Parents can protect toddlers--with their maximum mobility and minimum logic--by pasting plastic on electrical outlets and putting poisons out of reach. But protecting teenagers is not so simple, says family psychologist and author of Raising a Nonviolent Child
John Rosemond. "Short of solitary confinement, you can't guarantee that a teen won't use drugs, shoplift, drink or crash the car. In the final analysis, teens must protect themselves." Rosemond's Teen-Proofing
provides parents with tough-love strategies for managing teens so they make self-protective, rather than self-destructive, decisions.
Many parents will recognize the error of their ways in Rosemond's portraits of parents as "micro-managers" who try to control their children and "wimps" who let their children control them. He offers a compelling alternative by urging parents to be "mentors, who realize they can control the parent-child relationship, but not the child." The author explores critical parent-teen issues including curfews, cash, cars, and cohorts--detailing an approach that gives teenagers a "long rope" to make their own mistakes and also offers "creative consequences" to encourage responsible decision making.
The author offers smart and seasoned advice--from coping with middle school "tweenagers" to understanding why teens are vulnerable and how the culture diminishes a parent's influence. Yet he undermines his clarity with snide asides about mental health professionals and one too many smug and self-congratulatory examples of his own parenting of a son and daughter. These distractions are unnecessary; the book's unconventional and provocative suggestions will speak volumes to parents of teens. --Barbara Mackoff
--This text refers to the
From Publishers Weekly
RosemondAsyndicated newspaper columnist, family psychologist and author of numerous child-rearing titles (Because I Said So!)Awrites about the angst-ridden teen years with a keen sense of humor. Rosemond's message that teens need to be "mentored" rather than "micro-managed" by their parents is clear and quite reasonable, but readers unfamiliar with his often unconventional attitude may be put off when he turns his acerbic wit toward mental-health professionals, including Selma Fraiberg, who he says promote "parentbabble." The book clearly outlines what to expect of teens and how to deal with peer groups; gives solid advice on how to set limits and communicate with adolescents; and covers more troubling subjects such as drugs and depression. The author slips too often into a q&a format that seems better suited to a newspaper column, and offers only scant information on school problems and how to approach the subject of college. Fortunately, Rosemond's main text is peppered with entertaining anecdotes from his family and amusing tit-for-tat tales of raising his own son and daughter. Rosemond followers will no doubt be delighted to add this book on teens to their parenting libraries, but newcomers may have to adjust to the author's unsentimental attitude toward kids and may find his advice to let the teen "stew in his own juices" just a bit tough to swallow.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.