Rosalind Wiseman was gracious enough to give us a sneak peek at the advice found in her new book, and we're kind enough to share. So, if you've ever found yourself in any of the following situations, Queen Bee Moms & Kingpin Dads is the book for you:
1. Your kid, who attends every practice diligently, gets lots of "pine time" on the bench, while other kids who aren't nearly as good get more play time. Should you say anything to the coach?
2. Your daughter fights with her best friend, who shuts her out of the clique. The best friend's Mom says, "I really think the girls should work it out, don't you?"
3. An angry father shouts down the principal at the PTA meeting, saying, "I know I speak for all parents here when I say..." while you disagree completely. Should you speak up?
4. You walk by two women and overhear them saying about a girl nearby, "She looks like such a slut." That's your daughter they're talking about. Should you confront them?
5. Your son goes to a party where there's drinking. When the cops bust up the party, your kid gets suspended too, even though he wasn't drinking. Should you protest?
6. Your daughter doesn't get invited to "the" party of the season, which is being given by one of her good friends. Should you call the other mother?
7. They're putting the squeeze on you to join yet another school committee, but you're already stretched thin with your full-time job. How can you say no?
8. The principal busts your kid for cheating, and now his chances for getting into a good college are ruined. It was a one-time offense, and you think the principal is making too big a deal of the incident. Should you challenge the school to get it expunged from his high school transcript?
From Publishers Weekly
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Top Customer Reviews
However, some of the suggestions for dealing with conflict boggle my mind. For instance, the author says if someone else schedules a birthday party on the same day as your child's party, you should call up the other parents, and suggest a joint party or give them the chance to "do the right thing," which is apparently for those parents to cancel/reschedule their child's party. I find this to be absurd, impractical, and potentially embarrassing to your child. First of all, if you are the one with the problem with the parties, you should reschedule your child's party. Why are you trying to make your problem their problem? Perhaps you could make a joint party work, but either that child wasn't invited to your child's party in the first place, or that child WAS invited but decided to have his own party. Either way, it doesn't bode well for a joint party. I think another suggestion was for the parents of both kids to send out a joint letter stating that they expect the kids to honor their first commitment to one of the parties. Again, I find this micromanaging and awkward.
There are other instances of this but I think you can get the idea. First she says don't micromanage your child's social life and then seems to suggest you do that very thing. There is helpful information here, just don't swallow everything without a little common sense.
Even better, Ms. Wiseman seems to understand kids as they really are (as opposed to how parents want them to be) and presents the information square on, with the feel of a friend who knows you well enough to tell you the truth unflinchingly. When she mentions that her son's abiding passion - over studying - is his X-Box, we know what she means. When she discusses her desire for her sons to know that "mom will always find out" if they've done something ill-considered, one nods in understanding.
So for every parent who wonders who to guide their kids' relationships - with other kids and adults alike - in positive, healthy, non-meddling, and non-social-death (in the words of a 13 year old I know) ways, I can't think of a better resource. From descriptions of the parental personality types one is likely to encounter at the PTA meeting or fundraiser and how to deal with them to frank suggestions on the it's-good-for-all-of-us need to keep Bat Mitzvah celebrations to reasonably minimums, refrain from writing your kids' college aps and confront a friend who you believe might be taking a parenting misstep while preserving the relationship, Ms. Wiseman covers it all well and thoroughly.
I don't live in Perfect Parent World, do you? And with this book, I feel like I've got a map to find my way around.
1. Frank descriptions about how parents of different races see each other...
My daughter's school is majority minority. The PTA is majority white. The book has helped me figure out the dynamics of the group and take small steps to get them to consider this as a problem.
2. Remember that all parent s want what is best for their children....
Our school listserv was getting out of hand last week with an argument about how colds were spread (seriously!). I pulled a quote from the book and reminded everyone that we need to assume that fellow parents are coming from a good and positive place regarding their children. If you can imagine how much that other mom loves her child, maybe you can have some empathy for her rather than just react negatively to what she says.
3. Make a plan to make change...
A girl was gossiping about my 1st grader and making her school day miserable. Using the steps in the book I helped my child take necessary action to confront her classmate, then had a very successful conversation with the other mom that resulted in positive change instead of a defensive argument.
4. Look at your own reaction to other parents...
There were several chapters in the book that helped me focus on my own reactions. Like freaking out when someone talks about a program her child is in - maybe it is better than what my kids are signed up for! Or not letting a bragging mom make me feel inferior.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Devoured this book on a weekend and am eagerly looking forward to the revised edition which I hear is coming out next year. A great read!Published 14 months ago by Paine Whitney
Wish I'd read this sooner. So reassuring to know others feel the neurotic culture and need help too. Great examples.Published 18 months ago by Hans Simons
Great read! I really loved it! Unfortunately, there were about 40 missing pages from the middle of my book. They did not appear to be ripped out, they just were not there.Published 20 months ago by annalice hill
Great supplement to Queen Bees and Wannabes as well as Masterminds and Wingmen.
Highlights current trends in parental guidance well.
I found this a useful refresher course on how to read other parents. Nice tips on how to help avoid pitfalls when dealing with certain types of parent. Read morePublished on September 11, 2013 by 3offthecharts