Teens say "Cool" for everything. Whether they agree or not. Whether parents have been trying to communicate some issues we want them to "let out", "spill it" when we're talking to them. At the end, all we get is "cool" from them. I wonder if cool is a common English error often said at the wrong time for the intended meaning. Or maybe, in my case, I am beginning to grab every chance of improving my communication skills -- not that my teens don't need it themselves. How I can enthuse them to expand their thoughts far beyond this breezy wave of conversation? Asking. Asking honest questions not because I want them to tell me what I expect them to say. But asking because I sincerely do not know a lot of teenage issues in their lives. Ask because I'm honestly interested in them-- about what they are thinking and feeling about certain issues in our family and in their world. So far, my teens are beginning to open up, discuss, and even tell me things that surprise me (and my husband). Other than that, they now say, "Mom's cool" to their older siblings and friends, instead. Phew! "Mom! Cool it!" isn't gonna happen. At least for quite a long while. I hope.