Where was this book nine years ago when I first needed it? Having already brought up two tweens and now onto the next two I was very keen to see if this Net Mums book ‘You and Your Tween’ by Hollie Smith could offer me some tips.
The conclusion is that yes this book has plenty of tips and very helpful ones at that.
So, what is a tween? It is certainly a new phenomena, we were never called Tweens when I was a child and Tweens were not around nine years ago. Well, tweens are typically aged between 9 and 13 years of age and stuck in that ‘abyss’ of not being young and cute enough to ‘get away’ with certain behaviours but also not old enough to have their attitude blamed on teenage hormones. But, hormones are actually aplenty in this age group and these can be turbulent times for both parent and child as they start to push you away and demand more independence.
This book written by mum of two Hollie Smith aims to guide us through our child’s tough transition to adulthood. From my own experience I would say this varies from child to child, some breeze through this without any problems at all, others do struggle and the ever evolving modern life just seems to make it harder for us all. For example, nine years ago I did not have to worry about social networking, online bullying or even online safety because the internet wasn’t really a part of my son’s life then.
So, how can this book help?
Divided into eight chapters, this book is something you can read from cover to cover if you have the time, or if you have a specific worry or problem you can dip in as and when needed. The chapters cover:
- Conflict and Communication – good tips on how to talk to your child even when they infuriate you and it all feels like a one way street.
- Education- covering a vast area including children that are unhappy in school, the move up to secondary school, getting into trouble and coping with homework.
- Friends and Peers- we all know the dreaded peer pressure but this helps with bullying, cyber bullying and also how to deal with your child’s friends if they are ‘bad’.
- Puberty, sex and relationships- preparing your child basically for the inevitable but also dealing with young love.
- Modern media- how much time should out Tweens really be on the internet, computer games, mobile etc? Do they know much much they should share in social networking?
- Good health- healthy eating, weight issues, alcohol and bedtimes are some of the subjects covered in this chapter.
- Emotional Issues- getting children to talk if they have a problem, boosting their self esteem plus many more important issues are mentioned here.
- Independence and responsibility- a lot is covered in this chapter from rules, when to leave a child home alone, to even pocket money.
What I particularly liked most was that although expert advice is given to cover each subject, there is also a large section in each chapter titled ‘What the netmums say’ and these are real life experiences from other parents who are going through a particular problem or who are no out the other side. I find this so interesting and also reassuring that I am not the only one dealing with ‘X’. When it comes to it we can all read what the experts recommend but sometimes it is good to know how other families have coped with something.
The book highlighted to me a few issues I haven’t thought about before. For instance, that I should be talking about with my children more, for instance, sex and relationships, modern media and also independence. Where we live the children have no independence at all and I must admit I have been hesitant about allowing my twelve year old to go to the nearest town with her friends. I realise I need to let her go a little. I also need to inform the children better on issues that aren’t quite so pleasant. It is so easy to protect their innocence against the dangers and sometimes absolutely awful reality of life but I am probably not doing them any favours. It is now on my list to tackle.
The recommended price of this book is £12.99 but you can buy it from Amazon for only £6.89 at the moment.
I think in conclusion, I may have done this twice before, and have three more to go but each child is different and they all have their issues however minor. I will definitely be referring to this book in future for guidance, back up and reassurance.
I award You and Your Tween a 4/5 cupcakes award.
I have been given a copy of this book for free to review and have also been paid to write a review although all opinions are my own.