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Letters

No Authority As a practicing general pediatrician, I appreciated Dr. Leonard Sax’s article “Don’t Ask the Kids” in the October issue of First Things. Sax makes some very helpful suggestions for parents struggling to raise respectful children, but his emphasis is misplaced in advocating . . . . Continue Reading »

Suzuki Method Uberparenting

Spiritually as well as emotionally, childhood years require not only joy and nurturing, but also suffering and growth, if the young person is to face adulthood maturely. And fortunately (or ironically), our musically obsessed phase never ended up shielding my kids from anything. Continue Reading »

Don’t Ask the Kids

Distrust of authority is now the American norm. In 1964, 77 percent of Americans said that they trusted the government to do the right thing most of the time or all of the time. In 2012, only 22 percent of Americans agreed that the government could be trusted. When I was growing up in the 1960s, if . . . . Continue Reading »

The Parenting Problems of Age Segregation

It has been more than a half-century since James Coleman and his team surveyed students in ten high schools to determine their values and interests and attitudes toward learning. The conclusion was that a new social formation was upon us: the adolescent society. That was the title of the book . . . . Continue Reading »

In Loco Politicus

There is much talk lately of an over-parenting crisis. In her book How to Raise an Adult, Julie Lythcott-Haims, a dean at Stanford University, tells horror stories about parents who speak for, plan for, and advocate for their college-aged children, afraid to let go lest their precious charges . . . . Continue Reading »

Singing Lessons

As my daughter and I travelled home over the Wicklow Mountains, our voices echoed between the cliffs, turning the heads of passing sheep as we rolled into the wooded hollows below. She knows these songs by heart from years of lullabies and sing-alongs since, but doesn’t yet realize that children . . . . Continue Reading »

The Anxious Parent

The trampoline, that upset them. We bought one of the big round ones for our eldest’s sixteenth birthday a few years ago, and parents we knew (mothers more than fathers) were appalled that we’d bought such a dangerous thing and horrified that our children were allowed to jump on it when we were . . . . Continue Reading »

The Unfathomable Mystery of Autism

Of all the many states of mind, disorders, and aberrations of man, autism is certainly among the most mysterious. Autistic people give one an uncanny feeling. They provide a vivid reminder that no person can ever fully fathom the mystery of another. Autistic people spend a good part of their energy . . . . Continue Reading »

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