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Help your teens build a strong personal leadership foundation that will enable them to live successful, independent lives of purpose, integrity, and impact. Parenting for the Launch offers key strategies for parents of teens in the crucial window before that launch into the real world. Learn how to set them up for success through effective communication, valuing and cultivating their unique strengths, and empowering versus control.
Number of Pages: 224
Vendor: LifeSmart Publishing
Publication Date: 2013
|Dimensions: 9 X 6 X 0.8 (inches)|
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CliffymaniaMichiganAge: 35-44Gender: male4 Stars Out Of 5Good advice and well organizedJune 6, 2014CliffymaniaMichiganAge: 35-44Gender: maleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 4Introduction
We all know parenting isn't easy. Kids can cause you great anger and great joy, often in one sentence. But it's the first calling of mankind, "Be fruitful and multiply." I wonder if God was waiting for Adam and Eve to ask, "And what do we do with them after we've multiplied?" They never ask and one day Cain kills Abel. Coincidence?
Why does the book exist?
There's no doubt that the shelves are filled with books on how to parent. Focus on the Family is a ministry almost exclusively dedicated to this proposition. Dennis Trittin and Arlyn Lawrence have set a particular focus for their book; how do you get your kids to a point where they can make their own way in the world? In other words; parenting for the launch. With this broader context in mind the book is a compendium of advice covering a broad range of topics.
What's it all about?
The book is broken up into three sections. What I see is that Part One covers, roughly speaking, the first 10 years. Part two, the next 10. Part three is some last tips and ideas as you kick your child out the door_I mean, as they switch from "passenger's seat to the driver's seat." A multitude of topics are covered; freedom, discipline, finances, thinking outside yourself, communication, knowing what motivates you, dealing with adversity, college, career, outside influences and ultimately letting them go.
Each chapter starts out with an example story of how Trittin and Lawrence learned, basically through trial and error, how to raise their kids. The story is then broken down to look at what's going on with the children and the parents. Throughout the breakdown general pointers are given that apply to given situation and the broader spectrum of their lives. At the end of each chapter is the Take Five section; essentially a moment to reflect and then questions to consider. The Take Five section will sometimes include activities to do with your children. I'm glad they pointed this out because as a father I always thought they were experiments to try on your children.
At the back of the book are four appendices with guidelines, goals, and personal inventory sheets. These are helpful to the new parent to clear a path and create a kind of baseline for where you want to be as a parent and where you want to point your children.
Having "raised" two children myself (those of you with children will understand why that's in quotes) I can tell you that the advice in the book is solid. Thanks to years of reading Dr Dobson from Focus on the Family, and the advice of our parent's (often unspoken, but never uncommunicated) all of this sounds familiar.
It's also reasonable advice. Trittin and Lawrence are not painting a rosy picture of "follow steps 1 through 10 and your child will be the perfect citizen." The authors are not hiding the fact that kids will test you. With every fiber of their being they will work hard day and night to break your will and send you to your room in tears, but you can't let this happen! Mount an offensive! Created a united front! Take the fort!
Some things to watch out for
Parenting for the Launch is not presented as a Christian book on parenting, but there's nothing here to worry the Christian. It really is good advice. The authors do point out that "faith" is an important part of raising your children, but that faith is not defined. I would not let this dissuade you from reading the book. Simply know that a foundation in Christ is the first and most important thing to instill in your children and then this book will fill in the day-to-day details.
At times the book does sound like a "follow these steps to success" kind of book and while the authors do mention that each child is different this point cannot be stressed enough: no book can adequately encompass all the differing possibilities your child will throw at you. Books are good primers with general advice, but always be ready to modify that advice to fit the needs of your child.
The Wrap Up
Whether you are expecting your first child; have one, or two, already; even if your oldest is about ready to launch, this book is worth your time.
I think Trittin and Lawrence sum up the book nicely, "And, you will smile each time, knowing that the relationship you've built along the way is an enduring one. They still need you, but in a different way now. Just as it should be."
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Icon Media Group and was not required to write a positive review.
pastor2519West Point, UTAge: 55-65Gender: male4 Stars Out Of 5things parents need to knowMay 23, 2014pastor2519West Point, UTAge: 55-65Gender: maleQuality: 4Value: 5Meets Expectations: 4Dennis Trittin and Arlyn Lawrence have compiled all the tips that I should have started reading 17 years ago. Parenting for the Launch: Raising Teens To Succeed in the Real World (LifeSmart Publishing, 2013) includes the things parents need to know about raising children who are ready to be the adults they need to be when they leave home for a life of college, military or marriage.
They write in an engaging manner, and include plenty of personal anecdotes. They even let us know that along the way they learned some of these things by making their own mistakes. One of the most freeing pieces of advice is to allow your kids to make mistakes. Let them fail, don't enable. Be there to support them, but at some point they have to acknowledge the fact that there are consequences for the choices we make. There is also a strong, and much needed emphasis on the fact that each teenager is unique, and they may not each be the 'mini-me' that parents might dream of their children becoming.
There are lessons on relationships and on finances; on education and even on learning to ride a bike (although that is certainly not one of the main objectives of the book.
Each chapter concludes with a section called "TAKE FIVE" some questions that help summarize the chapter, and depending on how you answer, help you to identify some areas that you might want to consider in more depth.
Overall this is a helpful book because it consolidates many of the things that we have heard in other contexts, and presents them in a systematic approach. It also follows a linear progression which I happen to appreciate.
This book is important for today's cultural context because there are so many children growing up without the appropriate role models in their lives. As Society becomes more and more mobile, and we deal with blended and single parent families, having resources available is something we can't do without.