Grieving the Loss of an Adult Child

Crying Angel

“He wasn’t easy to raise, but it’s been more difficult losing him.”

That’s how Jan Harrison describes the emotional struggle she’s endured since her son, James, passed away six years ago at the age of 27. He was a challenge to raise because he was born with an adventurous spirit. He wasn’t the kind of kid who responded well to boundaries that locked him down.

That’s not easy for a mom whose natural instinct was to keep her son safe.

Leaving a Legacy of Love for Your Children

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Bill Butterworth had something of an awakening when his father passed away.

At the funeral, Bill stood behind the lectern as the family representative and told stories about who his father was. Bill didn’t mention his father’s stock portfolio or real estate holdings. He shared about what his father believed, about what he valued, and recounted a few of the meaningful life lessons his father had taught him.

And all the while Bill was thinking, “Someday the funeral will be mine, and one of my kids will be standing behind a lectern.

Reflecting the Heart of God in Your Parenting

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I don’t know about you, but my wife, Jean, and I have days where our parenting doesn’t go very smoothly. Sometimes we’ll look at each other and wonder, “Is there a secret to all of this that we’re missing?”

A conversation I had with the late Dr. Karyn Purvis before she passed away reminds me of a concept that I wouldn’t exactly consider a secret, but it comes about as close as anything: Good parenting is rooted in the heart of God, which is all about connection.

A Lighthearted Look at Wedded Bliss


Marriage is serious business …. unless you’re comedian John Branyan.

Like this astute observation: “Have you ever noticed you’ve got to get your driver’s license renewed every four years, but you don’t have to get your marriage license renewed, ever. You’d think there’d at least be some kind of eye test. You look into the little machine, ‘Alright, Mr. Branyan, can you see your socks on the floor?’”

I think Jean could get on board with an idea like that.

How to Discover Your Child’s Unique Gifts

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I’m not sure which is harder to believe: The fact that Christmas is right around the corner, or that the school year is nearly half over.

My boys, Trent and Troy, are ready for Christmas break. They’re hanging in there with school, but they’ll need some encouragement to get through the final stretch until summer.

Until then, there’s a lot of studying and homework to do, which can be stressful on students and parents alike. If you’re feeling the mid-year crunch, I think our radio program today and tomorrow will be a big help to you.

How to Put Your Kids on the Road to Character

Teens with arms around each other's shoulders

A father who visited psychologist Michael Anderson’s counseling office illustrates the shift in thinking many moms and dads need to make in their parenting.

The father said, “You wouldn’t believe what my daughter has become. In the last 90 days, she’s changed completely. She’ll do anything her friends tell her to do. She’s smoking. She’s drinking. She’s shoplifting.”

Michael asked him, “What was she like 90 days ago?”

“She was an A-student. She was in the church youth group and would do anything we told her to do.”

That wording caught Michael’s ear.

Four Things Good TV Moms – and Real-Life Moms – Have in Common


By now you may have heard that the actress Florence Henderson died last week on Thanksgiving Day. She was best known as Carol Brady, the “lovely lady … who met this fellow” on the iconic 1970s sitcom “The Brady Bunch.”

The show wasn’t a ratings hit during its initial run, but “The Brady Bunch” found its niche when it first aired in syndication in 1975. It’s been on the air ever since.

Some of that success is undoubtedly due to Henderson’s take on the family matriarch, which made Mrs.

The Surprising Benefit to Teen Virginity


My colleague Glenn Stanton, who’s a noted author, researcher and family expert, has an interesting article out in The Federalist today.

In it, Glenn takes a look at a new, unique study from the U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) that examined a wide array of high school students’ health behaviors in light of their sexual activity (virginal, heterosexual active, and same-sex or bisexually active).

The results are telling.

As Glenn writes, “The virginal students rate significantly and consistently better in nearly all health-related behaviors and measures than their sexually active teens,” and “teens who have sexual contact with the same or both sexes have remarkably lower percentages of healthy behaviors overall than their heterosexually active peers.”

And those behaviors range from binge drinking to illegal drugs, from dating violence to even tanning beds!

What to Do When Being a Mom Doesn’t Come Naturally

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Before having children, women might think motherhood is the most natural role in the world. So what should a woman believe about herself when she feels like she doesn’t have what it takes to be a good mom?

The bar can seem impossibly high. Some moms have smooth pregnancies, and their babies might even take to breastfeeding easily. These mothers look completely content and patient with their children, never frustrated, never aspiring to goals or achievements outside of their family.

Eight Simple, Practical Ideas for Raising Great Kids

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If you’re a parent and missed yesterday’s edition of our radio program, I encourage you to grab your iPad to take some notes and get near a radio for part two today (then go back and catch part one online or via our free phone app).

Conversations about parenting often lean toward the philosophical, the “why” of raising children.

Not today.

We’re talking with Todd Cartmell, a child psychologist, about his book 8 Simple Tools for Raising Great Kids.