girl standing in front of gate with back turned showing teal blue hair
girl standing in front of gate with back turned showing teal blue hair

There is a Progressive auto-insurance commercial you may have seen once or twice in which a young man walks into a hardware section of a store with blue hair. The other adults in the commercial can’t stop staring. That kid with the blue hair — well, it's my daughter. A few weeks ago, it was purple; a couple of weeks from now, I think she’s going orange.

Since our daughter was little, we have let her color her hair in some way or another. At first, it was just a strip here or there, but now (at 18), she has…


For a good portion of my life, empathy wasn’t something that I really understood. It wasn’t until about 5 or 6 years ago that I fully came to understand it and its impact on our lives. I was sitting in a large conference arena at SXSW (South by Southwest) in Austin about to listen to a woman named Brené Brown. By the time I left that room, a new understanding and value level came to me around empathy.

Empathy: the ability to understand and share the feelings of another.*

In the workplace, finding the right balance of empathy to manage…


white-board-with-weeks-and-blue-post-it-tasks.
white-board-with-weeks-and-blue-post-it-tasks.

As modern technology has progressed, organizations have established internal teams to build various solutions within their walls. Whether these solutions are websites, proprietary systems, tools to manage their work, or something else entirely — when standing up a practice of developers and their counterparts (project managers, designers, testers, etc.), the organization typically jumps immediately to ‘let’s work Agile.’

Alternatively, some organizations have housed and managed solutions for decades. Those solutions are supported by teams who have worked via older processes (aka Waterfall or no process at all) for the duration of their time together. …


an-older-woman-with-a-younger-woman-and-a-child-running-down-a-path
an-older-woman-with-a-younger-woman-and-a-child-running-down-a-path

Slightly before our daughter went into a long-term rehabilitation program, we started attending church services at a church where some of our close friends were. At the time, we didn’t realize how much we needed it in our lives and started attending more to solve the home troubles than any other reason. Although we hadn’t stepped foot into a house of God for fourteen years, we thought it could be the magic cure for our daughter’s struggles. To give her a better (healthier) community to spend her time with. …


grey-rock-split-in-half-on-black-background
grey-rock-split-in-half-on-black-background

A ‘sad’ reaction to a Facebook post. That was the straw that broke the camel’s back. That seemingly innocuous reaction is what caused me to go through the simple, yet impactful, act of unfriending the first and only person I’ve unfriended on Facebook in the 12-odd years I’ve actively been engaged.

There is a lot of talk about people unfriending on social media and in real life because of extreme opposing political views. In retrospect, I know I have eye-rolled at this sentiment and thought ‘can’t we all be grown-ups here.’ I grew up in an era of ‘agree to…


Therapy might not be enough to help your family if you have a teenager who is struggling. It wasn’t for us. The first time our daughter ran away, I realized very quickly we were out of our depth. My support search started with a Google search on “Christian boarding schools for teenage girls.” This search yielded so many unhelpful results that we were forced to dig through. During our investigation, I found myself learning a lot and flying a little bit by the seat of my pants.

When you find yourself in this situation, as we did, there are lines…


young-girl-in-white-shirt-in-concrete-room
young-girl-in-white-shirt-in-concrete-room

We watched a television show the other night when one of the characters visited a treatment program facility. It looked amazing — comfortable private rooms, beautiful grounds, daily room service. It was everything you’d hope rehabilitation would be. When we placed our daughter into a long-term rehabilitation program at the age of 14, she shared a room with 4 other girls and ate in a communal dining room. Instead of yoga hours and walks around parks, she had chores, worked on an animal farm, and went to school. …


Growing up, my dad and I weren’t incredibly close. We butted heads more than we agreed. He had a very rough personality with very narrow and high expectations and, generally, wasn’t a very kind person. It doesn’t mean he didn’t love me; it just came down to how he grew up and how his life experiences formed how he treated me and others. Some never saw that side of my dad. They saw the helpful, religious, passionate man he could be or chose to ignore his worst personality traits. He was a functioning alcoholic who, when I was young, was…


So why do I keep saying I don’t?

My 18-year daughter just got her driver’s license. After coming home from her shift the other day, she told me that she was going to the lake the next day with her friend around Noon. The immediate response out of my mouth was, ‘Ok. I don’t care.’ What she said next made me stop and realize what I’d said.

Ok. I just thought you’d want to know.

What was in my head was not that I didn’t care. What I meant when I said ‘I don’t care’ was “sounds good, thanks for…


As parents, we want to protect our children from any dangers we perceive. As parents of daughters, we want to protect them from people we don’t believe are healthy/safe.

Before our daughter going into a long term treatment program, we definitely didn’t embrace the friends and boyfriends we thought were ‘bad’ for her. We prohibited her from seeing them, certainly didn’t invite them into our home, etc. These are common behaviors amongst most parents who find themselves in this situation. While we were in our treatment program, I read a book that used the scenario of a child being placed…

Melissa A Green

I am a human-mom, husky-mom, wife and wannabe Top Chef who went through fire and came out on the other side faithful, self-aware, renewed and sane (mostly).

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