Book Review: "Parenting Your Stressed Child"

Reviewed by Kimberly Hunt, CFLE
Content Area
Family Health
Internal Dynamics of Families
Parent Education and Guidance

Parenting Your Stressed Child: 10 Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction Practices to Help Your Child Manage Stress and Build Essential Life Skills. Michelle L. Bailey. 2011. Oakland, CA: New Harbinger Publications. ISBN: 978-1-572249-80-6.

Parenting Your Stressed Child was a good selection. It addresses the stressors that children and families face. This book provides the reader with dialogue that can be helpful when addressing stress at almost any age and is catered to meet the needs of both the parent and the child. The exercises, as well as the short stories about families and their encounters with stress, were very realistic. The quotes provided throughout the book were inspiring. The workbook format is family and educator friendly; in the event one may need to make notes, it is easy to do so.

This book can be a great resource for a variety of families including blended and military, as well as grandparents. The material in the book is applicable to many everyday situations. Families will be able to identify with the suggestions and tactics the author suggests. It is an easy to read guide.

Parenting Your Stressed Child captures the reality of stress among families. It does a great job of providing families with dialogue to use with their children that are clearly articulated through the activities provided. The author was able to reach several demographics of families. While reading the book I began to think of the different settings in which it could be beneficial including incarcerated parents, church families, and community centers where staff may be the family for the support system

The various scenarios support the fact that it is a good fit for any family but the book appears to be largely the author's opinion. If the author proved that it was evidence and research based it may gain credibility. While it does not appear to be biased or unrealistic, I think more data would be a benefit. I would add a few more graphics for visual learners.

The selection can be improved by adding more scenarios for the parents of younger children. Also, this can be a remarkable tool for military families if it covered tips on transitioning due to military deployment. I can even see it as a guide during the pre-deployment or deployment phase.

I would recommend this book to others. Parents, educators, and other professionals always are in need of ways to help families cope with stress. I would highly recommend it due to the fact that it is an actual workbook, not just something for one to read. Many families today do not have time for leisure reading, but this one is worth taking the time to indulge. It definitely engages the reader and may give parents the confidence they need when approaching their children about stress.

Reviewed by Kimberly Hunt, CFLE. A current graduate student, Kimberly is an Independent Educational Consultant for families and children of low performing schools, post-adoptive families, and single parent families that have experienced hardships.