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A book for my bro?

427 Views 8 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  mamaduck
My brother and his wife have a calm and well-behaved 4 year old and a "spirited" 2 year old. They don't call him "spirited" though. They call him a lot of other ugly things instead. And they spank, yell, threaten, etc... Its agony to witness. I've intervened many a time and pissed my bro. off entirely. But finally yesterday, he confided to me that they are "out of ideas" and might be willing to read something.

I'm pleased about this. And I'm ready to buy them a book.

They don't read much at all. They aren't going to work through something complicated or philosophically deep. I think "The Discipline Book" is too long, and too much like a text book. And I don't like the "how to" section on spanking. I am leaning toward "Raising your Spirited Child," but I haven't read it myself. I've read other books by the same author though, and I think highly of her. Can anyone give me a run-down of this book, or suggest another?

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If they don't appreciate the power of hurtful words, I think maybe "how to talk so kids will listen..." would be a good book. IIRC, they even have lots of cartoons, so it isn't "reader intensive". Might make them think twice about how they word things.

I'm trying to remember the content of "kids are worth it" (i read it from teh library)...I think it also touches on the basics of GD - why your words are important to kids, etc...if I'm remembering that right, it might be another good book. I remember reading it and thinking "yeah yeah, ITA already" it might be a good start for someone who isn't on the ball with that concept yet.
Thanks Piglet. "Kids are Worth It" helped me immensely. The first real parenting book I read, in fact! However, I don't think it is right for my bro. Too abstract. They need "steps," KWIM?

I hadn't though of "How to Talk..." I haven't read that either, though somehow I have it in my head that it is geared toward older kids? Is that Faber and Mazlish? I like their books, but they are *so* much geared toward older kids.

Anyone care to give a rundown on "Raising your Spirited child?"
Here is the great thing about "Raising Your Spirited Child"....

It goes, chapter by chapter, through the traits shared by most spirited children (intensity, persistence, sensitivity, (in)adaptibility, distractibility, irregularity), and gives concrete ways to best handle each "difficult" trait. Explains *why these kids act this way, and even explains how these can be good traits throughout life--so that "spirited" is a neutral term, and not a negative one. Each chapter ends with very specific things to remember and understand about your child's temperament--and how it affects their behavior, and specific things to say to your child to help them understand their own temperament and *thrive*. It also has chapters dealing specifically with tantrums, bedtime, mealtime, dressing, etc (typical trouble spots). And, it has a chapter for identifying your own temperament, which helps to explain why parents and children interact (and battle) the way they do.

This book focuses heavily on understanding the child and being proactive--preparing for success. It embraces the spirited child's temperament, and teaches the parent to teach the child how to handle their own (seemingly overwhelming) intensity, persistence, sensitivity, inadaptibility, distractibility, and irregularity.

I love this book!!!!
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ITA with Sunnmama... "Raising Your Spirited Child" is an excellent book! It's helped me be more aware of my daughters' triggers, which I expected it to do. But what surprised me is how much more aware of my own traits I am now. It really helped me recognize when my "buttons" are being pushed... in time for me to step back and calm down.

There's also a "Raising Your Spirited Child Workbook" now... I haven't used it yet, but it's on the shelf. Seems to have more examples from a wide age range of children, and lots of space to write thoughts/track progress/evaluate your child's temperament, etc. It's a very visually appealing format, I think, especially for someone who might not want a big Instruction Book.

I second the vote for "How to Listen..." The cartoons alone were a wake-up call for me!

Let us know what you decide... and how it's received!
I vote for "How to Talk..." as well. I'm a fan of "Raising your spirited child" but I don't think it would be a good starter book. What about "123 Magic"? I know there are differing opinions about it here but I think it might work really well for your brother as it's an easy read, offers something they can *do* right away and seems to work best in an environment where yelling, etc just need to stop. It talks a lot about not yelling, hitting, name-calling and gives you something else to do
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Yeah, you're probably right, mamaduck. It gives a good foundation for why not to yell, belittle, etc...but the practical tips really are for older children.

I haven't read the Spirited Child book, but from the descriptions above, it sounds like it might be a great place to start.
Good for you, mamaduck. I didn't like Barbara Coloroso's work, mostly because I didn't need yet another person telling me that co sleeping was bad for a marriage and her recommendation to lock the parents' bedroom door every (her emphasis) night was something I didn't want my DH to read. So I put that book in the bin!

'How to Talk...' is good, it's the modern day Guinott and in some ways I think Guinott did it better but oh well. I do not think this book is helpful with toddlers at all, especially pre verbal toddlers. No frickin way. Save it for later.

I like 'Raising Your Spirited Child' as it emphasizes unchangeable temperment (in the spirited child). I think sometimes parents unconsciously try to make their child a different person when it's a personality clash.

I really like Thomas Gordon's work:

I hope this is the beginning of great change for your brother and family!

Originally Posted by playdoh
Good for you, mamaduck. I didn't like Barbara Coloroso's work, mostly because I didn't need yet another person telling me that co sleeping was bad for a marriage and her recommendation to lock the parents' bedroom door every (her emphasis) night was something I didn't want my DH to read. So I put that book in the bin!

Geez Lousise! I don't remember that stuff in her book at all! That book changed my life! I'm gonna have to pull it back out now and scan it for those things.
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