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How to Raise Your Adult Children: Because Big Kids Have Even Bigger Problems Hardcover – August 5, 2010

4.3 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Comedy writer Parent and psychotherapist Ende combine their wit and expertise in this collection of letters from parents facing issues with grown children. According to the U.S. Census, 55% of men and 48% of women ages 18 to 24 are living with their parents: this trend has given rise to a host of financial and lifestyle conflicts. In separate chapters, each with an introductory section, the authors answer questions relating to money, the college years, living arrangements, work, dating, family rituals, marriage, in-laws, grandchildren, divorce, and aging and illness. In their approaches, the authors differ: Parent, who wrote for The Golden Girls, is often tongue-in-cheek, while Ende takes a slightly more earnest approach. The questions--gathered from friends, relatives, and "strangers"-- are wide-ranging, from what to do when a college student trades the car his parents bought him for a motorcycle to how to deal with a dad who is dating his daughterÖs 28-year-old girlfriend. The dueling tones and format donÖt always work, but the authorsÖ overriding theme--that adult children are separate from parents, who must respect their right to make their own choices in order to foster independence--rings true.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Gail Parent is an award-winning writer and producer whose credits include The Tracey Ullman Show, The Carol Burnett Show, Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman, and The Golden Girls. She is also the bestselling author of Sheila Levine Is Dead and Living in New York
Susan Ende, M.F.T, is a psychotherapist and has taught at California Institute of Technology, Pepperdine University, and California State University at Los Angeles. Both authors live in California. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Hudson Street Press (August 5, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594630690
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594630699
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.5 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,346,930 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Half the people I know spend a big portion of their life dealing with the problems of their adult children. After providing them with a first class education, start up money, a Rolodex full of contacts and recommendations, why do they rush to the rescue every time a kid stumbles a little? Including letting 30-somethings move back home! Guilt I suppose, and a lot of other things covered by this book--after all, the kid didn't ask to be born, he reminds you. The advice is serious and well reasoned. The presentation is easy to take. The book has a light touch and is genuinely funny--kind of a spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down. Do we have an obligation to let our children grow up, with all the risk and occasional trauma that entails? This book has a lot of answers.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I probably wouldn't have bought this book if Gail Parent hadn't been one of the two authors. I am the mother of two adult sons and I think I've done a fairly good job of raising them. But Gail Parent was one of my favorite authors from her fiction published in the 1970's and 1980's. "Sheila Levine" is still readable forty years after it was written and "The Best Laid Plans" is one of my favorite books.

So, where has Parent been for the past 30 years or so? Raising two sons, it seems, and hanging out with psychologist friends. (Also writing for TV but not writing more novels.) With this advise book, written with her friend, Susan Ende, she has reentered her old readers' lives just at a time when they are facing the dreaded "adult children syndrome" (my term, not hers). Both Parent and Ende dispense advise in the form of answering letters in tandem from parents asking about how to handle problems with both their children and their parents. We're the "sandwich generation", after all. Parent's answers are more practical or social, while Ende's are more psychological. Both authors tend to hit the mark with their responses to the questions posed, while some of the questions/problems presented seem to beg the response, "Are you kidding me, you must be crazy". I applaud Parent and Ende's restrain in responding to those questions/problems.

So, do we members of the "sandwich generation" need Parent and Ende's book? Maybe, sometimes, we 50 and 60 year olds really DON'T know all the answers. Parent and Ende are here to help with their breezy, yet serious advise.
It's a good book that I'm glad I bought. Now, Gail, let's get some more fiction, please. What ever happened to Sheila?
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Although there was some good information, I found a lot of the comments offensive. Although Parent was probably to be funny, calling people idiots, etc. and calling their children names is not what I would call appropriate. Also, the book seems to lack diverse perspectives; there was too much focus on wealthy parents.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The title and the description of this book was much better than the reality. This book reads more like an advice column -- which it is -- rather than a substantive parenting primer on how to develop quality relationships with our adult children. There are other books available that offer much better advice.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a pretty good book, especially being there are not any choices out there to deal specifically with this topic. It is basically in a question and answer format, similar to an Ann Lander's style column. The entire premise of this book is to "butt out" of you grown children's business for the most part - that they have to make their own mistakes and we are not here to rescue them or control them. The advice is to leave them alone and let them create a life that is meaningful to them. It is a fairly quick read and easy to understand. Also, humorous....

Still, I couldn't help wishing for an answer as to what I could do to encourage my own adult child to fix an issue in his life.....
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By IG on September 21, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book was such an eye opener for me. I had so many misconceptions about the role a parent and an adult child should play. I thought my responsibilities toward my child went beyond the boundaries of raising him to be a responsible, successful adult. It's not my job to tell him what to be when he's an adult but to be there to support his decisions, give advice when asked and also remember that I don't know everything and that sometimes outside sources might be a better course of action. I learned so much. I would recommend this book to anyone with adult children.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I listened to this book. The two authors read it. The information they give is a wonderful,eyeopening, and insightful
look into how we raised our children and now how to help ourselves "deal" with the end product. It is very eyeopening and caring. They don't make you feel like a failure at parenting and you realize many other parents struggle with the same issues.
My thanks to the authors!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I found lots of books on divorce but nothing about when adult children divorce. This book had only one chapter on divoce so I bought it. It's the best non-fiction book I have ever read. I ended up reading the whole thing and will keep it as a resource. Love the format and all advise. When I'm done with it (if ever) I'm planning to donate it to my church library.
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