cover image Parents Who Think Too Much: Why We Do It, How to Stop

Parents Who Think Too Much: Why We Do It, How to Stop

Anne Cassidy. DTP, $19 (368pp) ISBN 978-0-440-50812-0

The irony of a nearly 300-page parenting book arguing against the reading of parenting books is inescapable. Yet the call for a return to ""off book parenting,"" is likely to strike a just-right chord for many moms and dads who suspect they might have abdicated their own authority in their search for expert advice. ""For decades,"" notes Cassidy, a mother of three who writes on parenting issues, ""bringing up kids has been evolving from something instinctive, personal and private to something studied, impersonal and commercial,"" as today's parents, cut adrift from extended families and isolated at the office, have lost confidence in themselves--and lost touch with their children--and turn to books and seminars for pat solutions to childhood's complex problems. Cassidy calls for ""authoritative"" parents whose goal is to be ""firm but warm, demanding but responsive,"" and pleads the case for kids being allowed to inhabit their own childhoods rather than being made into over-scheduled little adults. While sometimes cranky and repetitive, Cassidy's stance, more explicative than prescriptive, is bracingly persuasive. (June)