Jodi's Reviews > Have a New Kid by Friday: How to Change Your Child's Attitude, Behavior & Character in 5 Days

Have a New Kid by Friday by Kevin Leman
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Nov 22, 2011

it was amazing
Read in November, 2011

Very good, but also VERY difficult to put into practice. Goes against a lot of the general ideas of how a lot of us parent today. I never thought of praising my kids as doing them a disservice, but after reading his thoughts, I agree. Encouragement is good, but that is different than praising, which is what most of us do.

The first chapters are about the general principles of his parenting theory, which I would sum up as parents need to stay in control, not get angry, say it once and walk away, then let the consequences of the child's disobedience play itself out. One example: your kid is yelling at you in the car and being disrespectful. You get home and they want to know where their snack is. "Sorry, I don't feel like doing that for you." Eventually they get the point that bad behavior has a consequence. We must follow through! Not always easy though. Another big point: B follows A. You don't get to do B unless A is done. Period. (Often easier said than done!)

The remainder of the book is how to handle kid issues, an alphabatized list from fighting to disrespect to getting kid's cell phones to messy bedrooms.

I've read a lot of parenting books and one thing I really liked about this was how Leman didn't make me feel like my kid's are awful, I'm a horrible parent, and my family is the only one with issues. In fact, he really paints an accurate picture of parenting, and how hard it is. I felt less alone and more like I was discussing with a group of parents how to deal with these issues we all face. That is in itself very encouraging because often parenting can feel very lonely.
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