When Kids Call the Shots by Sean Grover (Book Review and Giveaway)
When Kids Call the Shots: How to Seize Control from Your Darling Bully
-- and Enjoy Being a Parent Again
By Sean Grover
Are the children ruling the roost? When parents reclaim their power, everyone benefits.
Rebellious, entitled, disrespectful, many kids pummel their parents with demands, and boss them around with impunity. Experts might label them 'difficult' and advise how to 'fix' them. But parenting struggles rarely originate from just one side. Instead, they erupt at the volatile intersection of a child's personality with a parent's own insecurities and behaviors. Fixing the child requires fixing yourself.
In When Kids Call the Shots, therapist and parenting expert Sean Grover untangles the forces driving family dysfunction, and helps parents assume leadership roles. With a liberating message and perceptive advice, the book explores:
- Three common bullying styles (defiant, manipulative, anxious) used by kids
- Parenting styles (guilt-prone, anxiety-fueled, fix-everything) that contribute to power imbalances
- Critical testing periods in a child's development
- Coping mechanisms that backfire
- Personalized plans for calmly exerting authority in any scenario
- And more
Caving in to tantrums and threats breeds more of the same. Learn to stop the cycle of abusive behavior and make parenting a pleasure again.
Author BioSean Grover, LCSW, author of When Kids Call the Shots, has worked in child development and adult psychotherapy for 20 years, and maintains one of the largest private group therapy practices in the U.S. He has been quoted in Newsweek, New York Magazine, NPR, and elsewhere about parent-child relationships.
"Psychotherapist Grover pulls no punches in this parenting manual . . . [his] empowering, motivating approach is highly compassionate to suffering, burnt-out parents . . ."
-- Publishers Weekly
"With warmth and sophistication, When Kids Call the Shots offers masterful lessons in the delicate art of parenting. This book will help countless parents to overcome limits, master fears and develop a healing compassion."
-- Marianne Pearl, author of A Mighty Heart (Scribner, 2004; Paramount Pictures, 2007) and In Search of Hope
"When Kids Call the Shots is a breath of fresh air in a world of endless "how to" parenting books, chocked full of practical guidance and keen insights about child development. It also takes the risk of asking parents to look at themselves to understand how they may be contributing to the problems in their relationship with their child. Sean Grover understands that in our attempt to be the best parents we can be and provide for our children's every need, we may be surrendering our power and authority as parents. And that once this shift in the power dynamic occurs we, as parents, head down a slippery slope where our wish for an idyllic family life becomes our worst nightmare."
-- Jerry Finkelstein, PhD, Director, The New School Counseling Center
"When Kids Call the Shots book is a much needed resource for parents of children all ages, from toddlers to high schoolers. This book offers important, step by step instructions on how to create a harmonious and healthy environment at home with our children. Akin to guidance found in books on helping children learn to go to sleep and stay in bed through the night, this book offers invaluable information about how our behavior shapes that of our children, and how we can change our relationships with them for the better. I look forward to having this resource to share with parents in our practice."
-- Amy Margolis, Ph.D., Columbia University Medical Center, and Director of Neuropsychology, Brooklyn Learning Center
"When Kids Call the Shots advises parents in a clear, helpful and pragmatic way. For parents who are desperate to get their relationships with their sons and daughters on track -- read this book. If it is really bad read it twice!"
-- Bob Townley, Founder and Executive Director, Manhattan Youth
"Even though I have run a parenting center for 30 years, I rarely come across a parenting book that I can wholehearted recommend. Sean Grover's When Kids Call the Shots is one of those rare few. In clear and down to earth language Sean Grover provides developmental information and sage advice that parents will be able to use immediately. He outlines the fundamental needs of all children and encourages parents to meet those needs before running off to a professional. Through real life anecdotes parents discover how they can address and help change their children's difficult behavior. This book makes it clear that parenting is hard work; work that requires introspection and an honest look at ones own unresolved issues and immaturities. If parents are willing to do the work, this book gives a road map for how to establish and maintain good relationships with our children."
-- Jean Kunhardt, MA, LMHC, Director, Soho Parenting
"Engaging, smart, funny and to the point, Sean Grover's When Kids Call the Shots provides an enlightened, no-nonsense approach to navigating the blind curves of parenting. Drawing on his personal and professional knowledge, Sean gives great insight into what may have caused your parenting balance to have tipped, how to manage the seemingly unmanageable and build strong, healthy bonds with your self-confident off-spring. Who could ask for anything more?"
-- Gina Barnett, Author of Play the Part: Mastering Body Signals to Connect and Communicate for Business Success
"Nowhere in life do well-intended people pay more for mistakes than in raising their children. Sean Grover has written the ultimate book to parents who need guidance. When Kids Call the Shots is an incisive book, forceful, simply written and useful to any parent."
-- George Weinberg, PhD, The Heart of Psychotherapy
"Insightful, intelligent, warm and above all easy to understand When Kids Call the Shotsmakes parents feel that we're not crazy to be frustrated and that we can really help our kids (and ourselves) get through challenging times. This book is so great, it's like having Sean in my linen closet for daily affirmations!"
-- Kate Harrison, VP Exec Bd PTA, Lower Manhattan Community School
"With a creative blend of psychological principles, kid smarts, common sense, and compassion for parents, When Kids Call the Shots shows how to make the most of the opportunity and awesome responsibility of guiding children and youth through the shoals of development into a wholesome and satisfying maturity. "
-- Robert Bolton, author of People Skills , People Styles at Work and Beyond
"As a father of a two willful and rambunctious toddlers,When Kids Call the Shots frightened the heck out of me with the prospect of future mutiny from my adorable progeny, then armed me with the strategies to successfully diffuse the rebellion, resolve its underlying causes and restore peace to our family. I'll keep it handy as a go-to manual when turbulent waters threaten smooth sailing."
-- Bill Santiago, comedian, author of Pardon My Spanglish
"When Kids Call the Shots is a well conceptualized, down-to-earth guide; a great source of support, encouragement and practical ideas that will inspire parents and caregivers. I look forward to having a copy on my bookshelf and recommending it to parents."
-- Andrew Malekoff, author of Group Work with Adolescents , Editor of the journal Social Work with Groups
"When it comes to helping parents, there isn't anyone better to speak on this subject than Sean. He loves what he does and it shows. When Kids Call the Shots is amazing, the perfect companion for any parent."
-- Penny Ekstein-Lieberman, President/CEO Toot Sweet Toys, Inc.
"In When Kids Call the Shots Sean Grover offers child-rearing insights with an ease and generosity; a very important and immensely valuable book for parents."
-- Ellen Kealy, Chair Emeritus, Creative Alternatives of New York, Mt. Sinai Hospital
"When Kids Call the Shots provides all the keys any parent needs to overcome seemingly intractable problems and open the way for healthy and happy family relationships."
-- Jessica Jiji, author of Diamonds Take Forever and Sweet Dates in Basra
My thoughts: Wow. It is as if this book was written just for me. Anyone who knows my family knows that my youngest child, Braxton, is not the easiest child to raise. He is eight years old now, but he has been a very difficult child. I know that his behavior has a lot to do with the fact that he is the youngest, the baby of the family, and my husband and I are older parents to him. Braxton is stubborn, very hard-headed and thinks the world revolves around him. He has definitely been 'calling the shots' since he was born and that is why he nursed until he was nearly five, but that is another story in its own entirety.
Thankfully, this book, When Kids Call the Shots is helping me to see that I am not alone when it comes to parenting a child like Braxton. I am learning coping mechanisms that I can use to deal with everyday scenarios and situations with my child. I can now see light at the end of the tunnel, whereas before, I thought Braxton was going to cause me to be committed to an insane asylum before he even turned 10.
So yes, this book has been very helpful to me and I hope that as I put the techniques of parenting into play that Sean Grover talks about, that I can reclaim my role as the parent and Braxton can play the part of the child who listens to his parents and obeys them. Whew. I'm a tired mama. I love Braxton to the moon and back, but it is nice to have a book like this one to help me learn how to parent him better.
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For more information please visit http://www.seangrover.com and follow the author on Facebook and Twitter.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book to review and to keep. All opinions are my own.