LATEST ARTICLES

From my Irish Independent Column

We are thinking of getting rid of our family TV

We are thinking of getting rid of our family TV

We are thinking about getting rid of the TV as our New Year's resolution. We haven't spoken about it with the kids (aged eight, five and three) and I'm not sure how to broach it with them. Should we go cold turkey or will we phase it out? My husband thinks we should...

I worry that my sensitive son won’t cope in secondary school

I worry that my sensitive son won’t cope in secondary school

I have an 11-year-old son who is very immature and over-sensitive for his age. If something doesn't go his way, he breaks down in tears. He'll do this anywhere, even in school, in front of his friends. I'm amazed they don't tease him about it. He is the eldest of four...

My 12-year-old son refuses to go into school most days

My 12-year-old son refuses to go into school most days

My 12-year-old son is in first year in secondary school. He has become highly anxious over the last few months and is now refusing to go into school most days and when he does go, I always get a text by lunchtime demanding that I come and pick him up. He is a bright...

This will be my first Christmas Day without my children

This will be my first Christmas Day without my children

My wife and I have separated since the summer and this is the first Christmas that my children won't be with me on Christmas Day. I'm devastated. The youngest is just seven and she was crying when I told her I won't be there for dinner but her mum is determined and...

I worry that my seven-year-old never seems to accept praise

I worry that my seven-year-old never seems to accept praise

I worry about my eldest boy, age seven. He hates getting praise and doesn't like to be centre of attention. He hid an award from school about being pupil of the week in his class. Anytime I look up lack of confidence in children it's always that they've been given out...

My 15-year-old seems to be heading down a bad path

My 15-year-old seems to be heading down a bad path

I've just got back from my son's parent-teacher meeting. He's in third year and we'd been happily believing that he was getting on great, but it turns out he isn't handing up homework, often sits day-dreaming in class and his teachers have little confidence in him...

How do I help my son to build resilience for competitive rugby?

How do I help my son to build resilience for competitive rugby?

My son is 14 and is part of a rugby development squad. This is his fourth year on the squad. In his first match this season he played very well and was told this. My son was delighted with this feedback and his confidence was high. Since this first game, however, he...

My nine-year-old son is giddy in school

My nine-year-old son is giddy in school

My son is nine and in third class. He is constantly in trouble in school, for being distractable, giddy and not being able to sit still. To be honest, he has always acted a bit like the class clown and I think sometimes it is almost habit for him to mess. Most...

My teenage daughter is upset that her dad is remarrying

My teenage daughter is upset that her dad is remarrying

My ex-husband is getting remarried next summer, and he announced it to our children last week. They are aged 11 and 14. The 11-year-old seems to have taken it in his stride, but his older sister is devastated. She is already saying she won't go to the wedding, but I...

How can I get my 10-year-old daughter back to her own bed?

How can I get my 10-year-old daughter back to her own bed?

My 10-year-old daughter has started sleeping with me in my bed for the last two months or so and will not sleep in her own bed. My husband is often away and I go to bed relatively early. She can be anxious sometimes (like in lifts), but is mostly happy-go-lucky. She...

My son has been dumped by a friend and I’m upset

My son has been dumped by a friend and I’m upset

My son is eight and has had, all last school year and summer, a lovely friendship with another boy in his class that seemed really genuine. Since starting back to school in September, however, my son's friend seems to favour playing in a big group of other boys he...

My 5-year-old can’t make friends

My 5-year-old can’t make friends

My five-year-old daughter is finding it hard to interact with kids in school. She is an only child, very outgoing when it comes to me and her mother, her cousins, slightly older friends that "look after" her but she has recently confided in her mum that she doesn't...

My 10-year-old won’t cope with his new teacher

My 10-year-old won’t cope with his new teacher

My son has been really lucky with his teachers up to now. The teacher that we believe he will have in fourth class, however, cannot handle stress, shouts a lot and is very critical of the kids if their work isn't perfect. All the parents know she is a nightmare, but...

My 12-year-old told me he’s bisexual

My 12-year-old told me he’s bisexual

My 12-year-old son is a typical boy, plays video games, hangs out in the park with his friends and wants to be a YouTuber for his career! He shared with me that he is bisexual and this shocked me as he has never displayed any behaviours that would lead me to believe...

I will be separated from my 2-year-old

I will be separated from my 2-year-old

I will soon be hospitalised in Dublin for at least 12 weeks, but maybe longer, due to pregnancy-related complications. I live about two hours away and already have a little 2-year-old boy. This means I could be apart from him for several months. I am hoping you might...

My husband and son fight dreadfully

My husband and son fight dreadfully

I have a 14-year-old son from a previous relationship. I have been with my now husband for nearly 10 years. Their relationship has never been great, but it is unbearable lately. I work long hours so my husband does school collections and dinners most evenings, but he...

Our 13-year-old is ready to give up on school

Our 13-year-old is ready to give up on school

Our 13-year-old is not getting on at all well in secondary school. He is in second year now.In first year, one teacher was picking on him and we tried to address it with the school, who told us that there is a teacher shortage and he had to take what he was given. He...

My daughter is drinking and hanging with older boys

My daughter is drinking and hanging with older boys

My daughter is 15 and is breaking my heart. She goes out and never tells us where she is going. I know she is drinking because she has been seen down the town drunk with some older boys that I definitely do not want her hanging around with. We've tried grounding her,...

My son left me a note saying he worries a lot…

My son left me a note saying he worries a lot…

I recently found a note that my nine-year-old son wrote. In it he said that he worries a lot. When I asked him what it is that he worries about, he said he worries that either my husband or I won't be there to collect him from after-school care. We have always...

Will my son be disadvantaged by being an only child?

Will my son be disadvantaged by being an only child?

My son is turning four this Christmas and myself and my husband are considering having another child. In many ways we are a very content family, and having a new baby will potentially disrupt that! But I worry that my son will miss out by not having a sibling. Do you...