Lauren Forcella

Straight Talk: Panelists send 'care package' to empty-nest mom

Dear Straight Talk: My husband and I raised a wonderful son who has recently left for college. I had no idea how bowled over by the “empty nest” syndrome I would be. After ...

Straight Talk: Gay girl fears coming out to intolerant parents

Dear Straight Talk: I haven’t told anyone, but I’m gay. I wish I wasn’t and I’ve tried to change, but nothing works. My parents are very religious and think being gay is ...

Straight Talk: Daughter feels left out by dad

Dear Straight Talk: I’m a 15-year-old girl with a twin brother. I love my father very much but he has little interest in doing things with me. Every weekend he takes my broth ...

Straight Talk: Girl just wants to feel safe

Dear Straight Talk: The abduction and rape of Jaycee Dugard has me terrified when I drive home late after work. How I can feel safe? Even during broad daylight, how do you tell a r ...

Straight Talk: Are Adderall and Ritalin the steroids of studying?

Dear Straight Talk: I’m concerned for friends who buy Adderall and Ritalin at school in order to stay up late studying. One of my friends is on antidepressants and I worry abou ...

Straight Talk: When do parents have the green light to snoop?

Dear Straight Talk: We have two wonderful teenage daughters who give us few problems. However, their e-mail and cell phone accounts are in our names and, without their knowledge, ...

Straight Talk: No matter the flavor, hookah still means tobacco

Dear Straight Talk: My 17-year-old son just left for the hookah bar. He said this is a popular social activity where you sit around outdoors smoking flavored tobacco from a shared ...

Straight Talk: Boy bounced school-to-school, feeling suicidal

Dear Straight Talk: I just picked up my 16-year-old son from a street corner after he was incommunicado for a week. He’s very mixed up, and I need help. Right before freshman y ...

Straight Talk: Former heroin addict speaks

Dear Straight Talk: I am writing to “Desperate in Salinas” (Straight Talk, July 19), the girl who was hiding her heroin-addicted boyfriend in her parent’s basement. I, too, w ...

Straight Talk: Avoid being a flake by breaking up properly

Dear Straight Talk: I’ve been going out with my boyfriend since last September. But recently I’ve met someone at work who I like better and we have been flirting. The problem ...

Straight Talk: Heroin a deadly addiction

Dear Straight Talk: I’ve been hiding my boyfriend in my basement bedroom because his parents kicked him out. What nobody knows is that he is addicted to heroin. We both began smo ...

Straight Talk: Girl frustrated over thong bind

Dear Straight Talk: I’m staying at my dad’s house part of the summer and it’s so lame because he and my step mom are freaking out over my thong underwear. They have actually ...

Straight Talk: Girl piles on pounds

Dear Straight Talk: I’m concerned about my 14-year-old daughter. She is rapidly gaining weight and is now 130 lbs at only 5’1”. She eats obsessively, sometimes hiding food ...

Straight Talk: Panel offers tips for earning money when you’re under 16

Dear Straight Talk: I need to raise $300 for driver training in August so I can get my learner’s permit. I don’t like little kids so baby-sitting is out of the question. Mowi ...

Straight Talk: Web makes porn seem teen norm

Dear Straight Talk: My friend, “Sheryl,” caught her son viewing porn on his computer with some other boys. When she got upset, he told her that everybody watches it and to ch ...