Radical Parenting, Teenagers and Us


It is with great honour and pleasure that I announce that the Female Empowerment Bracelet (FEBY) has received the Teen Approved seal fromRadical Parenting.  For any readers out there who don’t know who Radical Parenting is you really should check them out, especially if you have teenage children or will in the near future.

Radical Parenting is a fantastic parenting advice website with the distinct difference of being  written by teens.  It was started by Vanessa Van Petten  when she was a teenager and wanted to give voice to her side of the parenting equation.  Vanessa is a ‘youthologist’ who understands the contemporary complications of the young and she began Radical Parenting at a critical time.  There has always been a chasm between kids and parents, but it has never been so obviously pronounced than currently with the internet generation.  Vanessa and her team of over 100 writers at Radical Parentingact as a bridge between that chasm with personal insights, helpful suggestions and desire to help. Topics touch on the spectrum that is modern family life, including violence, doubt, insecurity, eating disorders, health, bullying, media, drugs and sex.

As the mother of three teenagers I value the wisdom of this site and have used many of the strategies recommended. The main focus is on communication and instilling confidence in our kids. So much of modern culture rips away at their psyche like impossible expectations (fashion magazines with their photoshopped images), constant connectedness (facebook, twitter…), electronic narcotics (blackberry, iphone..) and  unlimited choices. Even in 2012 though, the fundamentals of a healthy and loving family haven’t changed and kids really do need and want our help and value our opinion. The trick is to recognize the right time when they are ready to share and then to simply BE there and LISTEN, offering positive feedback and instilling their worth as amazing human beings with so much potential.

The female empowerment bracelet is a great conversational tool and would surely be well received from a daughter thirsty for information on her seemingly erratic hormones and body. It’s important knowledge that one learns eventually, but the goal of the bracelet is to teach the girls early so all the days of their lives can be informed. The “Teen Approved” seal will hopefully attract parents who wish to empower their daughters with practical and useful knowledge, by assuring them it is unlikely to be rejected as other teens approve. It’s a win win situation for parents and kids.

As I, like many others, struggle as a mother on this new frontier, I know I don’t  know all the answers which is why it’s incredibly helpful having people like Vanessa steering me in the right direction.

Posted on September 19, 2012 .