Parenting Problems

About Children

Help For Your Picky Eater

  • Do you end up preparing three meals every night, and tire of being a short-order cook?
  • Are there endless negotiations over food, and battles have exhausted you?
  • Do you worry about health concerns because your picky eater is so stubborn, and only eats junk?

If so, then you likely know that you share this struggle with millions of parents.  And yet, the situation is almost always easily resolved…with clear guidance and a firm commitment to build healthy patterns of eating.  As a Licensed Psychologist, I have witnessed the most stubborn of picky eaters surrender their habits in just a matter of days.

However, because you are changing a pattern of behavior…the change is not always easy.  In fact, many times you will have to overcome your own personal struggles with false ideas…such as, “I can’t let them go to bed hungry.”  Well…yes you can.  IF…you realize that they are choosing to go to bed hungry after you offered them wonderful, yummy food.  They have to learn from their choices.

If you decide that you will feed them junk food, in response to their refusal to eat healthy food…you set up a pattern where their resistance is actually “fed” and rewarded by you giving in…and letting them eat junk food.  This is a recipe for disaster…no pun intendedJ

Anyway, here’s my quick-start version of what you must to do to start getting a handle on your picky eater.


  1. Adjust your mindset.To expand the foods your child eats, it is essential to let go of the idea that you can (or should) force or demand your kids to eat healthy food.  Please notice my choice of words carefully, as we must drop the idea of “demanding” our children to eat.This is not to say that you relinquish the goal of healthy eating.  We do not.  It simply acknowledges that forcing or demanding your children to eat healthier will not work.
  1. Start out by assertively cleaning out your pantry.Get rid of all the junk food, sodas, potato chips, ice cream, candy bars, etc.  Simply do not have these foods in your house as an option, and instead substitute healthy alternatives…such as an abundance of fruits and vegetables.Many folks want to make these changes slow and easy.  My suggestion is to take the opposite approach.  If it’s junk food…it’s JUNK.  So throw it away.  You really don’t need to read another article, or take another week to talk about it.

    For some, you can be methodical and consistent…and you can take out a food a week.  But for most, that’s just not reality.  One food gets deleted from the pantry, and within a month, another one or two substitutes find their way back ‘home.’


  1. Announce: “I’m no longer the short-order cook.”Now…you must walk your talk.  Prepare healthy meals with a variety of foods.  After you prepare a meal, let the kids know that this is the meal for the evening.  There will be no additions or changes, depending on the preferences of anyone in the family.Yes, I know that sounds radical for many of you who believe your children won’t eat the good stuff you prepare for everyone, but it’s just not true.

    It is true that they will continue to demand that you be their personal on-demand chef…as long as you are willing to do it.


  1. If children complain or resist eating the healthy food, use this very simple formula for communicating with them:”You have a choice.  Eat what’s here…and you will feel good.  Or…don’t eat, complain, pick at your food and you will feel hungry.  You choose.”  Now…just leave them to decide.
  1. If any of your children refuse to eat, simply do not resist or battle with them. Don’t argue with them, and don’t allow them to get alternative food.  Just stick to your guns about the food that is available, and that they are free to walk away hungry.If children complain and pick at their food, do not talk to them during these times WHILE they are complaining.  Instead, engage with someone else at the table, simply ignoring their complaints and criticisms of the food. When your child begins to talk without complaint or begins eating, engage and talk to them freely.
  1. Don’t worry if they go to bed hungry a few nights. All will be okay. They will readily survive an occasional night here and there without an evening meal.Instead, you must trust that the natural learning processes of nature will begin to take hold in the days ahead.  When your children learn that there will be no fights over food, and that no other options are available after a meal, the hunger that they experience eventually becomes a powerful teacher and instructor. They will learn to eat what is offered MOST of the time.  Simply don’t sweat the other times, as they will grow fewer and farther apart.

As a reminder, the guidelines outlined in this article will eliminate and reduce symptoms of picky eating.  If you son or daughter is exhibiting more serious symptoms consistent with a possible eating disorder, it is imperative that you obtain a professional evaluation and possible intervention.

Children Need Clear and Consistent Limits

Limits are important for children because they teach kids what to expect about reality. As they go through the educational system, get jobs, have friendships and romantic relationships, there will always be limits.

Life sets limits on all of us, and learning to live happily and effectively within them is a skill we acquire through our childhood experiences. But many parents are unwilling or unable to set and maintain limits.  Here are a few examples:


Recently, I counseled a single father whose six-year-old son regularly goes to bed between 11:30 p.m. and midnight, falling asleep in front of the TV set with his dad. Dad says, “Ryan just doesn’t want to go to bed, and I can’t stand for him be mad at me.”


Another client complained about the money she was spending on her two children, both in elementary school. She explained that she couldn’t go anywhere without having to stop at Wal-Mart or the mall to buy something for the kids. If she didn’t, they’d “throw a fit.”


Still another recent example comes from an executive mom who works 60 to 70 hours a week, leaving almost all the childcare to an au pair. To lessen her guilt, she does whatever the kids want on weekends.  Now…three years later…Mom says, “My daughter thinks she’s my boss. How did that happen?”


What could you learn from these examples?  Well, perhaps it’s clear to you that kids need limits, and yet, like many parents, you struggle to hold the line on the limits you set.


What might cause you to be reluctant or unable to set and maintain firm limits?

  • Anxiety about repeating your parents’ mistakes, so you overcompensate.
  • Fear that the consequences of your kid’s choices will traumatize them.
  • Afraid that they will be harmed by their upsets.
  • Fear that your kids won’t like you when you stick to your decisions.
  • Guilt about feeling that you haven’t been around enough.
  • Fear (in a divorce) that you’ll lose your connection to your children.
  • Fear of embarrassment over the tantrum you can’t control in public.


Such fear-based parenting decisions will not prepare kids for the reality of life.


There’s a different way. Children need and benefit from limits. It’s not just Dr Cale’s theory here.  This is well documented with lots of research, and we all know…it’s just  “common sense.”


What if kids don’t get experience realistic limits?  They grow up thinking that there are no limits set by society (when there are) and they falsely believe there is no consequence for many of their actions (when there will be).  They also learn dangerously inaccurate expectations, particularly when minimal efforts on their part are rewarded with significant returns.


It can be remarkably seductive to get caught up in the loving responses young kids give to parents when parents soften the limits they have set.  It can make you all warm and fuzzy inside, if you aren’t paying attention.  If you are paying attention, then you see how you have just destroyed the integrity of your word.  When this is repeated over and over…then the real damage begins to unfold as you see that your word is not respected with your kids.


YOU CAN AVOID THIS!  It’s essential to keep your focus on the long-term vision of what you want your children to learn. Make your decisions with that that vision, and your values, clearly in min.  If you abandon that vision to avoid pain or fear, you’re relieving your immediate anxiety rather than making healthy parenting choices.


Is it easier to buy the toy than deal with the tantrum? Yes! Is it easier to let them watch one more TV show than struggle over turning it off? Yes! Is it easier to do those chores yourself than make sure the kids do them? You bet!


All of these are short-term solutions to anxiety and fear…and they produce long-term problems of growing complexity.  It may seem easier in the short term, but in the long term, you’re better off setting limits and sticking to them. If you don’t, there’ll be more trouble down the road.


  • If you say “no” and then give in to a tantrum, your children learn that “no” is simply a signal to have a tantrum. They know they can get what they want.


  • If you say it’s bedtime and then allow them to stay up for another hour because they whine, your words are a signal that it’s time to whine.


  • If your teen keeps calling and asking to stay out another hour, and you repeatedly negotiate, then your words are only a signal for negotiation. Eventually, your words demand no respect.


Bottom line:  For your kids to learn about reality, you must set limits for them to experience.  For your words to have meaning, you must stick to the limits you set.  Not just on your good days, but every day.


Helping Your Child Feel Good…Even If They Get Rejected.

There will likely be times when your son or daughter gets rejected or excluded.  They don’t get called for a birthday party, or they weren’t picked to be on the sports team, or someone called them an ugly name.  All of these can be hurtful, and your child will benefit from the right kind of support.

For some of you, these moments will be infrequent.  Your child usually fits in.  That’s fortunate.


For others, your children may not be so fortunate.  They may be a bit awkward…maybe a little “geeky”…or perhaps just very shy.   Sometimes it’s just the clothes they wear.  At other times…it’s about a “difference” that makes your child stand out, and other children make fun or ridicule them for it.


But at one time or another, almost everyone will experience getting picked or rejected by their peers.  It’s going to happen.


You can likely see the consequences.  Your child might be moping around a bit.  For some children, they will talk with you about it.  But, for many children, you’ll pick it up from their behavior.  Other than the obvious emotional upset, there are other consequences of such rejection.


Rejection and exclusion reduces self-control.


Some interesting research suggests that kids who feel excluded or rejected demonstrate a loss in the sense of self-control.  In other words, they perceive themselves to have LESS control over their choices that is true.


For example, when feeling excluded and rejected, children tend to initiate less,  they tend to give up easily, and they are more inclined to over eat, or to eat junk food.


What is clear is that being rejected reduces a child’s normal motivation to control their own behaviors.  With lowered motivation for self-control comes more reactivity and more need for “immediate gratification.”  Your child may show less patience, and want it right now!


Parents: You can do something about this! 


The same research suggests a reason to be optimistic and hopeful.  Researchers found that when we are made aware of the change in behavior, corrections can be made.


In other words, this same research suggests that when parents point out the change in behavior by specifically noting that, “Sweetheart, you seem to be giving up too easily on your math and ask me for help when I know you can figure this out.  Try a little harder, and I will check on you in a few minutes.  I know you can do it.”


That type of supportive coaching by parents will help to turn things around for children.


In specific situations where your child has experienced rejection and you see a change, you can simply comment on the change in behavior, and emphasize that, “I know this isn’t easy, but it’s not good that you are letting it stop you from doing your best.  You can do better, if you try.”


You may notice more impulisivity, or that they are eating more, or that they seem more easily frustrated.  That’s where you gently comment on their behavior, and let them know that mom and dad are absolutely confident that they can do it better.  This seems to be remarkably beneficial in these situations, and it’s very simple.


Here are a few more examples:


“John, you keep throwing down your pencil today.  That’s just not like you.  I know

it’s frustrating to not make the team, but I also know that you can do better with your

homework.  Why don’t you take a few minutes off, and then come back and get that

done while keeping your cool.”



“Alicia, that’s the third time that you’ve yelled at your brother today.  I understand your friends were mean to you today, but you can handle this better, and I expect you to do that.  The next time that you lose your temper, you will need to take a timeout.”


Or …

“Stephen, you seem to be eating like a mad man today.  You can slow down, and       finish what you have in your hand…but that’s all.  I know that you are upset about the teasing today, but eating like this will not help.  We can talk about it more if you want, but eating more is not the answer.”


The strategy here is that you comment on their behavior, affirm that it’s okay to be upset, but also insist that they have more control and that they can do better.


Isn’t this simple?  And yet the preliminary research suggests a powerful effect on short-term choices with you children.


Try it out and see if it doesn’t make things better for your kids.  Rejection is a tough experience, and we can all get ‘hooked.’  If your child gets too caught up in the feelings, their behavior will reflect it.  This strategy gives you a tool to help pull them out.  Let me know how it works at


Picky Eating

“End Daily Battles Over Food, Stop Serving ‘Special’ Meals Every Day, And Relieve Your Worries Over Your Child’s Health!”


“The Easy to Follow, Step-By-Step Action Plan To Transform Your Picky Eater
Into A Healthy Eater”

Dear Worried Parent,

Are you tired of losing sleep? Do the worries over your child’s eating? Are you frustrated from cooking special meals every day? Are you just playing exhausted from battles over food? If so, then you will want to read every word of this article. Look, I have been helping parents who are just plain worried sick over their child’s picky eating habits, and the potential health problems that come with it.

Most of these hard-working, exhausted parents struggle, plead, cry and sometimes fight and even scream out loud because their child refuses to eat good, healthy food! It’s enough to make you crazy!

As a Licensed Psychologist working with families for 23 years, I accidentally discovered that there is one UNIQUE STRATEGY that Mom and Dad must master TO QUICKLY ELIMINATE THOSE STRUGGLES AND BATTLES OVER FOOD FROM YOUR HOME.

If you give me the chance, I will show you how to:

check Never have a battle over food…
check Forever end cooking separate meals for your children…
check Make certain that they eat healthy food consistently…
check Get rid of tantrums, crying and all upsets over food…
check Hang up your ’short-order cook’ hat for good…
check End All Your Worries over their unhealthy eating forever!
Even if – you’ve unsuccessfully tried other approaches that worked for a while and then stopped.
Even if – your child’s picky eating is so bad they will refuse to eat at all.
Even if – your son or daughter is unusually strong-willed, stubborn or even diagnosed with some other condition.

This approach has been tested and proven with hundreds and hundreds of children, with all variations of picky eating – from only wanting to eat junk food to not eating much at all.

kidseatinghealthyfoods“Dr Cale,
I attended one of your workshops for parents, and spoke with you about my picky eating child. You gave it to me straight, and it became clear that I needed to do something different.

I ordered your program, and…just as you promised…it was 3 or 4 very tough days… followed by a rapid change to more normal meals.

Within two weeks, the kids were eating typical foods for 5 and 7. Thanks a million! Please tell everyone that it’s worth its weight in gold!”

— Paula, mother of 2 (Manhattan)

Dear Mom or Dad,

Are you ready to pull your hair out because you are fed up with fixing special meals? Are you worried that your child doesn’t eat healthy? My daughter weighed 42 pounds

The common advice doesn’t seem to work, with YOUR CHILD… and you wonder why? You have tried everything (you think). You have negotiated. You have been kind. You have tried to talk it out. You have tried being firm. You have gotten angry. You have gotten frustrated, and you have done the time-out thing! It’s really frustrating… right!

And You Wonder If Something Is Wrong
With Your Son Or Your Daughter?

But guess what. There is nothing wrong with anyone here. When I first started helping other parents who had children who would refuse to eat healthy, I just followed the traditional ways I had learned and used myself. Sometimes this strategy worked, and sometimes it didn’t. Then I tried other approaches I had been taught in graduate school, and again…it was hit or miss… especially with certain children.

Then, I Discovered The Key! It Was Like
A Hidden Secret Ingredient That Made Everything Come Together

I would like to claim some genius ability in pulling this out of all my research and experience, but that is not the case. I really just discovered this solution because I worked with so many families who were struggling, and I had so many chances to learn the ONE ESSENTIAL CHANGE that every parent must make to end fussy eating… regardless of whether your child is 3 or 13!

pickyeaterThis may surprise you: The truth is that most of what causes fussy eating to get worse is the misleading, and inaccurate advice you are given, in magazines, books and yes… even your pediatrician’s office. When you discover how easily you can change these eating habits. You just may want to write a few letters of your own!

Okay, I did say “How easily you can change your child’s eating habits.” Didn’t I? Well, compared to another tantrum over dinner, or another “special meal” you have to make, or any more missed vegetables… this easy to follow, step-by-step action plan will be a walk in the park. Yet, I don’t want to deceive you here… there will be a few tough days ahead… and for a select few of you, you may have a week or so where you have to stick firmly to the action plan.

But the learning is quick, and the change become immediately noticed. Even with the most stubborn and oppositional kids. My system works, and it works quickly. I guarantee it.


First, Let Me Tell You What My Easy-to-Use Action Plan is NOT

  • It does not require any new gadgets, or the idea of a magical tool.
  • It is not some ordinary advice, this works with every child and every personality.
  • It does not require long hours of sessions and counseling.
  • It does not cost a fortune. Not just being the greatest solution for picky eating ever, it’s also the cheapest, costing much less than your lunch out with the family.

Picky Eating Is Not Just A Phase

Important Point: Most Kids Don’t Grow Out Of It.

healthy_cute_girlDo you realize that your child’s picky eating can lead to developmental problems? Or even unhealthy eating habits that can follow them into adolescence and even adulthood?

You have every right to be concerned. Children begin developing their lifelong eating habits at a young age, and it is up to you to make sure you have to tools to stop their picky eating in it’s tracks before it becomes a bigger, more stressful problem.

I’m sure you have heard, “don’t worry, they will grow out of it” or “it’s just a phase”. But this is not something you should take lightly. Your child is growing and developing right now and it is up to you to make sure they eat what you fix for them – instead of just the same thing every day.

I know every parent wants the best for their child, but waiting for them to grow out of it is not an option unless you are willing to risk your child developing unhealthy eating habits or just simply not developing properly.

You Are Not Alone… Because Picky Eating
Has Almost Become An Epidemic

I see it more and more, parents are concerned about their children eating healthy, as they should be. I have worked with thousands of families, guiding them with tools that transform children and create healthier, happier lives.

I see more and more families struggling with not just one, but two or three kids who are very picky eaters.

Like you, these parents want their children to eat healthy. In their efforts to make sure that their children eat, parents give in to demands, tantrums, and stubbornness around picky eating.

Sometimes that means parents just walk away. Sometimes there are arguments over eating habits. Often it means that Mom or Dad becomes the family “short-order cook.” Regardless, the result is a growing trend of children who are becoming picky eaters.

Picky Eating Has Grown Out Of Control Because Well – Intentioned Parents (Just Like You) Have Been Given Bad, Unhealthy Information

Is Your Child A Picky Eater?

Take my quiz to find out if your child really is a picky eater…

  • Has your child ever thanklessly pushed away their plate and said, “I don’t like that” without even trying it?
  • Has your child ever pushed away a healthy meal you thought they would enjoy only to ask for something else less healthy?
  • Do you worry that your child isn’t getting the proper nutrition that they need?
  • Do you worry that your child is developing bad eating habits?
  • Are you concerned that your child only wants to eat chicken nuggets, or mac and cheese, or PB & J sandwiches or their favorite food for every meal?

dr_cale_parents_pschologistIf you answered “Yes” to any of these questions, then you have a picky eater on your hands.

Hi, my name is Dr. Randy Cale and for the past 23 years I have helped thousands of parents, just like you master and overcome the daily struggles that all parents face.

My passion to help parents by using practical, real life strategies that gets real results has lead me to be featured in the Wall Street Journal, on NBC and on Fox News— just to name a few.

I am often referred to as “The Parent’s Psychologist” by pediatricians, teachers and the media… as well as the parents I work with. The reason for this is the fact that I focus (well… let’s call it an obsession) on helping parents master the skills to get you through the daily struggles and challenges we all face.

Why You Should Trust Me To
Help Your Picky Eater

I developed the Help Your Picky Eater formula after I kept running into a ‘brick wall’ with my families who had picky eaters. Over and over, I heard the same struggles, and to be honest…I had lived with a picky eater and I knew these battles personally.

4But in the spirit of openness, let me be clear. I really stumbled upon this formula after seeing how the common advice we get from magazines, books and even the pediatrician fails us…over and over. You have been led down the wrong path. How do I know? Because…the battles just get worse. The worries over health just become more intense. The negotiating just feels more and more ‘wrong.’

And it is…WRONG. It’s wrong that you have been so misled by the news media, and by the popular press about how to handle this. I know this now…because when you are doing things ‘right’— your picky eater will begin eating healthier in just days… and most of your battles and struggles will be over in less than 21 days. From that point forward… smooth sailing. (I guaranteed it…or you get your money back! More about this later.)

Imagine… just two weeks from now… being able to plan your meals with complete peace of mind, as you have surrendered all worry about picky appetites and fussy eaters…

If you’d like to end those useless battles over food, bring peace to your mealtime and have a normal conversation (without mention of food), then this might be the most important letter you’ll ever read.

And Here’s why:

I know you may be skeptical, In fact, I would hope that you are a bit reluctant to believe everything you read here… because I know my results may be hard to believe.

But the ‘Help Your Picky Eater’ is a no-nonsense approach to attacking these daily struggles head-on. You get a specific, step-by-step guide that tells you exactly what to do and what to say. No detail is left out.

There will be no more begging, pleading and negotiating over food when you complete my ‘Help Your Picky Eater’ guide. It’s been proven time and time again. And the best part is you can rest easy knowing that your child will eat exactly what you prepare for them.. without any fighting or complaining.

It’s Time To Get Control Of Your Picky Eater, and Teach Them How To Eat Healthy
(Without Battles & Struggles)!

I feel certain that you want your children eating healthy, and that it’s likely that you have had many conversations about good eating habits and children.

You just need real-life practical strategies and tactics that will guide you step-by-step to discovering the road to ending healthy eating once and for all.

You can turn that picky eater into a healthy eater, with this powerful information aimed at transforming those picky eating habits. Here’s a proven formula that is remarkably easy to implement.

And, unlike the psychobabble you read elsewhere… there’s nothing for you to figure out. You know exactly what to do and when to do it.

I have created a step-by-step guide that has successfully worked with hundreds of families struggling with mealtime battles. This step-by-step guide has been refined with years of clinical experience, and walks you through a simple, but remarkably effective process that you can start today!

If You Have A Picky Eater You Need This Step-by-Step Guide Because?

1. First, I don’t waste your time on theory and conjecture. There is no deep psychobabble explanation of every little step. I keep it simple.
2. Secondly, while I do strive to give you a sense of how things can turn bad at mealtimes. My focus to keep it practical and “user-friendly”.
3. Thirdly, I outline the core mistakes you simply can’t afford to make if you are to get this problem under control. I reveal why most books do not discuss these secrets, and teach you how to avoid those mistakes that can make or break your child’s eating habits.
4. Fourthly, you get a proven formula to get your kids on track to healthy eating. With each step of the step-by-step guide, I will walk you through what you need to do, when to do it, and what to say to your kids.

When It Comes To Picky Eating…
Less Talk Leads To More Action
(Healthier Eating)

In many ways, it’s about the old saying, “less is more.” In other words, when it comes to eating problems with kids, you must become parents of action… not parents of words.

Now the secret is not random or punitive action… it’s action that actually teaches your kids what you want them to learn. In the ‘Help Your Picky Eater’ step-by-step guide, you will discover precisely what actions will predictably teach what you want your kids to learn… that’s how to eat healthy!

Now, I know you’re probably skeptical. That’s normal and beneficial. Let me give you three good reasons why you should keep reading, and consider my step-by-step guide carefully.

Three Reasons You Know My ‘Help Your Picky Eater’ Step-by-Step Guide Is What You Need Right Now…

1. As a Licensed Psychologist and parenting expert, I have helped hundreds of families with picky eaters. Where other approaches have failed, this system works… time and time again!
2. My approach is based upon the proven principles found in the neurosciences research and the literature on behavior management. Why is this important? Because it’s not just some other theory. You can put this strategy to use with the confidence of years of accumulated research and clinical experience.
3. There is nothing wrong with your kids. There is a problem with their habits…but there is nothing wrong with your child. I am not suggesting that the current situation is healthy; but it is fixable… and you do want your children to change their habits, don’t you?

My ‘Help Your Picky Eater’ Step-by-Step Guide Gives You

checkmark2 A clear formula for relief that you can easily follow… so…
You can raise fit, healthy children that will grow into fit and healthy adults.
checkmark2 A simple and practical step-by-step guide for healthy eating has a proven track record… so…
You are not going to waste your time and energy.
checkmark2 A complete solution you can master in less than an hour… so…
You can get started right away… without days or weeks to read a book.
checkmark2 Principles based in the psychology of learning… so…
You begin to get results in a few days… not weeks.
checkmark2 A strategy that will end all useless battles over food… so…
You won’t have to continue to worry if your child is growing and developing properly.
checkmark2 Relief from your constant dancing around food demands and worries… so…
You can have peace of mind that you child isn’t developing unhealthy eating habits.

Parents Are Constantly Sending Letters And Emails Praising The Help Your Picky Eater Step-by-Step Guide

Parents that have used my step-by-step guide find that their home life is much more relaxing. Just read a few of these letters and see for yourself:

“Dr Cale,

My daughter weighed 42 pounds. She was eleven years old. She was the ultimate picky eater.

To be honest, I wasn’t sleeping at night. I was worried sick and seeking therapy for myself…I was a nervous wreck.

I then found Dr Cale. After following the advice in Cure Your Picky Eater, my daughter put on ten pounds within the next thirty days, and picky eating was a thing of the past.

This program saved my child, and our home returned to normal…Thank you Dr Cale!”

— Jennifer’s Mom (Delmar, NY)

“Dr Cale,

I used to fix three meals every night: one for my son, one for my daughter, and one for my husband and me. Those days are gone! This was easier than I ever imagined….”

— Alexandra (Loudonville, NY)

“Dr Cale,

Thank you for the gift – The Picky Eaters solution has been a GOD SEND – and I really mean it!!

We have two boys ages 7 and 12 – their diet consisted of chips, crackers, cookies, pizza, mac and cheese – all the simple sugary carbs you have spoken of. They were very unhealthy and extremely picky. We had fights over food constantly. We trained them to be picky as I now have seen.

BUT GOOD NEWS! After only a few days on your picky eaters solution it all turned around. I couldn’t believe it! What a miracle. We are almost at week 4 now and there are absolutely no more fights over food. They are eating normal meals with us- the SAME thing and I’m not cooking separate meals anymore. There is so much more peace in our home because of this.

I was so afraid to try the program and put it off for months because I figured it would cause tons of tantrums, etc. But finally I got to the end of my ropes and knew it was time to start it. I wish we would have done it sooner.

My younger son is like a totally different kid now. His behavior has turned completely around now that he is not eating all the junk food that we use to have around the house but is now actually eating REAL food. He desires meat now and this is a HUGE turn around.

I don’t ever remember him sitting down to a chicken breast and eating it. I’m ashamed now that I look back at how I let my kids eat and how I was actually causing them to be picky eaters with all the negotiating and fighting I did with them. Thank you so much and I mean this from the bottom of my heart.”

— Heather Harkema, (Loudonville, NY)

Ready To Try The ‘Help Your Picky Eater’
Step-by-Step Guide For Yourself?

Help Your Picky Eater Package
Today for $217.95 Only $37


This is an instant download package

All Major Credit Cards, Paypal and Online Checks Are Accepted.

You can get your children to eat healthy, quit fighting over food and you can have a calmer, more peaceful home – Just like the thousands of satisfied parents who rave about my Help Your Picky Eater step-by-step guide!

You Owe It to Yourself And Your Child
To Help Them With Picky Eating

Eating, canon 1Ds mark III

Eating, canon 1Ds mark III

With an understanding of the lessons I have learned over the years, you can alter the immediate and the long term future for you and your children. Not only do you save your time and energy, by not wasting it with endless theories that only work with some children some of the time. But you get an action plan that includes the key ingredient that I have found essential to success for every picky eater.

While I write this, I know some of you are skeptical and that’s okay. I probably would be too. But I have created a simple, step-by-step action plan that has helped hundreds and hundreds of parents, just like you, finally get peace at their own dinner tables. The ‘Help Your Picky Eater’ step-by-step guide is an easy to follow action plan that will show you the secrets to ending picky eating right now so you and your family can have a better, less stressful, more peaceful life… for only $37!

You see, from my side of things, I know that life can be better. Not next year. Not five years from now. Not after they graduate from high school. But things can be better in just a few days! Why would you keep suffering when relief is so close? I have seen it hundreds of times in working with every type of family, every style of parenting, and every variation of a strong willed or oppositional child. They all get it! Every child gets it. WHEN you get it.

Ready To Try The ‘Help Your Picky Eater’
Step-by-Step Guide For Yourself?

Help Your Picky Eater Package
Today for $217.95 Only $37


This is an instant download package

All Major Credit Cards, Paypal and Online Checks Are Accepted.

Get The Only Proven, Step-By-Step Behavior Guide To Help Your Picky Eater!

5-6 years old boy and plate of cooked vegetables isolated on white

5-6 years old boy and plate of cooked vegetables isolated on white

Help Your Picky Eater step-by-step guide gives you a clear, straight forward game plan that tells you exactly what you need to do and how to do it. No more theory and untested approaches. You get the formula that works time and time again. This plan is different. The results you get will be different… it will transform your home. I promise it, and stand behind your investment.

Look, I want to be very clear with you in your struggle with picky eating. This step-by-step guide brings you a solution that works the wide majority of time. If it doesn’t work for you, you will see that I stand behind this unconditionally. It either works like it has for hundreds of families and you wake up a week or so from now realizing that this was an amazing bargain, or. You let me know it didn’t work for you, and get your money back.

By the way, if you were to consult with me to get this information, it would likely involve 4-6 sessions of family therapy at a cost of $680.00 to $1020.00. You get the advantage of this information that distills years of clinical experience into a simple, practical step-by-step guide with a proven track record. But I’m not charging $1020.00 for this valuable resource. I’m only charging a fraction of that for ‘Help Your Picky Eater’ step-by-step guide. I’m only charging $37.

Why Only $37 Dr Cale?

This is a common question, and I think I would ask that too. Look, my practice is booming and I am as busy in my office as I want to be. I could publish this in a traditional way, but that takes years and years of effort and still. The publisher may not accept it. So here I am, reaching out with a solution that can make a difference for you, and you get it right now…

What Makes My ‘Help Your Picky Eater’ Step-by-Step Guide So Powerful?

1. Don’t continue with a plan that isn’t working. Find one that does…and this is it!
My grandmother always told me, The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and praying that something better would show up. If it ain’t working… do something different!
2. You Can END YOUR WORRIES over poor eating, and say goodbye to all the struggles as well.
I invite you to imagine a home where you rest easily feeling peace and contentment in your child’s healthy eating…and even feeling free of those battles, the yelling, the meltdowns…and then decide if that relief isn’t worth 10 times the cost of this focused step-by-step action plan.
3. In the time it takes to read another semi-worthless website article, you can download this action plan, and be on your way to a happier home.
Please don’t procrastinate, I want to help you. And this action plan will give you the tools to turn your child into healthy eaters.

I often wonder why parents hesitate to take action now… since the benefit of this step-by-step guide will bring daily peace to your home and ensure your child eats a healthy meal… everyday. For less than a couple of movie tickets you get ‘Help Your Picky Eater’ step-by-step guide sent directly to your email, there is no waiting and no shipping cost.

And there’s no risk for you! If you apply the principles in this step-by-step guide, and it doesn’t work for you…just send me an email and you will get your money back!

You Really Get Much More Than Just A Step-by-Step Guide, You Really Get…

checkmark2 Psychologically, you get peace of mind… and relief from the daily battles.
What is it worth to have NO MORE BATTLES?
checkmark2 Physically, you get healthier kids… and an end to rotten eating habits
How much would you give to end your worries?
checkmark2 Practically, you get saved from the enormous drain of being “short-order cook”.
How much is your time worth?
checkmark2 Emotionally, your energy and enthusiasm is no longer squashed by the fears of where these unhealthy patterns of eating could take you and your family?
You begin to get results in a few days… not weeks.
checkmark2 A strategy that will end all useless battles over food… so…
You won’t have to continue to worry if your child is growing and developing properly.
checkmark2 Relief from your constant dancing around food demands and worries… so…
If I could guarantee you a healthy eater… Would you hesitate… or would you Take Action Right Now!

In the ‘Help Your Picky Eater’ step-by-step guide, I provide you with a step-by-step guide to end your picky eating problems. You can transform your home…and bring relief to your family today!

What You Need To Do Right Now

You can end the struggle, frustration, and frustration that picky eating causes. It’s all up to you, if you are ready to discover the secrets then you need to order ‘Help Your Picky Eater’ step-by-step guide today.

You will instantly have access to ‘Help Your Picky Eater’ step-by-step guide that gives you the tools to stop picky eating and get back your life. It’s not like they grow out of it. Unless you show them the way, their picky eating will just continue to get worse.

Order right now and give your child and yourself the life you both deserve…. you really have nothing to lose but the fights over food that is wrecking your sanity…

Here’s what you get with the Help Your Picky Eater Download Package:


In the Help Your Picky Eater Package, you get a downloadble E-book which you can read right away. This is a PDF document you can read on your computer, or print at home. You also get my Picky Eater Guide on mp3 audio program, which you can listen to immediately. In addition, as my gift to you, I have included several bonuses. In fact, I have more bonuses in this offer than any other program package I have put together.

Included is my complete Guide to Healthy Eating and Healthy Living. This is a new program, focused on the core lessons that allow you to gain control over your kitchen, as well as the routines in your home. At the core of this program is a method to help your family get healthy again, without the battles, the worries and the constant sense of failure.

In addition, I have included “Cooking Fast and Cooking Healthy” This is a recipe book, created specifically for Terrific Parenting by a privately commissioned chef. These recipes are both healthy, and easy to prepare. Great tools for making progress.

Finally, I have a research summary, on what we know about picky eating, it’s causes and solutions that work.

Let me break the package down for you:


Instant Download:

Help Your Picky Eater Step-by-Step Guide ($47.00 value)


First, you get Dr Cale’s Help Your Picky Eater step-by-step guide. Dr Cale walks you through every detail to make certain you are ready to get success. From the changes you make in your home, to the message you give to your picky eater, to the way you handle the battles over food, THIS IS THE ONLY STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE that will take you from picky eater to healthy eater in just a matter of weeks.

If you are looking for a bunch of theory, this isn’t it. This is Dr Cale’s practical guidebook that doesn’t waste any time getting you started. You can read through it in an hour or so, and by tomorrow…you will be on your way. This program has been featured in newspapers, TV and applauded by desperate moms and dads across the country.

bullet Ways to talk to your children about divorce
bullet Key lessons for preventing emotional trauma
bullet Guidelines for beginning a co-parenting plan
bullet Essential considerations for custodial arrangements
bullet Specific ways to protect your children and keep them out in the middle
bullet Specific ways to protect your children and keep them out in the middle


Cooking Fast. Cooking Healthy. ($47.00 value… included)


This amazing bonus is all about how the correct recipes are critical to your long term success, and why these recipes fit perfectly with a healthy eating game plan. It’s not about putting sugar-like “sauce” over veggies (although that’s what most people do… making excuses like, “Well, it’s okay to do that just to get them to eat something healthy.”)

Dr Cale commissioned a nutritional expert to hand-select these recipes, and gears them toward the active family who needs healthy meals without flavors that are excessively challenging for the typical picky eater.

You’ll discover:

bullet How to quickly select healthy meals that everyone can eat.
bullet How to prepare meals fast that fit with your picky eating program.
bullet How to simplify you life on those crazy days when you need a simple recipe that’s good for everyone.

Not bad, right? But that’s not all you get! Because I’m also throwing in:



MP3 Download of “Help Your Picky Eater” ($47.00 value… free)


Are you beginning to see how valuable this package is? With this bonus you’ll be able to download and listen to Dr Cale step-by-step guide you through this program.

Learn Better From Listening Than Reading.
Need Repetition and Can Easily Listen Over and Over.
Need Repetition and Can Easily Listen Over and Over.

Imagine how you’d feel if you knew could listen to the program any time, to make sure you have the details right! YOURS FREE when you order Help Your Picky Eater. You are reading this, aren’t you?

Well the good news is, that’s still not all. Because I have another gift for you.



Healthy Eating & Healthy Living ($47.00 value… free)


You don’t know it yet but, at the end of this bonus you’ll know everything about developing healthy routines for the whole family.

Here’s a short list of what this amazing bonus contains:

How to manage ALL aspects of your child’s daily routines, from eating to homework.
How to support an active, healthy lifestyle and do so without being controlling.
How to easily limit unhealthy habits, whether eating, exercise, TV or video.

And actually, there is much more here! This is a brand new program just out of the editing phase, and actually sells for $99.00 on it’s own… and you get it free!



Dr. Cale’s Comprehensive Research Summary On Picky Eating ($29.95 value… included free)


Dr Cale insisted that we add this bonus. Over 25 hours of painstaking research went into this step-by-step guide. This walks you through the current state of the research, what the implications are for your family and lays the foundation for why Dr Cale’s approach works. This is a remarkable step-by-step guide, and it’s also free.

Here’s a brief list of what this science-driven bonus contains:

How to understand the real risks of picky eating.
How to view the role of family dynamics, personality and behavioral conditioning..
Why medication is not the answer, and where to look instead.

And this is only the beginning of what is contained in this step-by-step guide…

Phew… that’s some list of FREE Gifts and bonuses, right? A total of $170.95 in bonuses alone…

The total value is $217.95… Yours today for $37.00.

But I don’t know how long Dr Cale will keep these bonuses up there. It’s part of a marketing test we are doing. They’re worth a lot on their own, but Dr Cale wants to make certain you get remarkable value for your investment.

Key Point: It’s important to know that Dr Cale has many solutions for you as a parent. He is making this remarkable offer, in part, to gain you as a lifetime customer. He believes that your home will be transformed with these products, and that you will return again and again when you have parenting questions. Thus, he is willing to offer all of these solutions in this package to help you decide that this program will turn picky eaters into healthy eaters in your home, and that it’s well worth the investment. (This is a marketing test however, and if this approach doesn’t work, we will stop the promotion.)

And don’t worry, if for any reason you’re not happy with the content, you have a complete guarantee to protect your investment.

Reality Check: This program works, and it works well… but it doesn’t work all the time. I believe it will work for you. But in reality, nothing works for everyone every single time. I know that. With only a minuscule 1.7% return rate however, I know that most parents are remarkably satisfied and happy with my Help Your Picky Eater Step-by-Step Guide.

However, if it doesn’t work for you, no worries my friend. I will gladly refund your monies, and you can keep all of these products for yourself as my gift. I want you to be happy, I want you to be satisfied.


That’s about as fair as it gets, don’t you agree?

And hey, don’t take my word for it on how great this package is. Remember what other parents…just like you…. have to say about it.

You can’t leave this page empty handed, can you? I sure hope not…when an end to your worries is staring you in the face.

For a mere $37.00, you’re getting the answers you need… PLUS MORE. You have our absolute money back guarantee that this will stop picky eating fast… or you get every penny back. Now, you can only get this product from this website… It’s not available in libraries or anywhere else on the net. Just imagine being able to get these answers downloaded to you right away.



Dr. Cale, I’m Ready To Turn Picky Eaters Into Healthy Eaters Today!

  • I understand that if I use your professional, time proven step-by-step action plan, I will have a strategy to turn picky eaters into healthy eaters once and for all…
  • I understand that for only $37 I will be able to download immediately your life changing action plan that will teach me to get rid of picky eating in my home, and…
  • I also understand I am backed by 365-day, 100% NO RISK GUARANTEE.

I also understand this package includes:

INSTANT DOWNLOAD Help Your Picky Eater E-Book
($47.00 value)
INSTANT DOWNLOAD Cooking Fast. Cooking Healthy. ($47.00 value)
INSTANT DOWNLOAD MP3 Download of “Help Your Picky Eater” Session ($47.00 value)
INSTANT DOWNLOAD Healthy Eating & Healthy Living ($47.00 value)
INSTANT DOWNLOAD Dr. Cale’s Comprehensive Research Summary On Picky Eating ($29.95 value)

‘The Help Your Picky Eater’ Step-by-Step Guide
and Free Bonuses for $217.95


Just click here to order now using our secure server



I am hoping that you don’t leave just wishing for something that’s free and easy. Look, I find you usually get what you pay for… right?

I promise you… This is worth paying for. Not only for your personal sanity, and to end the squabbles and fights over food—but to get your child on the path to heathy eating.

If You Knew With Absolute Certainty…

I believe… if you knew with absolute certainty that this program works… you would buy it now! Right? For less that 3-4 picky eater meals…you can be done with it! Good bye picky eating!

How could you not invest in your child’s future health? How could you not risk a few bucks on a solution to bring sanity to your home? Oh… I forgot.

You have no risk. I am taking it all away. You can try it…and if it doesn’t work…you get every penny of your money back. No hassles. No battle.

It’s your call.

Is it time to turn that picky eater into a healthy eater today? I vote yes. Click below to invest in this life changing step-by-step guide, and you will never look back. My solutions have helped thousands of families and Help Your Picky Eater will help you. Invest now…

Either way, I only wish the best for you and your family.



Randy L. Cale, PhD
Licensed Psychologist & Parenting Expert

P.S. Don’t forget, you’re getting $217.95 worth of total product value (including bonuses) for just a fraction of that price. Everything to end that picky eating and get you started in putting one meal of healthy food on the table, and putting an end to the whining, the negotiating, and the battles over food… So if that’s what you want to do, this is the opportunity you’ve been waiting for.

P.P.S. Some of you will not believe that you can really stop you picky eater in their tracks. I understand. If that’s you, I hope you remember that your child will not grow out of this on their own. And fancy recipes with chopped up veggies is not the answer either. You know that. You need a new game plan, this is a proven formula for success… right in front of you. Don’t delay any longer. Click on the “Add to Cart” button, and end your worries now.

P.P.P.S. In my early years, a long, long time ago, my coach often repeated the words of my grandfather: “If it ain’t working… then stop doing it”.

If you have a picky eater.. .then it ‘ain’t workin.’ And it’s time to do something different. Here is a solution which solves your problem. And you take no risk. If it doesn’t work…you get your money back. No questions asked.

In other words, you have everything to gain… and nothing to lose. Now is the time…

Help Your Picky Eater Package
Today for $217.95 Only $37


This is an instant download package

All Major Credit Cards, Paypal and Online Checks Are Accepted.

Reality Talk For Resistant Teens

Let me begin by emphasizing that this article is not about every adolescent.  However, for some of you, you have become quite familiar with the teen I am about to describe.   Let’s imagine you asked the question, “How was your day?”


It seems innocent.  It seems that you are concerned.  There was no tone in your voice.  There is nothing that you are angry about.  Your adolescent appears to be sitting at the table doing nothing.  All appears okay.


Yet the response that you get sounds something like this:


  • “None of your business!”
  • “Leave me alone!”
  • “Why do you keep bothering me?”\
  • “What’s wrong with you?”
  • “UUggghhh!”
  • “Don’t bother me!”
  •  “Why are you always asking me questions?”
  • And so forth….


Of course, with this adolescent, you have probably been through this several hundred times….maybe more!


It doesn’t matter what the time of day.  It doesn’t matter what question you ask.  It doesn’t matter how you ask it.  The more concerned and worried we become about their guarded or resistant responses, the more we tend to press…and the more ugly things seem to get.


The only exception might be in the event that your son or daughter actually WANTS something from you, and then you get a response that sounds more like a human being.  In fact, they can be “sweet as pie” as long as they are getting what they want.  If this is your child, you may have a case of what I call, “The Adolescent Third Degree Burn!”


What is the Adolescent Third Degree Burn?


While not every teenager goes through this phase, certainly many do.  This is a stage of life where every question, inquiry or request is taken as an imposition.  It’s as if you are probing into their personal world with a dagger in your hand.



To understand this metaphor, imagine their self-esteem has been burned…and the boundaries are hypersensitive to any effort to find out “What’s going on in there?”  The more you try to get inside…the more reactive they become!


If you are dealing with this, you are probably aware that most of what you read says that you should just keep asking….and keep asking…and keep asking.


This is wrong.   Why?  Because it doesn’t work for resistant kids!


Does your teen seem to appreciate your repeated worry, concern and efforts to connect?  Do they ever open up to your questioning and probing?


No!  Notice it just keeps pushing your son or daughter further and further away.


Now this doesn’t mean you give up communicating; it just means that you approach “touching” a child who has been “burned” very differently than you might approach others.


What’s the advantage of this metaphor?


First, it prepares you for the reality of trying to communicate with a teen who has landed in this place.  Be prepared for the hypersensitivity, and don’t take it personally. Just hold the awareness that if you probe, it will get ugly!


Secondly, the metaphor of a third degree burn implies that there would be great sensitivity to touch or pressure.  It’s not that you can’t communicate; it’s just that there can’t be an effort to move inside this psychological sphere of energy which is hypersensitive.


You can communicate with your teen.  You just can’t probe…you just can’t inquire…you just can’t push.  If you do, you will get the over reactive and seemingly inhumane treatment that no parent really deserves.


Third, all burns eventually heal, if you stop probing and picking at them!  Thus, the metaphor implies that this is not a lifelong condition.  However, when you stop pushing and probing, the burn begins to heal.


Finally, when you cease efforts to probe into your teenager’s world, you’ll find more opportunities for dialogue and discussion.  How?  Rather than inquiry, we focus on meeting them where they are at.


Meet Your Teen Where They Are At!


How do you do that…you are asking?


First, rather than probing about their day, comment on the day.  Simply state, “It was a beautiful day outside.”   Don’t get hooked by their response.  If it’s positive…keep going.  If not, ignore it.


Secondly, don’t ask questions where you already know or can get the answer.  Instead of asking who won the game, you do a little research and then comment, “I heard you guys won by five points.  Nice job.”


Third, rather than asking about the results of their math quiz, you comment, “I noticed how hard you studied for your Math quiz last night.  I am sure you did your best.”


Finally, try to resonate at their level of emotional investment.  By meeting them where they are at, you actually show respect for their struggle.  While it seems counter-intuitive, I encourage to simply notice the results.  You don’t have to wait weeks or months to see the effect of this strategy.


“But won’t they think that I don’t care?”


No, this is not the case.  The probing approach, with resistant teens, just pushes them away.  You invest more and more energy in the resistant, ugly comments…and you just keep getting more ugly comments.


In this approach, you stop investing in the ugly moments, and you stop being the only one always investing in the relationship.  Because you do this, you give your teenager the chance to begin investing in your family.  Just notice what happens when you try!  And remember, it doesn’t happen over night!  Burns take a while to heal…just be patient for a few weeks.


Showing Respect for a Parent’s Request: Getting Kids to Listen!

Parents are often asking how to get their kids to listen and respect their request to help out or to take care of basic responsibilities.  Many times parents will say,” Why do I have to ask Johnny to pick up his shoes seven times before he will listen to me?  Why can’t he just respect me when I ask him to do something?”


In essence, these parents are asking that their kids listen.  They want to be able to ask their kids once, and have their children respond.


But often children do not respond by honoring a parent’s request.  Some just ignore their mom or dad.  Some say, “I’m busy.  Wait.”  Others may be more defiant, simply stating, “No!”


The end result is often the same, as the child is not listening.  As time goes on, if parents do not develop an effective strategy, the pattern will worsen and parents will end up asking over and over again.  Typically, most parents get very frustrated with kids’ not listening like this, and ultimately it ends up in an ugly, unpleasant exchange.


So what’s the secret to getting respect for a request? 


There are three keys to getting your kids to listen when you ask them to do something.  It doesn’t depend upon their personality, although certainly kids have different personality styles.  Some will respond more rapidly, and others will take a little bit of time.  However, the formula remains the same regardless of your child’s temperament.  Don’t get seduced into believing that you have to dance around your child’s temperament, or you will always be dancing!


  1. You will get respect by offering respect.  Many times parents will fall into a pattern of using very controlling and demanding language with their kids.  It might sound like this:
    1. “Pick that up.”
    2. “Put that away.”
    3. “Get your homework done.”
    4. “Stop hitting your brother.”
    5. “I said STOP THAT NOW!”

      Would you like to be spoken to in that way?  I doubt it.  If you want your kids to respond to a request, make sure that it sounds like a request-and not a command.  If you’re asking them to pick up their toys, make sure that you’re asking.  If you want them to do their homework, ask.  If it’s a time when you need to be more firm, and you have to get out the door, say it like this: “It’s time to get your shoes on, because we have to go to the doctor’s appointment now.”

      Avoid the command, “Get your shoes on now.”  If you fall into that pattern, you likely won’t like what evolves when your child moves into those teenage years.  It can get really ugly when your words come back to haunt you!

      This “asking” will not ensure a success.  It just ensures that you speak to your kids in a manner that models the way that you would like to have them speak to you.

  2. If it’s really important, say it once…and only once.

    Rather than making the request over and over, just say it once. If you are in the habit of asking seven times to get your kids to do something, their brain learns to expect seven requests.

    If you want them to respect the first request, make only one request.  If you end up harping and nagging on them, their brains will begin to expect that.  They actually come to learn that you saying something once only means you will say it again…and again…and again.

    Know that it doesn’t work to repeat your request…if you want respect for your request…unless you want to spend most of your time constantly repeating everything you say just to get every little chore done around the house.

    Bottom line:  Say it once and then…

  3. Rely upon actions to teach respect for your words.

    When you follow words with more words, the value of your words becomes diluted.  If you just keep throwing more and more words out there, your children learn that your words don’t mean anything.  How would you expect your kids to know that you really mean business, if you’re willing to repeat the same request a dozen times?  It just can’t work that way!

    The secret here is to find a consequence (that requires your action) and trust that that consequence will teach your kids to value your words.

    For example, if you want your daughter to cut off the TV and come to dinner, you ask once.  Perhaps you wait five minutes and then you go out to where the TV is, cut it off, and walk out of the room without saying a word.

    Let’s imagine that you’re in the grocery store, and your son starts bugging you for a treat.  You tell him “No” once, and then you go on with your shopping.  If he wants to have an upset, let him have his upset…but your “action” is to walk away from his whining and upset.

    In every situation, you want to remain respectful.  You will never feel bad for maintaining your cool.  State your position once, and then follow with decisive action.


If you follow that simple formula, you’ll see that your requests become honored with increasing consistency.  Just remember however; all of this is a learning process.  Don’t expect perfection immediately.  You have to allow your kids the opportunity to learn, and that may take two to three weeks.  Be patient, and let the respect for your requests build over time.



Teaching Kids About Money

  • How can you teach your children to handle money responsibly?


  • What are the strategies that successful parents use, when teaching their kids about money?


  • Do you pay kids for doing their chores?


  • Should you remove allowances if they are acting poorly?


These are great questions, and ones that parents often ask inquire about.  While your answers may differ from mine, I encourage you to consider the approach outlined below.  My recommendations are based upon years of working with families who have developed successful strategies for dealing with money.


  1. Never buy responsible behavior.

    It is a mistake to pay children for completing basic responsibilities around the house.  If you use allowance as a tool to “purchase behavior,” you always end up purchasing their compliance.  It’s not good.

    Your kids will never learn to “own” their behavior.  You will be purchasing the appearance of responsible behavior.  Instead of this being a signal of responsibility, it is simply a signal that your parenting toolbox is empty, and that you can pay for maid service.  It will not generalize to future patterns.

  2. Commit to a reasonable allowance around 4th to 5th grade…NOT contingent on “good behavior.”

    I strongly encourage you to give the kids an allowance that does not depend on their behavior.  Let them know that they get an allowance because you love them and you want them to learn to take care of their own money.

    Decide on a reasonable amount of spending money for your children, and include monies for treats that you might typically buy them.  For example, if you normally buy the kids some juice when you are getting gas, include that portion in their allowance.  As they get older, include their lunch money in their allowance.  Include some extra spending money, for the small “stuff” they often want and that you pick up for them.

    Let them know that it’s their money to manage each week, and watch them learn from their choices.  Begin early on, to allow children to experience the consequence of good judgment, as well as poor judgment in their use of their money.

  3. Open a checking account for your kids, and teach them to manage it.

    Consider opening a checking account for the kids, and consider putting their allowance in the bank.  Teach them how to get their monies, and when they want to purchase something, they can write a check.

    This is a remarkably practical and powerful way to learn about basic money management.  Set aside time weekly to help your kids balance their checkbook, and to discuss how they might spend their resources.  In today’s world, they will not only learn to balance their checkbook, but also learn to gain access to their records via their computer.

  4. Open a savings or investment account for your children, and teach compound interest.

    When you open the savings account, sit down and show your kids the effect of compound interest.  Make sure you repeat this on a regular basis, and teach them how the bank will pay them to “store” their money there.  If they start saving at an early age, show them how easy it will be to have abundant resources by the time they reach the middle stages of their life.

    As an incentive to their savings program, let them know that you will match every dollar that they put and keep in their savings account, with a dollar from Mom and Dad.  Show them the power of this as they look ahead to the next 10, 20, 30, and even 40 years.  (If you haven’t played with a compound interest calculator, you may want to do this with you children…especially as they move into adolescence.)

  5. Never model impulse buying.

    When you model for children a willingness to buy impulsively, you are teaching them to do the same.  In every arena of life, you simply can’t escape what you model.

    If you want them to make wise purchases, with forethought and consideration about the importance of the purchase, make sure that you model this.

    Remember:  Your kids are always learning.  And you are the primary teacher.

  6. Buy the Book:  Rich Dad, Poor Dad:  What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money. By: Robert T. Kiyosaki.

    Mr. Kiyosaki has written several books under the general title of, “ Rich Dad, Poor Dad.” They are all excellent books.  However, the book written for teaching children about money is an excellent primer on this subject.  It’s a great place to start.


In closing, if you find yourself struggling with how to teach responsible patterns of behavior without paying for it, I encourage you to carefully review the materials on my website, at  The tools of effective parenting are much more powerful than money, and the results are more enduring.  As always, I encourage you to email me with your feedback, at



Sibling Harmony on Vacations: Fantasy or Reality?

Do you find vacations turn into bickering matches, sibling unhappiness and constant negotiation over what to do when?  If so, you can turn this around—with a few simple changes.

How so?  Because you have more leverage on vacations than you often have during more “normal” family time.

Let’s review a few simple ideas that will quickly resolve most major challenges while traveling with your children.  Just notice, most of this begins to teach your kids a critical lesson:  You are becoming parents of action…not excessive words.  That is one of the hidden keys to parenting success.



Here’s my insiders game plan that always works.  Just follow these guidelines, and you will find much more peace in your travels.


  1. Before leaving, explain to the kids that there will be a new ‘rule’ in place throughout the vacation. Explain that this rule will not be altered, or varied in any way, regardless of whether or not they approve or do not approve.


  1. Here’s the rule: “We vacation peacefully, or we stop.”

    Explain the rule like this:  Let the kids know that the car will be moving as long as there is civil and reasonable conversation, without bickering and fighting.  The moment that the fighting or bickering begins, and mom or dad are distracted in any way, it’s not safe and it’s not peaceful.

    Do not remind them to be quiet or to calm down.  Instead, pull over at the next possible moment, and turn on the radio while sitting calmly in the car.  All electronics are off otherwise.  Let them know you will sit until there is five minutes of silence.

    Allow them to go through whatever fighting and bickering they want to go through, until they are bored with this.  Eventually, there will be silence.  Don’t argue or remind them to quiet.  Just wait it out.  (Remember:  You can let them know in advance that this is exactly what you will be doing.  Simply don’t remind them of this while traveling.)

  1. If in the hotel, or at a restaurant, simply let the kids know that the “train” will not be moving until there is peaceful and civil communications between them. If the kids are fighting in the morning, have a conversation between parents and let them go on and on.  Just wait for boredom to show up…then move on with your day.


  1. Be willing to leave any activity! That’s right!  Let your kids know in advance that any extreme behavior will mean that you will walk out.  And you won’t come back.  You don’t want to talk about this a lot.  You want to make the statement up front, and then follow through.


Once you do this one time, you will not have to do it again.  Simply make sure that you use the consequence and follow through immediately.

If two kids are behaving relatively well, and one child is out of control, then one parent can walk out with the difficult child.  No discussion or dialogue about the “inappropriate behavior” occurs.  Simply leave the activity, and wait until the rest of the family is done.

Again, while this can be extremely boring and tedious for one of you, it is much more so for your son or daughter.  It is the consequence that follows immediately after their behavior that effectively teaches them.  It is not your repeated requests or prodding or encouragement.  This only makes things worse.

Remember:  Fewer words and warnings, and more immediate follow through!

NOTE:  In situations such as Disney world, or some other all day activity, it will not be necessary to walk out all day.  Simply go to a “time out” area, and allow plenty of time for the kids to understand that they are missing fun stuff while their siblings are enjoying it all.  If you want to show you are really serious (and I suggest you do), go back to the car and sit there until all is calm.  (Did he really say ….back to the car?)  That’s right.  Take out the hour or so to make it back to the car.  Do a “time-out” in the car.  You will only have to do it once…maybe twice.  The rest will be smooth sailing!

While this discussion may seem relatively simple, these principles will transform your vacation experience, if you’ve had these kind of difficulties.  The key is action…particularly action immediately tied to problem behavior.  Be clear with kids upfront about how you will respond…then DO IT!

Get Your Mornings Off To an Easy Start This School Year

Get Your Mornings Off To an Easy Start This School Year


As the school year begins, many times there is a deep sense of dread about those morning routines, and the constant prodding, pushing and nagging to keep the kids moving. For some parents, the morning routine is the worst part of the day.  The constant conflict, nagging and prodding, and escalating emotions often result in an angry and frustrated goodbye between parents and children as the bus arrives.

And it gets worse, at times, when there is the missed school bus, and mom or dad is late for work—all because there really is NO morning routine.

While these ugly starts to the day can be frustrating and challenging, these struggles can be easily avoided.

Here are my top 3 strategies for making mornings easy:

  1. Be The Leader In Preparedness

    You know how this works for many of you.  You are yelling from the bathroom, as you try to get dressed while getting the kids out of bed.  This isn’t going to work, if you want an easeful morning routine.

    Instead, just get up a half hour earlier, and be prepared and ready to go—before you even try to get the kids going.  Yes, I know this is a brain dead simple suggestion, but it works!  No confusing theory or complicated steps.

    Just get up a half hour earlier and be a model of what you want from your kids.  Show them how comfortable the morning can be when you are up and well prepared.  It makes you so much more resourceful and calm, as you get the ‘herd’ going.  Perhaps more importantly, being up and ready gives you the time to focus on the next two habit changing strategies.

  1. Use The Tools Of Simple Leverage

    In the mornings, I find that parents have two types of leverage that they rarely use.  The first is breakfast, and the second is some form of entertainment, such as video games, computer, telephone (texting), TV or playtime with toys and goodies.

    Key Point:  Set up a rule where your kids must be up, dressed, book bag packed shoes on and ready to go PRIOR to breakfast or entertainment.  This means the TV isn’t on, the toy room is closed, and no phone texting or computers in any form BEFORE those morning routines are complete.  You can even cheat a little by fixing a wonderful breakfast, and allowing yourself to throw it all away, if they aren’t ready on time.  Be patient with this, and repeat.

    The TV doesn’t come on and breakfast isn’t served until your son or daughter is ready to go to school.  If they have to go to school hungry, because they get up late and miss breakfast, just let that occur.  Trust me, this natural consequence is important to them, and they will remember that tomorrow.  For some kids, missing breakfast is no big deal.  Just relax and stick to the plan. Don’t let their attitude throw you off!

  1. No More Nagging, Prodding, Pushing or Yelling!  You Are DONE!

    Under no circumstances do you nag, push, plead, or pull to get them going.  Stop all engagement of their lollygagging around.  Ignore their moaning and complaining.  Ignore their lying in bed.

    You cannot keep engaging your children (with your attention and energy) for the behaviors that you want to see disappear.  Yelling at them while they are in bed, or complaining repeatedly about how slow they are, or pulling them through each phase of the morning only serves to worsen the very habits that you want to change.

    If you keep engaging them for being slow and distracted, you will see more distractibility and more slowing down over the years ahead.  It has to happen that way!  It’s one of the laws of human behavior!  And yet…there’s one….

Final Insider Secret:  If your child doesn’t get up on time, they will have to go to bed 30 minutes earlier each day—until they get up on time.  This is particularly helpful with the oppositional child, stubborn child.   If they linger in bed, then once up, you remind them that’s its 30 minutes later to bed tonight!  You must be able to gain control over all the goodies, as this is a critical component at bedtime—so you can shut down their world when it’s bedtime—and not argue with them about it.

There is much to learn here, but these are the fundamentals to getting the day started on the right track.  Best of luck and have a great year!

Eating Out With Kids…in Peace: The Restaurant Rules

Eating Out With Kids…in Peace:  The Restaurant Rules


I often receive questions through my website about eating out with kids.  Typical problems center around:


  • kids complaining or whining before, during or after the meal;
  • siblings picking or kicking at one another;
  • kids acting out, with demands, outbursts or tantrums.


Each problem can be handled remarkably well with a simple, straightforward approach.  Below you will see that I promote becoming parents of action – and few words – when managing problem situations.


Another secret to success in parenting is to recognize that kids require an opportunity to learn.  Therefore, if you decide to use “Dr Cale’s Restaurant Rules,” it is essential to think of it as a learning process.


It is best to view your children’s responses to these new rules just as you would view their response to learning a new sport:  They need opportunities to practice and learn.  Once you have put these powerful strategies into place, you will need to PLAN on two to five meals out that are “training trips.”  During each trip the kids will learn that you are serious and that these new rules come with consequences.  (If you have more than one child, it will be easier if you have another adult with you during these “training trips.”)   After that … – peaceful eating ahead!


Dr. Cale’s Restaurant Rules For Kids


  1. We only eat in peace. You get one warning…, and it’s “Strike One.”

    You explain to the kids that they will be free to eat in the restaurant, as long as there is no complaining, whining, hitting, kicking, yelling, or tantruming.  The first – and ONLY THE FIRST – time you see the kids start to get out-of-hand, let them know, “It’s Strike One.”
  2. When you don’t eat in peace, you leave for Strike Two.

    If they break the rule #1, Mom or Dad will walk them to the car immediately to have a time-out in the car.  Let them know the specific details:  There must be five minutes of quiet, before you return to the restaurant.  Remind your child, “Strike Two. One more, and you are out.”
  3. When you don’t eat in peace again, Strike Three and you are out!

    Again, the child and a parent return to the car and wait until everyone else is done.   It’s Strike Three, and NO FOOD is taken home for the child/children sitting in the car for Strike Three.  Allow them to skip this meal.  They will be fine…, and they will begin to learn that you are serious about your new rules.
  4. Repeat this several times.

    Most kids understand that you are serious the first time you follow through.  Yet, some of you have more challenging kids.  They may need additional trips to the car before they realize you are serious.  Stay consistent.  They will get it…, if you also keep in mind the “Parent Restaurant Rules.”


Restaurant Rules for Parents


  1. Don’t do this unless you are serious.

    You don’t want to put new rules in place, unless you mean business; it undermines your credibility and your effectiveness.
  2. Be consistent.

    Regardless of the situation, or your level of fatigue, be consistent.  Follow through, not expecting immediate perfection.  Do expect your kids to learn from the consequences – not the threat of consequences.  That’s REALLY IMPORTANT!
  3. Don’t nag, lecture, remind, and constantly correct.

    In other words, don’t keep investing your energy in the very behaviors you don’t want!  Instead, just ignore the little stuff; focus your attention elsewhere when the small stuff is present.
  4. Become obsessed with noticing the kids when they are pleasant and appropriate.

    Notice when they are reading, talking quietly, or drawing a picture.  Just a smile, or a touch, or a nod WHILE they are doing what you want.  Invest your energy in what you cherish and value – in small and consistently subtle ways.  In this way, the healthy behavior can grow.
  1. Follow the rules impeccably.

    When the kids’ behavior has broken the rule, give one – only one – warning.  Let them know…”It’s Strike One.”

    Then, when they fail to eat in peace, it’s out to the car immediately… – even if the hot food just arrived…; send it back and remain impeccable in your follow-through.  If it’s two kids, then out to the car with both of them.

    This is how kids learn:  Not from your threats…, but from actually FEELING the consequences.  So don’t expect mastery of the rules…; expect mastery only when the kids have had several opportunities to learn from the consequences of the new rules.

    You can learn more about this topic at

    Randy L. Cale, Ph.D.

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