19 Family Center Programs Now Available on DVD at Grosse Pointe Public Libraries!

Parenting with Love and Logic
Bob Sornson, Ph.D.
Sornson explores with parents why it is that in our affluent society, where we know how to raise successful children, more and more children are arriving at school with speech and language problems, sensory motor delays and behavioral issues. Sornson encourages parents to turn off the technology to promote social skills and language development, to be in charge of the food decisions to foster healthy children, to neutralize arguments and stay in charge, and to give children responsibilities to promote a sense of belonging. Children and youth need to experience consequences, being upset, calming themselves, solving their problems and making decisions, negotiating, working hard, perseverance, waiting for rewards, and family chores.

A Student and Public Safety Officer Dialogue on Teen Drinking and Parties
Susan Fell moderates a discussion between four Grosse Pointe high school graduates and Officer Amy Ellison of Grosse Pointe Shores and Detective Mike McCarthy of Grosse Pointe Farms. Law enforcement officers answer student questions about possession, disciplinary action, house parties, curfews and a student’s criminal record.

Depression in Children and Adolescents
Laura McMahon, MD
Dr. McMahon, adult and child psychiatrist, stresses the importance of early intervention in children and adolescents who show signs of depression. She reviews the symptoms to look for in the younger person, the role of genetics, statistics that indicate the drop in age of onset from 20 to 11 years, the role of medicine and how medications can affect a growing brain and the cognitive, social and developmental consequences of letting depression go untreated.

Promoting Sexual Responsibility in Adolescents
Panelists Dr. Charla Blacker, Reproductive Endocrinologist, Karen Webb, Psychotherapist, Dan Griesbaum, Health Teacher, Mark Corey and Jean Ritok, parents, with moderator Sherry McRill discuss statistics (which show that over one half of teens have had sexual intercourse by the time they graduate from high school, and that 25-50% of first encounters are without protection), sexually transmitted diseases, the physical and psychological ramifications for early sexual activity, the difficulties of talking with our children about sex, resources available for parents and the importance of parents being involved: “Teens want to talk with their parents but they cannot let you know that.” (Webb) Panelists leave us with the question: Are you an ask-able parent?

Hidden Dangers on the Internet
the Attorney General’s Office of the Eastern District of Michigan
This 90 minute presentation hosted by Stephen Murphy, United States Attorney and including Kym Worthy, Wayne County Prosecutor, Catherine Connell, Child Interview Specialist, Inspector Felicia George of the US Postal Inspection Services, Deputy Erin Diamond, Wayne County Sheriff’s Office, and Grace Smith of Grosse Pointe Public Schools addresses what kids are doing on-line, internet lingo, what websites may be dangerous and how to protect our children.

Expectations and Consequences
Ross Flynn, L.M.F.T., L.P.C., L.L.P.
One of the biggest parenting challenges is how to establish expectations and consequences with children and teens. For the youngest child, expectations and consequences are set by the parent, for the middle school age student collaboration is key, and for older youth, exploration of limits and consequences is appropriate. With collaboration, there is ownership.

How Much is Enough?
Jean Illsley Clarke, Ph.D
Too much stuff is the obvious evidence of overindulgence but there are other ways that parents can overindulge. Clarke gives parents guidelines on needs and wants, on enough and too much, on balancing love and structure. Clarke brings us information on “how to raise appreciative and responsible children in a world where more is never enough.”

Temperamental Differences
Pamela Lemerand, Ph.D.
Temperament, although influenced by the environment and people, is inborn. Parents quickly sense what their newborn will be like, their child’s style of responding to their surroundings. But, our own inborn temperamental differences affect how we respond to our child. What happens when our styles are not in tune?

How To Say “No” to the Incessant “I Want”
Jean Illsley Clarke, Ph.D.
Parent educator and author, Clarke explores the importance of posting family rules, how to teach while disciplining, how marketing is targeting our children, the difference between enough, abundance and too much, and how to stop the nagging. Clarke helps parents strengthen their ‘no’ resolve and stay in charge while building self-esteem in their children.

Promoting Maturity
John Bernardo, M.A., L.L.P.
With humor and wonderful stories as examples, Bernardo guides parents through the process of promoting character, self-esteem and self-confidence in our children. Maturity is a continuum. The first two stages require ‘directive’ behavior on the part of parents as they impart knowledge and help motivate the child. Parents are more ‘supportive’ (the emotional dimension including empathy and understanding) in the later stages of maturation as the child struggles with growth and mastery. Power and responsibility are transferred to the child as maturity progresses.

The Pressured Child
Suzanne Haynes, M.S.
How Much Stress Is Too Much Stress? Haynes explores the pressures, expectations, demands and stressors that our children experience. While stress can be motivating and stimulating, too much can lead to stress diseases. Haynes identifies symptoms of stress that can alert parents of undue pressure and then teaches us ways to minimize stress and help children cope with pressure.

Remarried Families: Making the Most of the Holidays
Sean Hogan-Downey, MSW, LMFT
In this 60 minute presentation, Hogan-Downey discusses the importance of establishing realistic expectations, understanding family dynamics, and creating new holiday traditions while integrating old holiday traditions that are especially meaningful to your kids. Every family has their own culture of holidays. Marriage merges two cultures and remarriage merges another two creating plenty of opportunities for stress. Learn ten holiday tips for reducing family stress during the holidays.

Immunizations: The Myths, The Facts and The New
Patricia Vranesich, RN
This interactive presentation addresses not only concerns parents have with new and old vaccines but also how immunity works, the 12 vaccines children need (the universal schedule), the myths surrounding vaccination, what is coming  (eg. sexually transmitted disease vaccines) and the importance of keeping records.

Promoting Healthy Independence
Erika Johnson, University of Michigan Office of New Student Programs, Fran Carnaghi, School Counselor, and Sean Hogan-Downey, Private Therapist
Johnson begins this presentation identifying the student challenges she has seen in the transition year to college. What can we as parents and teachers do to better prepare our students? Carnaghi discusses ‘senioritis’, homework, and finding the right college fit while Hogan-Downey focuses on a needed shift in parenting style to create an opportunity for mentoring and how we can help our children develop the skills that will enable them to become mature and successful college students as well as independent adults.

Surviving Parenthood
Dennis Muzzi, LMSW
Our child centered marriages, while better for our kids, are more work for us. Raising children today takes much energy, time, focus and love, which can stress even the best of marriages.

Recognizing the Signs of Autism, ADHD and Learning Disabilites
Aimee Miller, BA and Behavior Specialist
Miller presents an overview of autism, ADHD and learning disorders and the warning signs of these disorders. She shares how to respond to the early warning signs, steps to take when parents have concerns, and basic techniques to help children at home.

The Moody Teenager: What is Normal, What is Not?
Karen Alton, MD
To answer her question: “What is normal moodiness in adolescence and what is not?”  Dr. Alton first shares the characteristics and goals of each of the three stages of normal adolescent development. Mood swings related to menstrual cycle or peer relationships can be normal.  She then helps us to understand the prevalence of mood disorders in this population and the causes, from organic disease to substance use, to anxiety and depression. Dr. Alton guides parents to identify pathological or abnormal behavior and when to seek medical assistance.

The Impact of Technology on Play and learning
Lori Warner, Ph.D., BCBA
“Should I let my baby watch Baby Einstein videos?” “Does my 7-year-old need a cell phone?” “How much time should my 4-year-old spend watching television or on the computer?” Parents today are faced with many opportunities and challenges when making decisions about how to include technology in a young child’s (infancy through age 8) education and leisure time. Technology is a tool that can be used or misused. Dr. Warner helps parents to think about “how much technology, what types, etc. are most beneficial for our family and what is just filler”.

Strangers Online: Keeping Our Children Safe
Deputy Erin Diamond CFCE, CEECS, A.C.E.
“They are slicker, smarter and try harder, using text messaging, cell phones and web cams, to meet our kids.” Deputy Diamond encourages parents to monitor their children’s website and the games they play, to listen to video game conversations (obscene and racist language might be heard), learn about your child’s social sites, and control a child’s password (a great discipline tool). The Family Contract for Online Safety (found at safekids.com) lends itself to dialogue with our children. “If someone does something inappropriate, come and talk to me.” Diamond admonishes parents for going overboard on reacting and disciplining. “Kids will use the computer at school or at a friend’s house if it is inaccessible at home. Also kids are smart enough to get around our spy software. A trusting relationship and open dialogue shows you care.”

Enriched Communities Through Stronger Families
The Family Center serves as the community’s hub for information, resources and referral for both families and professionals. The Family Center is a non-profit organization founded to promote a deeper understanding of the role of parents and others in supporting our youth to become competent, caring and responsible community members.

All gifts are tax-deductible.
To volunteer or contribute, visit www.familycenterweb.org, call (313) 447-1374.
Email: info@familycenterweb.org or write to: The Family Center
32 Lake Shore Drive, Grosse Pointe Farms, MI 48236