Parenting Teens: The Biggest Job We’ll Ever Have Podcast

Do you feel that parenting teens is the biggest job you’ll ever have? Are you wondering about how to help your child discover his or her unique potential? Are you dedicated to raising a child with character and integrity? Based on the Hyde School’s philosophy of “parents are the primary teachers and the home is the primary classroom,” this podcast was created to help parents understand just how to put this philosophy in place in the home, and to discover the transformative outcomes that happen in families who implement it. You will hear from not only experts in the field of raising teenagers, such as educational consultants, authors, and therapists, but also hear from former Hyde parents and students who share their stories of challenges and triumphs on this journey. We welcome you to jump in and start discovering some “ah ha” moments and practices you can implement right away to bring your family closer together and raise self-confident teenagers with character who become inspiring adults.
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Parenting Teens: The Biggest Job We’ll Ever Have Podcast




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Oct 16, 2018

“Do your kids know more about gender and sexual attraction than you do?”

Amy Lang portrait 

Amy Lang, of Birds and Bees and Kids (, and the author of Birds and Bees and YOUR Kids, and Dating Smarts: What EVERY teen needs to know to date, relate or wait!, joins us for a second podcast – this time about gender, sexual attraction, what it means to be gender fluid, what is cisgender? Pansexual? And more…

“Trust your child to know their gender, even if it doesn’t conform to the gender they were assigned at birth and may not make sense to you. Gender is not about what genitals a person has, but who they know themselves to be in their heart.”

Amy is starting her own podcast which will be a Q & A podcast; phone her at 206-926-1522 and leave your questions.

She gives terrific advice to parents on this subject; you’ll want to hear what she has to say in this podcast.

Oct 8, 2018

R U Ok?: Teen Depression & Suicide is the title of a book by author Kristi Hugstad, Certified Grief Recovery Specialist and credentialed health educator.

Kristi Hugstad 

After her husband completed suicide, Kristi bought every book on grief she found and says her living room looked like a recovery library; because of her experience and her new understanding of what she wished she had known, (the title of a previous book she wrote is What I Wish I’d Known), Kristi wrote R U Ok?, a book for parents, educators and teens.*

This interview with Kristi is up-lifting, enlightening and down to earth at the same time. Her presentation of the causes for the depression which can then lead to suicide are straightforward and thought provoking.

If you have not had “the talk” - and Kristi doesn’t mean the sex talk, she means the talk about suicide - with your teen, it’s just as important as the other talks from parents, like “don’t text and drive!” 

*Through a grant, R U Ok? is available for schools and organizations, free of charge. Contact Kristi at to ask for your copies.

Oct 1, 2018

What can parents do to reduce the chance of teens hurting themselves?

Kirrillie Smout 

Kirrilie Smout

This is the title of an article (and today’s podcast) with Kirrilie Smout, clinical psychologist and founder of Developing Minds: Helping kids & teens learn life skills & manage tough times, located near Adelaide, Australia.

In a nutshell, Kirrilie says:

  • We should do everything we can to help teens be connected with a peer group. (And she gives suggestions on how to do this.)
  • We need to help teens learn strategies to cope when they are feeling agitated, stressed, hopeless and overwhelmed. (And she describes some of them.)

In the article, there is a link for some of these strategies:

Beyond Blue is in Australia, but the coping strategies are universal.  She asked that I give several links in the United States:

Kirrilie has also written two books that are available through her website:

  • When Life Sucks: ideas and tactics for teens in tough times
  • When Life Sucks for Kids: ideas and tips for when you feel mad, worried or sad – or life gets kind of messy.
Sep 24, 2018

Are you worried about an eating disorder in your child?

Dana Suchow

Then you’ll definitely want to listen to this podcast with Dana Suchow, national speaker and activist on eating disorders. Dana has personally overcome bulimia, binge eating, and exercise compulsion and has a firsthand understanding of how eating disorders can get started and what parents can do.

Dana has been seen on Good Morning America and ABC News; she’s been interviewed by Vogue, Marie Claire, and numerous other publications. Our interview includes her views on the contributions social media and the diet culture are making to the issue of eating disorders, how parents unwittingly contribute to the problem; and the fact that eating disorders are so often combined with other things.

If you have questions because your child has or you think they may have an eating disorder, Dana suggests contacting The National Eating Disorders Association at

Dana’s focus is preventative, and she speaks to parents, teachers or anyone involved with raising kids. You can find Dana at or on Instagram @danasuchow.

Sep 17, 2018

“Parenting through puberty is demanding; [but] remember that your teen needs and loves you, even in the moment that he or she appears to have forgotten this fact!”

Parenting Through Puberty book

This is just one of the many great reminders about parenting adolescents in a wonderful new book by pediatrician, Dr. Suanne Kowal-Connelly called Parenting Through Puberty: Mood Swings, Acne, and Growing Pains, published by the American Academy of Pediatrics.  It’s advertised as an ultimate guide to puberty, and indeed it is.   

Dr. Suanne, as her patients call her, covers the nuts and bolts of what happens to children’s bodies as they go through the 5 stages of puberty (both boys and girls); issues of self-esteem and body image; concerns that parents have about the timing of puberty; the developing brain of a teenager; the relationship with a pediatrician; guidance for parents of adolescents with special needs; the subject of physical literacy; and lots on health and wellness.

There are also resources on all the subjects she writes about, including eating disorders, depression and anxiety. 

The book is a great read and a wonderful reference book for all things adolescent. You can find Dr. Suanne through her website and blog (, or on twitter at  

Dr. Susanne Kowak-Connelly

Dr. Suanne Kowal-Connelly

Sep 10, 2018

“What do parents of high school and college kids fear most?” 

This is a question I ask Shannon Evans, the scholar coach. A former teacher, Shannon turned to helping families find the right college because as a teacher, she found that kids were not often coming up with the right fit for themselves when it came to going to college.

She uses a family questionnaire, which she describes in this interview, in which parents have to answer questions about their kids: their preferences, their values, their likes and dislikes. She says, “There are often big surprises when the family reconvenes and shares their answers with each other.”

You can find Shannon at, and she welcomes free, 20 minute consultations to answer you initial questions. 

Sep 3, 2018

As a parent, have you ever felt like you were drowning? It can be a lonely feeling when your child or your family is going off-track.  Where do you turn?  What do you do?

Ed and Linda Murphy found help at the Hyde School in Bath, Maine. And through The Biggest Job Family Program they learned how to parent from their principles, letting go of parenting from fear, guilt or control.

This is a short podcast but a powerful conversation with long time Hyde alumni parents who are very grateful for the life boat that came along and rescued their drowning family.

Aug 27, 2018

Are you worried about the effect of social media on your kids? If so, this podcast may put your mind at ease, at least about some aspects of all that kids are exposed to in the media and on devices.

Caroline Knorr, senior parenting editor for Common Sense Media,* shares with us her wisdom about what parents should watch for and the questions they need to ask their kids about what’s going on with them when they’re on their devices. 

“In general, social media is a positive with our kids,” Caroline says. “We need to encourage what’s good, and minimize any risks or anything that could exacerbate what’s already there [as a problem] for a child.”

You can find Caroline at She enjoys hearing from parents.

*Common Sense Media is an organization that provides reviews on all products to which kids are exposed, including movies, apps, games, and even you-tube channels. Their website is  Watch for their latest research report in September, 2018. 

Aug 21, 2018

Do you consider yourself an honest family, but you don’t talk about the elephant in the room?

Many families are like this; they avoid talking about the really tough stuff; and then kids quickly learn what it’s okay to talk about and what is off limits.

Sheri and Alan Brooks sent three kids to The Hyde School, and went through The Biggest Job Family Program three times. “The third time we did a parent retreat,” they said, “we finally got to the deep issues between us, got honest about them, and began to inspire our children in a totally new way. We were an honest family, but we never talked about the elephant in the room,” said Alan.

In this podcast, Sheri and Alan talk about how The Biggest Job Family program helped them come to an adult-to-adult relationship with each of their now grown children. You’ll enjoy their humor and candor about how they stopped being helicopter parents and inspired their children with their willingness to parent differently.

Aug 13, 2018

“Providing information about sex is not the same as giving permission.”  ~ Amy Lang

Amy Lang has written two great books on how to talk to your kids about sex. The first one, titled Birds + Bees + Your Kids is also the name of her company: She teaches parents the importance of clarifying their own values and beliefs about sexuality, love, and relationships, thus forming the solid foundation needed to have the sex talks.

Her second book, Dating Smarts: What EVERY teen needs to know to date, relate or wait is for parents to read and then to give to their teens to read. Nothing is left out in these books. “A well educated child [about sex] is a safer child,” Amy explains. 

She does workshops for parents on how to teach kids about sex; and she welcomes questions. You can find her blog and website at and email her at

Aug 6, 2018

"The greatest impact on children are the unlived lives of adults.”  Carl Jung

In our last five parenting mantras, Laura Gauld, co-author of the book, The Biggest Job We’ll Ever Have, mentions this quote “We need the help of others to get to our own greatness as parents.”

The mantras in this podcast are about living the kind of life as a parent that will inspire our children; that will model character for them; and that will show our kids our spirit.

The final five mantras are:

  1. Others see you as you cannot see yourself.
  2. Embrace curiosity and learn something new each day.
  3. IPSES: Intellectual, Physical, Spiritual, Emotional, Social
  4. No one taps into their greatness without the help of others.
  5. Inspiration: Job # 1
Jul 30, 2018

Do you see your teen in a way that is only one dimensional?  Does your teen see you the same way?

This is a question that Kristin Harman, Director of Admissions at the Hyde School, encourages parents to look at as they decide if they want to start parenting in the exceptional way that The Biggest Job Family Program teaches parents to do.

After working at seven different schools in her career, Kristin came to the Hyde School. She finds that the interview process helps kids and parents listen differently to each other and this begins to establish a deeper trust in each other.

In this podcast, Kristin also talks about how she views the influence of social media; the increase of anxiety in teens; and answers the question, “Is depression sometimes a mask for anxiety?”

Jul 23, 2018

This is a great way to help ourselves, as parents, keep our kids from manipulating us says author, Laura Gauld. 

The mantras in today’s podcast are:

  1. View each day as an opportunity for growth
  2. Do the unexpected (and keep your child off guard.)
  3. Let go of perfection.
  4. Take hold of excellence
  5. Be a good friend and make new friends.
Jul 16, 2018

Parenting as Partners by Vicki HoefleWhen big parenting issues come up, do you ever think “…if only he/she would just do it my way? Then we could solve this and move on!”

As you well know, it doesn’t usually happen this way. “Kids highlight the real challenge in the family: the one between the parenting partners,” writes Vicki in this wonderful hands-on book.

A true proponent of fostering independence in kids, Vicki teaches us that looking at how we were parented and melding that with the experience of our partner is truly a challenge. She believes that “having a strong marriage and having solid parenting strategies is not enough to successfully negotiate the tricky terrain of co-parenting with someone who has an entirely different idea on how to raise the kids.”

So how do we meld ideas on parenting in order to co-parent? This book (and this podcast) will help get you started.

You can find Vicki at

You can also listen to our first interview with Vicki, about her book Duct Tape Parenting.

Jul 9, 2018

We learn in today’s podcast with speaker and author, Laura Gauld, that the word “accept” is an important part of parenting.  Laura talks about accepting what our own parents gave us, taking a look at how we listen, and actually reaching out and seeking honesty about how others see us. 

Today’s mantras are:

  1. Accept what your own parents gave you, what they tried to give you and what they were unable to give you.
  2. Get up every day and model character in the little moments.
  3. Give others permission to be totally honest with you.
  4. Do something each day for your pure joy.
  5. Share successes and failures with your child.
Jul 2, 2018

Are you trying to be “the perfect mom?” Think you’re “not very good at being a mother…?”  This podcast and book are for you!

Mommy Burnout by Dr. Sheryl ZieglerMommy Burnout: How to Reclaim Your Life and Raise Healthier Children in the Process

Although the title of this book, by Dr. Sheryl Ziegler, might sound like a book for mothers of younger children, be assured that it’s not. Moms of teenagers experience burnout too, and can benefit from not only listening to this podcast but also reading the book.

Burnout has its symptoms and it has its remedies, and Dr. Ziegler is an expert in both. In our podcast, Dr. Ziegler talks about how burnout can affect so many parts of a woman’s life: friendships, partnerships, work, and of course, our kids.

The podcast is a great introduction to a book I highly recommend. Dr. Ziegler can be found at; and the book at

Jun 25, 2018

“We will be parents until we breathe our last breath.”  - Laura Gauld

This parenting fundamental and the mantras that explain it teach us the importance of continuing to grow and change as parents. We are never too old to look at our own attitudes and change the ones that might be holding us back; or to take risks in our lives.

The five mantras in this podcast are:

  1. Lead by example.
  2. Respect yourself.
  3. Grow, risk and change.
  4. Take risks in front of your child.
  5. Tackle the deep attitudes that hold you back.
Jun 18, 2018

“Our conscience is the compass of our destiny.”   - Laura Gauld

So how do we teach conscience to our kids? Advice on that, and the last five mantras of Parenting Fundamental # 4 are discussed in today’s podcast with Laura.

  1. Let your conscience be your guide.
  2. See the small moments of inspiration.
  3. The darkest times bring about the deepest lessons.
  4. Do not compare yourself or your child to others.
  5. Trust in a higher power.

Discover more advice from the parenting village at

Jun 11, 2018

Grit is a word that we hear a lot these days; we talk about it in the Biggest Job Workshops, and in part 2 of our conversation with Rebecca Mannis, a learning specialist who founded Ivy-Prep, we learn that grit is something that can be intentionally taught to kids.

“There are ways in which we can step back and understand what our responses are and appreciate our experience”, Dr. Mannis says. “Encourage your kids to appreciate why it is they may be feeling a certain way; encourage them to try something even if it brings up discomfort.” 

Dr. Mannis also shares in this podcast her views about how technology has increased anxiety in kids.

Her website:

Jun 4, 2018

Dr. Rebecca Mannis, a learning specialist and founder of Ivy Prep, says that each child has a natural way of learning, whether they are intellectually gifted or specifically challenged with a learning issue. Her Ivy Prep Learning Center bridges the fields of neuropsychology and education in a targeted and customized way to help students of all ages in NYC and worldwide. The Ivy Prep approach uses methods, tools and tech that enhance learning via a cohesive education action plan that tends to the total individual. 

In this interview, Dr. Mannis talks about how students come to understand how they learn best and how to work effectively on their own at home and at school. This is called “metacognitive awareness – awareness of one’s own thought process.”

But don’t let the big words keep you from listening; Dr. Mannis explains her field and puts everything into terms any parent can understand. There are specific ways parents and teachers can help kids become their own best guides. And it’s all closely related to unique potential!

Her website:  

May 21, 2018

“Parenting is messy,” says Laura Gauld. When I think about this, it’s really true! Parenting is messy. Just accepting this might make the job a little easier, don’t you think? We might not get so caught up in how we look as a parent or how we’re doing at the job. It’s also important to remember that humor and humility are two very important traits in parenting.

In this podcast, Laura shares with us the following mantras from Fundamental #4 (Have faith in your child’s unique potential and the larger forces at work):

  1. Take hold and let go.
  2. Humility to ask for and accept help.
  3. You may not always see the teacher in your child’s life.
  4. “Turn that attitude into gratitude.”
  5. Let go of yesterday and tomorrow.
May 14, 2018

This is an intriguing question that Neha Gupta, founder of Elite Private Tutors and College Shortcuts answers on her blog at .

Neha’s enthusiasm for what she does shines through in what she shares with us about how to motivate students, how to give them confidence, and her warning about how the common app might make every applicant common.  “What is that thing that makes you, you?” she asks students?

Neha can be found at and

She is also a speaker and author of the book, The 4-Year Plan, which you can find on her website and costs only the shipping charges.

May 7, 2018

“You are in this game for the long haul!”

I know you’ve heard this said before, or in different ways, but hang on to this mantra, as it’s so important. Hang on, too, to the vision you have for your child. Sometimes they may say they don’t have a vision for themselves, or they don’t care, but they do; “every child wants to be somebody.”

Today’s mantras are important (aren’t they all?) – but they can escape our memories and our practice of parenting when we get caught up in so much “every day stuff.”  So listen carefully, listen twice, even, and share this and all our podcasts with your friends. (We can add your friends to our list so they receive the notices directly.)

Included in today’s podcast are the following mantras:

  1. Set High expectations and let go of the outcome. (Parenting Priority 4)
  2. Hold on to both the reality and vision you have for your child.
  3. Believe in yourself and the best of your child.
  4. Let go of all the “what ifs” and believe that your child is capable of figuring it out.
  5. You are in this game for the long haul.
Apr 30, 2018

Parenting Fundamental 4: Have faith in your child’s unique potential and the larger forces at work.

This 13th podcast with Laura Gauld is a special one. (Not that they aren’t all great!)

This fourth fundamental is a wonderful tool to help us as parents let go when things go off track – getting out of the way so our kids can experience some short-term struggles for long-term gain - learning something about themselves, acquiring some grit and some courage. Laura also talks about labels we put on our kids and the importance of creating a partnership based on trust with your child’s teachers and coaches.

Today’s mantras are:

  1. Allow obstacles to become opportunities
  2. Resist labels of any kind
  3. Give others permission to challenge your child
  4. Who you are is more important than what you can do.
  5. "Your children are not your children."
Apr 23, 2018

Did you know that a college application only gets minutes in front of admissions officers? How do you construct an application that stands out in this sea of competition?

With four million seniors each year competing for coveted spots at colleges, an application needs to effectively communicate a student’s achievements and potential to give them the best chance at admission - whether your student is applying to an Ivy League or a different dream school.

Today we are speaking with Amber Jin, the founder of Get Into Ivy, about the college application process - from the number one mistake students make, to must-have elements that will help them make an impression on admissions officers. 

Parents, you’ll want your student to listen in, and you will want to tune in until the end to find out where you can be most impactful in the process. 

Visit for a very informative article for parents called The Parents’ Guide to College Application; and additional tools and resources to guide you and your student through the college application process. 

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