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Raising Children Who Think for Themselves Paperback – May 10, 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books/Beyond Words (May 10, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1582700478
  • ISBN-13: 978-1582700472
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #422,375 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Raising Children Who Think for Themselves provides plenty of sensible, down-to-earth advice for parents. A goldmine of suggestions and guidance."
—Thomas W. Phelan, PhD, author of 1-2-3 Magic

"Rich stories and examples from her own parenting experiences and those of her patients make Medhus's book a comprehensive guide for teaching our children to become honest, intuitive, and independent thinkers, using not only their heads but their hearts."
—Jeanne Elium, coauthor of Raisin a Son and Raising a Daughter

From the Publisher

Beyond Words is proud to announce that Raising Children Who Think for Themselves, by author Elisa Medhus, M.D., has earned three highly prestigious awards: The 2002 Parent's Choice Award, The 2002 NAPPA Gold Award (National Parenting Publications Association,) and the 2002 National Parenting Center Seal of Approval.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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See all 17 customer reviews
I highly recommend this book for Parents and Grandparents alike.
William D. Bergstrom
In many instances I would finish reading a certain hypothetical scenario Dr. Medus had invented and think "wow that's exactly how I felt growing up!"
Sal Asutra
Dr. Medhus has successfully communicated her great knowledge of raising strong, independent children.
Happy Eater

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

40 of 41 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 12, 2001
Format: Paperback
The problmes that seem pervasive among youth today, from mindless consumerism and premature sex to school shootings and drug abuse, have raised an uproar on all sides, and the blame for these ills gets bounced around like a ping-pong ball!--TV, video games, lack of religion, rap music, and on and on. But Dr. Medhus, after hundreds of interviews with children from all kids of backgrounds, reaches the conclusion that the problems really all spring from a common source: personalities that react to outside forces rather than their own beliefs and morals. Laying out the difference between "externally directed" people who act according to impulses, peer pressure, and the fear of punishment, and "self-directed" people, who have been taught to think for themselves and follow their own consciences, she goes on to share parenting methods intended to encourage the introspection, empathy, and high self-esteem that gives self-directed children their ability to resist negative influences. The author discusses specific techniques for handling many kinds of situations, with rules and disciplinary measures that help kids understand why bad behavior is wrong, instead of shaming or scaring them into blind submission. Indispensible advice for parents seeking to inspire their kids to self-confidence, adventurousness, independence, competence, and the ability to make positive contributions to the world.--MZ
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Sal Asutra on August 27, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Page after page all made it clear that Dr. Medus really did her homework in putting together this great book on raising a confident and intrinsically successful child. Being a new father I find it a little daunting in being responsible (at least partially) for the behavioral molding of a human being. This book was a real eye opener is so many ways, from methods of dealing with conflict, to getting your child to accept his/her bedtime. In many instances I would finish reading a certain hypothetical scenario Dr. Medus had invented and think "wow that's exactly how I felt growing up!" Since my daughter is still only 6 months old I plan to reread this book many more times while she is growing up. I'd even recommend those without children to read it as it really hits home on how much our society is "externally directed" rather than internally.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By ClayHalo on June 4, 2001
Format: Paperback
THIS BOOK IS A MUST-HAVE if you want your child to be independent, confident, responsible and able to make sound decisions without your constant hovering. If you read and incorporate its advice into your life, by the time your children reach adulthood, you will have done your job as a parent well. The author gives more practical suggestions for real-life situations than I've ever seen in any book on child-rearing, and is particularly helpful for those of us with children about to enter or in middle school/jr. high school. Dr. Medhus also explains how parents can encourage even younger children to be self-directed, so that many problems associated with adolescence can be avoided. If every parent can raise ONE self-directed child, the world will be a better place for us all.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Judy Stevens on November 6, 2001
Format: Paperback
This is a wonderful guide for parents and educators who are searching for techniques to help children avoid the pitfalls of "following the crowd." The author provides many practical strategies and "real life" examples of how to interact with children to prevent inadvertent development of an external locus of control. The suggestions are powerful and helpful to all adults who want to help children become independent thinkers in a world filled with challenges. Following the author's advice will enhance student development and improve parenting skills simultaneously.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By William D. Bergstrom on May 31, 2001
Format: Paperback
I am the Grandmother of a wonderful (and willful) two year old who had her Mother baffled until she read this wonderful book. Upon reading the book our daughter began applying the techniques. Bother Mother and Daughter are happier (Daddy too). My husband and I have read the book and believe it will improve our Grandparenting skills as well. The techniques Dr. Medhus prescribes are practical. The practices set forth in this book are much like those we used as we raised our son and daughter (who very definitely think for themselves). Dr. Medhus skillfully, and with charm, articulates age-old truths in modern day language. I highly recommend this book for Parents and Grandparents alike.
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By J.Dodge on December 5, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
my daughter is 18 months old and our son is due any day. during my first pregnancy, i thought a lot about what i wanted to accomplish as a parent, what i wanted to do for/give my children to prepare them for the world. and i came to just this phrase, i wanted them to think for themselves. so naturally i was drawn to this book.

i'll be honest, i have not finished it, and i'm not sure i will. i believe whole-heartedly in the author's intentions, but here's the thing, i've already read a book that covers the same ground, leads us parents in the same direction, wants us to achieve the same goals for our children and our relationships with them and this other book does it more efficiently, with better research and better examples of what to say and do. i recommend reading "how to talk so kids will listen and how to listen so kids will talk." this book is sold more as a way to stop fighting with your kids, but ultimately it's about teaching them to recognize and identify their emotions, express the emotions in healthy and constructive ways, and to make their own decisions and accept consequences while respecting the fact that they have to live in a family and cooperate with others. the authors have a section on autonomy and how to encourage it, how to let go as parents, admit we don't have all the answers, and direct kids to asking other qualified adults, eg, a doctor, for answers.

in reading "raising children who think for themselves" i kept feeling that i was reading a rough draft of "how to talk...". "raising children..." feels more earnest in tone, but also more naive and less practical. the best thing about "how to talk..." is that the authors ran support groups wherein the techniques were used by parents who then reported back with the results.
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