Parenting Education, Coaching & Advisory Services


Parenting is the most important job you will ever have.



Dana Hirt Parenting is a Chicago-based parenting education and coaching service that offers parents, both new and experienced, concrete skills and personalized guidance and support.  I bring 28 years of experience in the field of educational psychology in clinical, school and private practice settings, and the wisdom of 24 years of parenting.  I have taught in the classroom, consulted with parents, worked one on one with students in private practice, partnered with therapists and other allied professionals, advocated in schools, and led parent workshops. 

Within the scope of Dana Hirt Parenting, I work with moms, dads, couples, and partners, parenting together or on their own. I have a particular affinity for divorce cases and employ strategies that can help when facing the challenges of joint parenting. I am also interested in Parent Coordination cases for couples seeking to co-parent more effectively. Utilizing Intentional Parenting - a conscious approach in which I help parents consider their parenting choices and the impact those choices have - I help parents parent better, feel more confident in the endeavor, and raise the children they know will grow into self-reliant adults.




How to Raise Kids who Can 'Love and Be Loved'

Forget about an apple a day keeping the medical doctor away

If you want to do something to ensure your kids experience backed-by-research benefits like:

·      Higher self esteem

·      Better parent-child communication

·      Improved academic performance

·      Fewer psychological and behavior problems and

·      Better coping skills…

be sure to add copious amounts of affection and acceptance to the healthy foodstuffs you dole out daily.

Four Reasons Why Co-Parenting Post-Divorce Matters more than ever.

Like many of you, I’m a co-parent…collaborating with my ex-husband to raise our three kids, who were under the age of 13 when we first separated. Just like parenting with a live-in spouse or partner, co-parenting has its joys – and its challenges. In my view, though, co-parents have an extra responsibility to their children given the family rupture. Here are four reasons why effective co-parenting matters more than ever. 

Read more from Dana Westreich Hirt on the Huffington Post >

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A dad called me and asked if his ten year old should have an Instagram account, worried his child might be overexposed or victimized. Regardless of my own opinion, my first question back to him was, ‘Do you want your child to have an Instagram account?’ Silent, he realized he hadn’t stopped to consider his own position on the topic. The first thing we did was determine how he felt about the technology and spent time addressing his fears. Once he understood his own feelings, we could then work to reach a decision that respected his own values and intentionally weighed possible outcomes.

Intentional Parenting seeks to have us all making mindful decisions based on our own values and the outcomes we want. That is why I don’t want everyone to parent like I do - I want you to parent in ways that reflect your values, not mine. These are the guiding principles that I strive to utilize at Dana Hirt Parenting.

- Dana Hirt  |  Founder



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"I have professionals in various aspects of my life to help me excel, so the idea of working with a Parenting Coach made a lot of sense. Dana has been a tremendous resource to me; she is honest and direct without trying to impose a prepackaged approach. Dana has helped me understand not only what is going on behind my kids' behavior, but also how I can respond most effectively to them."

J.S.  |  father of 3

"I can think of no one better or more qualified to help build the skills, confidence, knowledge and mindset it takes for successful Intentional Parenting. Dana’s approach is thoughtful, practical and infused with a tremendous depth of experience. She is able to provide guidance and support for every aspect of parenting using her understanding of human behavior, wisdom and creativity. Ultimately, there’s no question I’m a better parent because of Dana and I couldn’t be more grateful for the invaluable guidance she’s provided to me and consequently my family."

D.H.  |  father of 2

"I am a single mother of two and also a professional in the mental health field, but after my divorce I found myself needing support in parenting my children. Dana was a life raft for me. She provided sound, consistent, evidence-based advice, and she also let me know that I was not alone. Dana has the ability to give parenting strategies while also supporting and believing in the parent. I have learned much about the teenage developmental stage, appropriate interventions and myself through Dana’s steadfast direction and care."

S.K.  |  mother of 2

"Dana is brilliant and insightful. Through our long distance partnership (I am located in Rhode Island), I have come to better realize my own strengths and vulnerabilities as an engaged parent raising two teenage sons. Dana's jaunty and reassuring style has put me more at ease as I navigate the inevitable ups and downs of parenting my kids. I wholeheartedly recommend Dana Hirt Parenting to anyone wishing to feel more successful as a parent."

M.G.  |  Mother of 2




Dana Hirt  |  Founder

Dana Hirt is the founder of Dana Hirt Parenting, and works as its lead parenting educator and coach. She holds a Master’s Degree in Education in Human Development and Learning from DePaul University and The Institute for Psychoanalysis, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Education and Psychology from Brown University. She has successfully completed Northwestern University's Divorce Mediation Skills Training Certificate Program.

Before starting Dana Hirt Parenting, Ms. Hirt worked as an educational therapist in both hospital and day school settings as well as in private practice.  

Ms. Hirt is the mother of three children, ages 24, 22 and 20. She currently lives in Chicago, Illinois.

Growing up, I always knew I wanted to be a parent. My other aspirations fluctuated over the years, but in the end I knew I was destined to be a mom. However, I had no idea what the job was really like, and the mom I am today has grown significantly from the mom who held her first baby over 24 years ago.