I knew about her before I got to know her. She was a parenting guru and she popped up all over the Internet. But what could she really offer me? I had given up all parenting books after I birthed my first born and realized that I could stress out about what the books said, or I could follow my instincts and parent my child out of love. Somehow, the second option seemed to work best for us. It made sense. Not every baby is alike. Not every pregnancy is alike. I could stress about the differences, about what milestones my kid was hitting and which ones he was behind on, or I could develop right along side of him as we both learned how to navigate our new worlds together.
But every once in a while, I’d really take in what parenting guru and family doctor Deborah Gilboa had to say. It wasn’t hard. Dr. G is great at packaging her advice in bite-sized snippets (just check out her YouTube channel). And every time I picked up one of her nuggets of advice, I would automatically share it with my husband. Because her tips were that good. They were something I wanted both of us to think about and implement. They were tips that I (usually) had never considered myself.
And then Dr. G went and wrote a book.
“Everyone struggles with parenting. Everyone.”
So how do I feel about this parenting book? Will it sit in the back of my bookshelf like my other parenting books that I once eagerly purchased, hoping to become the World’s Best Mom?
I own Get the Behavior You Want… Without Being the Parent You Hate as an ebook. But I need to pick it up as a paperback copy, and I need to keep it in my living room on the coffee table or on in the bathroom on the back of my toilet. I once heard Dr. G refer to her book as a handbook for parents, meant to help through those tough parenting jams. The chapters are short yet they deliver so much wisdom and provide an incredible amount of empowerment. In fact, it was Dr. G who suggested keeping it on the back of your toilet so that you can escape to the bathroom when you’re just not sure what to do about a certain parenting situation (and you know we all do that anyway), flip to the relevant chapter, quickly read through it, and come out equipped with the tools needed to address the specific parenting issue.
Get the Behavior You Want… Without Being the Parent You Hate is an empowering book. Dr. G fills her book with reminders that we are uniquely qualified to best parent our children. We are the expert of our kids – not our doctor, not a parenting book, not even Amazing Parenting Expert Dr. G (my title for her). With that in mind, it is a little easier to take on each challenge with love and respect, especially if we have a few handy tips from Dr. G in our back pockets.
“I am a parenting expert on the four kids who live in my house. You? Are a parenting expert on the kids who live in your home! No one knows the kids you love better, or cares more about their welfare, than you do…. As parents, our efforts are always well-intentioned and often right on the mark. This book is to give you new ideas, and provide structure for your consistency.
I desperately want my kids to grow into the type of person that Dr. G wants my kids to grow into – kids who are respectful, who can handle responsibility, and who are resilient. When I consider all I need to do to mold them into this kind adult who I will be proud of, I grow overwhelmed, because if parenting has taught me anything, it is how imperfect I am. But as I read through each section and chapter of Dr. G’s book, I find myself wanting to implement her tips and I get excited about how they will positively impact my children.
Get the Behavior You Want… Without Being the Parent You Hate is a practical parenting handbook with chapters on mealtimes, friendships, cleanliness, fitness, homework, money, time management, and relationships. The book is applicable to parents of young children, parents of teenagers, grandparents, and caregivers. I cannot recommend this book enough. It is a book for parents who are struggling and for those who aren’t feeling the struggle just yet. It is applicable in easy times and in it is useful to pull out in parenting emergencies.
I have a very small list of parenting books that I think are gems in the genre – ones that I choose to give at baby showers to hopefully drown out all the other parenting books that are useless. These books that I love and share empower mothers. I can assure you that I am adding Dr. G’s book Get the Behavior You Want… Without Being the Parent You Hate to that bundle of must-read parenting books.
I was provided with a copy of Get the Behavior You Want… Without Being the Parent You Hate for the purposes of this review, but my love for the book is entirely genuine. All links leading to Amazon are affiliate links.