The fourteen essential conversations to have with your tween and early teenager to prepare them for the emotional, physical, and social challenges ahead, including scripts and advice to keep the communication going and stay connected during this critical developmental window.
“This book is a gift to parents and teenagers alike.”—Lisa Damour, PhD, author of Untangled and Under Pressure
Trying to convince a middle schooler to listen to you can be exasperating. Indeed, it can feel like the best option is not to talk! But keeping kids safe—and prepared for all the times when you can't be the angel on their shoulder—is about having the right conversations at the right time. From a brain growth and emotional readiness perspective, there is no better time for this than their tween years, right up to when they enter high school.
Distilling Michelle Icard's decades of experience working with families, Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen focuses on big, thorny topics such as friendship, sexuality, impulsivity, and technology, as well as unexpected conversations about creativity, hygiene, money, privilege, and contributing to the family. Icard outlines a simple, memorable, and family-tested formula for the best approach to these essential talks, the BRIEF Model: Begin peacefully, Relate to your child, Interview to collect information, Echo what you're hearing, and give Feedback. With wit and compassion, she also helps you get over the most common hurdles in talking to tweens, including:
• What phrases invite connection and which irritate kids or scare them off
• The best places, times, and situations in which to initiate talks
• How to keep kids interested, open, and engaged in conversation
• How to exit these chats in a way that keeps kids wanting more
Like a Rosetta Stone for your tween's confounding language, Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen is an essential communication guide to helping your child through the emotional, physical, and social challenges ahead and, ultimately, toward teenage success.
* This audiobook includes a downloadable PDF of conversation starters to have with your kids.
Michelle Icard is a member of the Today show parenting team and NBC News Learn. The author of Middle School Makeover, her work has been featured in the Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, The Christian Science Monitor, Redbook, Time, and People. Her leadership curriculum for middle schoolers, Athena's Path and Hero's Pursuit, have been implemented at schools across the U.S., and her summer camp curriculum is offered at more than twenty camps each summer. She lives with her family in Charlotte, North Carolina.