31 May 2015

Review: Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves

Raising Our Children, Raising OurselvesRaising Our Children, Raising Ourselves by Naomi Aldort

I read this book after seeing it recommended on a message board thread, which I found after googling something like "I'm so mean to my kid!" (Our bathroom battles have been epic.)

I like some of the book's advice and think treating your child as an individual and with respect is solid. But some of the other advice seemed unrealistic and like it would get out of hand quickly -- not that the child would manipulate or take advantage of the parent but that they'd never learn how to be part of a family unit, do their part of things, etc. Also you would NEVER get anywhere on time because her advice seems to suggest the kids can do anything they want, never interrupt them or redirect their activity.

There are more complete reviews on Goodreads that better describe what I mean/why I didn't love this book. (And they also link to a series debunking the author's credentials and an entire site about people who have been hurt by crunchy parenting.)

I didn't completely hate the book either though, and I've found myself trying to be more mindful with Jane and practice some of the S.A.L.V.E. method, which stands for Separate yourself from your child's behavior with a silent self-talk, Attention on your child, Listen to what your child is saying or what actions may be indicating, Validate your child's feelings, and Empower your child to resolve her own upset. I still probably help Jane solve problems more than she needs, but I also know we're securely attached and believe she knows how deeply she's loved even when I lose my temper.

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