NEFESH: The International Network of Orthodox Mental Health Professionals
Parenting with Purpose
Sara Teichman, PsyD
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A proactive approach to chinuch habonim based on understanding and respect.
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Showing Results 1 - 40 (73 total)
A Divorce, Civilly
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
October 26th, 2022

 Dear Dr T.,  I am unfortunately unable to keep my marriage together, and we are in the process of getting a divorce. As heart-rending as this decision has been for us both, that is not the focal point of this letter.  We have reviewed the situation over and over again with parents, Rabbonim, askanim and the like. For whatever reason, the decision is absolutely final and we are not open to reviewing it anymore.   We have six c …
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Learning to say 'no'
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
July 13th, 2022

                                                    Dear Dr. T.,  My eighteen-year-old daughter is a really good girl. I am not the only one who says this: for example, she won the middos award at  her high school graduation. She got into a great seminary, is accumulating college credits, and we are anticipat …
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intrinsic vs extrinsic
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
February 15th, 2022

                        Dear Dr. T., I remember reading in your column a few months ago about a teenager who would kill for an “A.” Well, my daughter is seven and doesn’t care yet about grades, but she will do just about anything – as long as she gets a reward.  So, if she eats her dinner – even her very favorite one – she must get her prize- …
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"You're Not Listening!"
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
January 17th, 2022

                                                Dear Dr. T., My ten-year-old daughter is the chatty type. She loves to talk- and she’s only ten so she says lots of things over and over. She has graduated from Clifford and his adventures to school anecdotes. I can tell you what each teacher and principal wore every day …
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The Comfort Zone
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
December 11th, 2021

      Dear Dr. T., The subject of your last column just blew me away. You wrote about a daughter who has trouble saying ‘no’ and is mevater even at a cost to herself. When I look around today, I don’t see many girls like that. What I do see is girls who do many good things- like drive for bikur cholim or visit the elderly- but on their own terms. Maybe I am old fashioned, but the concept of putting other need …
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Infant Speak
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
October 5th, 2021

  Dear Dr T.,  Whenever I am with my mechatenesteh and our grandchild, I feel awful about myself. So, it goes like this. The baby is six months old- and sees us each about once in two weeks. I also have some older grandchildren from my other children.  When I see the kids, I try to be respectful and read their cues. So, I don’t rush to hug, kiss, or even approach the kids until they signal their readiness. I might be there fo …
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Why Did You.....
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
August 24th, 2021

   Dear Dr. T.,  What’s the best way to correct my children? They are reasonably well- behaved [mostly], all different ages- but everyone needs some guidance and discipline, don’t they?  I am an avid reader of parenting materials and listen to many parenting lectures as well, so I know that punishment and yelling and screaming are counterproductive. But what’s wrong with criticism when needed? Can’t I t …
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What Would You Do?
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
August 2nd, 2021

      Dear Dr T., I have a problem with my two and a half year old. He is always hurting his one year old brother. Even if I am playing with them both, the older one may just take a toy and throw it at the baby. I am writing to you as a last resort though I don’t know if you can help me. I certainly have asked many people – parents, siblings, friends, and even a rebbitzen in my community. People say all kind of things: …
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Love or Abuse? PAS [Parent alienation Syndrome]
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
June 27th, 2021

   Dear Dr. T.,  What exactly is PAS [Parent Alienation Syndrome]? Is it contrived, junk science as its detractors say, or is it an insidious, subtle form of child abuse, as its defenders hold?  There is a divorced staff member in our office whose children are almost completely estranged from him because of what he calls PAS. But, how is that possible? Don’t children naturally bond with a decent, loving parent, even when …
1 comments
I Want Tatty !
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
June 2nd, 2021

 Dear Dr. T.,  I used to think it was cute when my adorable little 3-year-old boy would say, ‘I want Tatty!’ Whether it was to dress him, feed him, play with him, or go with him- a real Tatty’s boy. We all laughed when he wouldn’t even take nosh from me when his Tatty was around. Well, I think we are both sick of it by now. My husband has to sneak out of the house to go to shul, and I feel like a shmatte. Who do …
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Mesorah
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
April 25th, 2021

                                                                                                   Mesorah Dear Dr T, I am writing this letter in …
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Why are my kids so unhappy?
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
February 12th, 2021

  Dear Dr. T.,  It hit me last week when I was at a family gathering. What I saw is that the cousins ate, played games, chatted up the adults, and got hyper. But here’s what I also saw: my pre-teen children clung to me, my little ones kvetched about the food, and two children begged to go home — now!  What strikes me is that my children are just not happy. Whether at home, or school, they see the negative parts, are rel …
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I Can Do It Better
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
January 26th, 2021

Dear Dr. T.,  School starts for me when Yom Tov ends, and I am beginning to feel that familiar dread. It’s not the homework- though that’s bad, or the carpools- which is worse;  it’s my 10 year old.  He’s a great kid- funny, well-liked, bright. Unfortunately, he overlooks these traits and is in constant competition with his two older brothers – who are-effortlessly- real academic stars in school. So, t …
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Right vs Loved?
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
December 29th, 2020

                                                                       Right vs Loved  Dear Dr.T.,  My eleven your old daughter really has a hard time getting along with others – whether family,  neighborhood, or school. We spend a lot of time talki …
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From Neb to ... Superman
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
November 30th, 2020

                                                            Dear Dr.T.,   My husband hates when I say it, but the truth is my son is a real scaredy cat. You know the different noises a house makes- well, he hears each one and reacts- crying, hiding under his bed or in the closet. He won’t …
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An Idea Worth Considering
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
October 25th, 2020

                                                                                                  &n …
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The Good Old Days
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
August 31st, 2020

                                       The Good Old Days Do you long for the good old days? Where children were seen but not heard, where chutzpah was kept at a minimum, when children did as they were told? How very different were we from the children of today …
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Scaredy Cat
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
July 15th, 2020

                                                            Dear Dr.T., My husband hates when I say it, but the truth is my son is a real scaredy cat. You know the different noises a house makes- well, he hears each one and reacts- crying, hiding under his bed or in the closet. He won’t go int …
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Negativity
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
June 18th, 2020

                                    Dear Dr. T., I work really hard at being a conscientious and responsible parent. I try to be attentive and on top of all areas of my children’s lives. I believe that I owe my children that much, but I do find it difficult, especially beca …
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Cliques
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
April 29th, 2020

                        Dear Dr. T., I recently heard someone say, “You are only as happy as your unhappiest child” – and that really hit home for me. You see, my daughter just started high school – a big school, in a big city- and she is miserable. So am I. The work is ok [“It’s school! It’s boring!], the teachers are more-or-less fine -as …
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Treating Trauma
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
March 23rd, 2020

Dear Dr. T., My family went through a trauma recently. There was a fire in our home, and though we all got out safely because of the working smoke alarms, some of the children did get hurt in the rush to get out. We, the parents, suffered smoke inhalation because we ran around making sure everyone was out and it took a while to get out of our three-story home. Boruch Hashem, no one was seriously injured. We [the parents] were treated in the hospi …
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The Overweight Child
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
February 24th, 2020

                                                       The Overweight Child

Dear Dr.T., I try to run a healthy - within reason- home-  with nutritious, balanced meals and no sweets except on shabbos+ special occasions.

 My 7 year old daughter is obsessed by food- she eats quick …
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Can't vs Won't
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
January 22nd, 2020

Dear Dr T, How do I get my children – ages two to ten – to sit and co-operate at the Shabbos seuda? They know all about Shabbos,  but they just won’t do what they are supposed to do. The shabbos table is such a struggle, and by the time it is over, everyone is frustrated and out of sorts. Are there behavioral techniques I could use to get everyone on par?   Dr T, Can’t or won’t? Are your children unable, or …
2 comments
Hoarding
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
December 31st, 2019

Dear Dr. T., I have a sweet, adorable five-year-old daughter who is perfect in every way. Well- almost perfect. She has this peculiar habit of saving stuff that is so out of character for her. You see, each of my kids has a ‘junk drawer’ where they keep all their treasures. Most of the children save stuff like school projects, prizes, coins, anything special. I hardly ever go into the drawers and really don’t care what the kids …
1 comments
Out of Control
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
November 21st, 2019

Dear Dr. T., I hate to admit this, but our 11-year-old son is out of control, at home and in school. He is angry, moody, and undisciplined; he just about does whatever he wants and tries to get away with it. At quieter times, he complains that no-one likes him and no-one wants to play with him. Needless to say, he does not do his schoolwork. Though we certainly try to discipline him, giving him ‘time out,’ positive and negative conseq …
4 comments
The Apology - For Teens
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
October 30th, 2019

We are all human and make mistakes. And, while ‘a mistake is just a mistake”, when someone is hurt by our error– even inadvertently- we are accountable. The Torah requires us to take responsibility -which means apologize and make repair. For most of us, this is not an easy thing to do – especially if it is to our parents or siblings. We don’t like confrontation and are afraid of the reaction of the other person. Yet …
1 comments
Labels
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
September 22nd, 2019

                                                      Dear Dr T, My wife is a wonderful mother. She is a great communicator and really works on understanding our children. So, why am I writing you? Well, I would like an opinion on a point of contention. See, it’s like this. At night, when our kids are safely …
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Recess?
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
August 22nd, 2019

                                                   Binah #231- Recess   Dear Dr. T.,  We are looking into yeshiva for our first son [he has three older sisters] in our large metropolita …
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Disciplining Moishy
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
August 4th, 2019

Dear Dr T., My Moishy is driving me crazy! He’s eight and cute and full of life – but he doesn’t listen to a word I say. It goes like this: “Moishy, get ready for bed.” [X3] “Moishy, get ready for bed!” [really loud voice] “Moishy, get ready for bed or you won’t get Shabbos party this week. [no response] “Moishy, get ready for bed!!!!! [Lock the door from outside so he can’t come o …
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Summer Anyone?
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
July 8th, 2019

                                                              Nefesh Blog- Summer Anyone? Dr. T, It seems to defy common sense, but many of us st …
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Tags: Summer, kid, kids
"Ma, What Should I Do?"
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
May 19th, 2019

Dear Dr. T,  “Mom! I’m bored! What should I do?” This is the part of summer I like least. Not that I don’t deserve this: I remember complaining to my parents all the time. Nevertheless, after all my planning, running around and shlepping to the country, it is disheartening to be hit with these moans and groans.  How do I help my children learn l to occupy themselves?   Dr. T. Replies,, Those long, lazy days …
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Pesach Crush
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
April 1st, 2019

Dear Dr. T.,  I have always loved Pesach- as a young girl and as a Mom of little ones and teens. But, the last few yom tovim have been trying, to say the least, and I wonder if you could help.  You see- most of my children are ‘young-marrieds’ with a few children each. Because they live in out of town kollelim, they all want to come home for the seder and be with family.  So, what’s the problem? Well, though my ch …
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Overwhelmed
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
March 24th, 2019

                                         Overwhelmed Dear Dr T., Though I know I should be very thankful for the great bracha in my life- a fine husband and five healthy children BH- I feel overwhelmed and guilty most of the time instead. I have five little ones [ages seven to ten months] and I am just not managing. The baby cries constan …
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Tantrums in the Store
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
February 6th, 2019

                                          Dear Dr. T.,  I’m not thinking my problem is so unusual- but, it sure is embarrassing! Whenever I take either of my two children [ages 4 ½ and 3] shopping, they inevitably start a commotion- grabbing stuff they want, tantruming- in general, behaving in a totally inappropriate way. Whe …
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Class Clown
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
January 21st, 2019

                                                               Dear Dr T, I am worried about my youngest daughter who is starting fifth grade this year. She is an above average student who excels in math but has some mild difficulty in reading. What I worry about is the fact that the teach …
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Gimme
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
December 15th, 2018

 Dear Dr. T.,   “I need…”   “Mom please…”   “I want…”   “Get me…” That’s about all that I hear from my eleven year old daughter. I wasn’t born yesterday and I do understand about peer pressure. I know that kids have more ‘stuff’ today than we did, but what bothers me is that she never seems happy: she is always looking forw …
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Chanukah Revisited
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
November 8th, 2018

Dear Dr. T.,  I read your Chanukah column about the excesses of this holiday in our world today, and I have another Chanukah-related question.  Here’s my issue: on Chanukah and various other occasions, my children receive their “own” money. Some of the children want to go asap to Target  and look for something to blow the money on. Others want to hold on to their money and fear spending even one dollar of it. Beli …
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Teasing Isn't Funny
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
October 30th, 2018

Dear Dr. T.,  My eleven year old worries me because he seems so overly sensitive to teasing that he actually falls apart when he is teased. This is problematic in school, but more so at home because my husband has a reputation for good natured teasing.  How do I help my son grow a tougher skin so he is not so vulnerable and easily hurt? Dr. T.,  There is no way that I am aware of to inure oneself to pain- whether it is physical or …
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Homework Woes
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
October 14th, 2018

                                         
Dear Dr. T.,
We are some random girls from different high schools in one of the major frum cities.
Now before we tell you what our problem is, you need to know that we are the good kids- what you adults like to call ‘top girls.’ We’re not looking to make trouble; we jus …
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School Success- Part 2
Author: Sara Teichman, PsyD
September 4th, 2018

                                                      Dear Dr T.,  I enjoyed your recent  column about concrete ways [diet, sleep, exercise] of helping our children be successful in school. Are there also some attitudes and expectations that parents can develop that would further support their children&r …
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