I made every possible mistake parenting my own teen age son (as a divorced father). It wasn't until I could no longer handle the pain of alienating my son that I finally committed myself to rebuilding cooperative relationships - with my former wife, Suzanne, with my daughter, Becca and with my son, Gabe.
Not only did I figure out how re-create a loving connection with my family, but also how to help other families work together to enjoy healthy relationships with their sons.
Growing up with mentors
As a young boy growing up in New York City in the 1950s, I was fortunate to have loving, supportive parents and to be surrounded by mentors in the form of relatives, family friends, neighbors and sports coaches. By my teenage years (in the 1960s), my new mentors were spiritual teachers who safely put me on my lifelong path of learning about personal growth and spiritual well-being. I then started practicing mindfulness meditation - and it has helped me maintain an awareness and calmness that has served me well.
When it was time for me to go to college, I already had a yearning to help people learn how to respect each other and to make the world a better place for everyone.
College: Getting clear about my mission
I was clear that I wanted my college studies to give me the tools I'd need to have a meaningful life and to help others enjoy the same. I studied Eastern and Western philosophy, transpersonal psychology, stress management and a splash of quantum physics.
There was no shortage of instruction about how to live a fulfilled life, but I realized that if people didn’t organize enlightening information into a system of principles and practices, they would likely fall short of their goals.
What does chiropractic have to do with young men and parents?
Being trained as a chiropractor gave me extensive training in neurology, which now helps me understand the latest research on the brain development of adolescent males and the reasons for their unpredictable behavior.
While in chiropractic college, I specialized in stress management. For the last twenty-nine years, I've been teaching patients and parents how to relax, using techniques that take less than a minute to do. These simple strategies are invaluable for preventing parents from engaging in unnecessary, unproductive encounters with their challenging teen age sons and with each other.
We should be investing in male rites of passage like this one to grow healthy young men. Mark Schillinger and his team are doing great work with parenting classes and male rites of passage in the Bay Area. Thanks, Mark, for your great work!
How I got it "RIGHT"
As a doctor who's been blessed to have a busy practice, I've had decades of experience combining the fields of stress management, personal growth and alternative healthcare.
I put together a system that would help people experience excellent physical health and mental well-being. The result was the RIGHT Way®, an integrated method of self-actualization which guides people in the discovery and mastery of their authentic life philosophy. My method helps people implement their unique perspectives into positive beliefs and productive behaviors.
My expertise with challenging teensWhen my son, Gabe, was 16, I realized that my old school style of parenting was not working. I knew I needed to learn how to communicate and motivate him and his friends in a digitally dominated era.
I decided to learn as much as I could how other civilizations raise young men, and had proven traditional ways of raising healthy and happy young men, who naturally wanted to serve their communities. Part of my studies included a trip to Kenya, where I learned about the initiation ceremony that the Samburu tribe uses with their sons.
With the help of my mentor, Brad Leslie, and many other great men, I founded the non-profit, “Young Men's Ultimate Weekend” (ymuw.org) in 2000. It's a modern, outdoors, nonreligious rite of passage initiation that shows young men how to overcome their concerns and fears about growing up and become more independent.
Now, approximately 40 initiations later, I've put in countless hours using the RIGHT Way® method "in the trenches" with thousands of young men. I was able to break the code and discover what makes them withdraw and become disrespectful, as well as what makes them become responsible and resourceful.
By the way, the young men who used to spend lots of time with my son and me at our bachelor pad, still remind me about what a great job they did raising me!
Helping parents get it right
After I gained my “black belt” in mentoring young men, I turned my attention to helping parents convert their problems with their sons into understandable concepts and practical solutions.
I created the workshop, "Parenting Your Challenging Teenage Sons" and began providing private coaching sessions with both the parents and their sons. My work with parents focuses on the proper use of their masculine and feminine wisdom to strengthen their authority and influence. This approach replaces the struggle of competition with the joy of cooperation.
Parenting Young Men Is More Biology than Psychology:
Knowing how to unify families
I teach at personal growth conferences for men, lead a bimonthly men's team and have directed thousands of teenage sons at the YMUW, and co-founded the Yoga for Men Conference. I know how to deal with fathers and the unique challenges they face as they work with their wives and sons.
By teaching parenting workshops with female colleagues and with my former wife, plus coaching single mothers, I also understand the specific challenges that moms face in dealing with their husbands and sons.
I'm able to restore healthy family dynamics by applying the RIGHT Way® method of family unity to the household setting. It's a no-nonsense approach that draws out the leadership skills of the parents, nurtures the values of their sons and provides the tools necessary for handling the toughest relational conflicts, even with difficult or defiant young men.
Today, I'm blessed to have a successful “divorced family”. Personally, I've never been healthier, happier or holier. I have the ideal relationship with my 30-year-old son that I always wanted. We own a recording studio together, travel together, play sports together and take great care of each other.
I was raised in a caring family and now I've created my own close-knit family. I get great pleasure in helping other families have greater trust, teamwork and love. I truly believe that the more healthy families we have in our communities, the more likely we'll live in a society that values respectful and prosperous relationships.
I've used the RIGHT Way® with my family and many other families and it works. I look forward to showing you how it can help you!
Get Your 3 FREE Downloadable Gifts
DVD: The RIGHT Way To Parent Your Son CD: Parenting Challenging Children REPORT: 5 Ways To Help Your Son Right Now