Category Archives: Social Skills

Misconceptions about Dating Violence

February is National Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month, which makes it a perfect time to promote safe, healthy relationships to youth.  Teens should know that the term ‘dating violence’ does not refer to the occasional argument or bad mood, which are a normal part of any relationship. Rather, dating violence is when someone tries to control their significant

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Teaching Teens to Stand Up for Themselves in the Right Way

For some teens, standing up for oneself is intimidating. They might worry that they will lose social status or that the other person will be angry or not like them anymore. On the flip side, some teens have no problem standing up for themselves but have trouble responding in a calm, non-confrontational way. They come across as hostile. Neither style

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Sibling Rivalry or Sibling Abuse?

Family members don’t always get along, and brothers and sisters are no exception. Siblings often experience jealousy, competition, and disagreements. However, there is a fine line between normal rivalry and behavior that is abusive. Today’s blog explains how to tell the difference between sibling rivalry and abuse and how to prevent and address abuse. Our society generally expects fights among

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Is your Tween Dating?

Many middle school students are involved in “romantic” relationships. While you might consider “dating” the process of going places with someone to get to know them better, youth today think dating is calling each other boyfriend/girlfriend and socializing online in a way that is often invisible to parents. Your tween could be dating and you might have no idea. BEFORE

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Teach your Teen the Importance of Setting Boundaries and Avoiding People-Pleasing

Many people struggle with maintaining healthy relationships, which are characterized by respect, trust, equality, and honesty. Creating healthy relationships is a skill that must be learned, and teens are no exception. Girls, in particular, are more prone to developing the habit of “people-pleasing,” or putting other people’s needs ahead of their own. Although people-pleasing seems like a very nice thing

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Helping Teens Through Their First Breakup

“Breaking up is hard to do” say the lyrics in the 1950s song, and truly it is, especially for teenagers, who may be in their first true relationship. Don’t underestimate the impact that their first heartbreak will have on them. Your teen is dealing with hormones, new experiences, establishing their identity, and peer pressure – all of which contribute to

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Helping your Daughter Deal with Mean Girls

Gossip. Name calling. Exclusion. Rumor spreading. Cliques. Backbiting. Manipulation. Cyberbullying. Sadly, the adolescent girl world is full of mean-spirited, controlling behavior that can significantly hurt others’ feelings or cause psychological harm. Your daughter may come in contact with any number of mean girls in her adolescent life, and when she does, it’s hard to know what to do. Here are

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How to Tell if your Teen is Lying

Lying is not uncommon in children. At some point, the majority of older children lie to their parents to: avoid punishment, seek attention, avoid a responsibility, or protect their privacy. Whatever the teenager’s reason, parents need to treat lying seriously. Teens may think lying is no big deal, so it’s our responsibility to teach teens that lying is a serious

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7 Ways to Have a Great Thanksgiving with Teens

Thanksgiving is a time to feel grateful, but sometimes gratitude isn’t our first thought when facing holidays with teenagers. Many adults worry how to connect with teens and make it a fun family gathering. Perhaps you are worried how to include fun traditions without treating teens like babies. Certainly, as our children grow up, our holiday celebrations need to grow

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How to Deal with a Self-Absorbed Teen

It is absolutely normal for teenagers to be self-centered. Adolescence is a time of rapid change, and being focused on themselves is actually part of the development that helps teens separate from their families and form their own unique identity. All teenagers are still trying to figure out who they are and what they are capable of. This development stage

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How to Deal with a Teen Know-It-All

Teens are in that awkward stage between childhood and adulthood. As they mature, youth are constantly striving to be more independent and establish their own identity and opinions. They are learning new things continually and wanting to share their knowledge and be taken seriously. Unfortunately, sometimes teens can take their newfound knowledge and independence too far and insist that he/she

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Bullying and the Role of the Bystander

October is National Bullying Prevention Month. Many organizations, including Middle Earth, are working to increase awareness of the prevalence and impact of bullying on all children. While this blog has covered many aspects of bullying in the past (see past topics on bullying), today’s article is focusing on an aspect of bullying that is not always discussed: the bystander. So

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