Synergistic Parenting

Resources for Parents


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There are many books about parenting that illustrate three different views. One group illustrates knowledgeable parenting that is designed to grow discipline and responsibility within children as a result of give-and-take between parent and child as taught here in Synergistic Parenting. Other books not listed here advocate either authoritarian parenting, which tends to produce dependency or rebellion in many children, or tell how to be laissez faire or permissive parents.

The following books add further information and examples. They are listed alphabetically within groups.

Good introductions:

Don Dinkmeyer, Sr., Gary D. McKay, and Don Dinkmeyer, Jr.: The Parenting Handbook. The STEP handbook — see also STEP for infants and STEP for teens — cover attitudes and skills.

Thomas Gordon: P.E.T.: Parent Effectiveness Training. An excellent book revised in 2000, covering many subjects carefully, and available in paperback. If you buy only one book, I suggest this.

Elisa Medhus, M.D.: Raising Children Who Think for Themselves discusses several aspects or facets of self-directed children in relation to failure, peers, etc.

Judith Warner: Perfect Madness: motherhood in the age of anxiety reports her experience as a new mother in France, then returning to the U.S., she reports the changes in parenting styles and women's self-images driving parents mad, and closes with hopeful possibilities. Thoughtful and scarey.

Discussions of issues:

Lee Canter with Marlene Canter: Assertive Discipline for Parents

Ellen Falinsky: Ask the Children. Results of research of parents and working; it found that work is not as critical as parental attitudes and time spent with your child.

Haim G. Ginott: Between Parent and Child

Nicky Marone: How to Father a Successful Daughter. Ways social and peer pressure reduce a daughter's motivation and how to counter it.

Chuck Meyer: Twelve Smooth Stones. Thoughtful notes to a daughter about problems.

Jane Nelson and Lynn Lott: I'm On Your Side: Resolving Conflict with Your Teenage Son or Daughter

Jane Nelson: Positive Discipline

Trevor Romain: The Little People's Guide to the Big World

Martin Seligman: The Optimistic Child. Building resilience in children.

Daniel J.Siegel and Mary Hartzell: Parenting from the Inside Out guides us to a deeper self understanding, and includes exercises.

Catherine M. Wallace: For Fidelity: how intimacy and commitment enrich our lives. A mother discusses her work with her teens about intimacy and commitment.

Denise Chapman Weston & Mark S. Weston: Playful Parenting: Turning the Dilemma of Discipline into Fun and Games

Jerry Wyckoff and Barbara C. Unell: Discipline Without Shouting or Spanking.

Conflict between profession or work and family:

Catherine M. Wallace: Selling Ourselves Short: Why We Struggle to Earn a Living and Have a Life.


Judith Wallerstein and others: The Unexpected Legacy of Divorce. A 25-year study yields important information about children and parents.

Being step-parents:

James D. Eckler: Step-by-Step-Parenting/A Guide to Successful Living With a Blended Family. Carefully discusses several different facets and relationships.

Gays and Lesbians:

Rosamund Elsin & Michele Paulse: Asha's Mums

More difficult to read, more specialized, or technical:

Dorothy Corkille Briggs: Your Child's Self-esteem

Rudolph Dreikurs with Vicki Soltz: Children: the Challenge

Erik H. Erikson: Childhood and Society

Erich Fromm: The Art of Loving

Copyright © 2004 John F. Yeaman