Choosing the Right Parenting Book
Parenting Books. There are so many to choose from, and it can be overwhelming. Typically, when parents ask me what they should be reading, I recommend simply heading to the library and flipping through a couple books to get a sense of each one. Parents are generally good judges of what approaches will fit with their family’s values and needs.
I do keep a few parenting books on my shelf, and I also recommend each of these often but for different reasons. Truthfully, most parenting books have similar content; “avoid giving your child attention for negative behaviors” and “catch your children being good and praise them” can be found in most parenting guides.
However, some of the nuance comes when we consider the family’s goals. For instance, common family goals including decreasing disruptive behaviors, dealing with anxiety, and improving parent-child relationships and communication all require different approaches. I find that some reading can be a nice supplement to therapy, where we can review what parents learned and learn how to implement those strategies at home.
Last, some parents feel a sense of embarrassment or shame about delving into parenting literature. In fact, they might find that their friends and family members start asking questions and feeling like they, too, should start looking into these resources. Even children often get a kick out of seeing their parents learn different ways to approach each other and connect as a family. Spending some of your valuable time to help your family shows them you care.
From my bookshelf:
NYT article about parenting books