Uncommon Sense for Parents with Teenagers

In this remarkable tribute to the parent teenager relationship, Michael Riera offers a fresh translation of adolescence, asserting that this period of a child's growth is too often misunderstood as a phase to be dreaded instead of enjoyed. The author's uncommon appreciation for this special developmental stage of life via his unpatronizing approach to teenagers sets this book far and above the rest.

"Uncommon Sense for Parents with Teenagers" is laid out in two parts. In Part I, Riera shows that as in all truces, it is important for the adversary to understand the opposition. Riera succinctly defines the turmoil of young adulthood with a layman's introduction to developmental psychology. In this section, the adolescent world is clarified with a grade-by-grade explanation of the cognitive, emotional, and physical change (and challenges) teenagers face. Your teenager is going through a poltergeist˜struggling between the personalities of the old child and emerging adult.

Part II of "Uncommon Sense" addresses, chapter-by-chapter, the twenty-most commonly asked questions by parents. It's no-nonsense advice on how to cope and instruct your teenagers through the confrontations they are bombarded with daily: Alcohol, Drugs and Television; Music and Computers; Making Friends; the Driver's License; Eating Modification and Eating Disorders; Divorce; Single Parenting; and When to Seek Professional Help.

Case histories are liberally sprinkled throughout the text. Parents who are denied candid feedback from their own kids can listen to other teenagers speak out on parental supervision, peer pressure, school, and a host of other topics. Parents can also seek comfort in the personal stories of how other parents cope with similar problems.


In "Uncommon Sense," Riera's unpatronizing approach coaches parents on how to let their children transform into responsible adults.

Adapted by Cynthia Traina and excerpted from "Uncommon Sense for Parents with Teenagers." Copyright © 1995 by Michael Riera. Reprinted with permission from Celestial Arts, Berkeley, CA.

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