One week before parents gathered in the "Oprah's Lifeclass" Social Lab to discuss and find solutions to their all-too-common parenting issues, "Lifeclass" guest Dr. Shefali Tsabary invited a group of children between the ages of 11 and 17 to come together and share some parenting ideas of their own.
The clinical psychologist and parenting author encouraged the children to speak from the heart about their parents, what they're doing that works and what hurts. "If there was a couple things you could tell your parents today about... how to be a better parent to you, what would you say?" Dr. Shefali asks the group.
Eleven-year-old Casserly speaks up. "Sometimes, when I feel pressure, I'll talk to my mom about it," she says. "I don't really need her to always go into working mode of how you can solve things and fix things."
It's a parent's natural instinct to help solve a child's problems or fix their mistakes, but Casserly isn't looking for this type of reaction. "Sometimes, I just need a hug," she says simply. "Or support. Saying, 'It's okay,' and, 'I know that was a little mistake of yours and it's fine.' That's what I really need to hear instead of getting lectured."
When Casserly's parents watch a video of their daughter's response, they agree with what she's saying.
"I think she's right on," mom Rita says.
The difficulty, she explains, is that Rita and Casserly approach things in a fundamentally different way. "She's a verbal child, so she does express herself. I tend to be a 'doer,'" Rita says. "So, it's not a surprise [to hear her say what she did]."