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For Parents Only: Getting Inside the Head of Your Kid by [Feldhahn, Shaunti, Rice, Lisa A.]
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4.6 out of 5 stars 45 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


"Shaunti and Lisa have done an outstanding job talking about the issues, confusion, and dreams our kids face as they grow–and thus the issues we face as parents. Someone once said to me, ‘God gives us the most important job in the world called parenting, and gives that job to inexperienced people.’ That is so true. But as you understand the inner life of your child, you will be much better equipped to meet the challenges and joys of being a good parent. I encourage you to pick up this book and start the journey of understanding today.”
Jim Daly, president, Focus on the Family

“Shaunti and Lisa have boldly gone where no one has gone before: straight into the brain of a teenager! The insights they have found give us a unique peek into the hopes, fears, desires, and challenges facing the next generation. Savvy parents will read and respond to what they learn in this book, and their family will be better as a result.”
Dennis Rainey, president, FamilyLife

“I will be buying this book by the case. As a youth minister, I’m always trying to communicate to parents exactly what Shaunti and Lisa so eloquently and poignantly communicate in For Parents Only. Every parent of teens should read this brilliant book!”
Dannah Gresh, author of And the Bride Wore White

“Sandra and I love this book! With two teenage boys and a daughter who just started middle school, we soaked up Shaunti and Lisa’s insights and discoveries like sponges. This is not just another book on parenting. It is a fascinating look at the way your child’s mind works. We plan to use For Parents Only as a curriculum in our home group.”
Andy Stanley, pastor, North Point Community Church

“Shaunti and Lisa dive into the deepest core of kids’ hearts to bring parents amazingly insightful truths and advice. They hit the bull’s-eye ...

About the Author

Shaunti Feldhahn is a nationally syndicated newspaper columnist, public speaker, and a best-selling author whose books include For Women Only. After working on Wall Street and Capitol Hill, this mother of two now applies her analytical skills to illuminating surprising truths about relationships.

Lisa A. Rice is the associate editor of Christian Living magazine, the mother/foster mom of three teenager girls, and one teenage boy, and an experienced screenwriter and producer. She’s also the coauthor, with Shaunti, of For Young Women Only.

Product Details

  • File Size: 4811 KB
  • Print Length: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Multnomah (January 16, 2009)
  • Publication Date: January 21, 2009
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #282,616 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
It's a scientific fact that parents do not understand teenagers. In fact, the only people who understand teenagers are other teenagers--and Shaunti Feldhahn and Lisa A. Rice. The authors took a nationwide survey of over 1000 teens. I am overwhelmed at their dedication. They don't endorse bad behavior, and they point out that there are exceptions for every rule, but they cover a lot of subjects that have kept parents bewildered since Adam and Eve raised Cain and Able. The results may surprise you.

Have you ever wondered why your teen won't talk and when he does it's nothing you want to hear? Wonder why she ignores your advice, but can quote from memory what her peers are saying? It's all between the covers of this book, along with some really surprising comments from teenagers, both boys and girls. Feldhahn and Rice have done a great job of writing a guidebook for parents of teens. For Parents Only is a book the reader will read more than once. Recommended for all parents.
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Format: Hardcover
For every bewildered parent, there's a kid longing to be understood. (from back cover)

In For Parents Only, the authors take us into the minds of teens and preteens by using the results of a nationwide survey and personal interviews with more than a thousand teens.

They cover things such as:

--Looking in on growing up

--The good thing about being the bad guy

--Attitude adjustment

And much more.

I didn't read this book exactly in order. As I have a moody fifteen year old and an equally moody twelve year old in my house, I headed straight for the chapter entitled Attitude Adjustment because I wanted to see what it said. After I read it, I went to talk to my considerably less moody seventeen year old and asked him about the findings. He agreed with the author's comments and insights almost one hundred percent.

For Parents Only is a resource that all parents need--whether your children are little and growing up way too fast, or only a few short years from leaving the nest. The writing is sitting across the kitchen table and sharing a cup of coffee friendly, and yet as helpful and wise as if your mother or grandmother is sharing their wisdom.

This is a must have for parents, counselors, and anyone involved with youth.

Armchair Interviews says: Check out the related discussion guide.
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Format: Hardcover
"For Parents Only" is a great read for anyone who wants to know more about how to be a more effective parent. Among the topics covered include:

1. Kids' desire for freedom.
2. Why our children secretly hope we will stand firm on certain issues.
3. How to help teens feel secure.
4. How to get your teen to open up and talk to you.
5. A teen's mood swings and how to help their confidence.

Throughout the book are helpful survey results that show how teens would like to see their parents respond in a given situation. Many of the survey results and conclusions by the authors reinforced my belief that we are to be our kids' parents and not their friends.

Coming from a Christian perspective, my point of view is to raise our kids in "the fear of the Lord" - a healthy and respectful fear, that is. Teaching our kids to respect us is far more important then winning their friendship. One kid mentioned in the book that if "I wanted friends I can get them at school, but at home I want my parents to be parents instead of my friends". Another conclusion in the book states that kids get more security and confidence when their parents state clear boundaries and are firm to their kids when needed. To that I say a hearty "AMEN!!!!!".

While some folks may not agree with the book's conclusion, I dare say that many (and quite a few from a non-Christian background) will agree that a firm yet loving type of parent is far better than a parent who is more concerned with being the child's friend. Teach the children respect early and the friendship can come later.

Whether or not you agree with the book, the authors present some conclusions that will challenge you to evaluate the effectiveness of your parenting style.

Read and enjoy. Highly recommended!
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Format: Hardcover
If you are anything like me, you spend part of your parenting moments congratulating yourself for surviving and the rest of the time kicking yourself for failing.

Even though everyone told me to enjoy them while they're young, I wished away the whining, the diapers, the clinging and the neediness of the younger years. Shouldn't everything get easier as they get older? Doesn't a parent's alternate life as a person begin when the kids learn to drive?


I jumped on the opportunity to do this blog tour because I'm exhausted. My bag of parenting tricks is empty. I also never expected to feel this way,.I'm generally the one my friends come to when they've reached into the burlap sack of ideas and grab air.

I read for parents only within a two hour time frame, and closed the book still feeling exhausted, but a different kind of exhausted. I'm not alone. There is hope.

Rice and Feldhahn write from different perspectives, one a parent of small children, the other a seasoned parent of teens. They've discovered a handful of keys that parents aren't easily discovering in the heaps of emotion, puddles of drama and endless parental/teen miscommunication within their own homes.

A small book with chapters marked for easy readability, statistics and solid suggestions. I don't know that I can guarantee that reading this will make your life easier. But I found one thing to grasp a hold of that is going to get me to the next obstacle. Then I'll reread a few key points and see what else jumps out at me. That's worth $14.95 in my book.
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