WPP 034: Parenting older teens and college students with Lisa Heffernan of Grown and Flown

Don’t go it alone. You need need experts. You need community, you need friends the same way you did when your kids were in diapers. So keep that community. It’s an enormous help to you and it’s an enormous help to your family.
— Lisa Heffernan

I had such a great discussion with Lisa Heffernan, co-author of the brand-new book out this week called “Grown and Flown: How to Support Your Teen, Stay Close as a Family, and Raise Independent Adults.”

This is one of those episodes that is not grief-specific. I was so glad to talk to Lisa about her new book because so often I hear from widowed parents that one of their challenges isn’t really related to grief at all – it’s that they find themselves in a new role as the “only parent” for their kids, and they need to handle everything alone. So, I figure the more information and insights we can get, the better, in terms of helping us with this job. Our discussion is also relevant, however, for your friends who are not widowed parents – so please share with them it you find it helpful.

Some topics Lisa and I cover in our discussion include:

  • What parents most want to know about raising their kids during the older teen / young adult years;

  • How parents can tend to feel isolated when their kids get older and face problems that can be more difficult to discuss with other parents than little-kid problems;

  • Signs you might be overparenting your teen or young adult;

  • The four main things your child needs to know to manage their health when they’re living away for the first time;

  • Four key academic lessons that your teen should learn before college;

  • Tips for getting through the 11th grade;

  • Tips for parents to stay sane during the college search and application process;

  • Tips for college drop off day;

  • Ways to support struggling college students without taking over; and

  • What surprises Lisa most about the late teen / early adult years.

I hope you enjoy my discussion with Lisa Heffernan of Grown and Flown.

Links & resources for this episode

Grown and Flown: How to Support Your Teen, Stay Close as a Family, and Raise Independent Adults, by Lisa Heffernan and Mary Dell Harrington
Grown and Flown website and Facebook group
My interview with Dr. Lisa Damour
Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions Into Adulthood, by Dr. Lisa Damour
Under Pressure: Confronting the Epidemic of Stress and Anxiety in Girls, by Dr. Lisa Damour

More links for listeners

Get my guide “What I’ve learned about widowed parenting”
Widowed Parent Podcast discussion group - sign up here (free) - first Sunday of each month
Jenny’s interview on the Life Through Transitions podcast

What is your biggest challenge as a widowed parent right now?

Call our voice mailbox at (669)257-3434 and leave a message. Or, answer this quick one-question survey. I’ll pick the most interesting questions and challenges, and hunt down experts to address them on upcoming episodes.