Category: Features

Lucky grandparents, lucky children

Family activities Anne O’Connell   If a grandparent has a skill which they can pass on to their grandchild, February is a good month to do so: there are still many long, dark evenings ahead. It can be any skill from tying shoelaces to whistling, to skimming a flat stone across the water! Think of…

The Terrible Twos

  Temper tantrums are a normal part of human development, writes Rory Fitzgerald   There’s bad news about the ‘terrible twos’: researchers now say they can begin well before the age of two, and can go on for a number of years afterwards — if you’re not careful. The symptoms are well-known to all parents…

New technology – pitfalls

Technological advances have had a huge impact on family life, writes Rory Fitzgerald   Our children are increasingly wired — in every sense. Children nowadays are intimately familiar with complex technology, often literally before they can walk. My two-year-old can turn on the iPad, punch in the access code, open his favourite Peter Rabbit app,…

Unlocking the silence

  The silence of bystanders in the face of bullying  reinforces the behaviour, writes Terri Ryan   The word bully triggers images of a robust bully or bullies who use dominance on someone who has become submissive and defenceless to stand up to them. You feel sad for the victim, which quickly deepens to concern.…

Dealing with highs and lows

  Rory Fitzgerald offers a positive approach to depression in the family   Despite living on a rain-lashed island which was impoverished and unfree for most of its history, we Irish have generally been known as a cheerful bunch. However, at this time of year, even the most cheerful of us can succumb to despondency.…

To my daughter . . .

In a rediscovered letter, a dying mother says goodbye to her young daughter   ‘When we bought two (copy) books for your homework so that you had the opportunity to use the one ”like all the others” I made up my mind to write a long, long letter to you in the one you didn’t…

The Irish family in 2012

  Rory Fitzgerald looks at what the future holds for families   The average Irish family is not exactly skipping into 2012 with a spring in its step, given the ongoing economic crisis. Yet, even amidst bewildering social and economic change, there are hopeful signs that the Irish family remains a vital institution. 2007 was…

Sharing the joy of a family Epiphany

  Erin Fox looks at some traditional ways of celebrating the feast of the Epiphany   The feast of the epiphany is traditionally about celebrating the three wise men’s visit to Jesus Christ. But it also marks the end of Christmas for many. The holiday is celebrated in many different ways across the world; each…