How We Make Our Kids Angry
I remember one of the first times our younger daughter Amber vented her anger at me for something I did. In reality, it was something I didn't do that made her mad. She had asked me to help her with a paper she was writing for a middle school class. The paper required a lot of research, and Amber didn't know how to go about doing the research.
"There's nothing to it," I assured her flippantly. Then instead of showing her what she needed to do, I simply told her to get started, explaining that she would figure out how to do the research as she went along.
She let out an exasperated sigh. "But Dad, I don't know how to--"
"Amber, just get started," I insisted with authority, "and you'll figure it out." Then I left the room. (from the introduction)
When the author understood his mistake, he was able to go and talk with his daughter. As she vented, he began to understand what a capacity parents have to make their kids angry, and how he could change his approach to communicating with his children to improve their relationship. In the years since Roger Cross has been studying the things parents do that make kids angry, such as:
Drawing on his ministry of Youth for Christ along with a survey of one hundred students of varied ages and backgrounds, Roger Cross has created a practical, helpful book for parents who want to understand why their kids are so angry and what they need to do to change.
"Roger Cross leads the way with his own transparency, humility and experience. He offers revealing insights on common parent challenges and does it with an empathetic and nonjudgmental way. In so doing, Roger gives us all the advantage of his valuable lessons from hindsight that can benefit all of us--even some of us grandparents!"
"There's no doubt from my travels today that Roger has hit on a very important subject for parents. I come in contact with a lot of angry kids and this book will help parents address this critical issue."
"What an amazingly practical book. Roger Cross doesn't waste a word on a single page. This book delivers straightforward solutions to clearly diagnosed problems. Roger gets to the heart of the issue from a biblically tested point of view and delivers ideas that allow sustainable change to take place."
"Roger Cross knows kids. I worked with him in Youth for Christ for many years. This book draws on his experience as a youth worker and father and is filled with practical advice to help anyone in close proximity with kids. I highly recommend this book."
"Dealing with unhealthy anger is the number one issue that causes parents to come for family counseling. This book is an invaluable gift for every married and single parent. The chapter on how parents can be on the same page is by itself worth the price of the book. I know that this is a book you will read more than once and one you'll want to share with your friends."
"Kids get angry when parents play favorites, push too hard, and fail to enforce boundaries. This book teaches parents how to avoid these traps, creating a better home environment."
"Cross offers amazingly practical ideas and suggestions for how parents can deal with and lead children of all ages. This is a great tool for parents."
"A parenting guide about respecting children while simultaneously providing them with the boundaries they need."
"Cross packs a lot of practical wisdom into a skinny book."
"Few parents intentionally set out to make their children angry. But we can--and we do. Roger Cross lifts the shade on some unintentional behaviors that we can avoid in parenting."
Introduction: "Sometimes You Make Me So Mad!"
1. Why Can?t I Be Me?
2. You Have to Earn Your Stripes, Kid
3. Playing Favorites
4. Hey, Dummy!
5. A World Without Boundaries
6. Crime and Punishment
7. Forcing Your Faith
8. Who?s the Parent?
9. The Two-Headed Monster
Conclusion: Just Keep Them Dancing