Parenting Philosophy

Dr. M’s Women and Children First Podcast #25 – Dr. Victoria Talwar – The Truth About Lying

Dr. Victoria Talwar is the Chair and a Professor of the Department of Educational and Counseling Psychology at The McGill University in Montreal, Canada. She is one of the preeminent thought leaders on the subject of lying. Working in the area of developmental psychology for over fifteen years with an emphasis on social-cognitive development, her research interests include children’s verbal deception, children’s moral development, theory-of-mind understanding and behaviour; children’s expressive display rule knowledge and behavior. In addition, she has investigated issues related to child witness testimony including child witness credibility and competence, lie detection and jury decision making. She is also interested in the influence of cross-cultural factors and attitudes to lying behavior. Recently, her research interests include children’s social interactions in cyberspace as well as the role of spirituality in children’s social development.
This week we sit down to discuss her new book, The Truth About Lying. It is a wide ranging conversation about the state of lying currently as well as what we, the parents, can do to reduce it while helping children find their best moral and honest selves.
I hope that you enjoy my conversation with Dr. Talwar,
Dr. M

Dr. M’s Women and Children First Podcast #23 – Duey Freeman – An Uncivilized Journey Part 3

Duey Freeman, MA, LPC is co-founder of the Gestalt Equine Institute of the Rockies, director of the Gestalt Institute of the Rockies and owner of his psychotherapy private practice. After teaching for 24 years at Naropa University he has decided to move in a more creative direction. Most recently and in collaboration with Kimberly Beck M Ed he has created: The Coming Home Project and Relational Rewilding Retreats. 

Duey is a dispenser of wisdom for Men. He is a specialist in relationship and understanding the breakpoints and blindspots that people have to their relational problems. We go through discussions of connecting with others, consequences versus punishments, living in communication and general love.

Enjoy my conversation with Duey Freeman,

Dr. M

Dr. M’s SPA Newsletter Audiocast Volume 12 Issues 10 and 12

SPA Audiocast Newsletter Volume 12 Letters 10 and 12

In issue 10, we look at effort and resilience. We take a look at non nutritive sweeteners and the microbiome. And finally, sugar and the risk of Inflammatory Bowel Diseases.

In issue 12, we discuss trauma and the epigenetic realities that follow these events. We look at some new research related to type 1 Diabetes following Covid infection as well as the effects that Maternal Gestational Diabetes on newborn offspring.


Dr. M

Teaching your teen to be “Responsible” (Pedcast)

Can you teach your children to be a responsible adult… you bet.  In this episode of, Anne Gessner PNP and Dr. Smolen discuss the subject of teaching responsible behavior to children, especially teenagers.  Hear them discuss what they consider the do’s and don’ts when it comes to helping children  become responsible adults.


Subscribe on iTunes!


Subscribe on iTunes or follow us on Facebook and Twitter!


*By listening to this pedcast, you are agreeing to Doc Smo’s terms and conditions.


All Rights Reserved.

Attitude lessons learned from my Dad (Pedcast)

Last year’s holiday message about lessons learned from my Grandfather was a well received podcast.  This year’s holiday message focuses on lessons learned from Dr Smolen’s father.  Parents can have a strong, positive effect on their children’s attitudes. Listen to this podcast and learn how “Smoky Smolen” had a positive influence on his son’s attitude.




-Podcast, helping parents with information to help raise their children from preschool to grad school

-Last Thanksgiving I did an attitude pedcast about my grandfather.

-I got a tremendous response so here we go again with my now annual pedcast about teaching children positive messages about life attitudes.

-It’s my belief that everyone around you have things to teach you.  Sometimes the teaching is direct and sometimes the lessons are only available only by observation.

-In the case of my father, his attitudes were crystal clear both in his words and his actions. I am going to share those with you today.

-Today I am going to reflect some on my father’s attitude toward work and really life in general…I hope we can all learn from his life experiences.

-So kickback and enjoy hearing a little some of the wisdom that my father taught me which I hope will have relevance for you and your children.


-First a little background on my Dad.

– He was born in the 1920’s, in Atlanta Ga, the deep south.

-He was an only child in a Jewish family in the south.

-Those two facts made him different right from the get go- Jewish in the South and only child at a time when families were usually large.  I got the feeling that these facts, galvanized his personality. He learned to stand up for himself and be proud of who he was!

-It didn’t hurt that he was a good student and very athletic.

-After high school graduation, he enrolled as a freshman at UNC

but then WW2 broke out.  He dropped out of school voluntarily to join the Marines.  He was going to join the fight and make a difference.  I got the feeling that not only was he ready to fight for his country, but maybe he needed to prove something to himself and others.


-After the war, he did not return to school but rather married and settled into a sales job, selling industrial chemicals, mostly soaps.  Without a college degree there were probably not a lot of options available to him.  While his friends were becoming successful lawyers, doctors, and business owners, he was selling chemicals to one customer at a time. But it turns out that the soap sales business suited him quite well.


– After a few years in the soap business it was clear that he had a talent for selling.  He had found his career, not as a professional but as a soap salesman.

-Now here’s where the attitude lessons come in. I can vividly remember him telling me a two things over and over again as a child;


Firstly, if you are going to be a salesman or anything else for that matter, be the best salesman the world has ever seen.  A 90% effort was just not good enough, it had to be 100% or nothing.  He would often say to me, “ If you are going to be a shoe salesman or a carpenter, be the best darn shoe salesman or carpenter there is.”  That was just his attitude.


Secondly, his attitude was that nothing happened until a salesman landed the sale. He chose to see his role as absolutely essential to the overall effort of the company.  In his view, his function was more important that the CEO of the company, the accountants, the chemists and all the rest down the line.  It was the salesman that made it all happen.  He had converted (in his mind) what many could call a mundane job into the linchpin of the organization. Now that’s a good attitude!



-Was this all ego or compensation for insecurity…I don’t think so.

– He had chosen a philosophy that gave his life meaning and purpose.

That philosophy was: When you decide to do something, give it all you got. Furthermore, no matter what the activity is , treat it as important.  Respect yourself and your contribution take it seriously.  Boy did this work for him.  He became an extremely successful salesman.  He retired having earned a great income and had become a legendary salesman in the company.


-What a great message for kids;


When your child decides to do something, they should give it their best effort… and they should treat their contribution to whatever the endeavour as important! They should demand respect from others involved.


-If you can convince your children to adopt my father’s life view (give your all and your contribution is important), think how that would help with schoolwork, sports, and even friendships.


– Learning to give things your best effort can only be a positive in my mind.  It is only with this kind of effort that we can hope to overcome all the difficulties that life throws at us.


– By the same reasoning, respecting your own contribution to a group activity and demanding respect from others gives it meaning and importance. An individual who always gives their best effort and treats every task as important is the kind of person I want working with and for me! Work with a purpose is always better than just work.  It happens to be more fun too!




-I hope these insights into my father’s attitude can help you shape your child’s attitude toward life.

-Sometimes when you watch the news you think that our problems are insurmountable….think about the tremendously difficult obstacles generations past had to tackle and overcome.  Maybe if you can instill in your child, my father’s life attitudes, their challenges will be easier to tackle.

-Well, that’s it for today.

-Thanks for joining me.

-If you like what you hear, please recommend the DocSmo pod cast to your friends and relatives.  The larger my audience the more energy I can invest in my blog. “Like” DocSmo on my face book page or “follow” me on twitter.  If you like the blog, so will your friends.

-Feel free to send in a comment and start a discussion

This is Dr Paul Smolen, recording in Charlotte, NC hoping you are in the mood, to affect your child’s attitude!


Until next time!

Subscribe on iTunes!


Subscribe on iTunes or follow us on Facebook and Twitter!


*By listening to this pedcast, you are agreeing to Doc Smo’s terms and conditions.


All Rights Reserved.

Tincture of Time (Pedcast)

In this week’s post, my discussion centers more on philosophy than physiology. Primary care physicians know that most human sickness, especially in children, will get better without treatment. Pediatricians are constantly weighing the potential benefits of a particular treatment against its potential harm. Most of the time they get it right, but as we all know, sometimes the treatment turns out to be worse than the disease. Watchful waiting with a tincture of time may be all that the child needs. Knowing when to intervene and when it is best simply to observe is the art of medicine.



Subscribe on iTunes!


Subscribe on iTunes or follow us on Facebook and Twitter!


*By listening to this pedcast, you are agreeing to Doc Smo’s terms and conditions.


All Right’s Reserved.

Let’s not forget to care for the Mamas and the Papas! (Pedcast)

As parents, it’s easy to become absorbed in your children’s well-being and forget to take care of yourself.  Don’t forget,  one of your most important assets is YOU. Taking care of yourself now can make a world of difference economically, physically, and mentally down the road.  In this “Pedcast”, Doc Smo reminds parents to be mindful of their well-being and illustrates some simple ways that you can improve your health for the betterment of you and your family.

Subscribe on iTunes!

Subscribe on iTunes!

*By listening to this pedcast, you are agreeing to Doc Smo’s terms and conditions.

All Right’s Reserved.