Kids, Parents, and Power Struggles: Winning For a Lifetime

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9780060182885: Kids, Parents, and Power Struggles: Winning For a Lifetime

Does bedtime mean struggle time, with your child negotiating for "just another ten minutes" every single night? Do most school mornings end with your child in tears or you bellowing as you race through breakfast in order to catch the bus? Do your children sit stone-faced in front of the TV, despite your repeated requests that they get up and do their chores? You don't have all day to negotiate--and after all, aren't you supposed to be the one in charge?

Parents and kids pitted against one another, opposing forces pulling in different directions--both determined to win! Every family experiences power struggles, but these daily tugs of war are not inevitable. In Kids, Parents, and Power Struggles, Mary Sheedy Kurcinka presents real strategies for getting to the root of the emotions and needs that can create daily hassles. But power struggles aren't just about winning or losing. They provide rich opportunities for learning how to deal with strong emotions and for parents and children to solve problems together.

Kids, Parents, and Power Struggles helps you to unravel the mysteries of power struggles by offering insights into differences and normal growth patterns, recognizing that every child is unique and every discipline situation different. In a new light, Kurcinka views power struggles as an opportunity to teach your child essential life skills such as how to calm herself, to be assertive rather than aggressive, to solve problems, and to work cooperatively with you and others.

INCLUDED ARE SUCCESSFUL STRATEGIES FOR:

  • Understanding emotions
  • Managing intensity
  • Identifying triggers

Hard as it may seem in the heat of battle, conflict really does present an opportunity to connect with your child.

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Review:

Kids, parents, and power struggles--the inseparable triad of family life. What if you could avoid Machiavellian peacekeeping maneuverings and instead turn difficult situations with your child into jumping-off points to having a better and more productive relationship? Mary Sheedy Kurcinka's new book gives a concise, practical, and often humorous account of how to achieve this turnaround. Kurcinka doesn't promise miracle cures or overnight success, but by building on Daniel Goleman's groundbreaking work in Emotional Intelligence, she offers creative techniques for using power struggles as pathways to better understanding within any family. Drawing on her clinical experience with numerous real-life families, Kurcinka builds up an image of the parent as an "emotion coach," whose role is to build a strong, connected "team" by understanding the players' strengths and weaknesses and showing by instruction and example how best to play the game. The techniques she outlines are useful for children of any age--in fact, the younger, the better--and are based on firm guidelines and mutual respect. In sections such as "Bringing Down the Intensity," "Enforcing Your Standards," and "Teaching Life's Essential Skills," Kurcinka addresses the causes of power struggles rather than just the symptoms, so that families can reduce the pain of repeated conflict. By the end of the book, any parent should feel confident in applying the principles. --Katherine Ferguson

About the Author:

Mary Sheedy Kurcinka, M.A., is an award-winning educator in Minnesota's Early Childhood Family Education Program, and founder of the Spirited Child and Power Struggles workshops. She is the bestselling author of Sleepless in America and Kids, Parents, and Power Struggles, and she lives with her family in St. Paul, Minnesota.

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