Real Talk Podcast: Teaching Children the Power of Resilience

March 15, 2023
real talk with susan and kristina podcast

In this episode of Real Talk, KJK Student Defense Attorneys Susan Stone and Kristina Supler are joined by Dr. Suzanne Schneps, a 30-year clinical psychologist who works with children, their parents and family units.  Topics that they discuss are related to resilience in children.  The conversation includes the relationship between resilience and success, how parents can teach kids resilience without over-parenting, and tips to model resilience for children to see and emulate.

Show Notes:

  • (03:05) How Dr. Schnep Defines Resilience
  • (05:06)  How To Really Define Success
  • (05:57)  Is Being Resilient Linked To Success?
  • (06:58)  Are Kids Struggling More These Days Than In Previous Generations?
  • (10:31)  How Parents Can Build Resilience Into Children
  • (12:54)  Parents and Kids:  Collaborating Versus Setting Non-Negotiable
  • (15:17)  Knowing When to Protect Your Child Versus Letting Them Find Their Own Way
  • (18:05)  The Difference Between Your Child Being Bullied versus Not Just Being Liked
  • (20:41)  How Educators Can Handle Bullying Or Mean Comments In Class
  • (21:41)  A Great Example of Mediation Between Students in Conflict
  • (24:49)  Resilience for Kids and Dealing with Grief of the Death of a Loved One
  • (27:04)  What it Means to a Child When Parents Apologize For Their Behavior
  • (29:11)  When Is It Ok to Hold Back From Kids
  • (31:40)  How to Talk To Kids About Covid (RSV)?
  • (34:19)  Set the Example: Model Resilience For Your Kids



Susan Stone: Today’s topic is really a very fundamental topic because as everyone knows, Kristine and I focus on helping students when they’re in a crisis situation. But long after Kristina and I are able to help the student out of the. We hear back from parents and some kids bounce back and lead and go on to do better.

Susan Stone: And some kids, the crisis defines them and it leads us to the question of resilience. So we wanted to have a podcast focused on that very topic because Kristina and I only see a small snippet of the crisis. We don’t know the student before. And unless someone reaches back out to us, we don’t know the after.

Susan Stone: So our guest is really the expert on the topic.

Kristina Supler: We’re pleased today to be joined by Suzanne Schneps, who is a clinical psychologist in Cleveland, Ohio, who’s been practicing for over 30 years. She works with children’s parents and family units. Prior to her clinical work, Dr. Schneps’ training, uh, was as an elementary school teacher and also a special education, uh, worker.

Kristina Supler: She worked with children with cognitive challenges, learning differences, and a variety of mental health issues as well. This experience really informs Dr. Schneps’ work with children and gives her a unique understanding of how academic and school issues impact a child’s self-concept and overall wellbeing.

Kristina Supler: Dr. Schnapps is just the best.

Susan Stone: I would have to agree and I’ll have to throw in. This is really scary. I met Dr. Schneps over 25 years ago already. Wow. Yeah. She is a consultant at my um, daughter’s school, which is Hathaway Brown and All Girl School, and she really. Made a big impact on creating an environment for resilience.

Susan Stone: So we have maintained our relationship all these years. And when you say she is the best, The best, but I also say her daughter, who is a psychologist, also the best, , also the best. So can we give a shout out that not only are you great working with students, but you raised one heck of a daughter in that Jenny Wolinsky?

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: You know, I don’t know whether I can handle all these positives. Ladies, . 

Kristina Supler: Well, welcome. We’re happy to have you today. Thanks for joining us. 

Susan Stone: So before we launch into a big discussion on resilience, Dr. Schnapps, can you define the term so we’re all on the same page? What we’re really talking about? . 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Well, well, well, Susan, I think you gave a good way to describe resilience to kids, but also adults.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: It’s bouncing back. It’s how are you gonna handle the fact that life is not perfect, that life has handled, handed you some things that are kind of challenging, and how are you gonna respond? so you move on with life. In the early years we would do lots of little exercises where we would give a situation and we would literally have them jump up and down to show that they were bouncing back and being resilient.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: But it’s figuring out a way to move forward so that the problem did not define you and did not weigh you down as you move forward in the future. 

Kristina Supler: it. It resilience relates to being able to move forward. Let me ask you, can a child or an adult be successful without having resilience? Well, I guess 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: I would have to say that it depends on how you define being successful.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: I know about that 

Kristina Supler: answer coming. 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Oh my gosh. Wait, wait. Yeah. Walk yourself right into that. Sure did. Okay. You know, if you wanna be miserable your whole life, it’s kind of a choice. Okay. By my standards, you could probably have a more, positive forward thinking. I might even use the word happier life, but if you’re okay with it that’s really your choice.

Susan Stone: Is that successful? I mean, seriously. I’m not just trying to play cute. Yeah. If your goal is to be miserable and you achieve it, you’re successful at that. So I don’t think that’s our definition . 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Well, that’s not our definition of a healthy mental health approach to life. So if we’re saying that we want resilience and we want a happy, healthy life, that would be allowing the resilience.

Susan Stone: I’m still struggling. I don’t know why. Yeah. Help me out here because when I think of success, 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Uh, you’re defining success Susan and Kristina by how you personally experience it. Okay. You are both very resilient people. Crisis is put in front of you. You actually live this in your work. You figure it out, you try to solve it, and the then you move on.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: You move on to the next one. Right? Okay. But there are people in life who say, I don’t wanna do that. I’m okay being stuck. I don’t wanna move on. Misery’s comfortable. I mean, it’s not a healthy approach, but you can make that choice. What happens then is you become known as a negative person. You become known as somebody that half the world does not really wanna be with, and you’re miserable, but you can make that choice.

Susan Stone: Would you agree then that being resilient is part and parcel of being successful?

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Yes. I think it leads to being a moving forward. Adult and by and a moving forward child being resilient lets you continue on a path that’s positive and on a path which we would define as successful, rather than being stuck. Yeah. , 

Kristina Supler: Dr. Schnep, susan and I tend to really only see Stu students when they’re in crisis, at their worst, whether it’s a school issue, a campus, uh, issue for kids in college, God forbid an issue in the juvenile justice system.

Kristina Supler: Would you agree that students are less resilient today than they’ve been in the past. 

Susan Stone: Yeah, because we really can’t go by what we see. It’s not fair. We don’t actually, nobody calls a lawyer and says, just want you to know my kid’s doing great .

Kristina Supler: It just seems that the kids are struggling more now. I mean, is that accurate or what are your thoughts?

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Okay. I think, could we separate two things? Sure. I do think kids have a great deal more to, to struggle with. I think that the world is much more complicated. Social media adds a great deal. Uh, more pressure on kids. I don’t know that I would say that they are less resilient today than they were in the past.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: I just think they have more to be resilient about. 

Susan Stone: Okay, but is that something every generation says? I mean, I’m sure the generation that was sending people off to the Vietnam War said this generation has more to deal with when, with others, or take it back further. My mother was a depression baby. And first generation after the Holocaust.

Susan Stone: I think that generation, could we just, what makes this 

Kristina Supler: different, big, big issues versus. I wasn’t invited to the party and I saw on Snapchat all my friends at a party. 

Susan Stone: Yeah, I just have a hard time with that.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Okay, so let’s take a look at the following of when you’re a kid. This is one of my favorite moments as a clinician cuz it helped to so define how an adolescent can see the world.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: I, I had this, this is really many years ago actually. I had this kid, his father was in the hospital with some bizarre disease that they thought he was going to die. His grandmother had just died. His unc Fa very favorite uncle had just died all within a week. I saw him on a Friday. I saw him on a Saturday. I saw him on a Sunday on Monday.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Wow. He calls, it’s a miracle. His father’s fine. All’s good, but he has another huge problem. You wouldn’t have time for this kid. We weren’t supposed to see each other. I said, sure thing. What’s the deal? The big problem was he was a sophomore in high school and it was homecoming and he didn’t drive yet and did I think it would be embarrassing.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: He went to Beachwood. I actually remember if his mother. Dropped him off at the corner of Fairmont and Richmond and they walked the other way. But this was the big problem. 

Susan Stone: Touche, touche.  

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: We might say it’s not a big problem, Kristina. Uh, you know that I read on Snapchat that everybody went to the party and I didn’t.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: But as a kid it is a big problem. Okay? And they move from. Okay. Right to the next big one. 

Susan Stone: You know what? That’s so interesting because that I was always raised with the cliche, little people, little problems, big people, bigger problems. But what you’re saying is that’s not true. You have to take the person where they’re at.

Susan Stone: They’re just as big at that point.

Kristina Supler: Yeah. It doesn’t feel fair to minimize the problem in, in the life of the child, just because, you know, we as adults with our life history and experience, say like, oh, who cares? Move on. 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: This would be like all the times that people have said, you’ll go to your high school reunion, it’ll be your 20th reunion, and you’ll see that those people didn’t amount to anything.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: They had a popular ones, you know, et cetera, et cetera. , it’s irrelevant. When you’re in the middle of, of your high school years, it’s important to you in your middle school years. We have to take kids where they’re at and what’s important to them. 

Susan Stone: That’s why she’s the bomb. 

Kristina Supler: That’s right. That’s right. let’s just jump to it.

Kristina Supler: The big question here, what can parents do to build resilience in children? 

Susan Stone: We now have defined the problem. We want the solution. 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Okay? Kids do not emphasize, not, you know, capital bold, like to always be told what to do. they like to figure it out.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: And if we’re teaching them to be resilient, it’s asking them the question of it’s empathizing first. I mean, you know, that’s really awful. Uh, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. What ideas do you have that would move you forward? Let you know I, you always have, and it’s giving the positive vibe that you know, that they can figure it out and listening and hearing what they have to say and then commenting on it and asking.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Sounds great. Can I give a tweak to it? Because sometimes you’re going, oh my goodness, that needs a little help. 

Kristina Supler: Oh geez. That’s not the, that’s not the way to move forward. . 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: and sometimes you go, oh my gosh, that is not how to be resilient. You cannot go, and punch ’em out on the playground.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Um, that’s gonna get us in real trouble. So then it’s to say, well, let’s think through the consequences of, of that choice. So it’s engaging in a conversation. You are helping them to be resilient by giving them the message that they can figure it out. 

Susan Stone: We, where I struggle is the line between, sometimes you let them figure it out and sometimes it’s a must do.

Susan Stone: So let me give you an example. Um, okay. . My third was very, very nervous about driving. Mm-hmm. , I’m a working mother. Mm-hmm. divorce situation. So getting that kid driving was really important to me. Mm-hmm. and there. And by the way, today she is a great little driver, but getting her through that anxiety and then finally saying you’re doing.

Susan Stone: that it there, it’s non-negotiable. How do you deal with the line of collaborating versus setting the non-negotiable? 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Great question. Okay. Well, well, first of all, I personally am a big fan of the word non-negotiable. Some things are non-negotiable. You, you know, you have to go to school. It’s non-negotiable.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: In your instance, your third child needed to learn to drive. It was non-negotiable. So the, the, there, there are a couple of pieces here. First of all, this is gonna sound weird for the person that encouraged people to talk. Sometimes as parents, we overtalk, we keep talking and talking and talking and we don’t.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Okay. It’s enough already. Since I’m not a dentist, TMJ is a very good thing. Shut your mouth, . Okay. Be quiet. Because we are encouraging and fostering anxiety, the more that we talk, we sometimes need to put a lid on it. Okay. And then in putting a lid on it, when it’s non-negotiable, look for where there are some choices.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: You know, your daughter needed to Learn to drive. Okay, so it’s saying it’s non-negotiable, but here’s what you can choose. I found this driving school and this driving school. You pick, talk to your friends. You know, you thought they both were fine. What do you care? So it’s giving choice where you can, but making it clear it’s going to happen.

Susan Stone: Sort of like potty training. It’s non-negotiable that you need to potty. You can pick the princess underwear or the 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: rainbow underwear. Yes. Now of course you’ve walked yourself into such a complicated topic that we really won’t go there . Cause you know, toilet training is all about control and the bottom line is you can say that, but they can choose to not want any of the underwear and we could have a problem.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: So we’ll leave that one for another topic, another time. . 

Kristina Supler: Fair enough. Now, of course, being resilient, it doesn’t mean that children aren’t going to experience difficulty pain, heartache. Yeah. So what’s the balance? That’s life. That that’s life and at any age, right? What’s the balance between. , I hear you when you’re saying, you know, don’t over talk.

Kristina Supler: Let the kids be a part of, of solving and working through how to move forward. But what’s the balance between letting your child work through the issue? Feel the feelings, find a solution, and protecting your kid? 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Yeah. Okay. That’s a very good question actually. I agree. Here’s where we protect our kid and step in, number one, we step in when it’s a safety issue.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Parents always need to protect their kids with a, with a, with a safety issue. What defines a safety issue? Anything that will be harmful to them physically and anything that’s significantly harmful to them educationally and emotionally When people hire you. , they know that their kid cannot navigate that system.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Actually, they’re having trouble navigating the system. Oh yeah. Okay. So they are protecting their child by getting them what, what they need. And it’s not a reasonable standard that some child should be able to do that. I think it’s also taking into account developmentally where they’re at. your little third grader gets into a, you know, a, a, a tiff with other kids and, and is fighting with them and gets called names and it’s, you know, it doesn’t go well.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: And they cross boundaries and say inappropriate things. A mom can still call and see if she can navigate with another mother, but when you were a junior or senior in high school, that is not appropriate. It’s funny. So we 

Susan Stone: need. Yeah, I, I was just gonna say, I was talking to a very dear fa friend. Mm-hmm. , and it was a, a younger child where it got a, the name calling, I felt crossed a boundary.

Susan Stone: And my advice was pick up the phone and call the mother. Now, don’t let this continue. Would you have agreed with that? . 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Yes. Yes. Because the kid’s little and the kid, we can help the kid with what to say, but not all of them can do it. And that’s different than being 17 or 18 years old. Where we can role play, we can plan it, we can think about it, but they need to take care of some of it themselves.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Hmm. Well 

Susan Stone: you know what, look, we get a lot of calls from younger parents wanting me to sue school districts for bullying. And of course it’s a very, very complicated legal issue that, you know, the school has to be first put on notice that there is bullying, but before we even get to something that would be defined as bullying, do you think there is a difference between.

Susan Stone: Just not being liked by peers and bullying. 

Kristina Supler: That’s a great question and I’m so curious to hear your response. Dr. Schneps because Susan and I often find ourselves in situations where we’re having really hard conversations with parents. We’re speaking as lawyers and you know, sometimes I feel like a jerk and parents are emotional and sharing with us their child’s struggle and we’re like, sorry, legally you don’t have anything we can do for you.

Kristina Supler: Be best wishes. You know that that stinks. 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Okay. Well, I think I, I, this is not gonna be a popular view, but I think a little bit we are overusing the word bullying. I, 

Susan Stone: I think I totally agree. Well, we 

Kristina Supler: agree. 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Yeah. Yeah. you can say to me something like, oh my gosh, those are such ugly earrings. Why would you ever buy them and wear them?

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: You look ridiculous. . That’s not bullying, that’s being mean. You mean girls, you . That’s not bullying or 

Susan Stone: brutally 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: honest. It’s brutally honest. You don’t like ’em. Susan, I thought they were not bad. Um, it. It, but it’s just plain mean. Okay. It’s not bullying. And I, as a kid, need to learn. And that’s where I would say the word resilience comes in.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: How do I handle those mean, mean comments? And I think that it is. Particularly in the early years, there is a tendency to do some of that mean kind of thing. You’ve been mean to me. I’m gonna be mean to her. See how, and, uh, I’ll play it out and see how that feels. Hurt. People hurt. Mm-hmm. . And so I, I think parents need to help their kids with how to respond, which I guess would be being resilient if people make mean comments.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Now, what doesn’t work in 2022? Were almost a 2023. You were probably told the two of you to ignore things. You can make one ignore and then you have to have a comeback. No, 

Susan Stone: not me, not I, not I Not you. No, actually, My , my parents basically said the only way to stop a bully or someone being mean is take ’em out in the playground and beat ’em up.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Well, that’ll get you nowhere today, . Yeah. 

Kristina Supler: That’ll get you get kicked outta school today. 

Susan Stone: Yeah. I, I, I didn’t come from the ignore it, but I also think that was from a family where, again, My parents were depression babies and lost all their extended family in World War ii, so the whole thought of fighting back was very ingrained in them.

Susan Stone: Mm-hmm. . 

Kristina Supler: What about for educators? Dr. Schnapps? We have, we have teachers in our audience who listen and school administrators. In. In your opinion, what can the classroom teacher, who’s, who’s seeing and hearing the name calling the looks, the, the heartache over exclusion, whatever it might be, what can the classroom teacher do to to stop the bullying or intervene in a constructive way.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Well, I think there’s a couple things they can do, Kristina. I think one thing is they can encourage I statements instead of saying, you did this to me, you did this to me. It’s the, I felt this way. I experienced what just happened to me, and encouraged kids to do that and give them the opportunity to be able to practice it.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: I also think. that they can encourage a form of mediation, which let’s see. I will briefly define it. It’s where you, you and peer, you’re smiling. 

Susan Stone: Well, just because Kristina and I, many, many years ago, way before the pandemic became certified in restorative justice and we’ve just now years later, see it, 

Kristina Supler: schools sort of embracing the idea.

Kristina Supler: Well, let me let you answer. I’ll let you finish your answer. I think we’re talking about the same thing, but who knows. So what does mediation mean to you?

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Oh, okay. I’ve had a conflict with, with you, Kristina. Okay. Horrible, horrible fight. You know, a horrible fight. I can’t stand and I could in the best, in the best of all.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Susan says she will help us do this cuz she’s another kid. But if not the teacher does. And first I tell what happened, how I see what happened. Mm-hmm. . And then you respond by saying exactly what I said. So if I say two plus two equals eight, you say two, Suzanne said two plus two equals eight.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: You do not change what? , then you talk and say what you think happened and I again repeat it. And if you say, nine plus nine is one, I have to say nine plus nine is one. And then the person that’s helping us says, do either of you have a solution? And we look to see if there is a solution. Put, uh, put out there and we discuss it.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: But what’s happened is each person has really heard what the other person experienced. And for many, and for a large majority of the, what would we call them more? Just they were mean and they were unkind, et cetera. It’s easy to get the apology. It’s easy to. Sure the next time you can, play with me and tag it.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: It resolves a lot of the easier things. Relatively quickly, the more complicated kinds of things. It brings to the foreground the need for further discussion and some kind of plan of action to further that discussion. 

Kristina Supler: So it sounds as though you’re saying that the, what you’ve called mediation is really appropriate for children of all.

Kristina Supler: It. It works quite well with the younger kids. Is that fair? 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Well, actually, I could take it a step further. It works really well between parents and kids. 

Susan Stone: Oh, I love that. To really say, okay. To repeat back what you’re hearing and that, and also to make sure you’re framing the issue correctly. Yes. That’s great.

Kristina Supler: I like it. I like it. 

Susan Stone: So when students do suffer, A tragedy, and Lord knows the world does not lack tragedy, even if it’s from, God forbid, the loss of a parent, any type of death including. We, we have heard in the community this year there were a number of young adults who died from fentanyl overdoses.

Susan Stone: So we know that really serious things are happening and you have those remaining siblings, or even divorce. 

Kristina Supler: These are all, it’s a major trauma for children. 

Susan Stone: Yeah. Really major trauma.

Susan Stone: At what point do you say grieving is good? , but there’s gotta be some sort of, not to get all lawyerly with you, statute of limitations on the grieving or 

Kristina Supler: basically life goes on, you gotta move forward. 

Susan Stone: How do you do that? 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Okay. Well, so ladies, there isn’t a statute of limitations on grieving. 

Kristina Supler: You c old callous lawyer, you

Kristina Supler: The psychologist says wrong . 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: That’s why she’s here. When there is ladies.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: how are you gonna manage it so that it doesn’t, and it’s, it’s interesting cuz you asked this, when you say our topic is resilience, okay, how do you manage it in a way that still allows you to move forward? But you can have, I, I lost a parent as a child, particularly 20 years ago. And. You still can see a movie.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Okay, we’ll make it simple and it re brings up and taps into play that, that grief and that’s okay. You cried, but then you still were able to pull yourself together and, go out and have some ice cream and share what it was, and, and vocalize that it reminded you of your own situation that you’ve become comfortable with.

Susan Stone: What I have done with my own children is insist that we all have to move forward, but also allow for space for them to talk about the past whenever they need to. I know the three of my children, and, and I’m not just sharing, but I will share with my reader, Suzanne has been incredible for my family.

Susan Stone: There’s a way to. , incorporate it into your life. And that’s the word I would use, that it’s okay at dinner if they wanna bring something up or, acknowledge where I, as a parent could have helped them navigate better and, and I use those opportunities to apologize and say, you know, you’re right. I wish that I could have handled that better.

Susan Stone: In hindsight, I wish I would’ve had the strength or the resilience. , I’m, I am happy you’re bringing it up now, but we still at the same time are moving on and have moved on. You 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: can move on at the same time that you can continue conversations, but you just brought up a really important thing, which I have to underscore, never underestimate how much it means to a.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: To apologize. It means so much that you’ve owned your behavior. We ask them all the time to own their behavior, and it means the world to kids when parents own their behavior. 

Kristina Supler: That’s a really, really powerful point, I think, for our listeners to keep in mind. So thank you for sharing that. Yeah, and it it just, this idea of loss.

Kristina Supler: Death, divorce, illness, you name it. The, the struggles in life. How o how honest should parents be with children about the bad stuff in life? About the fact that life isn’t always fair, the good guy doesn’t always win. Maybe you worked really, really hard and still failed the test. You know, how, how should parents handle basically the injustices of life when talking to their children?

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Okay. I think parents need to be honest with their children. Kids hear and know far more than parents ever give them credit for. However, we need to do this in a developmentally sound way, so how we share. With our little six year old is different than how we share with our 16 year old. They don’t have the same cognitive abilities to, to understand things.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: And that would be in terms of both the world and what’s happened or something in the family that’s happened. And then we wanna encourage questions. A, a good way to kind of think about it is kids talk about. And we, ask us questions about sex, and parents have become increasingly comfortable of adjusting those conversations to developmentally where they are.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: There are other really serious topics that they also need to do the same kind of adjustment, but they need to be honest. Now, another phrase that is helpful with kids. Is full disclosure is not always required. So I’ll give an example. A mother goes for her mammogram and gets that horrible call that she needs another mammogram.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Okay? We all know as women, this puts us into a real tailspin scary time. 

Susan Stone: Oh my gosh. Uh, I, yes. 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Okay. The mother. does not need to share with her children. Oh my God, I think I have cancer. Nobody said you have cancer. You have simply been told you need to have another mammogram. You wanna to say, I, you know, I’m gonna have more tests.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Fine, but you don’t need to go to the nth degree cause we don’t have that information. Okay. You find out that the story is not a good one. You need to think about, and that gets into a whole complicated thing, how to explain that, which we don’t need to go to, but you, your kids do need to know, and they do need to know that you’re gonna have treatments, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: And answering your questions. You’re doing 

Susan Stone: a great job. But I, you know, let’s shift, and this is a timely topic. of Covid because I’m assuming we’re gonna head into the winter months. I don’t know when this podcast is gonna get played. And everybody has either had it or knows someone and everybody has it in a different way.

Susan Stone: Mm-hmm. , can you give a little piece of advice on what is the healthy way to talk about. Covid. I mean, what I’ve been saying to my family is we’ll deal with it, whatever it looks like. And right now, gosh, one out of three of my kids had it. I had it. But you know, it was tough. I will tell you my own covid experience, it was really rough and I.

Susan Stone: Double vaxxed and double boosted, but oh, it was a bear. 

Kristina Supler: Well, and now on the news, all the reports are showing that particularly among children, COVID, R S V, respiratory illnesses are on the rise, and pediatric hospitalizations have skyrocketed and the healthcare system is getting bogged down again. And so, I mean, scary stuff, not that we have to go into all those details with our kids necessarily, but be honest.

Kristina Supler: Be developmentally appropriate. So what are your thoughts on how to still discuss the lingering. 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: medical crisis. And so, so last night my youngest granddaughter is actually ill, and she said, do I have r sv? Well, wow, we don’t. She’s is going to go to the doctor today. She doesn’t have covid. And then she says, and this is important, she says, Alexa, is there a treatment for rsv?

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Wow. . Okay. Okay. Technology. So we need, we need to realize that they have access to many resources that we don’t think about. . Okay. Oh, Alexa. So true. And so the, the an in how to approach it, it is, I think first there’s so many pieces to this, and the first is to say, in our family, we have done the following.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: In our family, everybody’s vaccinated, and that helps. Now, if you’re in a non-vaccinated family, you need to explain why you think that’s a good idea. . It’s to say we have good healthcare. We have people that will help us to navigate it. And it’s to say we’re gonna deal with what happens.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: We see, you know, with Covid the spectrum of how people experience it is vast. And just because you test positive, you might actually feel reasonably. We need to wait to see and then we’ll make, and then we’ll make a plan. I think that we’ve learned a lot of positive things actually, which I know sounds weird but I think that people are more sensitive to not being in public when they’re.

Kristina Supler: I totally agree. I think, yeah. I think in the workplace, employees are, are, we’re all more sensitive to that. Like, if you don’t feel good, stay home. 

Susan Stone: Yeah. And we’re set up for it now. Mm-hmm. 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: and, and I think it’s in, it’s, I guess the most important message to a parent in terms of dealing with any of this is checking their own anxiety.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Okay. And being sure that they’re representing being calm and that you have healthcare professionals out there that’ll help you. And that it’s, you know, we’ve learned a lot and it’s going to be okay. You’re gonna figure it out and and reach out to the people that can help you. Is there 

Susan Stone: any question that we haven’t touched on today that you think is important for you to tell our listeners about the topic of resilience.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: One more topic, one more thought. Please. I think it’s an opportunity for you to model resilience. Kids like to see that grownups can handle what they have and it, they don’t need to know about every crisis that ever happens, but giving examples of how you’ve handled things and modeling resilience really gives away for children to learn how to be resilient.

Susan Stone: When you say modeling, do you. just talking about it or just like sharing our own problems with our children and in how we worked through it,

Kristina Supler: And it’s a great follow up question, Susan. what do you mean by modeling Dr. Schneps? 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Okay. I don’t mean sharing things that are gonna make them anxious. O okay. Okay.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: But I’ll give a made up example. I think the kids like to know what’s going on in our lives and, you know, you had a boss or have and the. The boss really, read you the riot act about what you did. And it, sharing with them, I didn’t do a good job on that report.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: It made me feel awful. And then what I decided to do was rewrite it and I decided to. Asked one of my coworkers to look at it, and then I, returned it back in and got rave reviews, modeling, showing what you did to solve the problem and that you didn’t cave and, put yourself to bed for five days because somebody said you didn’t write a good report.

Susan Stone: Or how about when you just failed at something and you say, huh, I did fail at that. I didn’t get a good report. But life went on. Is that, Because we do fail. 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Well, yes, I’m though I’m sure that you win 99.9% of your cases, always, always never lost that this didn’t go your way and to share with them that you felt really disappointed.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: You, you talk back and forth to each other. You tried to see if there was anything you could have done differently. You really didn’t think there was, and you were really sad. And, you, you realize that in what you do, you cannot win every single case. The same way that when your children apply to college in today’s world, they may or may not get accepted.

Kristina Supler: Or maybe you’re not gonna go to Harvard and that’s okay. You’ll go elsewhere, right? 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Mm-hmm. . But you can be really, really, really disappointed. Mm-hmm. that you didn’t get into Harvard, it was your life. and it’s okay to be upset, but then you have to figure out which one of the many other opportunities works for you.

Kristina Supler: Well, Dr. Schneps, this has really been a, a joy to speak with you and pick your brain and talk through these parenting issues that I think that we’ve all experienced it at some point in time and many of our listeners are currently working through, or, issues around the horizon. So thank you so much for your time today and sharing your.

Kristina Supler: your tips and your feedback and, and really practical advice for families, working through issues and trying to do the best 

Susan Stone: they can. I was gonna say, Cleveland is really lucky to have you as one of our mental health resources, so yay us. Right? 

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Yes. Well, and thank the two of you for having me, and people are lucky to be able to work with the two of you as well.

Dr. Suzanne Schneps: Thank you. Very kind. Oh, thanks. Very kind.