The Emotional Intelligence Livestream #14


Mixed Emotions: Parenting Young Adults in 2020

Building trust & connection amidst disruption & uncertainty

2020 is a time of upheaval as we grapple with CV19, racism, climate instability,  polarization, increasing issues with mental health… and as parents of young adults, many of us feel like we’ve failed to leave them a better world. So what do we do?

Kids are “stuck at home,”  unable to engage in “their world” at school or university, at an age when social life IS life. Navigating learning-from-home, uncertainty about courses in the fall, cancelled summer jobs… they’re in hiatus. Meanwhile parents are likewise trying to juggle work (if they’re lucky) and financial stress and and and. How do we balance it all? What does it take to be a good parent in this tumultuous time? What does that even mean today?


In one of our earlier panels, we discussed the intense challenges the pandemic was creating for students and educators — and the fact that learning at home just does not work for some students. 

As a parent of two college students, I was seeing that too. Like for many adults, teens are facing massive disruption and uncertainty… while they’re also leading the charge for massive social change for climate, social & racial justice, and more.

In the months my 19-year-old was home at the start of the pandemic, I was seeing him struggle with being disconnected from peers — and also I was grateful for the time for us to get to know each other in a new way forming a more adult-to-adult relationship.


  • As Chief Program Officer at Active Minds, Laura Horne develops innovative strategies and unique partnerships to empower students to help schools and society embrace a comprehensive, public health approach to mental health. She has 15 years of experience leading public health initiatives at Active Minds, the National Association of County and City Health Officials, Tulane University, and the Louisiana Public Health Institute. Laura earned her Master of Public Health degree in community health sciences from Tulane University and her Bachelor of Arts degree in communications from Loyola University New Orleans.
    Twitter: @LauraHorneAM of @Active_Minds
  • Dr. Lynne Kenney is the nation’s leading pediatric psychologist in the development of classroom cognitive-physical activity programs for students – and the mother of two young adults. Dr. Kenney develops curriculum, programming, and activities to improve children’s cognition through coordinative cognitive-motor movement, executive function skill-building strategies, and social-emotional learning.  Dr. Kenney’s books include 70 Play Activities for Better Thinking, Self-Regulation, Learning and Behavior (Kenney & Comizio, 2016), the Social-Emotional Literacy program, Bloom Your Room™; Musical Thinking™; and Bloom: 50 things to say, think and do with anxious, angry and over-the-top-kids (Kenney & Young, 2015)
    Twitter: @DrLynneKenney
  • Annie Fox, M.Ed., is an internationally respected parenting expert, family coach and trusted online adviser for teens. Her life’s work is helping youth effectively manage their relationships and emotions so they can feel confident in who they are. Her latest book, The Girls Q&A Book on Friendship, is for girls ages 8–12. Her latest book for parents, Teaching Kids to Be Good People, is a guide for navigating 21st century parenting challenges.
    Twitter: @annie_fox
  • Jacques-Philippe Piverger is Managing Partner at the OzoneX (venture capital firm purpose-built to invest in and scale mission-driven tech companies founded by women and people from underserved communities). A dad, a martial artist, and an entrepreneur who harnesses private and public sector experiences to affect change where it is needed most on the globe. He has co-created and scaled a wide range of enterprises including MPOWERD Inc., REALICITY, and The Council of Urban Professionals.  He has been recognized by the World Economic Forum as a Young Global Leader and by the Council on Foreign Relations as a Term Member. He also serves as a board member of the New York Economic Development Corporation’s Build NYC and the Industrial Development Agency.
  • Zahir Shaik is a Network Leader in the Six Seconds Emotional Intelligence community and a dad of two teens. He earned his Master’s Degree in Philosophy of Management Coaching from the University of Stellenbosch Business School. He’s one of a handful of people in South Africa who’ve earned the advanced Certified EQ Facilitator designation from Six Seconds as well as 8 other certifications including all Six Seconds’ assessment tools for individual and organizational performance.
  • Moderator: Joshua Freedman, cofounder and CEO, The Six Seconds Emotional Intelligence Network, working since 1997 toward a world with more EQ. Josh is a Master Certified Coach and author of the best-selling At the Heart of Leadership
    Twitter: @EQjosh of @6s_EQ
    IG: @joshmfreedman of @6secondseq

Key questions

  • In terms of parent/GenZ interactions in the “2020 upheavals”… what’s one unexpected positive surprise you’ve experienced?
  • Is this time of isolation + uncertainty + upheaval going to be a trauma for millions of young people, and if so, what do we do? 
  • Many of the parents I’ve been talking to recently are seeing young people in danger from police. For some, this is a longstanding and recurring trauma, for others this may be the first time we’re seeing people who look like our own kids in this experience. How is the uprising affecting families?
  • What are some of the challenges young people are facing in the pandemic, and how is that affecting families?
  • As a parent, what’s something you’re grieving or struggling with during the pandemic? What’s been a gift or learning from that?
  • When my college-age son was unexpectedly home for a couple of months, I experienced a challenging but deeply satisfying “re-negotiation” of relationship as almost-adults where we were giving one another support in ways I hadn’t experienced before. What is something you’ve been re-negotiating or recalibrating in your family?
  • What’s been one of your biggest learnings these past months as a parent and.or someone who works closely with young people?

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