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How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So…

How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk (1980)

by Adele Faber, Elaine Mazlish

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reading again, as Jamie ages, the relevancy changes!
  stacykurko | Oct 29, 2015 |
This isn't the first re-read of this book for me, but of all the parenting books I've read over the years it's my favourite. The schmaltz is limited, and a lot of it is good common sense that's useful to be reminded of every now and again.

I was conscious that I've not been properly listening to my 8 year old recently, and that I can be quick to respond to things he says with a 'told-you-so' response, or to try and suggest for him how he fixes a problem. He's definitely reaching a new stage of independence, so this book has reminded me to allow him to be more autonomous, and to do his own problem solving.

So, this bit of calibration has already had two successes today. Firstly, I told my son I was going to try really hard to acknowledge his feelings more about things rather than immediately telling him what to do. His immediate response was "Mum - that's what I've been really wanting you to do". OK - point taken.

Secondly, I decided to use his desire for increased autonomy to both our benefits. He normally takes a year to pick his way through his dinner, but tonight I said - "I'm going to allow you to be independent and grown up about how you eat your dinner this evening". And what do you know, he did much better than usual (still at his speed rather than mine, but there was no battle).

4 stars - a useful tool for the most important job you ever get without a handbook. ( )
  AlisonY | Sep 16, 2015 |
definitely one of the better parenting books i've read, with practical solutions or ideas for just about everything. they boil it down to basic communication, and make a lot of sense. this is a newer edition of a book that was written something like 30+ years ago, and i would have thought they'd update some of it. for example there is a lot of assuming that the alternative to the good communication that they're teaching is to hit or spank your child. there is a lot more emphasis on moving away from the physical than i think (hope?) there needs to be.

like in all parenting books some of it seems ridiculous, but putting it into practice is worthwhile, and not always as easy as it sounds. this has great reminders and is worth keeping for reference.

what i know will be hardest for me is to stop trying to problem solve and learn details. this passage reminded me of answering the phone on the rape crisis hotline, where what was important wasn't learning what happened, but showing your support and belief: "The urge to question is so strong. If we find out what the problem is, we feel we have a chance to fix it. But often the fix is simple acceptance. Even if this girl hadn't told me what was wrong, I feel sure that having an adult just sit with her and acknowledge her distress without question would have been the most healing remedy."

and to use: "I'd love to hear about [...] when you're ready to tell about it." or "Come tell me about [...] when you're in the mood."

also, we try hard not to use reward/punishment with our son but don't always succeed. so there were good reminders in here, too, that using punishment isn't helpful in any other relationship dynamic. ("In most of our relationships we don't have the power to punish people..." ( )
  elisa.saphier | Jul 20, 2015 |
Non-stop repetitive easier-said-than-done wishful-thinking nonsense, and brags about it. It doesn't address, for example, things that happen that they don't have advice for. This book is a con. If this is the parenting "bible" then I'm scared about what the rest of scripture looks like. I completed the book because I thought it could help,but it was a waste of my time. The bottom line seems be: be cool, manipulate your children, be creative. It could have said all that in 20 pages.
  MartinBodek | Jun 11, 2015 |
I hope I can put these things into practice. ( )
  VincentDarlage | Jan 30, 2015 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Adele Faberprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Mazlish, Elainemain authorall editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0380811960, Paperback)

How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk is an excellent communication tool kit based on a series of workshops developed by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish. Faber and Mazlish (coauthors of Siblings Without Rivalry) provide a step-by-step approach to improving relationships in your house. The "Reminder" pages, helpful cartoon illustrations, and excellent exercises will improve your ability as a parent to talk and problem-solve with your children. The book can be used alone or in parenting groups, and the solid tools provided are appropriate for kids of all ages.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:38 -0400)

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The twentieth anniversary edition of the best-selling parenting guide includes updated information as well as the practical, sensible advice that made the book a classic to begin with.

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