Psychologist/author and popular lecturer Taffel (The Second Family) claims that in the postboomer era of parenting, children enjoy unprecedented freedoms. The "Free-est generation," which knows "no bounds," is ensconced in youth and pop culture. But while the peer group seems omnipresent, Taffel believes that parents are just as important as ever. The problem, as he sees it, is that parents need new child-rearing techniques to keep pace with the changing world of their offspring. To that end, Taffel presents various methods to help parents stay "engaged" with their children. While he rightly observes that the generation gap has narrowed (with kids often feeling free to tell their parents just about anything), many parents have become distant, two-dimensional managers of their kids' busy schedules, hesitant to reveal their inner thoughts and opinions, and cowed by their kids' independence. Taffel coaches readers to open up to children in ways that will foster true connection: for instance, he suggests setting enforceable limits, giving only authentic praise and honoring the ways and times when children are most available for conversation. While this generation is prone to high-risk behaviors, Taffel also notes that it's the most philanthropic, and that many kids thrive when encircled by forces of family, spirituality, community and school. Taffel offers parents food for thought as well as practical ways to reconnect with their kids. (Jan.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Childhood Unbound: Saving Our Kids' Best Selves--Confident Parenting in a World of Changeby Ron Taffel
Dr. Ron Taffel, one of the country's most sought-after child-rearing experts, draws on decades of counseling experience and extensive conversations with parents nationwide to offer an original and inspiring analysis of the distinctive challenges parents face in raising children today. He also introduces a breakthrough approach for guiding kids -- from children to teens -- in ways that bring out the best in both kids and parents in these twenty-first-century times.
With warmth and clarity, Taffel, who is himself a parent struggling with these issues, helps us to understand our sons and daughters in an entirely new way: as a distinctive "free-est" generation, born to the first generation of "post-baby boomer" parents and the products of a decades-long cultural sea change that intensified in the nineties.
As a result, kids of all ages are now a bundle of contradictions: they exude entitlement, back talk shockingly, negotiate endlessly, worship celebrity, do ten things at once, conduct independent lives online, and engage in high-risk behavior at younger ages. Yet, they are also far more open with their parents and each other than kids in prior generations, are strikingly generous and empathetic, and care deeply about ethical issues. In addition, their high-speed multitasking is preparing them for the demands of the future.
The key question, then, is how to encourage the good while steering them away from the bad. Taffel believes today's parents, having lived through the beginning phases of the same social changes, are uniquely qualifiedto bring out kids' best -- and he shows you how.
Using a wealth of examples, he walks parents through innovative methods to get children's and teens' attention, to set limits they will respect, and to engage them in meaningful conversation to provide the guidance they need. He also instructs on how to rebuild supportive community around us. His inspiring analysis and expert guidance will be embraced as the authoritative new approach to raising their kids that parents have been searching for.
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Meet the Author
Dr. Ron Taffel is one of the most esteemed and in-demand specialists on child rearing in the country, with a strong promotional platform. His workshops have been featured on 20/20 and Dateline; he has appeared on The Today Show, GMA, Primtime Live, Larry King and many other shows. He has acted as a consultant to and held workshops for many major media sources, including The Today Show, The Early Morning Today Show, The Weekend Today Show, Good Morning America, The CBS Morning Show, Dateline, 20/20, The Larry King Show, NPR, Parents Magazine, Working Mother, Child Magazine, Family Circle and Cosmopolitan.He has been called “a Spock for our time” (New Woman) and “a genius addressing all the issues of family life” (Child).
He founded the Family Therapy Division at the Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy in New York City and he now serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Institute as a whole. The agency provides family counciling to over 500 clients a week with a faculty and staff of over three hundred professionals.
He also continues to run a thriving practice as a family therapist.
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