When Parents Love Too Much
What Happens When Parents Won't Let Go
This book tackles the problem of what happens when parents give children too much love, attention and overprotection. The book is not an assault on loving parents. Instead it addresses the problem of parents who become totally enmeshed in their children's lives. Overparented children often turn into unhappy adults who have problems forming intimate relationships, who have difficulty putting trust in others, and who fear success. They grow up with a feeling of entitlement and are shocked to find that people in the real world are not as giving or as admiring as their parents were. The text is filled with informative case studies and advice from two therapists, and should help parents learn to recognize and stop their destructive behaviour. It may also help those adults who suffer the consequences of parental overprotection to begin to manage their own lives.
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What Reviewers Are Saying
Here's something new: How parents can trash their lives and their children's lives by caring too much. What are the symptoms of overadulation? Ashner (an educator of learning-disabled teen-agers) and Meyerson (a psychotherapist) provide a lengthy list that thoughtful readers will apply immediately to themselves, as with symptoms of a trendy disease. Among the signs of growing up with overinvolved parents are: trouble making decisions; fear of success; a tendency to be self-critical while at the same time feeling "entitled" - which, except for the last, seem similar to the signs of growing up with noncaring parents. Among the causes: too much love and not enough understanding, too much praise, too much hand-holding. It all adds up to a person who used to be called simply "spoiled." The book follows a formula typical of this self-help genre. There are catchy chapter headings, case histories with the subjects cozily identified as "Ron" or "Kris" or "Nancy," and a first-person point-of-view - in this case, a diffuse "we." Overprotection and overindulgence (not the same as "love") do put roadblocks on the road to maturity, however, and the authors red-flag some obstacles and suggest remedies. Breaks no new ground, but of interest to adults who seem to have had silver-spoon childhoods and still feel deprived. (Kirkus Reviews)