Four Steps for Handling Frustration with Teens

Over the past thirty-five years, Between Parent and Child has helped millions of parents around the world strengthen their relationships with their children. Written by renowned psychologist Dr. Haim Ginott, this revolutionary book offered a straightforward prescription for empathetic yet disciplined child rearing and introduced new communication techniques that would change the way parents spoke with, and listened to, their children. Dr. Ginott’s innovative approach to parenting has influenced an entire generation of experts in the field, and now his methods can work for you, too.

In this revised edition, Dr. Alice Ginott, clinical psychologist and wife of the late Haim Ginott, and family relationship specialist Dr. H. Wallace Goddard usher this bestselling classic into the new century while retaining the book’s positive message and Haim Ginott’s warm, accessible voice. Based on the theory that parenting is a skill that can be learned, this indispensable handbook will show you how to:
• Discipline without threats, bribes, sarcasm, and punishment
• Criticize without demeaning, praise without judging, and express anger without hurting
• Acknowledge rather than argue with children’s feelings, perceptions, and opinions
• Respond so that children will learn to trust and develop self-confidence

When your young teen has decided to try his hand at backing the car out of the garage after you’ve told him he’s not ready, and the bumper’s scraped, the bushes have a hole in them, and you’re about to let loose with a barrage of #%$@* that would set fire to ice, stop….take a deep breath….and try this response suggested by psychologist Haim Ginott, in his book Between Parent and Child.

  1. Describe the situation: “Son, you just backed through the bushes.”  sigh   (“Yeah, Dad.”)
  2. Tell how you feel about it: “And I’m really ticked off at you!”
  3. Leave!: “In fact, I don’t know what I’ll do if I stay here. Pull the car back in the driveway, clean up the mess and come into the house.”
  4. By the time he comes in the house you’ll have calmed down and will probably be more able to talk with him about the incident without unnecessarily lecturing, criticizing and degrading him, and will be able to work out a solution. And remember, solutions are best when they are worked out by the child:

  5. “So, what do you think needs to be done about it?”

(“Well, Dad, I think I can pay for the damage out of my pizza shop check next week, and maybe go to the nursery for a new bush, and….okay….ground myself tonight….I’m really sorry.”)

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