All posts by getsetgo

Strong Womanhood

At our house we love to watch box-set DVD’s.  No ads, intelligent TV, and if its too much of a cliffhanger we just rock on to the next episode.  Now our kids are grown up, its a great bit of couple time too.  I love to hear the little sounds Shaaron makes of empathy and response to the situations and characters.  And if I literally “lose the plot” I can just pause it and ask her what the heck is going on!.

Right now we are watching “Borgen”, the Danish drama about a woman Prime Minister, her family and her life in politics.  I love the subtle differences in people from different countries – Denmark seems notably more equal and the women, at least on this TV show, don’t do the cutesy simpering things that they often do on US television.

The plot though, has taken a dark turn, as it has to midway through any TV drama worthy of the name.  The PM is so engrossed in her political challenges, which are of course huge, that she is ignoring her teenage daughter’s cries for help.  Her marriage has already broken down under the strain.  And what’s worse, when the daughter makes all those usual teenage signs of being deeply unhappy, she gets angry with her for being immature or a nuisance.

I find it almost unbearable to watch (you can tell I get a bit over-involved in television, that’s why I don’t watch much).  The clearly mounting distress of the daughter with nobody hearing her signals.  Her loneliness, and the fact that she DOES love her mother and father and little brother.  She is an open hearted girl, the things that make her good are now making her so vulnerable.

When I was doing lots of radio and TV interviews for the Raising Girls book launch last year,  I found myself searching for concise and easy to remember messages that would sum up the message of the book, and be helpful to anyone listening too. I decided there were three basic things that any girl needs to make it to strong womanhood.

1. To be protected from the tidal wave of trash media that comes through our TV sets, internet and smartphones.  Especially when young, not to be drowned in images of women as objects of decoration, anxieties about weight and looks, and the pure chaos of modern media that so disrupts our sense of being grounded in a beautiful world.

2. To have a father who treats her as if she is important, valuable, and interesting, for herself.  By his time and actions and words, he conveys to her that she is special and worthwhile.

And last of all, and most important.

3. A mother who has time to listen and talk.  To spend those thousands of hours of her growing up, helping to transmit strong and thoughtful womanhood.  A mum, in other words, who isn’t rushed, swept away with other priorities, or too lost in her own stuff, to be there for her.  Even if she is the Prime Minister of Denmark.

These are not easy things to provide.  But knowing they are there, like clear strong beacons to aim for, might help.

The New Manhood

According to Steve Biddulph, “Most men today live behind masks. They put them on in the morning and keep them on until they fall asleep at night, adopting the clichés of what they perceive a real man to be. The problem is, it’s all pretend.”

In The New Manhood, Steve Biddulph explores the elements of a man’s life that often cause unhappiness, emptiness or frustration. Steve explores how deep down, men don’t know who they are or why others can’t find a true connection with them. 

The New Manhood comes sixteen years after the international success of the original Manhood. “The New Manhood contains everything I have learned about being male” says Steve, “from working as a family therapist and educator with men, and living for almost sixty years, struggling, reflecting, and researching about how a man’s life either works, or does not. The book invites men to escape from the ‘prison of self’ and bravely attempts to define the heart and soul of being a man in comparison to a boy. You see, a boy lives for himself, while a man should live for others. “

Steve has spent thirty years sharing his message about Manhood and Raising Boys with the world. The New Manhood represents his ultimate message – Grow up. Get connected. Grieve for what you have lost. Then get it back. 

The Complete Secrets of Happy Children

From the author of the worldwide bestseller Raising Boys, this bind-up of the parenting classics The Secret of Happy Children and More Secrets of Happy Children by parenting expert and child psychologist Steve Biddulph tells parents everything they need to know about raising happy, healthy, confident children from babyhood to teens.

This bind-up brings all of Steve’s parenting tips and secrets together for the first time.

This book shows parents how to be true to themselves while also bringing up secure children who feel loved and respected, with self esteem and responsibility.

The book is aimed at a wide age group- from babies and toddlers to older children and teenagers.

Authoritative yet accessible, the book is full of case histories and familiar conversations and scenarios, as well as cartoons, that help parents relate to Steve’s message.

Published in 27 languages, this book has sold 2 million copies. It covers the whole of childhood, and was a breakthrough book in many countries in encouraging more affectionate, warm and engaged parenting. How to have discipline without using fear, and how to listen so children tell you their needs and fears before problems arise. A parent-friendly, funny, and easy to read book about understanding children and how they grow.

Raising Girls

Steve Biddulph’s Raising Boys was a global phenomenon. The first book in a generation to look at boys’ specific needs, parents loved its clarity and warm insights into their sons’ inner world. But today, things have changed. It’s girls that are in trouble.

There has been a sudden and universal deterioration in girls’ mental health, starting in primary school and devastating the teen years.

Steve Biddulph’s Raising Girls is both a guidebook and a call-to-arms for parents. The five key stages of girlhood are laid out so that you know exactly what matters at which age, and how to build strength and connectedness into your daughter from infancy onwards.

Raising Girls is both fierce and tender in its mission to help girls more at every age. It’s a book for parents who love their daughters deeply, whether they are newborns, teenagers, young women – or anywhere in between.

Feeling secure, becoming an explorer, getting along with others, finding her soul, and becoming a woman – at last, there is a clear map of girls’ minds that accepts no limitations, narrow roles or selling-out of your daughter’s potential or uniqueness.

All the hazards are signposted – bullying, eating disorders, body image and depression, social media harms and helps – as are concrete and simple measures for both mums and dads to help prevent their daughters from becoming victims. Parenthood is restored to an exciting journey, not one worry after another, as it’s so often portrayed.

Steve talks to the world’s leading voices on girls’ needs and makes their ideas clear and simple, adding his own humour and experience through stories that you will never forget. Even the illustrations, by Kimio Kubo, provide unique and moving glimpses into the inner lives of girls.

Along with his fellow psychologists worldwide, Steve is angry at the exploitation and harm being done to girls today. With Raising Girls he strives to spark a movement to end the trashing of girlhood; equipping parents to deal with the modern world, and getting the media off the backs of our daughters.

Raising Girls is powerful, practical and positive. Your heart, head and hands will be strengthened by its message.

Raising Boys

A word of mouth bestseller which has become one of the best loved and most successful books in the parenting field.

In this expanded and updated edition, Steve Biddulph shares and gives practical and honest advice to parents so they can recognise the different stages of boyhood and learn how to raise happy, confident and kind young men.

Boys need to be parented in a different way from girls with their own very special psychological and physical make-up. Home, society and education have failed boys badly – and these failures lead to unhappy men who cannot fully become happy, responsible, emotionally-confident adults.

While it is essential that boys spend more time learning about manhood from their fathers, Biddulph updates his classic to include helpful information for mothers and single mothers with baby boys.

This extended edition explores some important topics:

• How ADHD may be caused by stress in the first year of life.
• Whether boys should start school later than girls.
• Help for single mothers raising sons.
• How to choose a sport that does more good than harm.
• What we can do about boys and binge drinking.
• What science can tell us about teenage boys and driving – and how we can keep our sons safe.

Raising Boys offers parents real-life situations, thought-provoking insights, humour and help.