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      8 Things to Stop Doing for Your Kids Before They Turn 18    Disclaimer: Please note that the content of this blog is geared toward teens without disabilities or health conditions that may impair their ability to be independent.    “Adulting” ain’t easy, but no one ever learned how to manage adult responsibilities if their parents did everything for them. While all parents want their kids’ lives to be comfortable, there’s a difference between being supportive and being a “snowplow parent” or “lawnmower parent” who removes so many obstacles from their kid’s lives that they never develop basic life skills for independence.      It’s natural to want to help your children succeed, but how can parents provide support without hampering their kids’ growth?  Here are 8 things to stop doing before your kid turns 18:    1. Scheduling their appointments   An important milestone for independence is being able to recognize when appointments need to be made: oil changes, physicals, haircuts, taxes, dental screenings, etc. Talk to your teen about knowing when these types of appointments are necessary, but allow them to be the one who makes the calls, sets appointments, and adds them to their calendar.    2. Being their personal chef   While many people joke about the typical college student living off of   ramen and beer   ,  the truth is that nutrition plays an important role in your kid’s development through college and adulthood. As they enter this stage of life, they need to know how to grocery shop and prepare a variety of healthy meals for when you’re not there to cook.    3. Fighting their battles   There are going to be times where your kid is treated unfairly in school,   in relationships  , and in the   workplace   .  Remember that your role is to teach your child how to set and enforce boundaries. It’s tough, but they’ll never learn how to stand up for themselves if you fight their battles for them. Don’t call their employer to complain about their snarky supervisor or yell at their friend for flaking on their plans; teach your kid about   healthy ways to resolve conflicts     and let them work through them on their own.    4. Acting as an alarm clock   There are a variety of appropriate alarm clocks out there: smartphones, nightlight alarm combos, or even those old school radio clocks with the red flashing numbers. Whatever alarm your kid uses is fine, as long as it doesn’t have two eyes and a pulse. Your kid won’t be able to rely on you to be their snooze button once they’re out of the house, so allow them to adjust to other ways of being responsible and waking up on time.    5. Doing their assignments   Doing your kid’s assignments should be a big no-no at any age, but a  New York Times  poll showed that 11% of parents wrote college essays for their kids and 16% wrote all or part of their kid’s job application(s). Not only does this put a “false face” on your child’s work, but it sends the message to your kid that you don’t think they’re smart or skilled enough to succeed on their own. This can damage your child’s self-esteem and self-efficacy, making them question their capabilities.   6. Tracking their deadlines   Even in the era of convenient online calendars, many parents constantly remind their kids of important deadlines for projects, events, or applications. Unfortunately, when parents act as their child’s “concierge calendar,” their kid can’t develop scheduling and time management skills which are critical for their career and personal lives.    Afraid it’s too late to stop doing it all for your kids? Click here for a free 15 minute consultation to learn how our specialists can help.       


   
     
      
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      7. Managing their money   Most schools don’t spend a lot of time on financial education, so it’s critical that parents work to instill basic financial skills. Talk to your teen about credit cards, predatory loans, savings, investments, paying bills, and how to create and manage a budget. Help them set up a checking account and introduce them to online banking tools. Give them a small bill to practice paying, such as $10 a month to contribute to the family’s phone plan. Let them know that you’re always there to answer questions, but don’t offer to manage their money for them.   Wondering if your teen is ready for their first job?    Click here        8. Fretting failures   As you allow your kid more responsibility, accept that they’re going to screw up here and there. Resist the urge to clean up their messes and prevent them from experiencing consequences. Failure is an effective learning tool, and every missed deadline, bank overdraft, broken heart, or rejected application is an opportunity for your kid to adapt, build resiliency, and learn how to roll with the punches of adult life.    Need extra support?      Preparing your kids for independence       is tough, especially if your kid is nearing adulthood and you’ve been doing most things for them up until this point. Even if that’s the case, it’s not too late! Our specialists can teach you how to gradually increase your kid’s responsibilities and empower them to become a master of “adulting.”   Dr. Marta M. Shinn, Ph.D.,  is an expert in Child and Educational psychology. If you’re concerned your kid’s life skill development is not on track, Dr. Shinn can provide consulting and recommend support.      
 
	 Click here to schedule your appointment with Dr. Shinn 
       Dr. Daniella A. Davis, Psy.D.,  is an expert in dealing with the unique challenges that women face throughout life. If you find it’s a struggle to balance advocating for your child while also promoting their independence, Dr. Davis can help you learn effective teen parenting strategies.     
 
	 Click here to schedule your appointment with Dr. Davis 
       Dr. Christopher J. Sample, Psy.D.  specializes in supporting men and teen boys through life’s transitions. Are you worried your teen son isn’t adequately prepared for self-reliance? If so, Dr. Sample can provide you and your son with tools that foster his independence.       
 
	 Click here to schedule your appointment with Dr. Sample 
       Dr. Elsa Torres, Psy.D.,  is a specialist in Diagnostic Testing and Counseling. If you’re concerned that something is holding your child’s development back, Dr. Torres can provide diagnostic testing and recommend support to empower your child to reach their potential.      
 
	 Click here to schedule your appointment with Dr. Torres 
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              The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of the highlighted topic. For a full consultation, assessment, and personalized treatment plan, schedule an appointment  with one of our specialists.   More about Variations Psychology   Variations Psychology is a group practice specializing in Child and Family Psychology.  Our specialists provide therapy to infants, children, adolescents, and adults to help them overcome the many challenges they may face throughout the lifespan of a family. We also conduct diagnostic testing of child and adult conditions that may impact the family’s mental health and development (e.g. ADHD, Autism Depression, Anxiety, Learning Disorders, college entrance exams, graduate and professional licensing exams such as MCAT, LSAT, GRE, CBEST, NCLEX, GMAT, CA Cosmetology Exam, CA Contractors State Licensing Exam, and CA Bar Exam).  See our   Specialists   page to select the specialist that best suits your need, or simply give us a call and we will guide you..  Variations Psychology is located in Newport Beach, CA and provides counseling to residents throughout Orange County and its surrounding areas including Newport Beach, Newport Coast, Irvine, Shady Canyon, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Coto de Caza, Corona del Mar, Costa Mesa, Yorba Linda, Dana Point, Laguna Niguel, Aliso Viejo, Mission Viejo, Pelican Hill, Crystal Cove, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, Lake Forest, Huntington Beach, Sunset Beach, Seal Beach, and more.      
  
       References:   How Parents Are Robbing Their Children of Adulthood (2019).  The New York Times.  Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/16/style/snowplow-parenting-scandal.html  Shinn, M.M. (2018). 5 Tips for Raising Emotionally Intelligent Children.  Psychologically Speaking . [Variations Psychology blog post].  Retrieved from  https://www.variationspsychology.com/blogs/5-tips-for-raising-emotionally-intelligent-children   Shinn. M.M. (2019). How Do I Talk to My Teens About Drugs and Alcohol?  Psychologically Speaking.  [Variations Psychology blog post]. Retrieved from  https://www.variationspsychology.com/blogs/how-do-i-talk-to-my-teen-about-drugs-and-alcohol   Shinn. M.M. (2019). My Teen is Dating – What Do I Do?  Psychologically Speaking.  [Variations Psychology blog post]. Retrieved from  https://www.variationspsychology.com/blogs/my-teen-is-dating-what-do-i-do   Shinn. M.M. (2018). Should I Let My Teen Get a Job? 10 Things Parents Should Know.  Psychologically Speaking.  [Variations Psychology blog post]. Retrieved from  https://www.variationspsychology.com/blogs/should-i-let-my-teen-get-a-job-10-things-parents-should-know   Shinn. M.M. (2018). Why Can’t I Say No?! The Woman’s Holiday Guide to People-Pleasing.  Psychologically Speaking.  [Variations Psychology blog post]. Retrieved from  https://www.variationspsychology.com/blogs/the-womans-holiday-guide-to-stop-people-pleasing   Shinn, M.M. (2018). 6 Tips to Prepare for your Teen’s Independence.   Psychologically Speaking . [Variations Psychology blog post].  Retrieved from  https://www.variationspsychology.com/blogs/6-tips-to-prepare-for-your-teens-independence   Young Adulthood in America: Children are Grown but Parenting Doesn’t Stop (2019).  The New York Times . Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/13/upshot/parenting-new-norms-grown-children-extremes.html?module=inline   How to Cite This Blog Article:   Shinn. M.M. (2019). 8 Things to Stop Doing for Your Kids Before They Turn 18.  Psychologically Speaking.  [Variations Psychology blog post]. Retrieved from: https://www.variationspsychology.com/test-blog/8-things-to-stop-doing-for-your-kids-before-they-turn-18

8 Things to Stop Doing for Your Kids Before They Turn 18

In the wake of the college admissions scandal, everyone’s talking about “snowplow,” “lawnmower,” or “drone” parents who prevent their kids from learning from failure. To avoid too much “snowplowing” in your parenting style, check out our blog on 8 things to stop doing for your kids before they turn 10.

     

  

    
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


      Preventing Student Suicide with Just a Few Simple Questions      Suicide among children and teens   is shockingly on the rise. In the wake of each tragedy, parents, peers, and educators are filled with devastation and regret. Spending so much time with children, teachers often feel guilty that they didn’t realize their student was suicidal. Other times, they sensed something was wrong but weren’t sure how to effectively intervene. So how can teachers determine if their students are at risk for suicide, and what can they do about it?    Learning these simple steps could help you save a student’s life:    1. Separate suicide and NSSI   One of the obstacles in providing proper interventions is educators not grasping the difference between suicidal behavior and non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI). Both are serious and require intervention, but the response for suicidality is different than for NSSI. Properly identifying a student’s behaviors is an important first step in getting them the right help. A few key characteristics of the two include:   Suicidal behavior/ideation:     The person has some   intention of dying       They know that their   behavior could result in death      May   seek the most painless way   to do it     NSSI:     Has   no intention   of dying      Does not believe   their actions could result in dead      Seeks physical pain   to escape emotional pain    NSSI has   3 possible functions:      To   obtain relief     from a negative feeling or cognitive state e.g. stress, worry thoughts, loneliness, emptiness    To   resolve     interpersonal conflict e.g. family arguments, divorce, sibling rivalry, peer conflict    To   induce  a positive feeling state e.g. euphoria, decrease numbness       For an in-depth look at NSSI and what to do about it,    click here     2. Explore the C-SSRS   The Columbia-Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS) was developed to provide a simple, accurate, and effective tool that anyone can use to evaluate risk for suicide. You do not need to be a mental health professional to administer it; all it requires is asking a series of simple questions and referring them to mental health services if their answers raise any red flags.    The full C-SSRS screening tool is available in several versions.   Below are a few quick links to commonly used versions.      Click here to access all versions of the C-SSRS.           C-SSRS for Teachers           C-SSRS for Family and Friends           C-SSRS for Teens to Talk to Friends           C-SSRS for Parents      3. Identify ideation   The first step in applying the C-SSRS is identifying ideation. If you are concerned your student may be at risk for suicide, start by asking these 2 questions:    “Have you wished you were dead or wished you could go to sleep and not wake up?”    “Have you actually had any thoughts of making yourself not alive anymore?”     4. Ask more as needed   When administering the C-SSRS, you only need to ask as many questions as it takes to determine whether your student has had suicidal ideation or behaviors. If your student answered no to both ideation questions, you can rule out ideation and jump right into the behavior questions listed in our next point. If they answered yes to either or both ideation questions, ask a few more ideation questions to gain understanding:    “Have you been thinking about how you might do this?”    “Have you had these thoughts and had some intention of acting on them?”    “Have you started to work out or worked out the details of how to kill yourself? Do you intend to carry out this plan?”     5. Assess for behaviors    Whether or not your student has indicated ideation, you must also ask behavioral questions. Determine whether they’ve engaged in suicidal behaviors by asking the following questions:    “Have you made a suicide attempt?”    “Have you done anything to harm yourself?”    “Have you done anything dangerous to where you could have died?”     6. Inquire about interruptions   Next, ask your student if there were ever times where they had attempts that were either stopped by someone interrupting them, or by them having second thoughts:    “Has there been a time when you started to do something to end your life but someone or something stopped you before you actually did anything?”    “Has there been a time when you started to do something to end your life but you stopped yourself before you actually did anything?”     7. Ask about preparatory behaviors   Even if your student has not indicated making any attempts, it’s important to find out if they’ve done anything to prepare to end their life. Examples could include collecting pills, purchasing a gun, writing a suicide note, or giving valuables away.      “Have you taken any steps toward making a suicide attempt or preparing to kill yourself?”     8. Know when it’s an emergency   If your student answers yes to any questions regarding ideation, behaviors, or non-suicidal self-injury, it’s important to refer them to mental health resources. For a student to require a 911 call and/or immediate escort to emergency services, they should meet either of the following criteria:    Active suicidal ideation with some intent to act, without specific plan    Active suicidal ideation with specific plan and intent     Check out these video clips to learn how to ask C-SSRS questions:    Joanna’s example         </iframe>" data-provider-name="YouTube"          Gabriel’s example         </iframe>" data-provider-name="YouTube"          Andrea’s example         </iframe>" data-provider-name="YouTube"            Click here to watch Columbia University’s C-SSRS webinar      9. Reach out and speak up   If your student’s answers have indicated suicidal ideation, suicidal behaviors, or non-suicidal self-injury, quickly share your findings with the school leadership, crisis response team, school psychologist, school counselor or other mental health professional on campus. If you’re not sure who to alert, call 911. As a preventative measure, advocate for mental health programming to be offered on campus so that all students learn healthy coping skills and become aware of available resources.    10. Host a C-SSRS training   The best way to prevent tragedy on campus is to get your faculty on the same page with effective tools that address mental health emergencies. While you don’t have to be a mental health professional to administer the C-SSRS, it’s best to complete a brief online training and receive additional in-person education from a mental health professional to fully grasp how to evaluate student answers in real-life scenarios.      Here is a listing of C-SSRS training options      including pre-recorded and live webinars.    If you represent a private school or district that would like to do an in-service teacher training, our Specialists can:    Visit your campus for in-person training    Answer questions and review key concepts of applying the C-SSRS    Provide realistic examples of evaluating students’ risk for self-harm    Help teachers prepare students for educational units or aspects of popular culture that may romanticize suicide (example:  Romeo and Juliet,  TV shoes depicting suicide, etc.)       


   
     
      
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      Dr. Marta M. Shinn, Ph.D.,  is an expert in Child and Educational psychology and is experienced in training educators on use of the C-SRSS screening tool.      
 
	 Click here to schedule your appointment with Dr. Shinn 
       Dr. Christopher J. Sample, Psy.D.  specializes in supporting men and teen boys through life’s transitions. If your teenage son is struggling with depression or is concerned for a friend, Dr. Sample can help.         
 
	 Click here to schedule your appointment with Dr. Sample 
       Dr. Elsa Torres, Psy.D.,  is a specialist in Diagnostic Testing and Counseling. If you or someone you love has had thoughts of suicide, don’t put off seeking help. Dr. Torres can provide a safe place to listen and provide support.      
 
	 Click here to schedule your appointment with Dr. Torres 
       Subscribe to our blog for a weekly article on topics that affect your life         
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              The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of the highlighted topic. For a full consultation, assessment, and personalized treatment plan, schedule an appointment  with one of our specialists.   More about Variations Psychology   Variations Psychology is a group practice specializing in Child and Family Psychology.  Our specialists provide therapy to infants, children, adolescents, and adults to help them overcome the many challenges they may face throughout the lifespan of a family. We also conduct diagnostic testing of child and adult conditions that may impact the family’s mental health and development (e.g. ADHD, Autism Depression, Anxiety, Learning Disorders, college entrance exams, graduate and professional licensing exams such as MCAT, LSAT, GRE, CBEST, NCLEX, GMAT, CA Cosmetology Exam, CA Contractors State Licensing Exam, and CA Bar Exam).  See our   Specialists   page to select the specialist that best suits your need, or simply give us a call and we will guide you..  Variations Psychology is located in Newport Beach, CA and provides counseling to residents throughout Orange County and its surrounding areas including Newport Beach, Newport Coast, Irvine, Shady Canyon, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Coto de Caza, Corona del Mar, Costa Mesa, Yorba Linda, Dana Point, Laguna Niguel, Aliso Viejo, Mission Viejo, Pelican Hill, Crystal Cove, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, Lake Forest, Huntington Beach, Sunset Beach, Seal Beach, and more.      
  
       References:   The Columbia Lighthouse Project (2018). The Columbia Protocol for Your Setting.  The Columbia Protocol for Communities and Healthcare.  Retrieved from http://cssrs.columbia.edu/the-columbia-scale-c-ssrs/cssrs-for-communities-and-healthcare/#filter=.general-use.english  The Columbia Lighthouse Project (2018). Community Card for Teachers.  The Columbia Protocol for Communities and Healthcare.  Retrieved from http://cssrs.columbia.edu/wp-content/uploads/Community-Card-Teachers-2018c.pdf  The Columbia Lighthouse Project (2018). Community Card for Friends and Family.  The Columbia Protocol for Communities and Healthcare.  Retrieved from http://cssrs.columbia.edu/wp-content/uploads/Community-Card-2women-2018c.pdf  The Columbia Lighthouse Project (2018). Community Card for Teens.  The Columbia Protocol for Communities and Healthcare.  Retrieved from http://cssrs.columbia.edu/wp-content/uploads/Community-Card-Teens-2018c.pdf  The Columbia Lighthouse Project (2018). Community Card for Parents.  The Columbia Protocol for Communities and Healthcare.  Retrieved from http://cssrs.columbia.edu/wp-content/uploads/Community-Card-Parents-2018c.pdf  The Columbia Lighthouse Project (2017).  C-SSRS Training . [Video webinar]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=epTDFFv3uwc&list=PLZ6DpvOfzN1kV1F_lDw9-26JifBSDlIbF&index=2&app=desktop  Shinn, M.M. (2018). Cutting & Other Self-Harm: What Every Parent Needs to Know.  Psychologically Speaking . [Variations Psychology blog post].  Retrieved from  https://www.variationspsychology.com/blogs/cutting-other-self-harm-what-every-parent-needs-to-know    Shinn, M.M. (2018). 8 Tips to Create a Mentally Healthy Classroom.   Psychologically Speaking . [Variations Psychology blog post].  Retrieved from  https://www.variationspsychology.com/blogs/8-tips-to-create-a-mentally-healthy-classroom   Shinn. M.M. (2019). Parent’s Guide: What to do When Your Child’s Friend Dies by Suicide.  Psychologically Speaking.  [Variations Psychology blog post]. Retrieved from  https://www.variationspsychology.com/blogs/parents-guide-what-to-do-when-your-childs-friend-dies-by-suicide    Shinn. M.M. (2019). Suicide Prevention in the School Setting.  Variations Psychology, Futures Academy.  [Webinar].   Posner, K.; Brent, D.; Lucas, C.; Gould, M.; Stanley, B.; Brown, G.; Fisher, P.; Zelazny, J.; Burke, A.; Oquendo, M.; Mann, J.(2008) Columbia-Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS). The Research Foundation for Mental Hygiene, Inc. Retrieved from https://cssrs.columbia.edu/wp-content/uploads/C-SSRS_Pediatric-SLC_11.14.16.pdf    How to Cite This Blog Article:    Shinn. M.M. (2019). Preventing Suicide in Students: How 3-6 Questions Can Save Lives.  Psychologically Speaking.  [Variations Psychology blog post]. Retrieved from: https://www.variationspsychology.com/test-blog/preventing-student-suicide-with-just-a-few-simple-questions

Preventing Student Suicide with Just a Few Simple Questions

We’ve all been pained by recent news stories of teens and even young children dying by suicide. This week’s blog delves into how teachers can save lives with 3-6 simple questions.

     

  

    
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


      The Teacher’s TCIT Toolkit    Children yearn to feel understood but it’s challenging for teachers to build relationships with students who talk back, distract other kids, and refuse to comply with instructions. But what if there was a way to change the dynamic between teachers and disruptive kids? What if there was a method to get these students engaged in lessons, behaving calmly, and complying with commands? Though this may sound like a fairy tale, a behavioral intervention called Teacher Child Interaction Training (TCIT) may be able to make this dream a reality in your classroom.    So what can you do to apply TCIT with your students?       1. Know the need     10 to 22% of students struggle with behavioral issues or psychological disorders, and teachers often feel ill-equipped to support these students’ needs. With the expectation of meeting every students’ unique needs, it’s only natural for teachers to feel frustrated with kids who act out. This begins a vicious cycle of a child acting disruptively, a teacher responding with negative attention, and a classroom missing out on opportunities to learn. With TCIT however, teachers can increase desirable behaviors and create a positive classroom environment.     2. Discover the benefits       Research on TCIT has shown it as an effective way to:      Increase job satisfaction in educators    Reduce disruptive behaviors in students    Improve interactions between children and teachers    Improve students’ emotional intelligence and academic performance    Increase students’ compliance and self-regulation    Decrease teachers’ need to issue commands     TCIT benefits children with a variety of conditions that can be challenging for teachers to support including:    Oppositional Defiant Disorder    Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder    Conduct Disorder    Child Maltreatment & Trauma    Bipolar Disorder    Anxiety & Depressive Disorders     3. Apply the principles      Families around the world have discovered the benefits of Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT), an intervention that teaches parents how to increase positive experiences with their children. The principles of PCIT improve a child’s compliance by:    Providing clear and consistent expectations for their behavior    Increasing positive attention toward children     Using selective attention by ignoring minor unwanted behaviors    Reducing criticisms and questions    TCIT embraces these principles while adapting techniques to the classroom setting.   4. Educate with PRIDE      TCIT identifies 5 core skills that teachers can use to improve teacher-student relationships. By giving students opportunities to lead activities and incorporating these skills while observing them, teachers can reinforce positive behaviors in students:      PRAISE   – Label the behaviors you appreciate in your students, praising them for acting appropriately.     Younger Child Example : “I love how Marta is using her pencil.”   Older Child Example:  “Thank you for being in your seat before the bell.”     REFLECTION   – Reflect back on things your students say to show that you are listening and appreciate their thoughts.     Younger Child Example :  Student:  “I wrote a story about a superhero who gets his powers from lima beans.”  Teacher:  “You wrote a superhero story!”    Older Child Example:   Student:  “I coded this entire webpage!”   Teacher:  “Coding is your thing!”     IMITATION   – Boost your student’s confidence by copying their creations or ideas. Imitation shows children that you enjoy interacting with them and think their ideas are valuable and interesting.     Younger Child Example : “I’m going to paint an animal picture just like Lola.”   Older Child Example:  “I like how you explained that formula, I am going to explain it that way to the other students.”      DESCRIPTION   – Support your students’ language development and communication skills by describing what you see them doing.     Younger Child Example : “I see you’re carefully gluing each piece of your project together.”   Older Child Example:  “I see you’re writing everything in your planner.”     ENJOYMENT   – Express enthusiasm and enjoyment as you interact with your class. The more fun you are having, the more engaged your students will be.     Younger Child Example : “I’m having so much fun practicing for our spring recital!”    Older Child Example:  “I really enjoy going to competitions with our team!”    Click to download our free PRIDE Skills for Teachers Form      
 
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       5. Point out the positive     A key element of TCIT is giving more attention to the positive than the negative. When teachers react to negative attention-seeking behaviors, students will continue to seek attention by acting out. When behaviors are only mildly disruptive, ignore them and look for the next opportunity to point out something positive the student does. Of course, there are times when behaviors can’t be ignored, which brings us to our next tips:     6. Set rules strategically     Establishing clear rules is essential for students to understand your expectations. Be strategic in setting rules that are:     Simple  – Rules should be easily understandable for your students’ age      Specific  – Gray areas leave room for students to argue or negotiate     Visible  – Display rules in a noticeable area     Enforceable  – “Respect yourself,” is a great goal to encourage students to have, but it’s too vague to enforce as a rule with consequences     7. Connect your consequences     Let’s say a child pushes a classmate during reading and you don’t allow them to participate in a trivia game two hours later. Your consequence might not make sense to them because they’ve moved on with their day and missing an academic game isn’t clearly connected to pushing. When a child doesn’t understand how a consequence relates to their behavior, they are more likely to break that rule again. A more effective consequence would be to have them sit away from other students until they can keep their hands to themselves. By immediately enforcing clear consequences, your students will be less likely to repeat the same mistakes moving forward.      8. Be a calm commander     The TCIT method calls for giving commands that are simple, calm, and direct. To ensure your instructions are TCIT approved, give commands that are:    Given one at a time    Explained in a calm, neutral tone      Stated after a reason ( Reason : “We are going outside for recess.”  Command : “When I call your table, please line up at the door.”)    Respectful and polite (Starting with, “please,” models good manners)    Specific (“Please stay in your seat.” “Please talk with your group quietly,” rather than, “please behave during group work.”)    Positively stated (“Please keep your feet on the ground” instead of, “stop putting your feet on your desk”)       


   
     
      
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      9. Is managing student behavior stressing you out?     Are you a teacher feeling stressed out with the demands of managing a classroom while meeting academic standards? Do you represent a district or private school and want to learn more about how to implement TCIT in your school? Reach out to us for a consultation and learn about our school-based coaching service to empower teachers with the TCIT model.    Dr. Marta M. Shinn, Ph.D.,  is an expert in child and educational psychology and a U.C. Davis TCIT & PCIT trainer. Dr. Shinn is experienced in empowering teachers and mental health professionals in understanding the TCIT method and incorporating its principles into their school’s culture.     


   
     
      
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              The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of the highlighted topic. For a full consultation, assessment, and personalized treatment plan, schedule an appointment  with one of our specialists.   More about Variations Psychology   Variations Psychology is a group practice specializing in Child and Family Psychology.  Our specialists provide therapy to infants, children, adolescents, and adults to help them overcome the many challenges they may face throughout the lifespan of a family. We also conduct diagnostic testing of child and adult conditions that may impact the family’s mental health and development (e.g. ADHD, Autism Depression, Anxiety, Learning Disorders, college entrance exams, graduate and professional licensing exams such as MCAT, LSAT, GRE, CBEST, NCLEX, GMAT, CA Cosmetology Exam, CA Contractors State Licensing Exam, and CA Bar Exam).  See our   Specialists   page to select the specialist that best suits your need, or simply give us a call and we will guide you..  Variations Psychology is located in Newport Beach, CA and provides counseling to residents throughout Orange County and its surrounding areas including Newport Beach, Newport Coast, Irvine, Shady Canyon, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Coto de Caza, Corona del Mar, Costa Mesa, Yorba Linda, Dana Point, Laguna Niguel, Aliso Viejo, Mission Viejo, Pelican Hill, Crystal Cove, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, Lake Forest, Huntington Beach, Sunset Beach, Seal Beach, and more.      
  
       References:   Budd, K.S., Stern, D. (2016). About TCIT.  TCIT.org.  Retrieved online: http://www.tcit.org/home/about/  Budd, K.S., Stern, D. (2016). Educators.  TCIT.org.  Retrieved online: http://www.tcit.org/educators/  Dover, V., Murillo, M., Garcia, A., Curiel, C., & Vargas, L. (2008). University of California Davis. https://pcit.ucdavis.edu/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/3_TCIT-Presentation-for-Conf.pdf  Giebel, S. (2018). E.C.M.H. Teacher-Child Interaction Therapy Model.  University of Pittsburgh Office of Child Development.  Retrieved online: https://www.ocd.pitt.edu/ECMH-Teacher-Child-Interaction-Therapy-Model/354/Default.aspx  Linson, Michael (2015). How to Create the Perfect Set of Classroom Rules.  Smart Classroom Management.  Retrieved online: https://www.smartclassroommanagement.com/2015/07/18/how-to-create-the-perfect-set-of-classroom-rules/  Lyon, A. R., Gershenson, R. A., Farahmand, F. K., Thaxter, P. J., Behling, S., & Budd, K. S. (2009). Effectiveness of Teacher-Child Interaction Training (TCIT) in a Preschool Setting.  Behavior Modification ,  33 (6), 855–884. https://doi.org/10.1177/0145445509344215  McIntosh, D.E., Rizza, M.G., Bliss, L. (2000). Implementing empirically supported interventions: Teacher-Child interaction therapy.  Psychology in the Schools.  Retrieved online: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/1520-6807(200009)37:5%3C453::AID-PITS5%3E3.0.CO;2-2  PCIT & TCIT Training (2018). PCITtraining.com. Retrieved online: https://pcit-training.com/tcit/what-is-teacher-child-interaction-training/  Urquiza, A., Zebell, N., Timmer, S., McGrath, J., & Whitten, L. (2011) Be Direct: Improving Compliance Giving Effective Commands .  Course of Treatment Manual for PCIT-TC.  Unpublished Manuscript. Retrieved online: https://pcit.ucdavis.edu/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/48_BEDIRECTrevised.pdf  Watson, A. (2018). How to Create Class Rules.  The Cornerstone for Teachers.  Retrieved online: https://thecornerstoneforteachers.com/class-rules/    How to Cite This Blog Article:    Shinn. M.M. (2019). The Teacher’s TCIT Toolkit  Psychologically Speaking.  [Variations Psychology blog post]. Retrieved from: https://www.variationspsychology.com/test-blog/the-teachers-tcit-toolkit

The Teacher’s TCIT Toolkit

Calling all teachers!Do you feel at your wit’s end with disruptive kids?

Are you stressed with trying to support your students’ emotional health while meeting rising academic standards?

Teacher Child Interaction Therapy (TCIT) has been shown to reduce disruptive behaviors in students and improve relationships between kids and educators - all while improving job satisfaction for teachers! To learn 9 tips on bringing TCIT into your classroom, check out this week’s blog.

     

  

    
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


     
   
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       The Women’s Guide to Divorce: How to Work Toward Acceptance and Happiness    Divorce is something no woman thinks will ever happen to her. I mean come on - all of our childhood movies ended with a royal couple riding off to the magical land of “happily ever after.” We never had The Princess and the Prenup or Ariel’s Alimony Adventure – we were shown that you find your soulmate, exchange some rings, and it’s all sunshine from there. So what happens when a woman’s lifelong view of marriage comes crashing down into the harsh reality of divorce?  The answer is that the emotional impact can feel devastating, and often makes a woman question her identity and self-worth. If you’re a woman struggling through divorce - there is hope. Try these tips to work toward a happy, accepting future:   1. Write a goodbye letter   The grief experienced during divorce can rival that of having a loved one pass away. Not only are you mourning the loss of your relationship, but you’re mourning the vision you had for your life story. Write a letter saying goodbye to each of the dreams and experiences that you expected out of your marriage. This will help you define exactly what you are grieving so that you can work toward acceptance.   2. Write a hello letter   Divorce is a beginning as well as an end. After you write your goodbye letter, write another letter saying hello to all of the things that you would never experience if you were still with your ex. Hello ballroom dancing lessons. Hello wine tasting trips with the girls. Hello rights to the remote control. Hello flirting with that ridiculously attractive cashier. Though nothing will eliminate the pain and process of grieving your losses, focusing on new hobbies and fun activities can add a silver lining in this difficult time.   3. Redefine your identity    Women often view themselves in terms of their caregiving roles to others. If most of your identity is wrapped up in being someone’s spouse, divorce can really throw a wrench in your self-worth. When you are feeling depressed or that you’ve failed, spend time thinking about your talents, character traits, and values that make you who you are. Remind yourself that divorce does not define who you are as an individual.   4. Find a supportive circle   Friendships can be a little tricky after divorce since many married couples hang out with other couples. When one duo splits up, it’s common for mutual friends to keep their distance, adding to the pain and isolation divorce can bring. The good news is, divorce can be a great catalyst to make new friends who understand what you’re going through. There are lots of online and in-person support groups for divorced women to discuss experiences and share coping techniques. Also, this can be a great opportunity to reconnect with family members or friends that you didn’t have as much time for during your marriage.   5. Take a break from social media    Resist the urge to cyber-stalk your ex. There’s no need to see the petty, “I’m doing great,” posts – they’ll just irritate you. It’s common for women to worry about what their ex and other people are thinking and saying about their divorce; to help avoid this, consider taking a break from social media for at least a few weeks to focus your mind on yourself and not the rest of the world.    For more tips to avoid comparing yourself to social media, click here      6. If you have kids, model emotional intelligence    While emotional intelligence is important for everyone, it is especially important if you have children and are helping them work through your divorce. Emotional intelligence is being able to identify and process your emotions in a healthy way. If you have kids, they might have a hard time expressing their feelings, but you have the power to show them how to acknowledge and work through the difficult emotions divorce brings.  Example: “This is a difficult time for our family. I have been feeling confused and lonely sometimes, but I know that these feelings are temporary. We are a strong family and we will get through this together.”    For more tips on fostering emotional intelligence in your children, click here      7. Work toward acceptance    While it’s healthy to be aware of all of the emotions that you experience through divorce, remember that your end-goal is to accept your divorce and move on with your life. Try not to wallow in feelings of bitterness and resentment – when they arise, acknowledge them, but remember that you will be happier once you can learn to move past them.   8. Keep your heels on the high ground    Taking the moral high ground in divorce can be tough, especially if your ex is petty-posting pics with their new love interest or writing derogatory tweets about you. No matter how awful your ex is being, remind yourself that no good will come from you retaliating. If you’re a mom, don’t badmouth your ex to your kids or try to make them spies. Don’t attempt to get your ex fired or ruin their friendships. As hard as it may be, keeping civil is best for your long-term mental health.   9. See a specialist    Divorce can be one of the most difficult experiences a woman may face, challenging her identity, self-esteem, and emotional health. Many times, friends and family just don’t seem to get it and women can feel alone in their despair. Fortunately, there are many resources for women going through divorce and there’s no reason to go through it alone.   Dr. Daniella A. Davis, Psy.D. , is an expert in dealing with the unique challenges that women face throughout each stage of life. If you are a woman struggling through the challenges of divorce or marital issues, Dr. Davis can provide support, understanding, and practical tips to get back to living your best life.     
 
	 Click here to schedule your appointment with Dr. Davis 
       Cynthia Johnson, LMFT,  is a specialist in Parenting and Child Therapy at Variations Psychology. She has years of experience in helping parents, teens, and children work through family issues and overcome challenges brought on by divorce. If you are worried that divorce or marital issues are harming your family’s emotional health, Cynthia can help.     
 
	 Click here to schedule your appointment with Cynthia 
       Dr. Marta M. Shinn, Ph.D. , is an expert in child and educational psychology. Divorce can impact a child’s school performance, cause them to act out, or result in anxiety and depression. If you are worried about the impact of divorce on your children, Dr. Shinn can provide evaluations, therapy, and educational consulting to ensure your child has support they need to overcome challenges and succeed.     
 
	  Click here to schedule your appointment with Dr. Shinn 
       Subscribe to our blog for a weekly article on topics that affect your life         
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              The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of the highlighted topic. For a full consultation, assessment, and personalized treatment plan, schedule an appointment with one of our specialists.   More about Variations Psychology   Variations Psychology is a group practice specializing in Child and Family Psychology.  Our specialists provide therapy to infants, children, adolescents, and adults to help them overcome the many challenges they may face throughout the lifespan of a family. We also conduct diagnostic testing of child and adult conditions that may impact the family’s mental health and development (e.g. ADHD, Autism Depression, Anxiety, Learning Disorders, college entrance exams).  See our   Specialists   page to select the specialist that best suits your need, or simply give us a call and we will guide you..  Variations Psychology is located in Newport Beach, CA and provides counseling to residents throughout Orange County and its surrounding areas including Newport Beach, Newport Coast, Irvine, Shady Canyon, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Coto de Caza, Corona del Mar, Costa Mesa, Yorba Linda, Dana Point, Laguna Niguel, Aliso Viejo, Mission Viejo, Pelican Hill, Crystal Cove, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, Lake Forest, Huntington Beach, Sunset Beach, Seal Beach, and more.

The Women’s Guide to Divorce:
How to Work Toward Acceptance and Happiness

Divorce is something no woman thinks will ever happen to her. I mean come on - all of our childhood movies ended with a royal couple riding off to the magical land of “happily ever after.” We never had The Princess and the Prenup or Ariel’s Alimony Adventure – we were shown that you find your soulmate, exchange some rings, and it’s all sunshine from there. So what happens when a woman’s lifelong view of marriage comes crashing down into the harsh reality of divorce?

The Parent’s Survival Guide: Explaining Puberty to Your Daughter

Training bras, tampons, and mood swings, oh my! Parents of girls might be a bit nervous about their little girls entering puberty, but with the right type of communication and support, these transitional years can be a great time for parents and daughters to connect. Check out this week’s blog with 11 tips for talking to your daughter about puberty.

     

  

    
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


      “Is My Child Addicted to Video Games?” How to Know and What to Do About It   Since their debut in the early 1970’s, video games have been an iconic form of entertainment. While most people can enjoy gaming as an occasional diversion, a growing number of youth seem to be pushing aside family, friends, and activities to spend more time in front of computer screens. Nicknamed “digital heroin,” video game addiction is a growing concern and has recently been classified as a mental health disorder by The World Health Organization.   So how do parents know if their child’s fantasy world is starting to take over their real life?     Warning signs of gaming addiction    Gaming 4+ hours a day  Playing for increasing amounts of time  Thinking or talking about gaming during other activities  Quitting other hobbies  Lying to friends or family to conceal gaming  Alienating themselves from family, friends, or romantic interests  Becoming irritable or miserable when they can’t play video games  Neglecting daily responsibilities  Declining academic performance  Showing physical symptoms including dry eyes, carpel tunnel, weight loss or gain, headaches, or back and neck problems  Ignoring personal hygiene  Depression, anxiety, or social phobias    So what can a parent do about it?    If you are concerned your child or teen may have a gaming problem, try these tips:     1. Start a log    Before you talk to your child about your concerns, start documenting their behaviors in a log. Write down how many hours a day you notice them gaming. Also, write down negative consequences you are noticing, such as them skipping out on soccer practice or avoiding family meals. Also, record how they react when they have to stop gaming. \   2. Communicate with love   When you talk to your child about your concerns, do so from a place of patience and love. In many cases, children use gaming as a form of relief from feelings of sadness or  worry, so being stern or critical may only worsen their negative self-image. Talk to them about their good qualities and the things you love about them – share your log with them and express that you are concerned that their gaming is getting in the way of them living their best life.   3. Organize a detox   Like with any other type of addiction, complete abstinence is necessary for success. This can be a bit tricky since computers are so prevalent in our society, so your child will  need to adjust to using computers without gaming. Set boundaries and rules regarding computer use, such as only allowing them to use it for school projects during certain times of day. Remove game consoles, block gaming websites, and keep the computer in a highly visible area in the house for easy monitoring.   4. Prepare to be patient   As your child is detoxing, they may be irritable, mopey, or just downright mean. When they are on your last nerve, walk away and focus on your breathing for a few minutes. Not only will this help you keep your cool, it will model healthy emotional regulation to your child, as opposed to burying emotions with gaming.   5. Make Reality More Exciting   You may think your kid is only interested in high speed pursuits or battling mythical creatures, but the truth is that real life experiences will be much more rewarding to them than any video game could ever be. Get the whole family involved in more physical activities – hikes, backyard baseball, or activities with other families. If they are old enough, encourage them to get a part-time job to boost their self-worth. Activities, hobbies, and responsibilities can both boost their mood and distract them from the lure of gaming.   6. Use a reward system   It can be hard for gamers to see why their addiction is a bad thing. A reward system can incentivize them to stick with their detox, even if they don’t fully agree with it. Try using a points system by giving them “10 points” for every day they go without gaming and have them lose 20 points each day that they cave in and play video games. Let them know that when they reach 1000 points, they get to go to an amusement park, have a sleepover party, or some other fun activity.   7. Seek support   Addictions of all types are complex and challenging to overcome, but there is hope. A qualified specialist can help your child address underlying mental health issues that may have led to their addiction. They can teach self-control techniques and tools to help your child find happiness and self-esteem away from the computer screen.   If you think your child has a problem with video game addiction, Variations can help.     Cynthia Johnson, LMFT , is a specialist in Parenting and Child Therapy at Variations Psychology. She is experienced in supporting parents, teens, and children in overcoming compulsive behaviors including video game addiction, self-esteem issues, depression, anxiety, and relationship problems.     
 
	 Click here to learn more about Cynthia R.  Johnson, MA 
        Dr. Christopher J. Sample, Psy.D. , is specialist in family issues impacting men and teenage boys. Dr. Sample understands the unique challenges that teen boys and men face throughout life, and is experienced in helping them overcome addiction, depression, anxiety, anger, and relationship challenges.     
 
	 Click here to learn more about Dr. Christopher J. Sample, Psy.D 
       Subscribe to our blog for a weekly article on topics that affect your life:         
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     The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of the highlighted topic. For a full consultation, assessment, and personalized treatment plan, schedule an appointment with one of our specialists.   More about Variations Psychology   Variations Psychology is a group practice specializing in Child and Family Psychology.  Our specialists provide therapy to infants, children, adolescents, and adults to help them overcome the many challenges they may face throughout the lifespan of a family. We also conduct diagnostic testing of child and adult conditions that may impact the family’s mental health and development (e.g. ADHD, Autism, Depression, Anxiety, Learning Disorders, college entrance exams).  See our   Specialists   page to select the specialist that best suits your need, or simply give us a   call   and we will guide you.  Variations Psychology is located in Newport Beach, CA and provides counseling to residents throughout Orange County and its surrounding areas including Newport Beach, Newport Coast, Irvine, Shady Canyon, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Coto de Caza, Corona del Mar, Costa Mesa, Yorba Linda, Dana Point, Laguna Niguel, Aliso Viejo, Mission Viejo, Pelican Hill, Crystal Cove, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, Lake Forest, Huntington Beach, Sunset Beach, Seal Beach, and more.

“Is My Child Addicted to Video Games?”
How to Know and What to Do About It

Since their debut in the early 1970’s, video games have been an iconic form of entertainment. While most people can enjoy gaming as an occasional diversion, a growing number of youth seem to be pushing aside family, friends, and activities to spend more time in front of computer screens. Nicknamed “digital heroin,” video game addiction is a growing concern and has recently been classified as a mental health disorder by The World Health Organization.

So how do parents know if their child’s fantasy world is starting to take over their real life?

     

  

    
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


      Co-parenting over Summer: 10 Tips for a Drama Free Vacay   Summer is a challenging time for all parents, but especially for those who are no longer together. During the school year, the kids are on a pretty set schedule and co-parents generally know what their responsibilities are from month to month. Then summer rolls around and throws a wrench into visitation, childcare, and transportation arrangements. Add the drama of your ex-relationship to the mix, and your family’s summer fun is at serious risk.   So what can co-parents do to plan a summer that works for everyone?     1. Create a co-parenting plan   Depending on your situation, communication between you and your co-parent might not be optimal. If you can stand being in the same room together (or tolerate phone calls), let your ex know you want to discuss summer plans that are in the best interest of your child. Plan ahead and tell them about trips, camps, or other activities you have in mind. Determine who will make arrangements for childcare and activities and discuss how payments will be split up. Putting summer plans in writing will help you both stay on the same page and avoid misunderstandings.   2. Share your priorities   Ask your ex what’s most important to them this summer. Is it bringing your child to cousin Frank’s wedding on a weekend that isn’t normally theirs? Is it taking your child to see a concert of their favorite band? Even if you secretly couldn’t care less about what your ex wants, being flexible and acknowledging what’s important to them will make it a lot more likely that they will do the same for you.   3. Meet halfway   Co-parents often bump heads about what summer activities their child should be enrolled in. One parent might think they are old enough to be home alone and that camps are a waste of money. The other might dread the thought of their little pookie-pie unsupervised without constant stimulation and structured snack-time. Whichever side you’re on, be open to compromise. Don’t feel like forking out half the cost for that exclusive STEM camp? Compile research to share with your ex on some smaller camps that might provide a more reasonable option.   4. Avoid competition   If you find yourself trying to one-up your ex with cooler plans for the ultimate vacay, remind yourself that competing with your co-parent will only make your child feel guilty. Splitting the summer between two households can be tough for a child or teen, so the most important thing is that they get quality one-on-one time with each parent. It doesn’t matter if it’s be on a beach in Maui or at a backyard barbecue; bonding with each parent is most important.   5. Get your child’s input   As you work out summer arrangements with your co-parent, make sure you don’t overlook what your child actually wants. Parents feel a lot of pressure to make summer amazing for their kids, but maybe all your child really wants to do is work on their guitar skills and hang out with friends. Focusing plans around your child’s priorities will make them feel important and will also reduce the power struggle between co-parents.   6. Don’t smother from afar   If your child is going away with your ex for an extended time, it’s perfectly reasonable for you to want to check in with them periodically – just don’t overdo it. Discuss set times with your ex that you will call and check in with your child, but limit it to 2 or 3 times a week. That way, your child is less likely to resent your contact and you won’t appear to be encroaching on the other parent’s quality time.   7. Make the most of your “me-time”   While you will miss your child and may even worry about them when they are with the other parent, remember that there is a silver lining in having a split summer: you get lots more free time! Make the most of your me-time by planning several kid-free activities to occupy your time and look forward to.   8. Support the other relationship    Co-parents come with a wide variety of background stories. Some just grew apart but still care and respect for each other. Others may have been lied to or cheated on and can’t stand the thought of that no-good two timer. Whatever your story is, remind yourself that it’s in your child’s best interest to have a positive relationship with both parents. Show support for them making memories with their other parent and ask them all about their time with them.   9. Don’t hex your ex   No matter how reasonable or considerate you are, sometimes the other parent just won’t want to compromise. As frustrating as this may be, don’t badmouth your ex to your child, even if they talk badly about you. Comments like, “You couldn’t go to Disneyworld because your dad refused to pay his half,” will alienate the other parent and put the weight of your drama on your child’s shoulders. When you’re feeling angry or upset, call a friend or other trusted adult to vent to.   10. Visit a specialist   Every family situation is different and sometimes parents need a little extra help in managing the challenges that co-parenting can bring. If co-parenting or visitation challenges are becoming overwhelming, Variations can help.   Dr. Marta M. Shinn, Ph.D ., is an expert in child and educational psychology. Dr. Shinn works with parents and children to help them discover ways to improve communication, overcome obstacles, and make decisions that benefit the best interest of the family.       
 
	 Click here to schedule your appointment with Dr. Shinn. 
       Dr. Daniella A. Davis, Psy.D ., is an expert in dealing with the unique challenges that women face throughout each stage of life including life after divorce and managing the stress and challenges of co-parenting.     
 
	 Click here to schedule your appointment with Dr. Davis. 
       Cynthia Johnson, LMFT,  is a specialist in Parenting and Child Therapy at Variations Psychology. She has years of experience in supporting families and strengthening relationships between co-parents, married couples, teens, and children.     
 
	 Click here to schedule your appointment with Cynthia 
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     The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of the highlighted topic. For a full consultation, assessment, and personalized treatment plan, schedule an appointment with one of our specialists.   More about Variations Psychology   Variations Psychology is a group practice specializing in Child and Family Psychology.  Our specialists provide therapy to infants, children, adolescents, and adults to help them overcome the many challenges they may face throughout the lifespan of a family. We also conduct diagnostic testing of child and adult conditions that may impact the family’s mental health and development (e.g. ADHD, Autism Depression, Anxiety, Learning Disorders, college entrance exams).  See our   Specialists   page to select the specialist that best suits your need, or simply give us a call and we will guide you..  Variations Psychology is located in Newport Beach, CA and provides counseling to residents throughout Orange County and its surrounding areas including Newport Beach, Newport Coast, Irvine, Shady Canyon, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Coto de Caza, Corona del Mar, Costa Mesa, Yorba Linda, Dana Point, Laguna Niguel, Aliso Viejo, Mission Viejo, Pelican Hill, Crystal Cove, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, Lake Forest, Huntington Beach, Sunset Beach, Seal Beach, and more.

Co-parenting over Summer: 10 Tips for a Drama Free Vacay

Summer is a challenging time for all parents, but especially for those who are no longer together. During the school year, the kids are on a pretty set schedule and co-parents generally know what their responsibilities are from month to month. Then summer rolls around and throws a wrench into visitation, childcare, and transportation arrangements. Add the drama of your ex-relationship to the mix, and your family’s summer fun is at serious risk.

So what can co-parents do to plan a summer that works for everyone?