Dear Mabby,

Where have you been? I’m probably one of the five people who have actually read your advice and I’ve missed hearing from you. Rumor has it that you also have some insights into parenting. I need some help and neither Dr. Phil nor Oprah will respond to my persistent emails. I don’t think my kids ever listen to me and I’m not sure what to do.


Zelda Rosenbergowitz

Dear Zelda,

I’m going to go out on a big limb here and guess that you’re a member of the tribe. If you are, you’ll know what I’m talking about AND that I’m also a member (which is the only reason I would have the courage to write something like that). I do have some parenting insights so this particular rumor may be true. But please don’t assume that because this one is true, all of the others that are texted to you daily are also true. You have to be wary of the other (not you, of course) suburban moms.

First, your kids hear more than you realize. I once felt the same way, but as my kids got older I realized that they had actually listened to some of my advice. But I actually learned something that is WAYYY more important than the advice I gave them.

My kids paid close attention to how my wife and I behaved, consciously and unconsciously. And this my dear (I’m assuming that we’re close enough for me to say this) is one of the biggest keys to parenting. It’s not what you say that matters, it’s what you do! It’s how you act. If you want your kids to say yes when one of their siblings asks to borrow something, you should get in the habit of saying yes.

Over the past 11 years, I cannot tell you HOW MANY TIMES I’ve seen the similarities between Lafayette Academy parents and their children, good and bad. That’s when I realized just how important it is to be a fantastic role model for your children.

Happy Parenting!