Lauren Forcella

Wishes for the world 2014

Dear Readers: From tiny acorns grow mighty oaks. The dreams of the young are the seeds of the future. It’s my honor to present these youthful voices, each one striving to m ...

The pesky holiday problem of drunken parents

Dear Straight Talk: My sister and I dread, rather than enjoy, family gatherings. Political and religious arguments ruin them, especially when the adults have too much to drink, a ...

Yikes, I’m spending Christmas with my boyfriend – and his teenagers

Dear Straight Talk: I’m going to my boyfriend’s house for the special day of Christmas. His boy, 15, and girl, 13, will be there. We’ve been together nine mon ...

Young people sound off on their top gifts

Dear Straight Talk: I enjoy hitting the mark with holiday gifts. I have three teenage grandchildren and two in their 20s. Please advise as to top gifts. Also, do kids read books ...

Family gatherings an opportunity for inter-gen bonding and support

Dear Straight Talk: I’m hosting several sets of parents, grandparents, teenagers and college students for Thanksgiving. The young people tend to divide off, many staring in ...

Panelist shares about healing from child sexual abuse

Dear Readers: Child sexual abuse affects one-in-three girls and one-in-seven boys nationally. In 97 percent of the cases, the abuser is a family member or friend. On Sept. 9, we re ...

Thank you for not smoking

Dear Straight Talk: Trying to quit smoking? Forget it! The trick is not starting. Leroy and Dee were heavy smokers who knew this. They told their sons at a young age that they pu ...

Anatomy of the high school party scene

Dear Straight Talk: My daughter, 17, and her friends are getting ready for the big Halloween party, swapping clothes and creating costumes. My problem isn’t the costumes be ...

Depressed male took risks, ended up in jail

Dear Straight Talk: I got engaged at 22 and we have three beautiful children. I fell down the wrong path and my fiancé said she would always be there for me. But when I re ...

No means no, or it’s sexual assault

Dear Straight Talk: Here’s one for your panel. What do they think about Rush Limbaugh’s advice to guys that when a girl says no, it might actually mean yes? Really en ...