Help by Phone

Help by Phone
3 votes

A professional family coach can quickly put parents on a successful path.

Raising a troubled child or teen is completely different from the way one raises a typical or normal child.  Natural parenting approaches do not work–things like praise, incentives, disincentives, and fairness do not improve our child’s behavior.  As the mother of a mentally ill child, I had to completely rewrite my job description for parenting.  It was counterintuitive, and personally trying.  This is the hardest parenting job of all.  If your family is struggling and nothing is working, I can help you make breakthroughs with sound advice and experienced coaching.

“My husband and I have often remarked that an hour with Margaret is worth a year with a family therapist. She just gets it and never failed to empower us with actions that we could implement immediately. Her practical insights always gave us the hope we so desperately needed. I have recommended her to many parents and do so knowing she can help and make a real difference.” –Kathy V, Life Coach

Start by telling me your Story in a form at the bottom of this page, and I will contact you free of charge to discuss how we can work together.  If you have general questions, email me at:  Find out more about me and my personal and professional experience here.

“Rarely have I heard someone get to the heart of the matter so quickly, thoughtfully, and with such great insight.  Margaret has inspired me to be a better mother to my children.  Her ideas for how to cope with extreme behaviors have given me a new set of tools that I continually draw upon for the next event that may present itself. I now look at our situation with candor and the knowledge that I am not powerless.”   –Ann A

Get Started

1.   Tell me your Story

What do you need?  What’s going on with your child?  We can save much time on our first call if I know something about your situation ahead of time.  Please take the time to complete your “Story” in the form at the end and click “submit.”  You may find that answering the questions will give you insights into your own strengths and those of your family and child.

2.  Set up a meeting

I will contact you as soon as I receive your Story.  We can set up a time that’s convenient for you, including evenings and weekends.  I can also accommodate international calls.  If possible, I strongly encourage a couple and sibling(s) to be on the call.  It is not appropriate for me to speak directly with your child, however.  This is about you and your family.

3.  Payment

I prefer payment using PayPal.  When you are ready, you can go here and make a payment to this email,  We can make other arrangements if you cannot use PayPal.

“My son/grandson was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome at age 14.  Neither of us had any idea what to do.  Both the mental health and school systems were complex and difficult to navigate.  We felt desperate, pressured, lost.  Then we found Margaret.  Within a month, we had an IEP in place, were handling the mental health issues and reaching an understanding of how to cope.   Nothing will ever be the same again but we can cope with it.  We call Margaret a “lifeline” because for us she was exactly that.”
—Victoria C, mother, and Pauline N, grandmother


Single phone session – $125 for a 90 minute session, which includes follow-up calls when you need immediate help, and a written summary to help to you recall key points.  You will also receive a copy of my book “Raising Troubled Kids,” a guidebook that has been reviewed by professional mental health providers.

We will talk about supporting your primary relationships; health care and
safety concerns; siblings; and your own health and wellbeing.

Four phone sessions – $400 for four 90 minute sessions.  This series will be hard work!  I will assist you with difficult steps that you, your family, and your troubled child must take to get the best long-term prognosis.  You can receive follow-up calls any time when you need immediate help or support, and a written summary of each contact and copy of the book, “Raising Troubled Kids“.  The sessions can take place weekly or bi-weekly depending on your schedule, and will address new issues that will come up once you start implementing real change and regaining your authority.

Book review of “Raising Troubled Kids:”
“As both the parent of a teenager with a mood disorder and a professional working with other “troubled kids”, I wholeheartedly endorse this beautifully written and theoretically sound book. Parents of mentally ill children are often misunderstood, maligned, and misjudged. Ms. Puckette provides practical advice, encouragement and realistic, yet hopeful glimpses into the lives of those of us who walk this difficult path. In addition to owning a copy for my personal bookshelf, I am planning to buy multiple editions to use in my clinical practice!”  –Elizabeth H

What you can expect from me

  • Respect, compassion, and non-judgment from someone who’s been there and understands;
  • Clear practical steps for reducing your child’s negative symptoms
  • Techniques for creating a therapeutic home for the entire family;
  • House rules that work, structure that works, and communication styles that work;
  • How to care of all family members;
  • How to deal with:  schools, health care providers, relationship issues, judgmental people, and stigma

“Despite years of therapy, alternative approaches, and interactions with healthcare professionals, my family was still wavering on whether or our daughter’s problem was serious, what should be done, or if anything even could be done.  Margaret’s wealth of knowledge and personal experience helped change our approach and perspective.  Her guidance with regard to pursuing information gathering, treatment options, and medication regimes has proven invaluable.  But what is more valuable, overall, is that she confirmed that there IS a problem.  Our daughter’s behavior isn’t merely bad coping skills or acting out – she has a serious mental illness that needs attention and care.”  –Marie D

Please read the Disclosure and Ethics document.

Thank you, and take good care of yourself.

Your Story

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Your Story

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