- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 7 hours and 19 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
- Audible.com Release Date: April 4, 2017
- Language: English
- ASIN: B06XQ5ZJ32
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
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The Happiest Kids in the World: How Dutch Parents Help Their Kids (and Themselves) by Doing Less Audiobook – Unabridged
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That is the refreshing thing about The Happiest Kids in the World. The message is simple: relax. It's going to be okay. The book has such a friendly, warm tone and I found myself laughing along as I could relate to the culture shock of wait, they let kids do what? And they survive and thrive!? Amazing! The authors' personal anecdotes are all followed up by research and interviews with Dutch professionals and it feels very balanced, a bit like the Dutch parenting the book advocates.
A common complaint for books like this is "Well, that won't work in the US." Yes, part of Dutch parenting happens due to the government--the way they prioritize maternity care and families in policies, the way schools are structured and how health services are available to all. But that only came about because it reflected the culture, the actual families living out their values. My experience in the Netherlands with children was that they weren't weird or exceptional specimens. They were normal kids who were allowed a really low-key beautiful childhood. They felt safe and loved. That's something that all of us, parents or not, can hope for and strive to create in our communities.
If you want some entertaining, non-judgemental advice of how to get off the treadmill of perfectionist parenting or if you're just interested in getting a glimpse into Dutch culture, this is a fantastic start.
The book is well referenced and has a lot of great research to justify the statement that "the Dutch raise the happiest kids in the world". Unlike the Danish book claiming the same but not providing any evidence to why the Danish children could claim to be the happiest.
Rina Mae spoke on her first stop in San Francisco to a small audience of mostly Dutch parents and some Americans. We shared childhood memories and asked the questions; "why don't we all raise our children to be playful and independent?". The sad answer is, our children are too busy and we are too anxious....
A must read for all parents raising children of all ages.