Quotes and Articles by LaunchPad Counseling


Middle School Daze

Richmond Magazine

Mark Loewen is quoted saying, “You are putting yourself out there all the time for people to judge, and your posts compete with everyone else’s,” says Mark Loewen, founder of LaunchPad Counseling. “Every ‘like’ counts.”
It’s common to see a tween obsessively checking their phone after posting a photo or video to watch the “likes” add up” Read more…

Why We Love Hands on Grands

Richmond Family Magazine

Mark Loewen is quoted saying, “Having grandparents involved strengthens families and individuals. There can be a strong bonding that occurs that expands kids’ abilities to form attachments,” he says. “A healthy family in general will help kids see the world in a positive light; they will assume the world is full of good people.” Read more…

Kids, Creativity, and the “B” Word

Richmond Family Magazine

Mark Loewen wrote, You’re a parent. You are busy. All the time. If you had one wish, you would choose to stop the world for a few hours, just long enough to catch up. So while you have become a professional schedule juggler, your child approaches you with the exact opposite problem. “Mom, I’m bored.” “Read more…

How Play therapy Works

Richmond Family Magazine

Mark Loewen wrote, For many adults who feel overwhelmed with emotional stress, seeking the help of a professional therapist is common practice.So, why should it be any different for children?

Even though they may not be able to vocalize their emotions in the same way as adults, children can also experience emotional stress.”Read more…


Do Preteens Still Play in Counseling

Counseling Today

Mark Loewen wrote, At our counseling practice, we often use games and interactive activities to take the pressure off. Preteens enjoy both regular board and card games and also specialized therapeutic games. Games can be used to deal with anxiety, power and control issues, self-esteem, relationships and difficult behaviors.”Read more…

10 Things You Should Never Say to a Heartbroken Teen


Mark Loewen wrote, We’ve all been teenagers in love—and now many of us are raising teenagers who are bound to get their hearts broken as a result of breakups and loss. Here are some of the worst things you can say to a teenager who is suffering from a broken heart.”Read more…


First-day of School Survival Guide

Richmond Times Dispatch

Don’t be afraid to role-play with your child. In fact, playing “school,” in which the child takes on the role of teacher, often helps children internalize the situation. In that role, “they’ll tell you the things they need to hear,” said Mark Loewen, a local licensed professional counselor who works primarily with families and children. “If they assume the role as nurturing teacher, and offer hugs and words of comfort, he said, it’s a cue to parents to act in those ways toward the child.”Read more…

Children and Annoying Behavior

Richmond Family Magazine

Mark Loewen wrote, While at the store the other day, I noticed a parent try to quiet a whining child. I saw the parent rolling his eyes, and I released an empathetic sigh. I knew how he felt when I heard the pleading:  “Please, just be quiet for fifteen minutes – just this once, okay? I need to focus.”Read more…

When Are Kids Old Enough to Walk Somewhere Without an Adult


Mark Loewen suggests, “If the child wants to start walking to school or to a friend’s house, parents can walk with them, and let the child lead, or even walk behind the child.”Read more…

6 Expert Tips For Keeping Your Kids Safe on Social Media


Mark Loewen says, “If you don’t currently allow your children to use social media, it’s a good idea to them know at what age they can start. When kids feel ‘it’s never going to happen,’ they are more likely to set up their own, secret profile.”Read more

7 Ways to Make Moving and Changing Schools Easier on Your Teen


Mark Loewen suggests, “There may be small decisions that the teen can make, like what classes to take. Include them in visiting the school beforehand and taking a tour.” Read more…

Rewarding Kids’ Behavior with Food:Are You Doing it Right?


Mark Loewen says, “A reward works best if the attainment of it lingers in the child’s mind. A walk in the park or a dinner out can be enjoyed for a longer period of time, and creates a memory. Candy is often eaten and forgotten.” Read more…

5 Mistakes Moms Make When Their Kids Ignore Them


Mark Loewen suggests, “Avoid adding emotion or frustration — like ‘you didn’t do it AGAIN’ — or even sarcasm — ‘I know you just LOOOVE cleaning your room.’Just clearly state the reason and the consequence.” Read more…

8 Surefire Ways to Help Your Child Overcome Bullying


Mark Loewen writes, “The signs for identifying that your child is being bullied are vast and often nuanced. Children often feel ashamed about being a target at school, so you may have to read between the lines to find out what is going on.” Read more…

6 Ways to Handle Power Struggles With Your Teen


Mark Loewen states, “Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to manage your disagreements and recapture the fun you used to have as a family. Here are six to get you started:” Read more…

5 Ways to Raise Kind Kids


Mark Loewen explains, “But it may not help them understand why it was wrong to hit.” Read more…

Attachment Parenting Your Special Needs Child


Mark Loewen says, “that because children with special needs often struggle with interactions that are crucial for creating attachment – such as eye contact, physical touch, and emotional attunement – encouraging these behaviors requires more parental effort than usual.”Read more…

Separating Twins at School: Should They Be Put into Different Classrooms


Mark Loewen warns,”separating them in school could result in emotional distress.” Read more…

5 Mistakes Moms Make When Moving Toddlers From Crib to Bed & How to Avoid Them


Mistake #3, Mark Loewen says, “is not explaining the “new bed” to your toddler. Especially when the child is younger, parents transition their child to a toddler bed without properly explaining it to the child,” says Loewen. “Parents underestimate their child’s ability to understand them.” Read more…

How Forcing Kids to Share Is ‘Traumatizing’ Them


Mark Loewen says, “Parents need to recognize that the ‘mine, mine’ stage is very important in the toddler years, since it establishes boundaries and belonging,” points out Mark Loewen, a therapist in Richmond, Virginia. Read more…

10 Ways to Get Kids to Clean Their Rooms


Mark Loewen said, “Chores work best when they have to be executed in the same way, at the same time, with the same frequency. Establishing 15 minutes to pick up the room before bed time or right after coming home for school makes it predictable and helps the your child remember.” Read more…

7 Signs Your Teen May Be Depressed


Mark Loewen says,”Although we tend to think of depression as sadness, teenagers often react to depression with a higher level of irritability: their behavior often becomes more apathetic, grumpy, and indifferent,” Read more…

Are Toy Cellphones Bad for Kids?


Mark Loewen says,”Part of healthy identity formation for children is to play out adult activities, such as shopping, dressing up, or cleaning. Playing with a toy cellphone is one more way of imitating adults and rehearsing the behaviors the child witnesses daily.” Read more…

10 Money Lessons Kids Should Know by Age 10


Mark Loewen explains, “Suggest a wait time before your child wants to buy a larger item. If they still want to buy the same toy after a week, it’s their choice to spend their money.” Read more…

Brothers & Sisters Sharing a Bedroom: How Old Is Too Old?


Mark Loewen notes, “Signs to look out for include when one of them locks the bathroom or bedroom door when changing or asks the other to stay out, an increase in comments about the sibling being the opposite gender, or a growing curiosity about sexuality issues, gender differences, or physical changes.” Read more…

How to Get Kids to Like Vegetables


Mark Loewen LPC, a child therapist in Richmond, Virginia, has worked with his share of picky eaters. His advice? Relax. Power struggles will only intensify the picky eating behavior. “Make sure you use a soft tone of voice. You can empathize with your child by saying something like, ‘I know you don’t like X. Let’s work on it together.'” Read more…

Top Tips for Parenting Teens from the Experts


Mark Loewen, LPC in Richmond, VA “Some suggestions to help your teenager reduce stress include encouraging healthy sleep habits, increasing movement and exercise, helping them learn time management skills, teaching them strategies to cope, and promoting a healthy and well-balanced diet. As a parent, you have the tools and resources to help your teenager decrease their stress. The most important place to start with your teen is to show them that you are listening so that they feel heard.” Read more…

When Does Protecting Your Kids Become Over-Parenting?


Mark Loewen writes,”A child changes everything. As a parent, you start seeing things from a completely different perspective. Whereas you would not have bothered before about cars driving too fast on a suburban street, now you find yourself yelling out, “Slow down, there’s kids in this neighborhood!”” Read more…

Speak up for Minority Youth


Mark Loewen  states,”A child changes everything. As a parent, you start seeing things from a completely different perspective. Whereas you would not have bothered before about cars driving too fast on a suburban street, now you find yourself yelling out, “Slow down, there’s kids in this neighborhood!”

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Kids, Creativity, and the “B” Word


Mark Loewen  writes,”So what is a busy parent to do when children are bored? Let them. Being bored is an important part of development. Like other feelings, it serves a purpose. Sadness helps us reach out to others, and anger moves us to create change. Boredom fosters creativity. Because parents are such great problem-solvers, most of us are quick to suggest ideas for stopping that feeling of being bored.”

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Why We Love Hands-on Grands!: Extra Support is a Win-Win for Families


Having grandparents involved strengthens families and individuals, says Mark Loewen, LPC, of LaunchPad Counseling. “There can be a strong bonding that occurs that expands kids’ abilities to form attachments,” he says. “A healthy family in general will help kids see the world in a positive light; they will assume the world is full of good people.”