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You're Not the Boss of Me

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At one point or another every parent has thought his or her child is behaving like a brat. Right? If not, then no need to read on. Otherwise, join us and get some great tips and scripts (just what to say) from the book, You'??re Not the Boss of Me: Brat Proofing Your 4 to 12 Year Old by Betsy Brown Braun ($11.00 on

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When I picked up this book and looked at the table of contents, I was immediately captured by the chapter titles -'??Did You Hear Me?'? - '??I Didn'??t Do It'? - '??No, You Go To Your Room'? - '??I'??m Bored'? -'??Is This the Only Present I Get?'? Then I asked myself, are my children brats?'? '??Am I a bad parent?'? - because after all, children are not born brats.

In pondering these questions, I began reading the book '?? every word on every page. Overwhelmed at times by the density of information, the author'??s words of wisdom calmed me, '??You can'??t rush the parenting process- nor can you master it in one sitting.'? She is right!

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So here are just a few tips and scripts from You'??re Not the Boss of Meto get you started in the process.

What constitutes a brat?'??A child who doesn'??t know the value of money, who is grossly materialistic, who acts as if he is entitled, who lacks motivation, who is unappreciative and who lacks gratitude.'?

What can you do to brat proof?
1. Communicate Effectively - even non-verbally. '??Your children are observing all of the time; they take in your every move, and they remember each one.'? The communications you have with your child are a gift, so honor them. When your child talks to you, take the time to listen. If you are unable to then say, '?? I really want to hear what you have to say, but I can'??t give you my full attention right this minute. I hope it can wait until I come to a stopping point.'?
2. Teach Empathy - The ability to experience and understand to some degree the feelings of others and to respond in helpful ways; make selfishness illegal. '??Everyone in the family needs to think about how other people feel.'?
3. Build Independence '?? Have faith in your child and avoid giving warnings that thwart your child'??s risk taking. '?? Don'??t get up there; it too high.'? Instead, '?? That looks really high. Does it seem okay to you? You be the judge. You can come back down if you aren'??t comfortable.'?
4. Teach Responsibility '?? '??Responsibility grows out of being genuinely needed and valued for your contribution to the smooth running of the whole.'? Too many of us hire people to do the jobs that you or your child could be doing.
5. Cultivate Gratitude '?? The child who is taught to wait, to work, to save for what she wants, who is allowed to long for something before getting it, and sometimes doesn'??t get it all, will surely feel appreciation when her desire is fulfilled. '?? I know you are really disappointed that I won'??t buy you that spaceship Lego set. Learning that you don'??t always get what you want sure does sting, doesn'??t it?'?
6. There are five more character traits (telling the truth, self-reliance, respect, spoilage and humor), but you will have to read the book to find out more.

I have a lot of parenting books on my shelf, but none that are as direct, informative and supportive as this. I admire the author'??s no-nonsense, behaviorist approach and easy to understand tips and scripts. I only wish I had an electronic device to secretly deliver the correct script when applicable (any mac techies reading?). Buy on Amazon and support Momtrends--we get a small % of every sale.

Momtrends was not paid for this post. The book was received for review purposes only.

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