January 4, 2016

Business-like Consequences For Teenagers

                              How do you discipline a teenager?  What consequences are most likely to be effective with a teen? The answer may be different than you expect. Let’s imagine it’s you who needs a consequence.  Picture this:  You messed up at work.  Pretend you missed a deadline, and you know your boss has to do something about it. There are two ways this can go. Scene 1: your boss says “Hey, you missed that deadline.  Was there anything unclear about what was expected?”…  “Well, next time please […]
December 17, 2015
Senior couple laughing and talking to camera

Parental Guilt and Compassion Fatigue: Part 2/2

Human empathy exposes us to a range of vulnerabilities that tend to physically and mentally break us down into parenting mush!  We lose our effectiveness, our parenting moxie, the belief that we should be better than we have become.  And the evidence…our son/daughter is in residential treatment.  The guilt discussed previously drives us to a breaking point.  Often we think we should just buck up and take it.  But if you really look at your effectiveness at home, in the work place, with other relationships that seem to deteriorate with not knowing why?  I suggest the human system can only […]
December 14, 2015
Caucasian blonde mom  in foreground in bathrobe holding head in frustration, while kids fight in background in kitchen.

Parental Guilt and Compassion Fatigue: Part 1

Let’s just clear the table of the thanksgiving turkey and agree, all parents who remove their children from the home to residential care are empathetic !  Even if your teen has scolded you into believing otherwise. Because of your great capacity to just take it, parents become exposed to a variety of traumatic situations, either by witnessing them or learning about them from their children or other professionals.  If this hasn’t happened then on to the next blog. As we move into the holiday season I want to take a few minutes to remind parents of a couple items.  One, […]
September 2, 2015

Let Them Make Mistakes

By Alaina I’d love to shelter my children from heartache, struggle and pain. Having been down the road they are now traveling, surely I can steer them around many of the potholes and roadblocks, making their journey much easier. After all, I can see the big picture much better so I’d make an ideal navigator, right? The problem is, I can’t be there every moment and eventually they’ll be far away from my safe shelter. What happens when life comes at them without my buffer? As the pediatrician often reminds me, “You’re not raising a child here, you’re creating an […]
August 26, 2015

Control is Gone, but Influence Remains

By George Ballew Remember the days when your child would listen to you? When that sweet child develops into a teenager, we see our hold on them slip. They are slowly turning into adults which means greater independency, autonomy and privacy. It’s a natural progression. Understand Control vs. Influence. There are many things in life you can control, but many that you cannot – like a teenager. However, there are ways to have a greater influence on them. Set your agenda aside at first, and just listen. Ask clarifying questions. You don’t have to agree or approve of their thoughts, […]
August 19, 2015

Get Your Teen Talking

By Alaina Chatterly The words that come out of your teen’s mouth are far more powerful than the words that go into their ears. For one thing, words coming out of their mouth are also heard by their ears. So anything you can get them to realize and say aloud will stick with them twice as long (or more) than something you have simply told them is important. What do I mean by this vague statement? Well, we have so much to say to these teens. Time is limited with them, and we have wisdom and advice and dos/don’ts that […]
August 12, 2015

Developing relationships through consistency

By Tirae There is no perfect way to raise children or to teach them. Please understand any advice I attempt to give comes from the heart in hopes it will help and you will know you are not alone. I have the two hardest, most rewarding positions on the earth; being a mom and attempting to change lives at Heritage. Kids come with all different personalities and what works for one may not work for another. However, one thing I do know is that when difficulty knocks, a relationship must answer. Just because you’re a parent does not mean you […]
August 5, 2015

Take Care of Yourself — You’ll Have More to Give

By George Often caregivers, especially mothers it seems, feel that if they give 100 percent to their troubled child, it will finally pay off. Or if not, at least you’ll have a clear conscience when you die a burned-out martyr’s death at an early age with lots of gray hair. While it’s important to give your best to the ones you love, there’s something to be said about taking some balanced time for self care as well. I compare it to having a battery. In theory, it may be noble to drain your entire battery, overextending yourself worrying about your […]
July 29, 2015

Why Horses? Seven ways kids benefit from Equine Therapy

By Summer Jenkins “Why horses? How will working with horses help my son or daughter?” These are questions I have been asked many times. As the program manager for the Heritage Schools Equine Therapy Programs, I have worked with hundreds of kids in equine therapy sessions. Here are seven of the many ways I have seen horses help kids: Working with horses is a healthy recreational outlet. It doesn’t matter who we are. Doing something fun, exciting and physical is good for us. Many of my students have picked up unhealthy coping skills as a way of dealing with the […]
July 22, 2015

Five Ways to Build Healthy Relationships with Your Teen

By Keven Downs LCSW 1-      Healthy communication is the foundation of healthy relationships.  Healthy communication can be an investment for the future. You can choose to be right or to have a successful relationship; you can’t always have both. Many people argue to be right about something. Listening is a crucial skill. Empathic listening is where the listener validates and really seeks to understand what the other is saying.  Oftentimes we are waiting for the other person to be quiet so we can state our position. One important factor in communicating with teens is that they are still forming their […]


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