Teaching Our Kids How to Interact

To say my grandfather was a people person wouldn’t be nearly sufficient enough. He was a people freak. He was one of the few people I knew who could turn a 10-minute Walmart run into a 2-hour event. Being a restless young boy (around 5), there were times when this was irritating—especially when his talking didn’t fit into my agenda of “fun” things to do. I didn’t know back then just how valuable watching, listening, and participating in these dialogues would become later in life. Before we took off to wherever we were going Grandpa would say, “Now honey, if I introduce you to somebody, I want you to shake their hand, look them in the eye, and tell them your name and that you’re glad to meet them.” I did what he asked and at an early age was able to interact with adults to such a degree it impressed them.

Fast-forward 25 years: most kids are “two-thumbing” their way through life on mobile devices and video games,...

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Parental Influence and Friends

Those who have read our book know what a raging alcoholic mess I was as a teen. After landing in major legal trouble induced by drunken stupidity, which nearly ruined my life, I continued to drink. Even after my father, a busy PhD student, rescued me from teen suicide, allowing me to come live with him, I STILL invited alcohol into my life. Most people likely think my face planting at the bottom of the miserable, sorry hell hole I’d dug for myself would’ve been enough of a wakeup call for even the most incompetent members of society. Sadly, it wasn’t for me.

What I wanted most in my early 20’s were relationships and connections. I didn’t want to be attending a notorious party school while sitting at home on the weekends alone. How would that have been fun? So, I went along with the crowd down paths of least resistance and, overtime, found myself feeling empty, back in the same miserable crap hole from which my father initially rescued me. It...

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