In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Sept. 20, 2011 / 21 Elul, 5771

Someone else's kid is the one using alcohol, pot

By Betsy Hart

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | In Lake Wobegon, it's said, all the children are above average.

The so-called Lake Wobegon effect is apparently alive and well. A new study -- the C.S. Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health from the University of Michigan -- shows that the vast majority of parents think a lot of other teens are using drugs or alcohol. Just not their own kids.

According to the latest annual Monitoring the Future study (this unrelated study was also conducted using University of Michigan researchers), 52 percent of high-school sophomores in a nationally representative sample said they drank alcohol in the last year. And 28 percent of sophomores reported using pot.

But the National Poll on Children's Health found that parents are very likely to overestimate what other kids are up to, and to believe that some 60 percent of teens used alcohol in the last year and 40 percent used pot. Yet when it came to their own precious darlings? Well, only 10 percent of parents believe their teens have used alcohol in the last year, and 5 percent used marijuana.

Garrison Keillor, call your office.

Dr. Bernard Biermann is a child and adolescent psychiatrist at the University of Michigan and the lead co-investigator for the National Poll on Children's Health. He told me: "Parents need to be aware of the possibility, even the probability, that their teens have experimented with drugs or alcohol. If parents don't believe that, they may be missing an opportunity to talk to their child about something very important."

Fair enough, but the issue here is much bigger.

I've written before about what I think is willful parental ignorance -- for instance, when it comes to bullying. Every parent I know is worried about his or her child being a victim of it. Cyberbullying is the latest hot topic, and it's a serious one. Parents are given copious information from schools on how to recognize if their child is being bullied. Hello -- do the math. Somebody somewhere is doing the bullying, and it might be your child or mine. Really. (Some of the best evidence, not to mention common sense, suggests that the typical child both bullies and is bullied.)

So the larger issue that these studies reveal -- again -- may simply be a truth that is hard for human beings to bear: that we are all capable of some pretty awful stuff. Think about it. How often do we say something like, "I was just so tired when I lost my temper -- that wasn't the real me!" Well, no. It's actually when our defenses are down that the "real us" lets loose. It's often not a pretty picture at all. I think our tendency to want to tie up our egos in our child's performance is part of that often-unattractive human tableau.

Instead, it's the wise person, the wise parent, who "is always saddened by sin, but never surprised by it," as I've heard theologians put it.

In fact, seeing our children as the real, wonderful, but flawed creatures they are will better help us as parents reach their hearts and characters and help train them in the way they should go. In other words, which is more protective: "Of course, my child is capable of that; now tell me again what happened …"; or "But my child would never …"?

Reality is also very freeing. It doesn't matter how accomplished our children are, tying up our egos in their performance is a pretty precarious way to live.

Wake up, Mom and Dad. If your child is human, he or she certainly could, and given the opportunity, maybe would, "fill-in-the-blank." It's not poor parenting for us to recognize that truth. It's only poor parenting when we don't.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Betsy Hart, a frequent commentator on CNN and the Fox News Channel, can be reached by clicking here.

"It Takes a Parent : How the Culture of Pushover Parenting is Hurting Our Kids — and What to Do About It"  

"Hart urges parents to focus…on instilling industry, frugality, sincerity and humility. She encourages parents to reclaim the word "no." Contrary to advice you may have received, you needn't give your child choices, or offer alternatives, or explain to little Suzie why she can't eat eight cookies right before bed-you're the parent, and sometimes you can just say no."

  —   Kirkus Reports

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