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13-19 - a parent's guide to understanding the teenage years

I don't have teenage children, in fact I don't have any children at all but I used to be a teenager and I can remember that it was an interesting time for both me and my mother. Of course my poor mother had to deal with a double dose of teenage challenges as my younger brother hit "that age" shortly after I did. Back then my mother was shrewd enough to recognise that one of her stares could turn me into a trembling, cooperative (but still moody) teenager whilst my brother needed a little more vigorous encouragement. So what do you do if one day your angelic son or daughter wakes up and has transformed into "the teenager from hell" uttering phrases like "Leave me alone" or "You don't understand!"?

Thankfully, guidance is available in the book "13-19 - a parent's guide to the teenage years" by Wendy Grant. This is an extremely well-written book that provides practical advice on dealing with the wide range of issues likely to confront parents of teenage children. The author is a qualified hypnotherapist and psychotherapist and lectures on emotional and behavioural problems and the unconscious mind. But her greatest qualification is that she has survived the teenage years as a parent.

13-19 covers issues such as puberty, understanding emotions, relationships, money, rules and letting go. The Fear of theThree Rs" -Fear of Ridicule, Fear of Rejection and Fear of Reprisals - are covered at the beginning of the book and begin to lay the foundation of understanding what is happening to your teenager. The author logically addresses the issues and at the end offers 21 tips for your survival such as:

1. Be consistent.

2. Rebellion is part of growing up; if it's not too serious, let it happen.

3. Don't be too quick to bale them out of trouble - they have to learn to take responsibility for their own actions.

If you are having trouble with your teenager at the moment then this is the book for you. It will not suddenly turn you into an overnight success or make all those difficulties disappear but it will give you and understanding of what is going on and why and will offer you some very practical alternatives to banging your head against a brick wall. In fact even if you don't have any kids read it anyway because it might explain some of the difficulties you may have had with your parents during that time in your life.

13-19 - a parent's guide to the teenage years by Wendy Grant ISBN Number 1-85230-862-1 is published by Element and can be obtained from good bookstores at 7.99 (US$ 12.95).






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