How Parents Can Help with the Emotional Challenges of Transitioning

School transitions can be pretty tough for kids – and as a mom you want to help ease them through it – but how?

Parents can help with the emotional challenges of transitioning, but sometimes it’s hard to know how to help. Here are some tips on how you can help your kids make those important transitions.

Preschool to Kindergarten

Here may be one of the first big transitions in your child’s life. The emotional challenges of this age involve separation anxiety and social readiness (or unreadiness). Here are some tips.

* Tour the school with your child over the summer before he or she begins kindergarten. Familiarizing her with the teacher, classrooms, playground, and overall layout of the school will help a lot.

* Understand her feelings, say experts. Parents may get impatient with separation anxiety and tears, but if you’re going to support your child, it’s a good idea to understand where she’s coming from. Talk about how she feels, and help her put words to the feelings (that can be hard at this age). This helps her identify the feelings which may make them less scary.

Grade School to Middle School

This can be a big one. It’s an emotional age at this point, so parents would do well to prepare themselves. Some of these tips may help.

* Understanding feelings is important at this age, too, but it’s not the same as going from preschool to grade school. Obviously, your child doesn’t need words to identify what he’s feeling. As a parent, you can help by recognizing the priority shift your child will have. His emotions are more focused on peers and the opposite sex than they were in grade school.

* Asking questions without judgment can help parents connect emotionally with their kids during transitional challenges. Try to find out what your child’s concerns, fears, and apprehensions are, as well as the things he is looking forward to and is excited about.

Middle School to High School

Kids start feeling independent and “grown up” about this time. Here are some tips on dealing with this transition.

* Help them solve their own problems. At this point, calling the school for every complaint may not help your child. The transition may be smoother if you can offer some problem solving skills and strategies to help your child help herself. This is an opportunity to help your child come up with a plan to help solve the issues at hand.

* Go to orientation if it’s offered. If it’s not, tour the school. Find teachers and advisors who can talk to your student about her fears and concerns, which will help alleviate some of those concerns. Many times, kids fear high school for reasons that really aren’t realistic.

High School to College

Sending your child off to college is a big step! How can parents help their increasingly-independent child with this transition? Here are some tips.

* Validate your child’s feelings about this big change. It may be tempting to blow off their problems – they don’t have “real problems” grown-ups may think – but remember your college-aged kids don’t have the life experience and frame of reference that you do. Being patient with their concerns can help make their transition smoother. Let them vent!

* Keep in touch with care packages and special gifts at key times (like final exams or his birthday). This helps support them more than you may know!


Your Questions About How To Pay Off Mortgage Quicker

Joseph asks…

How do you get out of a mortgage when the other won’t sell and can’t assume the loan because of bad credit?

The mortgage is about 5 years old on a house I part own in Colorado. I’ve been trying to get off the title and mortgage but my ex-fiance seems to blow me off each time. I don’t care about the money I just want out he can have the house. I’ve told him several times but I guess he does not qualify for an assumption. Now what? I’ve told him over and over again I don’t want to take this to court….but it may be my only option. My credit is getting hit hard because he pays the mortgage late, a lot. I can’t afford the house after a career change. He’s been paying by himself for years. I told him I want to sell it or just get me off the mortgage. Quick Claim will get me off the Title but not off the mortgage! The mortgage is what is affecting me credit score. It’s a fairly new ranch style home in golf course community big corner lot….it will sell if he’d let it. Please help no one seems to have any answers! I’ve more then paid for my mistake of going in on a house and being naive!
Thank you for everyones suggestions. I’m very stressed about this. I’m the co he is the primary. Also he has been late paying the mortgage twice (in a row recently)by 30 days. I found out by my credit report… he never informed me he was having problems coming up with the mortgage. I would have paid if I would have known to keep my credit at good standing. Also it’s a 30 yr.

richmama answers:


Sharon asks…

How can I fix this mortgage problem with my home’s title?

I’m trying to sell my home, but it seems an unexpected mortgage comes up on the title check. That mortgage has been paid off over 10 years ago, and I haven’t been paying any mortgage since then. The mortgage company that held the mortgage has been sold and bought numerous times by other companies and I’m having trouble trying to get verification for the buyers that the mortgage has been paid. I need to do this quick so the buyers don’t back out. What can I do?

richmama answers:

In the quickest scenario you will need to find some kind of proof relating to the pay off of the mortage regardless of what it is and then record an affidavit stating that the attached proof represents the pay off and describing all of the recording information regarding the mortgage. You really should get a real estate attorney to quickly help you. The title company can also assist you in the needed research showing who bought and or was supposed to service your original mortgage. The lender who gave you the money should have all that information as a starting point.
To get legal help go here:
American Bar Association: or
Buena Suerte

William asks…

Is it possible to payoff your home mortgage with a home equity line of credit?

My loan is for 30 years 75K. I was told that you can pay it off alot quicker with a line of credit. Has anyone on here done it and how?
I didn’t think it was possible or financially beneficial. I’ll stick to my 300 extra towards principle every month.

richmama answers:

Sorry but no one here knows what they are talking about.
Here is how it works. You have a heloc for 75K at say 4% interest only with a payment of $250.00 per month. Now lets say you have a rate of 6% right now which gives you a payment of $450 per month. You save $200 per month and add to the extra $300 per month that you are sending in to your principle.
Here is the break down.
On your current loan(using the numbers above) if you continue to pay the $300 extra per month, your loan will be paid off in 140 months (11.66 years) with a total of $29,252.87 paid in interest.
If you take the savings of $200 per month and add that to the extra $300 for a total of $500 and send that in as extra to the principle on a heloc, you will pay off the loan in 123 months(10.25 years) and pay $16,383.83 in interest.
The reason this works is because an interest only loan is the only mortgage that will recast (re-amortize) when an extra payment is made to the principle. This means that every time you pay on the principle the following month you interest charges are based on the new lower loan amount.

Richard asks…

How can my husband and I make some quick dough?

My husband and I are 30 000 in debt with our loans. We’d like to pay them off quicker, without using the money we currently work for so we can enjoy life a little more. Anyone know how to make quick money legally?? I’ve thought of flipping houses but Im not sure we can get a mortgage at this point.

richmama answers:

There is nothing like quick money on internet. If you believe you can make money quick then you are a possible victim to scams. There are many scams. But, You can make money here. There are simply too many opportunities and sky is the limit when it comes to the earning potential. You have to learn and find time to set it up and get it running. You hard work will eventually get you through.

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Your Questions About Kids Reading To Dogs

Donald asks…

Kids and dogs…..long please read. Thanks!?

Ok, so ever since I’ve joined YA I have noticed A LOT of kids coming on here and asking for ways to convince their parents to get them a dog. (I don’t answer these questions because they just infuriate me to no end!!) Here is why.
First, I want to say that millions of dogs each year get put into shelters because of these reasons:
1. Kids didn’t know how to properly treat or respect a dog so the dog bit them or showed aggressiveness toward them.
2. The novelty of a dog wore off so now they completely ignore it and the parents unwillingly take over and eventually dump the dog.
3.Owning a dog is a huge responsibility, more so than any kid will EVER realize, and when they can’t handle more than feeding and taking the dog out they suddenly don’t want a dog anymore.
4.Children in elementary school and younger tend to not understand that a dog is not a giant toy and that’s when disaster strikes.
5.Many kids have the perfect vision of a “dream dog” ex. A cute, white, tiny, fluffy, oh so adorable, loving, well behaved dog and when they finally get a dog that doesn’t quite fit that “dream” owning a dog to them just becomes a nuisance .
6.Parents are MAJOR causes of this too. They should NEVER get their kids a dog just because they’re fed up with their screaming, crying, begging, whining and not stop talk of dogs. But some of them do anyway. And what makes some parents think that they NEED to get a dog for their two year old? I’ve seen questions like “What is a good dog for my almost three year old?” Now that’s just ridiculous!
7.Or it can be ALL of the above.

I’m tired of these kids saying that they have the money to pay for a dog! Good for you if you miraculously saved up the money to buy a dog but you have to be a well informed, mature, (Which means you DO NOT come on here and beg strangers to help you convince your parents to get you a dog. That’s being IMMATURE.) responsible, intelligent person.

I’ve seen questions asked by kids who already HAVE a dog and now they want ANOTHER one! Shouldn’t you be grateful that you even got a dog in the first place?

What are everyone else’s opinions? What do you think will stop this trend? Do you think having kids be REQUIRED to take classes in school EVERY DAY on how to treat animals of ANY KIND will help?

If any kids read this, PLEASE reconsider and do NOT get a dog!!! You will be responsible for just ANOTHER helpless dog that gets dumped in a shelter!

Obviously, I can’t change the world. But if I can change one person from maybe getting a dog when they shouldn’t, then that is a step in the right direction.

No fighting or rude answers please. Best answer will be chosen.
ADD: Wow, some of you have some really good answers!

Derrick, I love the pet rat idea! I never would have thought of that!
ko ko and ? I don’t mind that you have or want dogs. I don’t want to discourage kids or teens that are mature and responsible and are huge animal lovers to not want a dog! I just want the other big majority of kids and teens that WANT a dog but really SHOULD NOT get a dog to rethink their decisions.

richmama answers:

I agree

The people who want to get puppies for their toddlers is expecially frustrating. Toddlers dont understand that pets have feelings and needs.. Toddlers can be quite selfish little brats- not necessarily to any fault of the parent, its just part of how kids grow and develop.. They become self aware first before they realize that others have wants and needs too. Dogs are NOT living stuffed animals!

NO parent should get their kid a pet, unless the parent is prepared to take on the responsability of caring for the pet when the child looses interest.

Lizzie asks…

Are Boxer dogs good with kids? Read for details below.?

Well,my sister birthday is coming up and she wants a boxer.I wanted to know.Are they good dogs and playful? Are they loud?Please give me alot information about boxer’s! Best answer will receive 10 extra points! Please help!
Yea we were getting the boxer before my sister was gonna have a birthday but it got delayed cause of my dad’s trip.So yea.

richmama answers:

My dog is a boxer-mix. It’s not to body of a boxer and pretty much the same behavior. I remember looking boxers up when we first got him at the library. They’re really friendly dogs (for the most part, just like people there’s always an odd one out). But they’re jumpers. They need plenty of space to run around, so they’re not good for small backyards and if you plan on keeping the dog fenced but not tied it needs to be a high fence because they’ll clear it. They can sometimes be overly friendly (jumping up on people) but overall, they’re generally good-natured dogs.

I suggest doing an internet search for specifics, if you’re really concerned. But basically just be careful when you attain the puppy, make sure it’s not already mean, but good spirited and not overly shy because they can come off as violent towards loud noises and aggressive to active children.

Michael asks…

Dogs that are good with kids, other dogs, and cats – read details?

We have a boston terrier

People: Male dad, female mom, 12 year old boy,15 year old boy, 10 year old sister, 3 year old girl.

Dog thats good with kids, cats, and other dogs (please don’t say boston terrier. And won’t leave the yard

EXTRAS: Active, good guard dogs, easy to train

richmama answers:

I would say Pit Bull but you want one easy to train so. I would recommend a Boxer. A very loyal dog great with families and good guard dog also fairly easy to train.

John asks…

To All Australian Shepherd Owners: Are these dogs good with kids?

I want to own a dog, I do have 3 cats and two ferrets, and I do have time to keep up with an Aussie.

I want to be active, at least go jogging with this dog for 1-2 hours. I live in Massachusetts.

However I want to use my dog as some kind of motivator to children in church. Like have the kids read him/her a book. Yes, I do intend on taking my dog to church with me, and use him/her for the glory of God. I’ve seen some dogs used for this, and I want my pup to take part.

I am a stay home wife, and I have no children and I don’t plan on having one soon. My husband is an active person, and I do want an active dog, because he/she will fit our lifestyle. And I do not want a small dog

I was thinking of a pitbull, because I know they are good with children. Another breed I was thinking was the rough collie, knowing they are great.

Any concerns I should have? 10 pts for best answer.

richmama answers:

All three breeds are typically good with kids.

The only down side of the aussie and collie is the amount of shedding they do. Not sure how bad Apbts are for that. My aussie was poorly bred (BYB, sister got her and then dumped Lady on me) but she was great with kids.

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Your Questions About Lower Debt To Income Ratio

Mandy asks…

Will a low income to debt ratio get me a better rate and/or lower mortgage payment?

richmama answers:

No it needs to be a lower debt to income ratio not the other way around, if you have a lot of debt and very little income then getting approved will be the key here.

Depending on your credit score will depend on your lower rate, anything right now over a 740 will get you no points and a better interest rate.

Joseph asks…

To lower my debt to income ratio?

should i pay off a low limit credit card or make a payment on a high limit card. like pay off a whole credit card with $2000 or pay $2000 towards a $5000 card

richmama answers:

Your debt to income ratio will be the same after you pay the $2000 towards your total debt.
Great that you are reducing your debt by $2000… But how you slice it up doesn’t change the outcome.

But… To pay off a maxed out account versus one that still has credit available is better for your credit score.

Pay off the card that is maxed out and see your score recover. If the cards are not maxed out then try to bring both balances towards the 30% of your credit limit line. That will also improve your score.

Chris asks…

How does a person calculate their debt to income ratio?

So here’s the deal. I applied for a home loan and was denied because of debt to income ratio. The confusing part for me is that my rent is more than the monthly calculated payment. I have a high credit score (almost 750), and 2 vehicle pymts. I suppose the real ? is how do I lower my ratio so as to qualify for the mortgage loan. any ideas would be appreciated.

richmama answers:

The number they used was your expected monthly payment (including taxes and insurance) plus your car payments, plus any credit card payments if you carry a balance.
You can pay off one of your cars to improve the ratio, or look for a cheaper house.
Your rent is not relevant.

Thomas asks…

trading in a car for lower payment with high debt to income ratio?

I wanted to know if I would have any problems trading in my car for one with a lower monthly payment. My payment is $350 now and I would be looking at about $200 payment on a different car. If I have high debt to income ratio, will I have a problem getting a loan? or will they consider the reduction in payment when approving the loan?
I am just starting to look into this, and I have not talked to a financial institution yet. I was hoping that someone could tell me in general if you are trading in a car with a payment, if they do not count that payment against your debt to income ratio.

richmama answers:

You are over-analyzing this too much. Go to a dealership and find out. No one here can answer that question for you. WAAAAAY too many factors involved.

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