Creating deep connections with our children

Madeline Levine, PhD Psychologist and Author, shares advice for parents on how to create deep connections with their children
How To Create Deep Connections With Our Children
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Creating deep connections with our children

Parents need to know, want to know, how to maintain and deepen their connections with their children. And, of course, you're going to deepen your connection with a two year old in a different way than you are with a 14 year old. Your two year old hugs you in a full body hug. I have three sons. They perfected the pyramid hug, which was like this, which is like don't let your junk touch my junk, but it was still a way of being connected. So part of what we need to do is sort fo ride the waves with our kids as they are comfortable with different forms of warmth, of love, of support, and I think the most important thing we do is to read our children accurately. This starts when they're babies, and we know the difference between a cry that means pain and a cry that means I'm hungry and a cry that means I'm lonely. We're reading our child, and throughout our children's lives the most important thing you can do to be accurate in our assessment of our kids, to be able to look them in the eye and know when they need to be left alone, when they need our help, and when they simply need us to listen and understand them. And I think that' s how all relationships flourish.

Madeline Levine, PhD Psychologist and Author, shares advice for parents on how to create deep connections with their children


Expert Bio

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Madeline Levine, PhD

Psychologist & Author

Madeline Levine, PhD, is a psychologist with close to 30 years of experience as a clinician, consultant and educator. Her New York Times bestseller, The Price of Privilege, explores the reasons why teenagers from affluent families are experiencing epidemic rates of emotional problems.  Her book, Teach Your Children Well, outlines how our current narrow definition of success unnecessarily stresses academically talented kids and marginalizes many more whose talents and interests are less amenable to measurement. The development of skills needed to be successful in the 21st century- creativity, collaboration, innovation – are not easily developed in our competitive, fast-paced, high pressure world. Teach Your Children Well gives practical, research- based solutions to help parents return their families to healthier and saner versions of themselves.

Dr. Levine is also a co-founder of Challenge Success, a project born at the Stanford School of Education. Challenge Success believes that our increasingly competitive world has led to tremendous anxiety about our children’s’ futures and has resulted in a high pressure, myopic focus on grades, test scores and performance. This kind of pressure and narrow focus isn’t helping our kids become the resilient, capable, meaningful contributors we need in the 21st century. So every day, Challenge Success provides families and schools with the practical research-based tools they need to raise healthy, motivated kids, capable of reaching their full potential. We know that success is measured over the course of a lifetime, not at the end of the grading period.

Dr. Levine began her career as an elementary and junior high school teacher in the South Bronx of New York before moving to California and earning her degrees in psychology. She has had a large clinical practice with an emphasis on child and adolescent problems and parenting issues. Currently however, she spends most of her time crisscrossing the country speaking to parents, educators, students, and business leaders. Dr. Levine has taught Child Development classes to graduate students at the University of California Medical Center/ San Francisco. For many years, Dr. Levine has been a consultant to various schools, from preschool through High School, public as well as private, throughout the country. She has been featured on television programs from the Early Show to the Lehrer report, on NPR stations such as Diane Rheems in Washington and positively reviewed in publications from Scientific American to the Washington Post. She is sought out both nationally and internationally as an expert and keynote speaker. 

Dr. Levine and her husband of 35 years, Lee Schwartz, MD are the incredibly proud (and slightly relieved) parents of three newly minted and thriving sons.

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