Providing mental health services for children, adolescents, and families.

410-531-5087

The Family Center Blog


Back to School Basics

It’s that time of year again – school has started or is starting soon. It’s a busy time for families that includes schedule changes, new activities, and usually some transitional stress. At The Family Center, we work with many families to help make a successful back to school transition. We’ve gathered together some of our

Read more >>

Talking to Children about Violence

Talking to Children about Violence This summer it seems like every day we learn about terrible stories of tragedy and death. The deaths of police officers, African American men and victims of terror attacks are in the news every day and surround us to the point where many feel people feel overwhelmed with distress. It’s

Read more >>

PBIS: From School to Home

What is PBIS? PBIS (positive behavior intervention and support) is a program used to improve behavior in many school systems. The basic idea is to focus on rewarding positive behavior in a proactive manner in order to reduce disruptive or problematic behaviors. A good PBIS program clearly details expected behaviors and the resulting reward system.

Read more >>

How to Talk About Paris with Your Child

This Friday’s terrorist attacks in France are another reminder that the world can be a scary place where bad things happen.  When events like this happen, parents are often left wondering how or even if they should discuss these events with their children.  The first instinct a parent  may have is to shield children from

Read more >>

Why Your Kid’s Pediatrician and Columbia Family Counselor Need to Work Together

Did you know that if your child’s Columbia family counselor works together with his or her pediatrician, their treatment could be 66% more effective? A comprehensive analysis conducted by researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles compared the findings of 31 previous studies that explored the impact of integrating mental and physical health care

Read more >>

4 Benefits of Therapy for Grief and Loss

Whether it’s the passing of a beloved family member, the loss of a treasured friendship, or the end of a long-term relationship, there are innumerable life events that can trigger the grieving process. Thankfully, therapy for grief and loss can provide many benefits for someone who is experiencing an extreme period of grief, including: A

Read more >>

How to Create a Neighborhood Bullying Action Plan

An estimated 50% of American kids are subjected to bullying at some point during childhood, and 10% deal with bullying on a consistent basis. What can you, as a parent, do when neighborhood bullying turns your home from a safe haven where your child can learn and grow into an anxiety-producing place of torment? Create

Read more >>

6 Essential Insights about Preparing Children for School

The end of August and the start of back-to-school sales are the signals that summer is almost over, and even though Howard County schools are some of the best in the country, families still struggle with preparing children for school-year success. Thankfully, taking a few simple steps can greatly ease your child’s stress and help

Read more >>

3 Tips on How to Raise Good Kids

Scan through the titles in the “Parenting” section of your local bookstore, or better yet, Google the term “how to raise good kids,” and you’ll get thousands of results offering a wide range of advice. Thanks to some great research by a group of Harvard scientists, we’ve been able to distill these ideas for how

Read more >>

What’s the “Bad Kid Myth?”

As a parent, have you ever labeled one of your child’s classmates as a “bad kid”? Often identified by their attention-seeking behavior, their lack of academic interest, and their few friendships “bad kids” have earned their own label – used by their teachers and their peers, too. The “bad kid myth” myth is just that

Read more >>

The Major Mental Illnesses That Affect Children

Mental illnesses can be more difficult to diagnose in children than in adults. Just as children grieve in different ways they can also exhibit symptoms of mental illnesses in different ways. Even the most attentive, involved parents may fail to identify the signs of mental illness in their children. Here are the characteristics of the

Read more >>

10 Tips to Help Your Children Celebrate Valentine’s Day

For many adults, Valentine’s Day can be fraught with memories of heartache and depression, instead of the joy that we should all be feeling. Starting from the days after New Years, many commercial card and chocolate companies bombard us for weeks on end with images of loving embraces and heart-shaped candy. Like the other winter

Read more >>

A Day of Tragedy

One moment you are enjoying the festive moments and anticipation of eagerly awaited holiday celebrations, family reunions, the laughter of young children, time with good friends and the annual holiday traditions that serve to remind us what is truly important and worthwhile. And the next moment you hear the mind-shattering news from a community in

Read more >>

The Pressure to Achieve: Helping Children Find the Balance Between Keeping Up and Running Themselves Ragged by Dr. Bomba

Today’s children are faced with a unique set of circumstances and pressures that are far different from those experienced by people growing up in previous generations. The pressure to achieve and “keep up” let alone “get ahead” feels much different than it used to. We live in a fast-paced society in which “keeping up with

Read more >>

Back to School Success!

It’s that time of year again, parents smile in relief as they send their children back to school. Sometimes, however, that relief can be short-lived once the pressures of school pick up. Parents may be faced with stressed out, overworked, exhausted kids. Here are a few tips to help the return to school go a

Read more >>

“Go out and Play!” by Dr. Alison Bomba

Summer is fast approaching! As the school year nears it’s end, many parents are beginning the search for camps, vacations, educational tutoring, and academic enrichment programs in sometimes frantic efforts to “keep their children busy” during the summer months. While there is benefit to attendance in recreational, spiritual, and educational summer programs, over-scheduling our children’s

Read more >>

The Important Role of Social Skills in Child Development by Dr. Alison Bomba

A child’s ability to communicate effectively, to reciprocate, to empathize with others, and to feel accepted are incredibly important in the development of a positive sense of self. Just as healthy social relationships lead to increased positive peer interactions and feelings of self-confidence, poor peer relationships often contribute to isolation and low self-esteem. In order

Read more >>

Why is My Child So Angry? By Dr. Nicky Lankerani

One of the most common reasons parents seek a psychiatric evaluation is that their child is having “anger problems.” This can range from mild irritation and poor frustration tolerance, to screaming/yelling/crying, to full blown rage episodes involving destruction of property and physical aggression. Although most people associate excessive anger with bipolar disorder, anger can also

Read more >>

How Do I Tell if My Preschooler Needs an Assessment? By Dr. Nicky Lankerani

The preschool period, between the ages of 2 to 5, can be an exciting time of getting ready to start school, making friends, pretend play, improving coordination, learning to dress and feed yourself, writing your name, using the toilet, and mastering communication skills. At the same time, it is a challenging period of learning to

Read more >>

Into the Sea: How to Get Children Interested in Marine Science

INTO THE SEA: HOW TO GET CHILDREN INTERESTED IN MARINE SCIENCE By Kristen Delano Walter, M.S. These days our children are inundated with technological toys like video games, computers, the internet, and cell phones that often cause them to withdraw into virtual worlds. Less and less emphasis is placed on spending quality time with each

Read more >>

Bullying in Schools

School is back in session! Many parents have prepared their children for returning back to school by stocking up on school supplies and preparing to juggle busy schedules and pack lunches. However, there is another issue that many children face upon returning to school that is often overlooked. Bullying in schools is on the rise,

Read more >>