Thursday, October 26, 2017

The Grown Up's Guide to Teenage Humans

Parents!! Do you remember when you were pregnant and you obsessively read the What to Expect When You're Expecting book? Then you read the What to Expect: First Year, and then they had a toddler book but by then you were so tired you didn't have time to read.

As bad as it was, everyone teased you with, "Just wait until they are teenagers!" and it seemed super far away and surely by then you'll know what you're doing and it won't be so bad.

Spoiler: It's now and you still have no idea what you're doing. This book is your new manual. Trust me.

A practical guide to understanding teens from bestselling author and global youth advocate Josh Shipp.
In 2015, Harvard researchers found that every child who does well in the face of adversity has had at least one stable and committed relationship with a supportive adult. But Josh Shipp didn’t need Harvard to know that. Once an at-risk foster kid, he was headed straight for trouble until he met the man who changed his life: Rodney, the foster parent who refused to quit on Shipp and got him to believe in himself.
Now, in The Grown-Up’s Guide to Teenage Humans, Shipp shows all of us how to be that caring adult in a teenager’s life. Stressing the need for compassion, trust, and encouragement, he breaks down the phases of a teenage human from sixth to twelfth grade, examining the changes, goals, and mentality of teenagers at each stage.
Shipp offers revelatory stories that take us inside the teen brain, and shares wisdom from top professionals and the most expert grown-ups. He also includes practice scripts that address tough issues, including:
FORGIVENESS: What do I do when a teen has been really hurt by someone and it’s not their fault? COMMUNICATION: How do I get a teen to talk to me? They just grunt. TRUST: My teen blew it. My trust is gone. Where do we go from here? BULLYING: Help! A teen (or their friend) is being harassed. DIFFICULT AND AWKWARD CONVERSATIONS: Drugs. Death. Sex. Oh my.
Written in Shipp’s playfully authoritative, no-nonsense voice, The Grown-Up’s Guide to Teenage Humans tells his story and unpacks practical strategies that can make a difference. Ultimately, it's not about shortcuts or magic words—as Shipp reminds us, it’s about investing in kids and giving them the love, time, and support they need to thrive.
And that means every kid is one caring adult away from being a success story.
Nobody wants to read a bland how-to manual and Josh Shipp delivers with this book- it's funny in all the right places. It gives you practical information, relevant problems you will face with your children, stunningly accurate descriptions of all the times you consider strangling your children, and excellent pep talks as you're standing on the ledge wondering why you even wanted kids in the first place. 

Clearly my favorite part of this book is actually part 3: Troubleshooting Common Teenage Challenges. It covers topics like eating disorders, using drugs, sex and sexting, cutting, stress, how to talk to them about sex, or death, and most importantly - WHAT TO DO ABOUT ANY OF THIS. He gives you actual steps on how to handle the situation, what to expect from them, what they need to get from you, and reassures you that even though those brats are snapping fingers and rolling eyes at you- they ARE listening, and they ARE grateful you are giving them rules and boundaries. 

Also important? The Teen Cell Phone Contract. Josh even provides the web address of where you can find the teen cell phone contract and customize it to your child(ren). You better believe I've done this with Olivia. He gives you 42 ways to connect with your teenager, as well, and a few of those I'm going to adopt as regular things I do with each kid. 

Even better? Josh doesn't leave you hanging- he gives you options to connect with him and learn even more. The best part about this book is not just how it can help you and your child but it also mentions how your relationship could be influential for their friends. How can you be a helpful and loving adult in their lives, too. Some kids don't have that positive force and they seek it out because at the core, teenagers need to be guided. They say they don't and they know exactly what they want, but on the inside they are desperate to be guided down the right path. 

I'm going to give this book 5 stars. Seriously. I'm not normally a big fan of non-fiction but I really enjoyed this book because it felt like this was my own therapist telling me what to do, a friend who has already been there telling me what NOT to do, and we're at an age where our kids face challenges we never had so we don't know how to navigate that ourselves. This book covers it all. 

1 comment:

Heather J @ TLC Book Tours said...

My son is almost 16 ... I need this book in my life.

Thanks for being a part of the tour!