Coping with Back-to-School Anxiety

– by Rosanna Fikes, MFT – While going back to school can be exciting, it often provides some level of anxiety as well. Whether your child is attending a new school or returning to an old school it is normal to experience some butterflies. Common concerns for youth beginning a new school year include: • Will my friends be in …

What’s Going on In Your Daughter’s Brain?

Kimmy Peterson, MFT - Petaluma Family Therapy

– by Kimmy Peterson, MFT – The life of a parent includes helping your child navigate transitions; from a once tiny snuggly baby girl, to an on the go toddler, an exploring grade schooler, an awkward preteen, and now a teenager learning to become independent. These transitions have each been made with minor fails, a few emotional wounds, and thankfully …

7 Easy Ways to Conquer Anxiety

Debi Emmons, MFT

– by Debi Emmons, MFT – You know that feeling…you’re sound asleep and all of a sudden, and for no known reason, you wake up. Suddenly, you start reviewing your day: Did I complete my to do list at work? Did I return that important phone call? How did the conversation with my boss really go? Before you know it, …

Crunch Time! Navigating School-Related Conflict – Part 2

This time of year, I witness this type of conversation all too often: Parent: “You are missing tons of assignments in math! You are going to fail the class, then you’re going to be held back a grade!” Teen: “Don’t worry about it. I’ll be fine. I’m not the only one missing assignments, and everyone says that I’ll pass the …

Bridging the Parent-Teen Divide

– by Jennifer Norstrom, MFT – You raised a child who once sat on your lap and giggled at your jokes to a young teen who walks right past you to hang out on her phone alone in her bedroom. You feel as though a large canyon has grown between you, and you feel ignored or shut out. It may …

Success or Failure? Is it how we play the game, or is there a deeper lesson?

By Jason Newman LMFT #100091 When school bells start ringing, parents’ anxieties rise. Parents find themselves asking, “Will my child be successful or will they fail? Will my child win or lose?” Some say, “It’s just how you play the game.” I propose a different approach. We live in a society bombarded with harsh images of success and failure. Either …

Crunch Time! Navigating School-Related Conflict – Part 1

      It’s that time of the year again, when tensions run high between parents and teens around schoolwork. While we hope for the best, past experience often tells us that we’re in for a struggle. Parents often seem more concerned about school than their kids do, and trying to help a teen be successful academically can feel like a losing …

Sink or Swim – 5 Tips for a Successful Summer

In 2013 Marcus hosted a free parent education event at PFT’s office in Petaluma. Uriah Guilford, MFT and Sierra Dator, LCSW  joined Marcus to talk to parents about planning for a successful and supportive summer. We also discussed pressing issues that parents were facing. This was a unique opportunity for parents to talk to three therapists who work primarily with families …

Poor School Performance?

The majority of teen boys I work with have moderate to severe difficulty in school. Many are failing classes, find it difficult to stay focused, or their emotional disturbances interfere with learning. Their parents carry constant stress regarding their son’s immediate future, and even more about his eventual success. One thing that parents can do during the summer months is …

Is Your Child Emotionally Prepared for School?

Kimmy Peterson, MFT

– by Kimmy Peterson, MFT – Yes, another summer has flown by and most of us are ready to send our kids back to school. This year will be full of new challenges and experiences no matter what grade your son or daughter will be attending. Back to school means a time to get your kids ready to embrace the …