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Get Out of My Life, but First Could You Drive Me & Cheryl to the Mall: A Parent's Guide to the New Teenager
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Get Out of My Life, but First Could You Drive Me & Cheryl to the Mall: A Parent's Guide to the New Teenager

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  1,562 Ratings  ·  252 Reviews
A brand new edition of the bestselling guide to raising teenagers

When Anthony E. Wolf's witty and compassionate guide to raising adolescents was first published, its amusing title and fresh approach won it widespread admiration. Beleaguered parents breathed sighs of relief and gratitude. Now Dr. Wolf has revised and updated his bestseller to tackle the changes of the past
ebook, 240 pages
Published August 21st 2002 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (first published 1991)
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Aug 21, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm currently raising my fourth teenager, so you'd think I'd have it figured out by now. Well, I don't ... and I found this book really helpful. There's a pretty simple message running through every chapter. State your rules and values, stay firm, and accept that you can't fully control them. Your voice will eventually become part of their conscience, and they'll probably turn out all right.
Jun 30, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Perfect! When I finish this I'll know alllll about raising a pre-teen daughter and son! I think it should come with a subscription to the Wine of the Month club or something equally helpful.
Sep 01, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
This book reminded me of Rilke: master of simultaneous attraction and repulsion. For Rilke, it was women. For teenagers, it's their parents. The mouthing is almost a kind of teething: at the same time they mouth off to signal their independence, they do it obnoxiously as a way to maintain their childish status. They both do and do not want their independence (this translates to wanting freedom with only the responsibilities they recognize.) They want their parents' unconditional love and they ar ...more
May 27, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this short book incredibly helpful. Wolf pulls no punches on what it's like to live with the contemporary American teenager. This quote perfectly sums up what it is like to live with my 13-year old son: "For those who have never raised a teenage child, it is hard to imagine the day-to-day swings between crazed frenzy and genuine tranquility. Some of the time things are calm, even beautiful. You love your kid and he or she seems just fine. But at other times, perhaps five minutes later, y ...more
Jan 15, 2009 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Obviously, I need help with parenting so I keep trying to read books such as these which continues to offend my children.
Ali Murphy
Jun 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was recommended to me by a friend after I expressed my frustration with my young teen. I am so glad that she did. I found this book tremendously helpful for several reasons:

1. The behaviour of my kids is completely normal, albeit frustrating. This was an enormous relief. Wolf spent a lot of time explaining the normal development of both boys and girls and it was like a light went on for me. It helped make me more understanding and less annoyed and helped me choose how to react.
2. Our l
Jan 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is old, but so good! I can't believe how accurate it is in depicting teens. It talks about how, at home, teen boys become reclusive and teen girls turn into fighters. Very good to help parents understand their teen's behavior. Perhaps there's something more updated. I have to check.
May 08, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
The author focuses on a very stereotypical teen-adult dynamic (parent lays down the law about homework, curfew, etc and the teen reacts with a stream of angry profanity). I assume that's because that's what he sees in his counseling practice. The advice is mostly in the form of reassurance and encouragement to stay firm and not despair. I think many families maintain a more multi-dimensional and connected relationship through the teen years. But the explanations he gives of the psychology behind ...more
Lenny Husen
Feb 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was excellent. A must-read for any parent of a difficult teenager (which is pretty much every teenager). How anyone could give this less than 5 stars, I don't know, except that this book doesn't offer any pat solutions to the problem of being a good parent to someone who treats you with disrespect and who is irrational. If you are expecting any solutions to the situation other than time, this book might disappoint you. But it is one of the few good "self-help" books I have ever come across.
Aug 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In three days time, I'll officially have two teenagers as my twin girls turn 13.

I read a couple of short "parenting teens" books at the start of the year when I had a Kindle Unlimited trial but both were disappointing and not very helpful to me personally. This one, I liked a lot. Sensible, useful advise and perspective on this next and different stage of parenting.
Judie Holliday
Oct 24, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I really appreciated this book, especially right now when I have two daughters in their early teens. A lot of what Wolf says makes sense and he isn't preachy or didactic. Instead, he's funny, realistic and convincing. These years are a mine field and I feel better equipped to tip-toe through them now, more aware of what I can expect and what I can realistically effect.
Janna Huyler collins
I picked this up to help me understand my 17 year old daughter who is driving me crazy. Gave me lots of great insight. Surprisingly, I also learned a great deal about the motivations behind my 15 year old son's behavior. I strongly recommend to anyone parenting teenagers!
Mar 15, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really helpful book for parents of kids aged 11-17. The basic message is that you have less control than you think, more influence than you think, and most kids turn out fine. Most importantly, your children will most likely turn out differently than what you you envisioned and you need to come to terms with that and love and support them anyway. A worthwhile read for all parents.
I don't think I've ever highlighted so many passages in any book as I did with this. I might have suspected that the author had set up hidden cameras in my house, if it weren't for the fact that so many of my friends have described similar scenarios to those he describes. He hits the living-with-teens nail right on the head - the difference between their behaviour at home and their behaviour in other settings; their apparent determination not to rely on their parents for anything but also to rel ...more
Aug 09, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jaclyn by: Rosalind Englander-Calo
Our family counselor loaned this book to my husband & I. I have mixed thoughts on it overall. I liked it because the anectdotes were humourous and relatable. I also liked that basically the message of this book is "relax, you can't really screw your kid up that badly and even if they are revealing a worrying trend now, as long as you continue to show you care, they'll likely turn out ok in a few years." It's a book that I'm convinced our couselor suggested we read for reassurance; and as a g ...more
Apr 19, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I recently ran into a former professor/friend of mine and after saying hello, I launched into an "All Teenagers are Evil," rant. When I slowed down to take a breath, she suggested that I read this book and I am glad that I did. Overall, the book has some really interested tidbits. I learned:

Nothing good will come of arguing with a teen. State your position, stick with it and move on
I already knew this one, but spanking adolescents is not a good idea for many reasons
Teens are resilient and can us
Apr 18, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: parenting
The main idea in this book is that adolescents are in a constant, dramatic struggle between their "baby self" that wants to snuggle and play games at home, and their "independent self" that wants to be far away from home on their own. The result is regular conflict so that engagement with parents comes in the emotionally safer form of conflict and arguing. Parents need to just stick to their clearly laid out rules, understand that they won't be adhered to 100%, and that they can't be enforced, j ...more
Meryl Evans
Feb 02, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended reading for parents of teens and tweens. Most parents will discover the arguments they have with their teens are typical and the author gives suggestions on what works and what won't work. A lot of it is common sense advice, but at least you know for sure what things to keep on doing and what things will be a waste of time.

The witty writing makes this a breezy read that only helps you better absorb and understand the content. Wolf shares dialogue that many parents will wonder if he w
Laurie Fink
Oct 15, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Don’t let the goofy title put you off. This is a book of substance that has saved me on many occasions. Raising a teenager is not what I expected — it’s harder, baffling and nuanced. I keep the book handy as a reference and go back to it when things get rough. It only takes a few pages to change my perspective and lower my pulse rate. The author’s thesis is that as a result of our attitudes toward being parents, we have created a generation of children who think they are our peers. Meaning: They ...more
Mar 12, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio
This book was recommended from a few different people. I could only locate the abridged version but I felt the advice portions were soft. I guess I am more strict or at least hope to be when my kids reach the teen years. It provided a good view of what teens are going through mentally and emotionally during these years and how they view adults in their lives. I found this part helpful. Loved the title but I think a recent read, "Boundaries with Teens", is much better.
Alina Fisher
Jan 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is so actual talking about internet safety, drugs, sex, binge drinking, you name it and you'll find an answer in there. Quite a few good examples and not patronising in any way.

If you have a teenager and wish to understand his world more, or even if you don't have a teenager just yet but want to get an insight into what the future may hold, this book is for you.

It actually improved my relationship with my son as I feel I can now understand him better.

Dec 23, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Humorous, insightful, helpful but a little dated. If written today there would be more neuroscience and brain development discussion. Best part of my copy was marginalia and underlined phrases by previous readers. E.g. "Lectures do very little," "Parents must not allow themselves to get sucked into ongoing battles."
Jan 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book when my son hit puberty (he's now 25) and have since raised three teens. I recommend it to ANYONE who even mentions they deal with teens! I used to read "Your One Year Old", "Your Two Year Old", etc and this does the same thing - shows you what is perfectly normal for your teen (son or daughter) to be doing and what to do about it!
A book recommended to me by two people - neither of which knows the other. A fabulous book for any person, parent, or guardian that has a pre-teen or current teen in their care.

Dr. Wolf is simply a practical father, counselor, and author! I cannot think of a better way to begin 2016. I have a better understanding and maybe learned a couple of things about myself in the process.
Feb 17, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2010
This is an amusing look at Teenagers. I cannot remember getting any specific advice from this book, but I did gain a sense of peace - a feeling of "this is normal" and a reminder to laugh about it, not let it get to me.
May 31, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was exactly what I needed, exactly when I needed it.

Not much has changed, except my perspective. I feel much more mentally prepared for the rollercoaster I just started riding. I suspect I will be re-reading portions of it over the next few years.
Calm LykaBomb
Feb 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the few "How To Raise a Teenager" books that has really reached me. On par with the "What to Expect..." series, but with a wry, accurate and earthy sense of humor that is essential to surviving your darling child's adolescence without incurring a felony record.
Kressel Housman
Dec 02, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An excellent explanation as to why teenagers act the way they do. I found the girls' explanation close to my experience, so I trust the author's word on the boys'. But I could have done without all the curse words. Yeah, many teenagers talk like that, but how much do I need to read it?
Oct 31, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a terrific parenting book about parenting teens. Ultimately optimistic, it doesn't pull any punches about what we are all in for in the next few years. A wise mom recomended it to me as her key to sanitity during those rough years.
Jun 10, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was impressed by how extremely realistic this author is about teenagers, and the best ways to influence their behavior.
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New teenager, new reason to REREAD this book. 3 26 Apr 10, 2009 05:30AM  
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“Much of this book is funny. That’s because I think much that goes on between teenagers and their parents is funny—if we can step back far enough from our lives to view our daily travails for what they are, instead of as deadly serious issues. Finally, if this book achieves its goal, you may notice a strange transformation in those scenes that used to drag you down. With a new understanding of your teenager’s psychological development and state of mind, you may find that those scenes are never quite the same again. They look different, less desperate, more like the inevitable interaction between a normally developing teenager and a caring parent. You may also discover that, seeing differently, you act differently as well.” 0 likes
“What is it to be the parent of a teenager? It is to do what you think best—when really you have no idea what is best. It is to ride out the storms and be back again the next day. It is to give love to a child who does not seem to want it, to a child who five minutes ago seemed to deserve a punch more than anything else.” 0 likes
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