Former teacher still has passion for 'logic and love' in parenting

by: REVIEW PHOTO: VERN UYETAKE - Kate Kelleher has 35 years of experience in helping parents build better relationships with their children. She recently opened her own consulting business in Lake Oswego.

It was only a year ago that Kate Kelleher retired after a 35-year career as a teacher and counselor.

But her passion for the development of school children was still too strong for her to quit, and that is why she has started Kate’s Consulting for Kids in Lake Oswego.

Kelleher’s position is that love is not enough when it comes to properly raising a child. She believes wisdom must be mixed in with love in order for a boy or girl to develop into a successful, self-reliant adult. Her key for unlocking this potential is the Love and Logic Institute, which has developed the programs she uses in her work.

“Parents don’t know what to do, and they love their kids,” said Kelleher, who spent 33 years of her career in Sherwood. “They don’t know where to turn for support. In most schools there are 400 to 700 kids for one counselor.”

Kelleher’s strategy is for parents to allow the consequences to occur when their children have problems instead of rushing in and trying to make everything right — a natural instinct, but one that can result in helpless kids.

“Parents today want to rescue their kids,” Kelleher said. “Kids can’t develop their own problem solving skills. Love and Logic is all about empowering kids.

“The thing is, it’s so hard letting our kids struggle. We get impatient and want to fix their problem. In the long run, if you let your children struggle, they become capable of solving their own problems and making their own decisions.

“What are kids responsible for today? Nothing. Our kids are growing up so unsure of themselves. How do you develop a sense of belonging? You work at it. We’ve gotten away from very simple tenants. A huge piece has to change. Thirty-five years ago kids were allowed to handle stuff, even if they handled it poorly.”

For Kelleher, if mistakes are not allowed to happen, then growth won’t happen, either. Too much empathy can cause a parent a lot of trouble.

“Parents are trying to be their kid and not stand with them,” she said. “At some point the kid is going to be in the world. Mistakes enrich us. That’s how we learn. We see how the world works.”

Kelleher isn’t just a teacher and counselor. She’s a mother, and she practiced what she preaches with her two children, now grown and making a success out of adulthood.

“I don’t run my kids’ lives,” Kelleher said. “I just love them.”

Kelleher strongly believes in her system, but she promises no easy solutions.

“The hardest thing is to try something new and change a habit,” she said. “It’s hard to change things for the long term. If you want a loving, lasting relationship with your children, that’s going to take work. I encourage parents to try one little change at a time. Most of us are capable of that.”

To learn more about Kate Kelleher’s classes on improving parenting skills and building better relationships with children, call her at 503-913-8970 or go to her web site

It will not only have details about her classes but offers testimonials from parents who have been helped by her counseling.

The office for Kate’s

Consulting for Kids is located at 530 Fourth Street in Lake Oswego.

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