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Getting to Calm: Cool-Headed Strategies for Parenting Tweens + Teens Paperback – June 1, 2009
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Parenting in a complicated world
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About the Author
Laura S. Kastner, Ph.D., is a clinical associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the University of Washington. A psychologist and mother of two, she writes and lectures widely on adolescence and family behavior. She and Jennifer Wyatt, Ph.D., are the co-authors of three books, including Getting to Calm: Cool-headed Strategies for Parenting Tweens and Teens; The Launching Years: Strategies for Parenting Senior Year to College Life; and The Seven Year Stretch: How families Work Together to Grow Through Adolescence.
Top Customer Reviews
The book covers so many issues which come up. The chapter, "When You're Fighting About Grades", is just one of many that could be so helpful to all parents. The section titled "Seven Top Tips for Boosting School Achievement" in that chapter offers excellent guidelines as does "The ABC'S of Family Health" in the chapter about getting stressed out. They also deal with drinking, smoking, dating, and the use of electronic devices all while pointing out what it is like to be a teenager.
By the end of the book the reader is shown two scripts where two different fathers take diverse approaches with a daughter who has received a poor progress report. The successful parent shown is "calm, careful and skillful" and as a reader, I felt empowered to use their strategies not only with teenagers, but with any family member. The thought-out careful approach can make all the difference.
I would recommend this book to all parents of teenagers. Would anyone want to miss the section about "More Responsibility for Kids"?
This book is quite readable and reasonable. I particularly liked the up-to-the-minute brain information, which explains teen behaviors (and parents', too)in ways that take the moral sting out of negative behaviors. I found the language helpful; for example, "rudeness" is a better description of typical teen behavior than "defiance." And "discipline" is really, at its root, about learning, not punishing. The chapter on entitlement and indulgence is superb.
I have no hesitation in recommending this book for all parents, even if they don't yet have teens!
Have the problems disappeared? Certainly not! We have a 13-year old girl in our lives! But her mother has a new and powerful tool. When conflict begins, Mom dashes away for a quick consultation; the chapters and sections are designed to work this way, offering on-the-spot, targeted strategies. And the hidden secret of this book is that the "Getting to Calm" begins with calming the parents. It works so well that my daughter refers to the book as "my valium!" And, faced with relaxed and confident parents, my granddaughter is sailing through her "moments" with much greater ease.
The book is realistic, about both teens and their parents. The calming begins when you realize that you don't have the only child that behaves this way and that you aren't the only parent who is hurt & angry. The book takes time to discuss what is happening, physiologically and psychologically; it helps to know that this stage is as necessary and natural as it is trying. The case studies are realistic, the voice of the book is wise & friendly, and the recommendations really really work.
The models of effective parenting presented in "Getting to Calm" demonstrate parents communicating respect and caring, while sticking to the boundaries and guidelines so needed by teenagers. The book provides samples of dialogue where, by adopting a "calm" approach, parents are able to convey faith in their child, and a sense that even in the throws of a crisis situation the teen is fundamentally a good kid and wise person who may have made a big mistake and can learn from it. The authors provide practical strategies and advice for helping parents manage their own sometimes less that ideal reactions and responses and guide their teen in making wise choices. This book provides tangible solutions for parents struggling with the common difficulties of raising teens.
Lorinda R. Rowledge, Ph.D.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
For kids turning into their teenage years this is a book you probably want to read. I have read it once, but will read it many other times with my wife to try and have the best... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Thomas Tsiaras
Excellent and practical resource for parents of tweens and teenagers. The examples of what we feel like doing in the heat of the moment and what to do after some deep breaths or a... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Amazon Customer
I'm at 4 stars only b/c I'm still reading. The intro had me and I'm looking forward to more
real, hands on insight from Ms. Kastner. Read more
Great advice presented in a really useful compartmentalized way. I am calmer already.Published 7 months ago by Simon Govier
It is just what I need to help navigate my grandchildren's passages into the teen years, and hopefully help dull those sharp edges. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Grateful Gram
This is by far one of the best and most useful parenting books I have read. The book is very insightful about the dynamics between parents and children and really helps parents... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Susan F