sassysage's Blog

Posts Tagged ‘parenting

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  • Comments Off on Sage’s Rage: I’ll be watching Fatherless Daughters on OWN

daddy girl 7-13i admit proudly that i am a daddy’s girl.   i remember as a young girl flying into his arms and he would pick me up and look into my eyes with love.    

i have so many memories of my dad going to my school productions and awards ceremonies.  most of the time, he was the only man around. it’s still a running joke amongst my old friends, how he would pull out his camera and the flash would blind the whole crowd.  there was no doubt in my mind that my dad was supportive of his little girl.  

we would have long discussions about the state of world affairs.  the nerd girl in me would be so excited that i could debate with a grown up.  to this day, i am grateful for him acknowledging my voice.  he is my rock and my hero.    he taught me that men respect and honor women, so his expectations of the guys i would date were super high!  thanks to his disapproving eye, i dodged many bad love matches.  

as i have grown into a woman, i see how similar we are.  he loves people and so do i.  he loves different cultures and i live for new travel adventures.   he loves baking and i’m starting to put a dent in my oven skills:)   i CANNOT imagine my life without him growing up and now.

in my work with girls/young women, i realize there are so many of you living without your fathers.  some of you know who they are, some of you don’t.  some of you act like it doesn’t matter, some of you are clear there’s a hole in your heart.  

i could jot down some psycho jumbo about the wounds of childhood traumas, but the reality is that being without a father has never been my experience. i’m not going to pretend i know what it feels like.  

but there is one thing i know for sure; not having a good relationship with your father is a significant factor in your life.   you gotta take some time to think about it and get some ideas about the best ways to move forward.

that’s why i’m glad Oprah and her tv network OWN has decided to take on the issue and talk to girls/women who do not have fathers in their lives.   i’m looking forward to watching the special discussion about fatherless daughters on OWN tv tomorrow night (July 14th) 9pm (EST).  

i’m also very happy to see she will be airing an amazing documentary by Kobie Brown called From Fatherless to Fatherhood.  i saw a special screening of this film last year.  it is an uplifting showcase of fathers, like mine, who are there for their children.   i hope those stories can be an inspiration to fathers to better their relationship with their daughters. 

let us know what you think…  what does your father mean to you?  do you want to create a better relationship with him? 

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  • Comments Off on Hot Off The Press: Study Finds 90% increase in ADHD among Black girls

solonge adhd 2-13did you know that singer, model, actress Solange Knowles has ADHD?  

according to a recent study she is not alone.  it’s a common misconception that only boys have ADHD.  but the recent study found a 90% increase in ADHD diagnoses among African American girls.  

this was very shocking to me and led me to try to find out why.  check out my recent publication about this issue on  read the article at the link below:, a division of NBC News, is a daily online news site devoted to stories that affect African-American audiences. 

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  • Comments Off on Sage’s Rage: What Parents Can Do When Their Child is Grieving

my blog is normally dedicated to issues for girls and young women.  but this week i want to use it in service to those who may need help in this time of crisis.  this past year, i led a study funded by new york life foundation focused on child experiences with the death of a family member and their treatment/service needs.  i want to use the blog this week to share some of the information we learned and provide resources for those who may need it.

parent grieving child 12-18-12

today’s blog is focused on what parents can do

to help their grieving child

1- make sure to be there for your child. this may sound obvious but many of the families i spoke with mentioned that parents were so overcome with their own grief that they weren’t able to be there for their children. some children even reported that they pretended to be okay because they didn’t want to put extra stress on an already overburdened parent.   it is understandable that parents would be dealing with their own emotions regarding the death.  however, if you recognize that you are overcome with grief, please get professional help from a counselor, clergy or psychologist. your family needs you to be there for them and in order to do that, you have to be well.

2- give equal attention to your children.   this is generally a rule of thumb for parenting overall. but it’s even more important after a serious life event, like the death of a loved one.   every child will be dealing with the grief in different ways. some may seem more adjusted than others but that doesn’t mean they don’t need attention and support.   regardless of whether your children are young or teens, make sure to spend individual time with them talking about the death and their feelings. this rule should still apply in situations where the death impacts only one child and not the other siblings.

3- take it easy. this is the time to let go of trying to juggle everything.   so many of the parents we spoke with mentioned that they were not prepared to deal with all the challenges of the death plus the normal demands of running a household.  there was just too much for them to do.  so it’s important to get support.   ask your family and friends to help with laundry, get someone to cook some meals and freeze them for you, have a close friend watch the kids while you get some ‘me’ time.   try to get extra sleep, eat right and exercise so you can handle the stress associated with the death and your child’s grief.  this time with your family is so precious it’s important not to waste it away on household chores and errands.

Below is a very helpful resource for parents to help them when their child is grieving:

New York Life Foundation brochure with tips, websites and programs for parents 

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  • Comments Off on Hot off the Press: Daddy made my world

i just got off the phone with my dad.  as usual he’s his calm and super cool self.  hearing his voice gives me extra strength i didn’t know i had.  it’s the encouragement of his words and laser sharp knowing that his daughter can do anything.  i have no problem at all stating that i am a daddy’s girl and wear the label proudly.

girls need their fathers.  girls need a male image to look up to. someone who shows them what true “man” love looks like. girls need that yang energy only men can bring to the parenting table.  i grew up with my dad (and mom) and i know it made a difference in how confident i felt and still feel about myself.

i’m sure it’s no surprise to anyone that i’m a pretty independent lady.  i don’t want any man trying to baby me; i have a father for that! but i also know that i like my man’s shoulder to lean on; it’s okay to show him my soft side.  since dad was always there, i know i can count on my honey…

dads make a girl’s world. mine certainly did.  and for that we need to honor our fathers so much more. we should let fathers know how much we appreciate what they have done and continue to do for us.  

which is why i am so inspired by the founders of Ms. Jessie’s hair products, Miko and Titi Branch. they are supporting a new documentary film, From Fatherless to Fatherhood, created by Kobie Brown. Check out the Fatherless to Fatherhood Trailer

this movie is amazing! i left the screening this past weekend so full.  it was really beautiful to see a film with so many fathers talking about the love they have for being a dad.  it was just tear jerking to see that love reflected back in their children’s eyes.  it’s a rarity that fathers get that much play in the media.   i salute Kobie for making a movie that the world needs to see.  

please support, spread the word and check out the dvd. you can host fatherhood parties, organize discussions on fatherhood, gather the kids for movie night!  Visit

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  • Comments Off on Hot off The Press: Reading is FUN-damental

I’ve always loved books.  I’m sure in my past life I was a librarian!  Many people don’t know I have secret collection of children’s books.  One of my favorite things is reading picture books to toddlers, acting out the characters, seeing the joy and excitement in their eyes as we explore the many worlds reading can take you…

I have the pleasure of serving on the Bank Street Children’s Book committee (CBC). Formerly known as the Child Study Association, CBC has been selecting and evaluating trade children’s books for over a century and publishing recommended reading guides.

Reading to children is one of the most important things a parent can do to help encourage in their children academic achievement, creativity, social skills. Plus it’s just plain FUN.   Our committee just released two amazing resources:

Best Children’s Books of the Year

Each year our committee reviews the slate of newly published children’s books and make recommendations for the Best Children’s Books of the year.  The list is compiled by age and is FREE!  Here is our list for 2012!

Read Aloud List

How do parents, grandparents, caregivers, and teachers know which books are the best to read aloud to children?

Look no further, our committee read, reviewed, and annotated the best of the best read alouds to create The Best Books to Read Aloud with Children of All Ages.  A Bank Street College Innova Grant provided funding for marketing and technical conversion of content provided by CBC volunteers.

The Best Books To Read Aloud eBook is for sale for only $2.99 in the following formats:

(Those without an eReader can download a free Amazon Kindle app or a free Barnes & Noble Nook app for computers, tablets, and smart phones.)

To learn more about Bank Street Children’s Book Committee visit

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