fall onto their children and grandchildren. With the increase in medical complexity of the end of life comes a host of stresses that can make things more difficult to provide good care for love ones.

Perhaps this is you reading this. Maybe it’s a parent or grandparent who you are happy is still around but who is requiring a lot of medical attention. Perhaps they are beginning to show signs of dementia or are in later stages of Alzheimer’s. This is a stressful experience and can bring up a host of emotions that complicate things and may affect your motivation to be their caregiver in the first place.

My hope is that the following paragraphs will help to normalize this experience for you an...

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Anxiety Symptoms: How to Recognize if You Are Struggling with Anxiety

Samantha is a 27-year-old female. She has a successful career and has worked very hard to get where she is today. Ever since college, she has noticed that she often feels stressed and worried about a variety of things. They might be worries related to work, school (when she was attending), relationships, or things she wants to accomplish.

There are seasons that are worse than others, but overall, it has been an ongoing issue in Samantha’s life. Some weeks she has horrible insomnia, where she cannot seem to shut her mind off. Other weeks she sleeps throughout the night, but still wakes up feeling unrested and groggy.

Her shoulders almost always feel tense, and more times than not she finds herself carrying a “knot” in her stomach. She has trouble relaxing and feels like she always needs to be doing something. Sitting still and being present is a huge challenge for her, which she has found affects her social life.

There are days where the worry and stress feel so out of control that Samantha will end her day with a glass or two of wine, to take the edge off. A lot of her worries are surrounded by a need to be perfect and prove herself to be worthy.

Lately, she has noticed that it has been difficult to concentrate at work. Her mind keeps going blank and she feels m...

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Rehab For Teens: What Does It Look Like? When Does It Really Help?

The scope of this article focuses on addiction to substances and rehab for teens.

One of the most difficult things to process as a parent is how little control we end up having over the well-being of our children as they get older. If we do our job well, they go from needing us absolutely (as infants) to not needing us at all (as adults).

That doesn’t mean we don’t have a relationship with them, it just means in most circumstances we go from being completely responsible for them to having little or no responsibility for them at all. For many parents, this is a painful transition. By the time they are in their teens, most children are beginning to flex their independence, looking for more freedom and autonomy.

When the choices they make involve addictive behaviors, life can get complicated very fast, made more so by their need to be free to make their own choices.

Helping an adolescent child get clean and sober can lead us through emotional war zones we never anticipated, and the key in the midst of it is to stand firm in our convictions while maintaining as compassionate a stance as we can muster toward our child. This is a challenge under the best of circumstances, and a solid sense of what needs to happen whether they go along with it or not is necessary to ...

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