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News Filed Under Family Dynamics

A man kneels in a walk-in shower, reaching down to a point in the entryway.
September 20, 2018 - Filed Under: Family Dynamics, Healthy Homes Initiative

Those who struggle with injury or disability know it is never too early to make changes that allow a house to be more accommodating to people with impaired mobility.

July 26, 2018 - Filed Under: Community, Family Dynamics

Safety concerns can put the brakes on driving for senior adults, but families with a transportation plan can help their loved ones maintain happy and healthy lifestyles.

July 16, 2018 - Filed Under: Family, Family Dynamics, Food, Nutrition

Healthy eating is important at every age, but older adults should pay special attention to their diets.

As adults age, several physical changes can affect how the body digests food and absorbs nutrients, said Pamela Redwine, Mississippi State University Extension agent in Yalobusha County.

June 26, 2018 - Filed Under: Family Dynamics

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Caring for someone with dementia can be overwhelming, but establishing routines is one way to make the process easier.

Judy Breland, county coordinator with the Mississippi State University Extension Service office in Stone County, said planning set times for meals, baths, regular outings and even restroom breaks, helps to lessen the stress on caregivers and their loved ones. Breland is a caregiver for her mother, who suffers from Alzheimer's disease.

A gray-haired woman in blue shorts and a multi-colored striped shirt holds a pen over a pocket calendar to check appointments.
June 18, 2018 - Filed Under: Family Dynamics, Health

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Flight attendants instruct passengers to take care of themselves before helping others with oxygen masks for several good reasons that also apply to other caregivers and situations.

A pair of hands holds a stack of mail taken from a mailbox.
May 18, 2018 - Filed Under: Family Dynamics

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Handling finances can be difficult at any age, but older Mississippians face even greater challenges when expenses rise and forgetfulness sets in.

At what point adult children need to step in with assistance is a personal decision for every family, said Susan Cosgrove, family resource management associate with the Mississippi State University Extension Service.

November 10, 2016 - Filed Under: Family, Family Dynamics

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- On the heels of a heated political season, make family peace a priority during the upcoming holidays.

Alisha Hardman, an assistant professor in the Mississippi State University School of Human Sciences, said holidays offer opportunities for family members to enjoy one another and make memories to last a lifetime.

"Some families have more trouble than others when it comes to controversial or sensitive subjects," Hardman said. "If something cannot be discussed in a constructive manner, it may be best to avoid the topic altogether."

Althea and Joel Bontrager of Columbus examine a communication ball at the beginning of a three-hour workshop for foster/adoptive parents in the Oktibbeha County Extension Office on March 19, 2016. (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Kevin Hudson)
April 13, 2016 - Filed Under: Children and Parenting, Family Dynamics

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Family service providers know that parenting is never easy, especially when the children are not your own.

The Mississippi State University Extension Service is teaming up with the Mississippi Department of Human Services Division of Family and Children’s Services to provide workshops on topics such as parent/child communications, helping children cope with change, and coping with stress, depression and anger.

February 29, 2016 - Filed Under: Family Dynamics

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- The foundation of a healthy marriage rests on the solid ground of communication.

Karen Benson, an agent of the Mississippi State University Extension Service in Neshoba County who conducts family life programs, said couples are able to grow closer emotionally when they open up about their hopes and needs.

“Conflict is inevitable, but marriage does not have to be a struggle,” she said. “We learn to negotiate and learn more about ourselves when we work out solutions to conflicts.”

This is an image of Anna Hughes, a field technical assistant with the Early Years Network helped with post-tornado child care at a Red Cross Shelter in Louisville, MS in May, 2014.
October 16, 2015 - Filed Under: Disaster Response-Youth, Family Dynamics

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- One of the most difficult tasks a parent or provider will face is guiding children through the grief and instability brought on by tragedy.

Natural disasters, terrorism, mass shootings, deaths of loved ones, or acts of domestic or physical violence are traumatic for everyone. When faced with these events, children and adults alike experience feelings of fear, helplessness and anxiety. However, children have very little, if any, experience in properly dealing with those feelings.

Katherine Weatherby is surrounded by her 2-year-old grandchildren (from left) Zirean Davis, G’Niereya Alston and Bryson Ward at her home in Sallis, Mississippi, on Aug. 20, 2015. (Photo by MSU Human Sciences/Amy Barefield)
September 10, 2015 - Filed Under: Family Dynamics

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Grandparents provide a loving, low-cost and flexible alternative to center-based child care for many families across Mississippi. The benefits to the parents, children and grandparents in these situations are significant for many reasons.

Nearly 11 million children under the age of 5 in the United States go to some type of child care for an average of 36 hours each week. Some children are in multiple child care settings because of their parents’ nontraditional working hours.

February 5, 2014 - Filed Under: Family, Family Dynamics

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Most spouses know to give romantic gifts on Valentine’s Day, but the gift of time spent developing a healthy relationship is one that will last much longer than a box of chocolates or bouquet of flowers.

Cassandra Kirkland, family life specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said strong marriages are built on common-sense, positive habits.

January 10, 2014 - Filed Under: Family, Family Dynamics

JACKSON – An elaborate ceremony punctuated with a white dress and gift registry is no longer reserved for couples marrying for the first time.

“With about 40 percent of couples remarrying, our society has become more accustomed to second marriages,” said Carla Stanford, a Mississippi State University Extension Service agent in Pontotoc County. “In the past, if either member of the couple had been married before, there was not a lot of pomp and circumstance surrounding the marriage. But today, people may go all out.”

November 8, 2013 - Filed Under: Family, Family Dynamics

JACKSON – Family gatherings, marathon cooking sessions and shopping trips induce waves of anxiety instead of moments of joy for some.

“Some families feel a lot of pressure to create the perfect holiday experience by buying the latest toys for the kids, traveling to visit extended family, and attending every party,” said Cassandra Kirkland, family life specialist with Mississippi State University’s Extension Service.

November 7, 2013 - Filed Under: Family, Family Dynamics

MISSISSIPPI STATE – In the rush of parties, shopping and decorating, families can enjoy traditions that bring some predictability to the craziness that often comes with the holidays.

Carla Stanford, Pontotoc County agent with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said a tradition can be almost anything, but smaller is sometimes better.

January 18, 2013 - Filed Under: Family, Family Dynamics

MISSISSIPPI STATE – The best way to avoid an infamous wedding disaster is to have a supervisor who is able to anticipate factors and think fast when the unexpected occurs.

Karen Benson, an area family and child development agent with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, has been on both sides of wedding challenges. After directing several weddings for other couples, she gained planning experience last fall as the mother of the bride.

December 20, 2012 - Filed Under: Family, Family Dynamics

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Many Americans resolve to improve their physical health each new year, and experts at Mississippi State University suggest it is also a great time to focus on healthier relationships.

MSU Extension Service family life specialist Cassandra Kirkland said the new calendar year brings opportunities for fresh starts in many areas of life, including marriage.

December 14, 2012 - Filed Under: Family, Children and Parenting, Family Dynamics

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- As news shows bombard the public with reports of senseless violence, young eyes are also watching as adults struggle to handle the information.

News of the mass shooting at an elementary school in Connecticut will receive tremendous coverage throughout the holiday season. Families may need help as the entire country recovers from the tragedy.

April 12, 2012 - Filed Under: Family, Family Dynamics

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Recognizing the expanding career fields related to families, Mississippi State University will offer new graduate studies in the upcoming fall semester.

MSU’s School of Human Sciences will offer advanced degrees in Human Development and Family Studies, an interdisciplinary approach to the study of children, youth and families. The program encompasses specialty areas in infant and child studies, youth studies, family studies, family resource management and gerontology.

February 2, 2012 - Filed Under: Family, Family Dynamics

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Valentine’s Day is supposed to be about love and romance, but gift exchanges can leave some sweethearts feeling anxious instead.

Susan Cosgrove, area family resource management agent in Newton County with Mississippi State University Extension Service, said homemade gifts are an inexpensive option and can be even more meaningful than store-bought ones.