Customer Reviews: Just Tell Me What to Say: Sensible Tips and Scripts for Perplexed Parents
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VINE VOICEon February 26, 2008
Oh, I wish I'd had this book when my daughter was younger! It is directed at parents of kids aged 2 to 6. Maybe for her next book Betsy Brown Braun could do a book for kids aged 14 to 16. My daughter's 14th birthday was yesterday. Betsy, please hurry.

"Just Tell Me What To Say" is just that: a collection of situations with scripts of what to say to kids. It is calm, wise and completely honest. It has great advice. On the topic of swearing, for example, tips include suggesting funny alternative words to swear words ("Fooey-spitooey!" "Rats!") and that parents should never wash out a child's mouth with soap.


1. SMALL TALK IS BIG TALK. Communicating with your children
2. "TOMMY JUST DOESN'T LISTEN." Discipline do's and don'ts
3. "IT'S ALL MOLLY'S FAULT." Sibling issues
4. "HOW MANY BITES `TIL I CAN GET DESSERT?" Children's eating habits and behaviors
5. "GET YOUR FINGER OUT OF YOUR NOSE!" Manners and social graces
6. "IT'S NOT FAIR!" Day-to-day parenting dilemmas
7. "HOW DID THE BABY GET IN YOUR TUMMY?" Learning about the Birds and the Bees
8. "WHY DID MOMMY'S HAIR FALL OUT?" Talking about serious illness
10. "MOMMY AND DADDY HAVE SOMETHING TO TELL YOU." Talking with your children about divorce
11. "IS THE FIRE GOING TO COME TO OUR HOUSE?" Answering questions about natural disasters, terrorism and war.
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on February 28, 2008
Before I picked up this book, as any parent, I thought I already had a lot of the answers. After all, I'd already survived one teenager.

From page one of Just Tell Me What to Say, I didn't have enough answers, and thankfully, this book would give me them all.

Throughout the chapters of Just Tell Me What to Say, I found a treasure trove of information and advice, many things I did not have in my parent arsenal of answers... but do now! By the end of the book, I felt empowered, ready to take on questions from my toughest toddler, and comforted by the fact that I have an invaluable resource handy, should I need to deal with more sensitive issues like illness and death.

Just Tell Me What to Say covers it all, from sex to divorce, to rudeness in public and picky eaters. The author, Betsy Brown Braun, provides tips and scripts, and oodles of advice, written in a fun, friendly, "parent to parent" style that's easy to identify with and comprehend. Ms. Braun is truly an expert and her advice, priceless.

I could go on and on praising the merits of this book, but in a nutshell-I'm convinced Just Tell Me What to Say is a book that every parent and childcare professional needs. Get a copy and read it today, you'll be grateful you did...and your children will be, too.
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on April 18, 2008
Thank goodness! This is NOT another "Raise-Your-Child-According-To-Me" book. Betsy assumes you already know a little something about parenting and can handle most day-to-day situations. But she also knows that we're all going to get stuck occasionally wondering about the right thing to say. THIS is when you pick up her book and look for help -- and you WILL find it. It's brilliant! Think of it as WD-40 for the parenting brain.
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on August 1, 2013
I am a stay at home dad with a father who was US Special Forces where I was raised in a "be seen, but not heard" home. Not the best teachers but my parents did there best. Know that I want to raise my child to be respectful, polite and overall good kid with out the "fear of god" or "dad" aspect to raising my son and daughter on the way. Too many parents in my generation, the ones who grew up in the 80's, have raised brats. That is at least in the area we live in. No respect for adults, talking back to teachers and parents is the norm it seems now a days. Well this book is really great on teaching me what and how to teach my child respect, boundaries, empathy and discipline. I am not the reading type of person so for me to pick up a book and read it I need to really like it or feel it is incredibly helpful and in this case the latter. Betsy's other book, "Your not the brat of me" is also a great book. There are many ways to raise children but making it easier for me to learn better ways are what this book is all about. The only way this book could be better if it had an app that, "in the moment" of conversation with your child, you could press a button and get the best answer on how to respond to you child. Before reading this book I can say I've worked very hard getting my child to say, please, thank you and cleaning up his toys etc. It's more a matter of teaching the etiquette and discipline to the parent to make their job raising their child easier. I can say it definitely helps tremendously and simple ways to say things work wonders. Read one of the page previews and you will see for your self. Highly recommended for any parent with babies or toddlers even elementary age can benefit from you the parent learning a better way to raise our kids.
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on March 15, 2008
Where was Betsy Brown Braun when we were raising our own children? While we certainly managed, how much easier life would have been with Just Tell Me What to Say on our nightstands. What an amazing resource. In addition to being packed with valuable information, the author's style is direct, no nonsense and humorous - all at the same time. She is obviously an expert on the subject of raising healthy, happy children but she talks to you like she is talking to a friend. I have given this book to my daughter (mother of a 1 year old) and daughter-in-law (mother of a 2 year old) who both know that I think they are wonderful mothers. We have already had meaningful conversations about a few topics in the book and know that there will be many more opportunities to reference it in the future. I have also started giving this book to my friends who are becoming grandmothers. Just Tell Me What to Say is definitely a quick refresher course. The only request I would have for Mrs. Braun is to please come out with the 6-10 year sequel within the next 4 years.
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on March 24, 2008
This book is heaven-sent!

I had been combing the shelves for books that would help me find the way to talk to my son in an age-appropriate way (he's 4) about death and the life-cycle, and hadn't found anything that seemed right to me. Then I came across this book which not only gave me an overview about how to discuss death, but provided a "script" that I could use. Happily, the entire book is as useful and I found myself using the scripts for situations that I hadn't expected to find myself in, the very week I bought the book!

I highly recommend this book for parents who are looking for the appropriate words to use and tone to take with their kids but aren't quite sure of the best approach. The writing is terrific and her point of view and perspective are sensible and open-minded.

I've already sent the link for the book to every mom I know, and I've had it on my night-stand so I can use it as a refresher whenever I need it.

A must have!
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on June 24, 2013
I have really enjoyed this book and it certainly has made me feel more human! I like most of the tips provided - they seem easy enough to follow and aren't too new-agey.
I am a little disappointed in the bodily functions chapter as this is the stage we're in with our 4 year old. I didn't find specific enough advice/scripts to try. Sadly I think I'll just have to wait this one out...but the rest of the book has been extremely helpful.
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on March 31, 2008
I love this book. I devoured the whole thing in one night, dog-earing pertinent sections that I have gone back to regularly since I read it.

Her scripts for "backtalk" and whining are really helping me deal with my almost five-year-old I also really like the chapters on explaining death and world concerns (aka terrorists) to children.

The fact that there are actual scripts is my favorite part. It really gets straight to what we really need when we're dealing with issues with our kids.

I'm sure I'll use this book even more than I did the "What to Expect" series when my kids were babies.
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on May 15, 2010
As a parent educator and author myself, I am very critical of many books for parents. Betsy's book is an exception. It's fun to read, immensely practical, really helpful and best of all, empowers parents to understand how children think and what they need to hear, especially in dealing with tough topics, such as death, sickness, fears, sexuality, siblings etc. The author tackles each of these topics as well as everyday issues with an upbeat, clear and accessible style. I will be recommending it unequivocally to the parents in my talks and workshops. Great job, Betsy!

Nancy Samalin, [...]
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on April 5, 2008
This is the best parenting book I've read. I have two boys (2 and 4), and most every topic has been an issue within our household. I've recommended this book to all my friends, and those who have purchased it are also singing its praises. I love the author's "scripted" responses -- takes all the guess work out!
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