The School of Hard Talks

The School of Hard Talks

How to Have Real Conversations with Your (Almost Grown) Kids
by Kline, PhD, Emily

“Think you can ‘create’ the perfect child? Dream on! Then stop dreaming and start reading this book. We can’t control our kids’ life trajectories, but we can create relationships with them that are genuine, warm, and encouraging. Here’s your road map!”
—Lenore Skenazy, president of Let Grow and founder of the Free-Range Kids movement

Want to have better relationships with the teens and young adults in your life? Backed by research, this practical, engaging guide by a Harvard-trained clinical psychologist will help you connect and communicate.

A great relationship is founded on mutual respect and understanding–especially as young people grow into independence and relate to their parents in a new way. Learn how to connect with your young adult children in this practical guide using techniques that focus on not on inducing compliance but rather on respecting their thoughts and understanding their motivations.

  • Discover why parents get on their older kids’ nerves and why young adults tend to dismiss parents’ input. 
  • Understand how to suppress your parental “righting reflex” – the almost irresistible urge to help by offering reassurance and advice.
  • Learn what young people really think and feel, to help them figure out to navigate their decisions and dilemmas competently on their own.
  • Handle conflict in a way that is productive and nurtures the relationship.

A five-step program based on Motivational Interviewing gives parents simple take-aways to have conversations about any topic, whether it is curfews, sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll, or college applications. Each chapter includes sample scripts and concludes with practical takeaways to get parents started immediately on having better conversations—and more rewarding relationships—with their young adults.

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