HelpMeSara: Podcasts with Sara Dimerman
The Road to Adoption and Beyond: A mother’s story
Sara Dimerman in conversation with Nia Vardalos. Over the course of this episode you will learn more about:
- Nia's honest and heart moving account of the journey towards adopting their daughter
- The importance of grieving the loss of what might have been
- Whether the internet is a good place to begin when researching adoption
- The bumpiest spots on the road to adoption
- The ecstasy and challenges once a child has been adopted
Why Nia chose to write Instant Mom and how it is helping other families navigate through the adoption process
Caring for your aging parent
Sara Dimerman in conversation with Dr. Tiffany Chow. Over the course of this episode you will learn more about:
- The age at which adult children typically find their roles with their parents beginning to reverse
- Age related factors that influence this change in role
- Other special circumstances that might accelerate this role reversal (eg alzheimers, dementia, stroke)
- The difference between dementia and alzheimer's disease
- The age at which older adults typically need more care
- Encouraging geriatric assessments and with whom?
- What to do when an aging parent is resistant to or in denial about needing extra help
- Why its best to avoid certain words such as "dementia" when talking to an aging parent
- Support services for aging parents and their adult children
- Whether our communities/provinces are well equipped to deal with mental and physical changes for our aging population
- The importance of getting extended family involved in caring for an aging parent/relative
- What to look for when exploring options for increased care
For better or worse: how technology has changed families lives
Sara Dimerman in conversation with Marc Saltzman. Over the course of this episode you will learn more about:
- How technology has evolved over the past decade
- Gadgets and gizmos that are particularly appealing to children? teens? adults?
- Whether males or females are more drawn to technology than the other gender
- Why there is such a fascination with technology today
- How technology has enhanced our lives and how it has made them more difficult
- Whether or not there is a correlation between violent video games and aggressive behaviour
- How and why parents should set limits on children and technology
- Where technology is headed
Raising kids in same sex relationship
- Whether children being raised in same sex relationships typically see themselves and their family structure as being different to their peers
- How children may voice their feelings and how same sex parents can prepare for their questions
- How acceptance from extended family eg grandparents, impacts on the adult children and grandchildren, for example
- Whether male same sex parents have a more difficult time with societal expectations and stereotypes than female co parents
- Whether and how school administrators and teachers accommodate for the difference in family structure within families of children being raised by same sex parents
- How same sex parents can advocate on behalf of their children and family to raise awareness -within schools and communities - and offer suggestions for change if necessary
Local and national supports for same sex parents raising children
Clearing Your Clutter
Sara Dimerman in conversation with professional organizer, Melanie Gross.
Over the course of this episode, you will learn more about:
- The physical and emotional benefits to clearing your clutter
- The side effects of disorganization/clutter
- The most challenging aspects of clearing your clutter and why
- Nature versus nurture - are some people predisposed to being disorganized or is this behaviour learnt?
- Whether change is typically permanent after your clutter is cleared
- Some simple tips to get you started and to help your children get organized
What To Do When You Suspect Or Find Out That Your Child Is Gay
Sara Dimerman in conversation with Cherie MacLeod.
Over the course of this episode you will learn more about:
- Signs and signals that may indicate your child is attracted to same sex peers
- The age at which children typically show attraction to one sex over the other
- The best way to approach your child if you think he or she is gay or lesbian
- What reaction to expect from your child after being approached
- Whether it is typical for a child to approach his or her parents with the awareness of a difference in sexual orientation
- Understanding/exploring sexual diversity and identity, e.g. bisexuality, transgender, transsexuality, pansexuality
- Why some children are more comfortable questioning or expressing their differences openly
- Common parental reactions when his or her child “comes out”
- How a parent can best support his or her child
- How parents can find support for themselves and their children
How to Choose the Right School to Fit Your Child's Needs (or How to Make the Best of What You've Got)
Sara Dimerman in conversation with Janyce Lastman.
Over the course of this episode, you will learn more about:
- Why parents sometimes feel that their children's needs are not being met at school
- The difference between public vs. private schools
- What parents can do when they disagree about which school their children should attend
- The factors/issues that parents often don't consider but should when choosing a school
- The pros and cons of changing schools or school systems - and the best (or worst) time to do so
- Some things parents might not typically think of doing that could help improve a difficult situation at school - social, academic or behavioural
- Some of the more common conditions that require accommodations at school, e.g. learning disability
- Some less obvious conditions that may require special attention, e.g. anxiety, conduct disorder
- Options for teens who don't fit regular high school programming
- Some newer or no-traditional options parents might consider for students who wish to continue an education after high school
- More intensive or specialized resources for at-risk youth
- Resources and supports for parents
Grandparents Raising Grandchildren
Sara Dimerman in conversation with Betty Cornelius
Over the course of this episode you will learn more about:
- What is a kinship family?
- How common is it that children are being raised by their grandparents?
- What is CANGRANDS?
- How CANGRANDS reaches out to and helps grandparents.
- How and why are grandchildren typically raised by their grandparents?
- What is different about raising a grandchild compared to raising a child of ones own? What special requirements need to be in place?
- What if the grandparents don’t have the resources to provide for their grandchildren?
- How does raising ones grandchildren typically affect the dynamics of the rest of the family?
- How are grandchildren typically affected – both positively and not as positively by being raised in a kinship family?
- CANGRANDS Hearts & Hands Quilt project
- How the rate of kinship families compares between Canada, the USA and other countries.
- How kinship families from around the world can connect with one another.
Resolving Conflict: Answers to How Bullying May Be Handled in Your Child’s School
Sara Dimerman in conversation with Rick Kelly
Over the years, there has been a movement away from a punitive approach to dealing with conflict, such as bullying, within schools towards a more restorative justice approach. Rick Kelly, a professor in the Child and Youth worker program at George Brown College in Toronto, and a restorative conference and trainer, chats with Sara Dimerman about:
- What restorative/restorative justice means?
- How long the restorative justice model has been used and how it evolved?
- Other options for dealing with bullying issues
- How the restorative justice model works
- Who facilitates this process in schools
- The benefits of being with the right facilitator in a safe, supportive environment
- The risks of being with a facilitator who is not trained/certified
- How parent can familiarize themselves with the model being used in their children’s school in relation to bullying
- How teachers and administrators can encourage the restorative justice model as an intervention and form of prevention
Parenting an Autistic Child – a Mom's Journey
Sara Dimerman in conversation with Barbara Lebo
Over the course of this episode, we will discuss: Possible causes of autism; signs to look for in recognizing that your child may be autistic; the roller coaster of emotions when raising a special needs child; the impact that raising an autistic child has on the family; treatment options when caring for an autistic child; how to advocate for your autistic child at school; what to consider regarding school placement – mainstream or a specially contained classroom; how treatment programs can be integrated into the school/educational system; practical strategies that can make a difference – at home and school; resources and supports for parents and children.
Am I a Normal Parent? Reassurance and Advice You've Been Looking For
Sara Dimerman in conversation with Lana Feinstein
Over the course of this episode you will learn more about what defines a normal parent, whether or not "normal" is all that its cracked up to be, what thoughts, feelings and behaviours you share in common with others, and more.
Parenting a Distractible, Inattentive or Hyperactive Child
Sara Dimerman in conversation with Carol Barber and Kate Davidson
If you're concerned that your child may be more distractible, inattentive or hyperactive than the average child his or her age, then you'll want to listen to this episode. You will learn more about why this happens, what to do and not to do about it and what resources and supports are available to you and your child. Hear Sara Dimerman in convesation with Carol Barber and Kate Davidson, members of the College of Psychologists of Ontario.
Sara Dimerman was born in South Africa and immigrated to Toronto, Canada in 1977. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Radio and Television Arts from Ryerson Polytechnic University in Toronto, in 1982, and then obtained a Master's level Diploma in Assessment and Counselling from the Institute of Child Study, University of Toronto, in 1988. Ten years later, following months of intensive study and successful passing of written and oral examinations, Sara was designated the title of Psychological Associate (C.Psych.Assoc.) by the College of Psychologists of Ontario.
In 1990, Sara founded the Parent Education and Resource Centre in Thornhill, Ontario. As Director of the Centre, Sara administrates all projects run out of or in association with the Centre. Her private practise, out of the Parent Education Resource Centre, includes counselling and consulting with and in regards to children, adolescents, adults, couples and families. The Parent Education and Resource Centre offers counselling, parent education, and other psychological services all under one roof. Registered Psychologists assess children and adults for intellectual strengths or weaknesses, emotional concerns, and learning disabilities.
In 1997, the Parent Education and Resource Centre was voted as offering the best parenting course in Thornhill, Ontario by the Post Newspaper.
In 1996, the Parent Education and Resource Centre received a recognition award from the York Region Healthy Community Coalition for its outstanding contribution and commitment to healthy communities. In April 2004, at the York Region's In Celebration of Women awards ceremony, Sara received an Education Lifetime Achievement Award.
Sara is a well known author and lecturer on parenting and family issues. writes articles and columns for several newspapers and magazines across Canada and the United States and also authored The Parent Tutor, a parenting program on computer software.
Sara is the child and family therapy expert at www.canadianparents.com and contributes to other websites including kidsaroundcanada.com, changinglanes.ca and newmarketbaby.ca. She is regularly quoted in newspapers and magazines, and has appeared on radio and television shows across North America (visit the Media & Appearances page for a full list).
Sara is the author of 'Character Is the Key' (Wiley & Sons, Canada, 2009) and 'Am I a Normal Parent?' (Hatherleigh Press, New York, 2008).
Sara considers herself blessed with a very supportive family - her husband and two daughters - all of whom inspire her with a steady stream of stories to write about.