I once received a note from a mother who had an eight-year-old son with obsessive tendencies. He was scared the upstairs of the house would break and drop everyone into the basement, so he constantly checked that the floor was strong enough. And this wasn’t the first time he had fixated on something. The mom was nervous because she had a family history of mental illness. Her husband wasn’t as worried because he believed most mental problems are created by a family’s discipline and relationships. He said that developing perfectionist children who govern themselves caused their son to obsess over things. She asked my advice on how to help her son through his obsessive thoughts and actions.