Should Hooking Up Be Normal?

It is always a little crazy towards the end of the school year as my adolescent clients get hyped up about prom, graduations, and the ever-so-innocent life-sucking high school parties that have teens going through faster than an In-and-Out drive-thru. Last month was not any different from any other year. That is…other than the intensity […]

How Much Does Technology Suck Up Your Relationships?

Do you remember when disc-mans and dual tape recorders came out? It was awesome. You could record a song from one tape onto another and it was genius! Then the disc-man came out and you felt cool just to have something so new. The pager! I wanted a pager so bad in high school that […]

Girls and Sex – Are We Ok with “Normal?”

I have been incredibly disheartened the last couple of weeks as I work with adolescent girls who have normalized sexting, sending nude photos to boys, and “hooking up.” I have had mothers come in blaming themselves, fathers crying, and families being torn by depression and anxiety. I find that regardless of parents’ personal parenting philosophies, […]

Is Dignity Lost?

“KEEP YOUR DIGNITY!” was a constant phrase yelled spoken to me by my mother. Dignity. According to Webster’s dictionary, dignity is defined as “the state or quality of being worthy of respect.”  Growing up, the word “respect” was constantly impounded into our head. To respect our elders, those around us, and to respect ourselves was simply […]

Dear Charise – My teenage daughter is having sex!!

Dear Charise, My husband and I are devout Lutherans and we recently discovered that my daughter is having sex. She is a junior in high school and we are part of a small community where everyone knows everyone. I feel so disgraced and my husband is so angry that he wants to kick her out. […]

Breaking Up is Hard to Do

Someone should have warned me that this week is the week of break-ups. My 20 something’s have come into my office in a state of misery and developmental confusion.  I can only thank God that I have surpassed that stage in my life. I sit there, looking and listening to my college students process their […]

The Birds and the Bees

Yes! Let’s talk about sex! I have written about sex within the context of marriages. However, the talk with our children….the fearful, dreaded talk about the “birds and the bees” (which by the way, pre-teens think you are talking about the animal channel when you bring it up in this context!) The other day, I brought […]

Sexy, Hot, Beautiful…

Aaahhh, yes!! It is summer and I have spent a good amount of time at the pool and beach. I have definitely seen a plethora of “looks” at the beach and honestly, I become a little anxious. Why? Because I have 3 daughters and I cannot help but look at the teenagers at the beach. What they […]


I was recently asked why so many people seem to be suffering from anxiety and having panic attacks. Is the prescribing of xanax on the rise? I work with one local high school and every student I see from there takes xanax. Yesterday, I saw a family for the first time where the son began […]

Dear Charise – I am an Annoyed College Student

Dear Charise, I just got back home from college a week ago and I am already annoyed by my parents. My mom is constantly bugging me about unpacking, constantly going out, and not having a summer job. My dad is annoying me because he thinks I am using “his house as a hotel” where I […]