Kids Don't Come With A Manual Review


I am not a fan of parenting books or books that claim they are not parenting books but yet look like them, although saying this, this is the third book I have read the reviewed which is not a parenting book but disguised as one, it is also the third book I have actually enjoyed reading and found it very useful.

Kids Don’t Come With A Manual is basically like a parents toolbox but meant for the bookshelf or bedside table rather than the garage or shed.
This is a fairly balanced book, it gives you two different parenting views; one being that of a strict parenting and one of a more attached ‘all heart’ parent. It also gives the view of the child which is always handy to have.

There are seven chapters, each chapter has several parts to it, from ‘how to be a good role model’ to ‘setting rules’, it sounds a bit more like a parenting book with the title of those parts of the chapters and I can honestly say this book is probably a parenting book, I’m not sure if it’s authors have tried to say it’s not, but to me it is, which isn’t always such a bad thing.

In each chapter you are given ‘tools’ which are ways to help your children through the good and bad times of childhood. The reason why I like this book is because it’s focused solely on the child and it’s a pretty gentle book (which is the way I like to parent anyway!), when I first got given it I thought it was going to be a bit like Super Nanny but it isn’t, it’s just a really well balanced take on everything.

I have tested out most of the tools in the book, my favourite tool was the ‘Limited Choices’ one, I have a very difficult four year old at the moment, I know he feels like he can’t do anything and he’s struggling to gain control with his life at the moment so this tool has worked well for us (not all the time, not everything will work every time) but 80% of the time it’s worked. You give your child choices which benefit you (and child) but you mostly and you let the child pick what they want to do, so for example you could say “Would you rather go to bed now or in five minutes?” So it makes the child feel like they are making the choice but you benefit from it as they are going to leave in five minutes and hopefully without much fuss because that is what they have chosen.

The tool I found that just did not work on my eldest was tool number 6 ‘Diffusing Whining & Arguing’, unfortunately I do have quite an argumentative four year old who struggles to listen to reason, so even though I tried this for several days it just did not work for us.

Some other things I enjoyed about this book include; It supports having family meetings, tells you at the start of each tool what it’s for, the age it works best at and it also explains what it is for. I like how the book gives you note space to write down tips for yourself and it’s also a space so you can write down things that work well for you so you can always flip back and check.

This is a good book, I would recommend it to parents who have children who they struggle to communicate with and just need a bit of a helping hand to help their relationships with their children.

I want to go into so much more detail with this book but I have found it really is a ‘read it and try it for yourself’ book, my children are different from yours (as all children are different!) but I would say it’s worth the read. I look forward to hearing how you get on.

If you'd like to buy the book direct for the website you can do so here or you can find it on Amazon here.

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