Maintaining a relationship or a marriage is a wonderful thing, but sometimes it can be tricky. We hear tips from an expert clinical psychologist on how couples can communicate better, understand each other more deeply, and work through some of the issues common in modern marriages.
Dr. Daphne de Marneffe, clinical psychologist and author, The Rough Patch: Marriage and the Art of Living Together
Welcome to Culture Crash, where we examine american culture. What’s new and old in books, film, and entertainment.
No time of year has more classics and standards than the holiday season. Beginning in early November, you can’t help but to start hearing the familiar Christmas tunes of years past in department stores and on the radio.
Personally, I’m a strong believer that Christmas music is appropriate starting on Black Friday and extending until New Years Day. Once Thanksgiving dinner is done, I pull the records out of the drawer and once New Years has past, I put them back away… metaphorically, of course. What I literally mean is I take my Christmas playlist out of a hidden folder in Spotify for a month or so and then hide it again.
Naturally, I enjoy the Christmas classics- Chuck Berry singing “Run Run Rudolph”, Frank Sinatra’s “Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow”, and Nat King Cole’s “Joy To The World.”
And then I enjoy the more modern Christmas wrinkles like NSYNC’s infectious “Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays” and Kelly Clarkson’s “Wrapped in Red.”
But like all families, my family has some holiday traditions of our own. My dad’s favorite Christmas tunes come from the Beach Boys, so this is the time of year I like to enjoy “Little Saint Nick”, “Santa’s Beard”, and the “Man with All the Toys.
But one of my most cherished Christmas traditions is listening to my mom’s favorite Christmas album. Every year growing up, or at least some years, my sister, my brother, and me would open our presents to Amy Grant’s Christmas album. Nothing says Christmas day to me more than hearing Amy Grant’s “Emmanuel.”
Admittedly, “Emmanuel” is probably a classic to no one outside of my family-and maybe Amy Grant’s- but for us, it’s essential Christmas listening.
Whatever your favorite Christmas songs are, whatever you consider the appropriate time to blast them in your car, and especially you only want a hippopotamus for Christmas, there’s no debating that now is the time to revel in that warm holiday feeling that comes with hearing the Christmas songs you cherish the most.
Parents want what’s best for their kids. But sometimes, they can take it too far. We talk to two experts about “over-parenting,” the tendency to demand your child earn straight A’s, work to be a sports star, and find the time to work a part-time job and how to fix it.
Carl Honoré, author of Under Pressure: Putting the child back in childhood
Terri Khonsari, author of Raising a Superstar: Simple strategies to bring out the brilliance in every child
A Writer’s World: Jonathan Lethem on literature and his decades-long career: Jonathan Lethem is the award-winning author of Motherless Brooklyn and other novels. His latest book is an inside look at his thoughts on literature. He talks to us about the importance of reading, what inspires him, and how he feels about tough critics.
Gene Crunching: The ethics and impact of genetic screenings on children Science enables us to know much more than ever before. We can be aware of what disorders we could pass on to our kids and we can conduct screenings on children to discover irregularities in their genes. Such screenings can help doctors catch issues early…but they can also put a huge burden on families.
The right to an education is guaranteed to all students, regardless of disability, by federal law. But experts and parents are now wondering if we are doing enough to help autistic students maximize their abilities to live their best possible lives. Mark Claypool, co-author of How Autism is Reshaping Special Education, discusses the current status of public schooling for autistic students and how the systems in place can be optimized to help students grow even more.
What should you do if you child tells you they feel they were born as the wrong gender? Do you force them to conform to their born gender or do you support their feeling of being born into the wrong body? We talk to the parent and the doctor of a transgender child to sort through the confusion and discover what science says about gender transitions and how one family navigated the issues associated with having a child you suddenly don’t fully understand.
Raising kids these days isn’t easy. Parents have expectations for their children that often don’t jibe with who the child is and his or her temperament — and that can lead to problems with behavior that disrupt family life, and end up being counterproductive for the child. We talk to a psychologist about why kids behave the way they do in certain situations, and offer strategies for dealing with a child that can help them grow more responsible and independent.