Teenagers – independence vs boundaries

By Jodi Benveniste. Do you remember being a teenager? It’s an intense time! There’s a heady mix of excitement at being more independent and grown up but also so much uncertainty and insecurity because we’re not yet sure of who we are and our place in the world. It’s a very challenging developmental stage. Our.. Read more

Teen idol – when does a celebrity crush become an obsession?

By Phuong Hua. Just one week remains until boy band One Direction begin their ‘On the Road Again’ tour in Australia. Many parents of teenage girls are probably anticipating a media frenzy and crowds of screaming adolescents like the kind of pandemonium on display when Justin Bieber appeared on Sunrise five years ago. He was.. Read more

Keeping teenagers safe around open fires and barbecues

By Jay Ong. Just a couple of months ago, two Toowoomba teenagers, Matthew (Matt) Richards and Paris Turkington were seriously burned at a party after an unknown accelerant was poured onto an open fire. Quick thinking friends immediately threw Paris into the swimming pool, saving her life; and rolled Matt in the dirt to extinguish.. Read more

Ask an Expert: We believe our daughter may be in a dangerous relationship

My husband and I have serious concerns about the man our 18-year-old daughter is seeing. She tells us he is 26, but we have been told by others that he is 30, and is using drugs, and treats her badly, may even be hurting her. We hear he has been sending her video messages of.. Read more

Ask an Expert: My daughter was harassed online and now says she is depressed. Do I ban her from all social media?

My daughter has changed. She has become very isolated and withdrawn, skips schooling and doesn’t want to go out in crowds. She used to like going out with her family to shopping malls. Naturally I have run all the medical tests under the sun. She is fine. Her behaviour has become worse over the last.. Read more

Ask an Expert: What sort of conversations do we need to be having with our daughters on issues like alcohol and sex?

In light of the controversy in the media recently regarding warning teenage girls about drinking and sexual assault, what sort of conversations do we need to be having with our daughters on issues like alcohol and sex? Very timely question! I was asked to discuss this very issue on ABC radio recently. You may listen.. Read more

Ask an Expert: My 12-year-old hits, kicks, throws things, and slams doors

I have a 12-year-old daughter who is generally happy, healthy and doing well. She is very smart, athletic, good looking and has generally good social skills … sounds perfect however … when she wants something or wants to do something and she is either not allowed or a decision doesn’t go her way, she loses.. Read more

Ask an Expert: My son is being bullied; should I force him to finish the school year?

My 15-year-old son is having a difficult time at school at the moment. He has been picked on mildly by another boy in his class for the past two years. Two weeks ago the boy and a couple of accomplices refused to let him out of the changing rooms and told him he had to.. Read more

Ask an Expert: I have anorexia; how can I stop food consuming my thoughts?

I’m 17 and have anorexia. I’ve had anorexia and EDNOS [eating disorder not otherwise specified] for about a year. I was emailing for advice on how to get though each day without letting food thoughts consume my whole day. Each day my thoughts revolve around food and it’s all I ever think about. Also I.. Read more

Ask an Expert – How do I protect our other children from the behaviour of our out-of-control teen?

We have an out-of-control 14-year-old girl – avoiding school, disappearing at night, smoking, lying, with some big anxiety and depression issues too.  We are doing everything we can to try and help get her back on ‘the right track’ – counselling, medication, love. My question is about our three younger children – 12, 8 and.. Read more