Explaining Violence to Kids

Posted on Nov 9, 2009 in Children, Death, Parenting, Tragedies

As hard as it may seem to turn something as horrific as the tragic shooting at Fort Hood into a teachable moment with our kids, it can be done. And it should be done: we can’t assume that kids won’t hear about these events simply because we monitor their viewing of the television in our own homes. Our kids also live in a world where their friends may be discussing these events on the school yard, or they may hear it or see it at one...

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Why Teens Are Killing Kids

Posted on Nov 4, 2009 in Children, Death, Tragedies

Why did two teens murder their neighbors? A psychologist sheds some light on the matter. We are shocked and horrified that the suspect in the murder of Elizabeth Olten is a 15-year-old female neighbor who knew the family. We want answers as to why this girl would lure a 9-year-old into the woods and murder her in cold blood. We also want to know why a 14-year-old would kill his 4-year-old neighbor, Alex Mercado, and stuff his body in a dryer....

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NEVER Let Them Walk to School Alone!

Posted on Oct 28, 2009 in Children, Death, Parenting, Tragedies

Why are we still debating whether children under the age of 13 should be allowed to walk to and from school alone? Is keeping our children safe really up for debate? As a clinical psychologist, I often counsel victims of violent crime. Given the risks that children face in our time, it is naïve and simply irresponsible to argue, as Lenore Skenazy does in her book “Free-Range Kids,” that because we were all raised in the 1970s in a...

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Tag and Tears at the Cemetery

Posted on Oct 20, 2009 in Children, Death, Family, Parenting, Tragedies

Today is the Yartzeit (Hebrew word for anniversary of a death) of our second child, Ozzie. He died October 18, 2002. Our son died while in utero at 26 weeks. I still remember that cold day because my then 20-month-old son was bundled up with blankets in the stroller watching our family cry and say goodbye to a child we had never really even properly said hello to. I believed or hoped that Asher would escape the pain of the death of his little...

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Casey Anthony Labeled Caylee Trouble?

Posted on Oct 9, 2009 in Children, Death, Parenting

Novelty T-shirts send a damaging message to your kid. It’s been almost a year since Caylee Anthony’s body was found, and her mother Casey has been sitting in jail waiting for her first-degree murder trial to begin. Meanwhile, those who have been following the tragedy continue to speculate on how and why Caylee met her terrible fate, shoved into a plastic garbage bag and tossed into the woods. Now what the little girl was last...

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Bullies, Work Violence, and Annie Le’s Murder

Posted on Sep 18, 2009 in Death, Tragedies

Workplace violence is on the rise in our country. On an average working day, three people will be murdered on the job in the U.S. One million coworkers are assaulted, and more than 1,000 are murdered every year, according to the U.S. National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health. Homicide is the second leading cause of death on the job, after motor vehicle accidents. What is more shocking than these statistics is the fact that half of...

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