The Price of Privilege: How Parental Pressure and Material Advantage Are Creating a Generation of Disconnected and Unhappy Kids  -     By: Madeline Levine Ph.D.
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The Price of Privilege: How Parental Pressure and Material Advantage Are Creating a Generation of Disconnected and Unhappy Kids

HarperCollins / 2006 / Hardcover

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Product Information

Format: Hardcover
Number of Pages: 246
Vendor: HarperCollins
Publication Date: 2006
Dimensions: 9.52 X 6.20 X 0.94 (inches)
ISBN: 0060595841
ISBN-13: 9780060595845

Publisher's Description

Madeline Levine has been a practicingpsychologist for twenty-five years, but it was only recently that she began to observe a new breed of unhappy teenager. When a bright, personable fifteen-year-old girl, from a loving and financially comfortable family, came into her office with the word empty carved into her left forearm, Levine was startled. This girl and her message seemed to embody a disturbing pattern Levine had been observing. Her teenage patients were bright, socially skilled, and loved by their affluent parents. But behind a veneer of achievement and charm, many of these teens suffered severe emotional problems. What was going on?

Conversations with educators and clinicians across the country as well as meticulous research confirmed Levine's suspicions that something was terribly amiss. Numerous studies show that privileged adolescents are experiencing epidemic rates of depression, anxietydisorders, and substance abuse—rates that are higherthan those of any other socioeconomic group ofyoung people in this country. The various elements of a perfect storm—materialism, pressure to achieve, perfectionism, disconnection—are combining to create a crisis in America's culture of affluence. This culture is as unmanageable for parents—mothers in particular—as it is for their children. While many privileged kids project confidence and know how to make a goodimpression, alarming numbers lack the basic foundation of psychological development: an authentic sense of self. Even parents often miss the signs of significant emotional problems in their "star" children.

In this controversial look at privileged families, Levine offers thoughtful, practical advice as she explodes one child-rearing myth after another. With empathy and candor, she identifies parenting practices that are toxic to healthy self-development and that have contributed to epidemic levels of depression, anxiety, and substance abuse in the most unlikely place—the affluent family.

Author Bio

Madeline Levine, PhD, is a clinician, consultant, and educator; the author of the New York Times bestseller The Price of Privilege; and a cofounder of Challenge Success, a project of the Stanford School of Education that addresses education reform, student well-being,and parent education. She lives outside San Francisco with her husband and is the proud mother of three newly minted adult sons.

Editorial Reviews

“Useful...clear, sensitive...”
“In this insightful book, Levine eschews the temptation to dismiss problems of privileged teens as overindulgence.”
“Her writing is warm and carefully thoughtful.”
“[Written] with clarity and understanding of the culture of affluence and its pitfalls for parents.”
“Fresh and important ideas about parenting in the age of affluence…”
“Levine offers chapter after chapter of practical advice for dealing with family problems.”
“[Madeline Levine’s] ideas may be uncomfortable for parents to read, but they’re a wonderful wake-up call.”
“Levine’s book explores some troubling and intriguing issues that certainly are worth pondering and discussing.”
“She treats her subjects as well as her subject with compassion and understanding.”
“...[an] impassioned wake-up call to parents...”
“This book has resonated in affluent communities all over the country. [Levine is] clearly on to something.”

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