Consultation, Collaboration, & Expert Testimony
I’m here for the parents who worry they’re ruining their kids by letting them play on their screens and for the kids with panicked parents!
I provide mission-driven business consultation and strategic partnership with clients who develop, implement, and utilize tech products for children, teens, and parents. Consistent with my mission to help families prevent and heal from digital injury while building stronger relationships, I advise customers how to interface with families in a mutually beneficial, positive way.
Corporate Consult in Technology, Information, and Health
I currently have the honor to serve on the Facebook Youth Advisory Committee. On this committee, child development experts from around the world, including the Fred Rogers Institute, Sesame Street, and the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence, among others, collaborate with the Facebook youth product team to optimize safety, fun, engagement, and learning in the development of child and family digital programs and products. As the public becomes more informed about the risks and benefits of technology, I believe we are entering into a new era of transparency and accountability, where corporations must work cooperatively with experts and advocates for children and, ultimately, their customers. I’m excited to be a part of that.
I was also honored to be the 2016 grant recipient and served as Global Ambassador of Teensafe, the first and largest text monitoring service for parents. Teensafe brought me on their team due to our joint mission to support parents to enlist this powerful tech tool in a collaborative, effective, and transparent manner. We agreed that families are best served by offering a strategy the builds parent-child connection rather than risks conflict. Parents breach trust when they sneak monitoring. A proactive, honest discussion is a teaching opportunity that sets up digital independence as a gradual process that is earned over time. In this capacity, I developed protocols for Teensafe and trained call center agents to help distressed teen and parent callers, real-time, with best practice and customer service.
Education, Law Enforcement, & Government
in support of Mrs. Melania Trump’s 2017 Anti-Cyberbullying Campaign, I conferenced with Reagan Thompson, Special Assistant to the President and Director of Policy for the First Lady on the behalf of Teensafe. With The White House taking notice of the prevention potential for digital injury, I am optimistic that the world has joined my mission.
Non-profit and public agencies have critical roles in optimizing benefit from screen technology while protecting risk to health, interpersonal exploitation, and exploitation for profit. As detailed in my book, Screen Time in the Mean Time: A Parent Guide to Get Kids and Teens Internet Safe, informed and thoughtful tech integration is critical for success. Regulation with an appreciation for privacy and human rights is sorely needed for the better protection of children and teens. We have a long way to go yet, and I’m passionate about creating solutions.
Forensic Evaluation & Expert Testimony
Parents who share legal and physical custody often have very different ideas and practices in regard to home rules and parameters for child screen use. As a result, kids and teens may drift into screen-using behaviors that can lead to digital injury and clinical distress and trauma.
Examples of digital injury include:
– distraction from healthy relationships and healthy activities,
– body image and self identity disturbance,
– repetitive use and distraction injuries (like texting and driving),
– chronic autonomic hyperarousal that can lead to anxiety and mood disorders and disorders of oppositionality and conduct), and
– screen addiction.
Unfiltered and unmonitored screen use can also result in:
– viewing and sharing violent and obscene content,
– interpersonal exploitation by sexual predators and online peers,
– financial exploitation, and
– cybersecurity and privacy issues.
As a licensed clinical psychologist and screen safety expert, I offer psychodiagnostic evaluation and expert testimony for the assessment, prevention, and treatment of digital injury. I also provide parent training and coaching to help parents form healthier alliances with their kids and implement parenting strategies for safer screen use. My Forensic Fee Schedule is available upon request.
I served as Technical Advisor and Clinical On-Set Support for The Learning Channel’s, I Catfished my Kid. Television is an important platform for education and entertainment. It’s critical that media also strives for transparency and accountability to their guests and customers. This program was designed to blow the whistle on the wild west atmosphere of the Internet. However, with vulnerable teens and their families as guests, it was important that their freedom of choice and well being be taken into consideration throughout production. I saw my role in this project to be in support of that mission.