Even though your teenager is growing up, and in a sense, growing away, there are still ways you can reaffirm and maintain family unity — now and in the future. How can you do this?

Face your problems together as a family. Don’t let denial or blame come between you. Facing pain together can enhance your closeness.

Let happy memories lead you back to positive feelings about each other. Recalling happy memories can make a wonderful difference when you’re in the middle, or aftermath, of a crisis. Remembering when you felt warm, loving and connected can be a unifying factor.

Give family time top priority — even though you’re all busy.

Get to know each other in new ways. Share feelings, stories of the past, dreams for the future.

Get involved in causes and altruistic activities as a family.

Finally, let family rituals, from traditions to nicknames bring you together again and again. Rituals are unifying. They can be shortcuts to good feelings, close ties and happy memories.

Mr.B