Several years ago, a fellow camp director introduced me to Dr. Tina Payne Bryson, author of many great parenting books (including “The Whole Brained Child” with Dan Siegel).  Tina is witty, caring and an enthusiastic camp mom.


I reached out to her to see what her thoughts were on our odd current circumstances.  

Please let me share two good ones.  

First, she thinks that WAY too many experts are sharing WAY too much advice to parents that never asked them for it.  As a result, she has really limited her output during this crisis.

[Note: I have desperately attempted to avoid falling into this category.  I have strived to share thoughts that I do not see anywhere else and to keep my blogs relatively short.]

Second, she shared a few short videos, the best of which I include here.  In it, she gives great advice on how to message around safety rather than fear.

Before I go, let me share a story that Susie Ma’am remembered after watching this video about “fear messaging”.  

When our 4 kiddos (now 18-23) were very young, Susie Ma’am was attempting to impart good oral hygiene habits.  She showed them how to floss, to brush and to spit.  Apparently at some point, she stressed the importance of not swallowing the toothpaste.

Even at a young age, our kiddos were somewhat data-driven.  “Why not?” they asked.

Reading from the tube, she shared “If more than used for brushing is accidentally swallowed, get medical help or contact a Poison Control Center right away”.  Apparently, she managed to read this in such a way that they could hear the capitalization of “Poison Control Center” in her voice.  

Years later, they confessed an unusual fear of toothpaste.

Yes, our bold children feared Aqua-Fresh and Colgate.

We were Crest-Fallen.

Steve Sir