Item description for Parents Under Siege: Why You Are the Solution, Not the Problem, in Your Child's Life by James Garbarino & Claire Bedard...
Overview A compassionate and practical guide for parents facing the difficult task of raising children in an increasingly violent world. This intelligent, parent-centered reference takes a sympathetic yet tough-minded look at the forces that are shaping--and disrupting--American family life today.
Publishers Description Is it always a parent's fault if a child grows up to become unruly, disruptive, or even destructive? Are parents always to blame for children "growing up wrong"? Is it possible that good parents can raise bad kids? Nationally recognized psychologist James Garbarino and child advocate Claire Bedard present tough-minded yet compassionate tactics for parents of children who don't make headlines-but who are exceptionally difficult and disruptive of normal family life.
Citations And Professional Reviews Parents Under Siege: Why You Are the Solution, Not the Problem, in Your Child's Life by James Garbarino & Claire Bedard has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
Wilson Public Library Catalog - 12/31/2008 page 595
Wilson Public Library Catalog - 01/01/2004 page 451
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Reviews - What do customers think about Parents Under Siege: Why You Are the Solution, Not the Problem in Your Child's Life?
Very badly written book with little info on child rearing Apr 7, 2005
I was STUNNED by how badly written this book was. ESPECIALLY as one of the authors is supposedly a department chairman at Cornell University! The same unimportant items are repeated over and over and over throughout this short (large type, few words on page) book. Paragraphs or sections start out describing something, get a third or halfway through the thought, then stop abruptly with the authors apparently forgetting to include the needed information to finish the paragraph or section.
The Columbine school shootings are mentioned repeatedly, for no particularly useful reason that I can see, other than to "cash in" on the incident. A single mention of this incident would have been far more than enough to make the few points they wanted to make about it.
A totally useless 8 page or so section, goes on to describe special needs of RICH(!) parents to deal with their children! Special care was taken to describe how wonderful the rich were who could save wealth (I would imagine that this is how the authors view themselves. WHAT was this doing in this book in the first place???). No such special section on child advice was included for either middle class, or poor parents. I found this section to be particularly insulting to just about everyone.
The authors in several places in the book say directly or indirectly how wonderful they are, or how wonderful their book is. This was galling and completely unneccessary.
While touting the book as offering detailed advice on child rearing, this is in essence an outright lie. The little advice they offer is so vague as to be virtually useless.
To save all of you the trouble of reading this book, here are the few points they made: love your child, listen to your child, give your child firm structure and guidance. That's about it. This is just about as detailed as they got with their advice. As you will note, their "advice" is virtually useless in helping parents with specific child rearing problems.
I have read NUMEROUS, much, much better books on child rearing; that quoted research, and then, IN DETAIL, gave many specific, detailed techniques that any normal parent could use with their children. Not ONE single detailed technique was EVER mentioned in this book. NOT ONE.
While research is quoted in this book from time to time, it is mainly along the lines of, "Ain't life horrible nowadays?" In other words, they mentioned many problems, BUT, no solutions. Virtually NO studies were quoted that described solutions to parenting problems.
I am still stunned that Simon and Schuster published this (the hardback edition). I could have forgiven the very poor writing if there had been useful parenting information in this book, but there was none.
I would have given this book ZERO stars if I had been allowed to.
MANY other books are available that are light years ahead of this book in every possible way; please look there for child rearing advice.
Excellent Book For Parents Feb 5, 2003
Garbarion and Bedard's book is an excellent resource for parents who find themselves in any type of situation which a child which the talk about in the book.
Another good point about the book is that the authors are among the very few people who have talked to Dylan Klebold's parents(although they're not directly quoted in the book) and that they authors show them the symapthy and compassion that few others have given them.
I think that the main thing that can be taken from this book is that it's not always the parents' fault when a child does something wrong and I wish that society would recognize that.
What To Do When Being a Good Parent Isnï¿½t Enough Sep 10, 2001
The authors also wrote the acclaimed book, The Lost Boys. That book came out the day that Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold created the massacre at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado. Later meeting with Dylan�s family after Mr. and Mrs. Klebold contacted them, the authors became convinced that Dylan had had good parents. ...
�Anything can happen� is the candid warning of this book. ...
In the 10 percent of the cases where abuse and neglect are not involved in youth crime, the root causes are found in fragile kids (who are susceptible to negative influences), excess reliance on secret lives not perceived by parents and friends, and a peer who has taken the same path (youth violence almost always occurs in at least pairs). Certainly, part of the problem is the �toxic culture� that encourages youth violence.
The book provides a toolkit of 10 things to employ with your children.
(1) �You can never do just one thing� to make the situation better.
(2) �See the world through their eyes.�
(3) �Spiritual parenting� helps.
(4) Evaluate the cumulative risk your children are subject to.
(5) Understand that resilience varies by child.
(6) Create a map of your child�s perceptions of the world.
(7) Detect and measure how much social poisons are influencing your child�s perception of the future.
(8) Provide a social compass of character.
(9) Provide social support.
(10) Learn from other cultures. The book has a marvelous example of how Buddhists carefully extracted earthworms before building a new structure so that they would not be harmed.
Perhaps the most brilliant part of the book is the section on how to deal with an �impossible� child. You are cautioned not to create an �impossible� child out of a manipulative one by giving in to manipulative anger.
I was fascinated by the sections in the book where polls showed that almost all teenagers thought that they could prepare an arsenal to hold a massacre at school without their parents knowing, and that 60 percent of male and 30 percent of female teenagers have had specific fantasies about killing someone by the time they are 19.
As parents, we have to deal with the dangers that are children face, either from their neighborhoods or from abusive people. The book is filled with frightening examples of youngsters being stalked or abused for months before either the child, the child�s friends, or the school let the parents know. When these real risks are not handled, the risk of depression is very high. The risk of violence grows too, as the child comes to feel that their own life may be at risk.
The book goes on to help you use empathy in intelligent ways when the child has a difficult temperament, be a good role model, reduce the emphasis on materialism in your family, and limit access to the violent sides of television, video games, and the Internet.
The end of the book contains a fine list of resources you can draw upon to help you.
No one can inoculate us from more episodes of school violence, but following the advice in this book can help us deal with troubled teenagers with more understanding and compassion. That�s the least we can do.
Support those you love in as many ways as you can!
Good, But Blinded By Political Correctness Sep 8, 2001
James Garbarino is one of the leading experts in this area, and he has written a book that is in many ways very useful. Unfortunately, his embrace of politically correct formulas limits both the usefulness and the appeal of this book. For example, Garbarino suggests that parents show their "strength" by getting their children involved in lobbying efforts on behalf of gun control. This recommendation is unlikely to go over well with the more-than-half of all American households who own guns, and don't appreciate Garbarino's labelling them as aberrant. Many Americans are also unlikely to feel that abandoning the means of protecting their families constitutes a persuasive demonstration of "strength." Garbarino's position on guns flies in the face of a great deal of research, by scholars such as John Lott of Yale and Gary Kleck of Florida State, but he does not even attempt to engage that research, much less refute it. Similarly, Garbarino apears to have taken Warren Farrell's sardonic advice to authors (pander to women at all costs) thoroughly to heart. He repeatedly gives mothers all possible benefit of the doubt, while coming down hard on fathers. Garbarino also fails to pay sufficient attention to the role that public schools' pathologies play in causing problems among children. Having said that, this is a useful book with many important insights. What is unfortunate is that Garbarino's embrace of PC culture-war slogans will alienate many people who might benefit from other parts of his work.