Understanding Children
A Parents Guide to Child Rearing

A Major Contribution to the Parent Guidance Literature


  • Different kinds of parent-child love
  • Nurturing self-esteem in children
  • Childhood sexuality
  • Parental anger toward child
  • Child’s anger toward parent
  • Anger between siblings
  • Reward, discipline, & punishment

Most mental health professionals agree that “love is not enough” and that knowledge and understanding of children’s psychological processes can be of immense value in, if not crucial to, healthy child rearing. With appropriate instruction many forms of childhood psychiatric disorders can be prevented and others alleviated if dealt with properly in their earliest phases. In this volume Dr. Richard A. Gardner provides advice to parents based on his many years of experience working with children and their parents. Some of his views are conventional, many are modifications of traditional views, and others nonconventional. Whatever his view, he describes in lucid detail the reasons for his position. The book is both theoretical and practical-providing parents with the "why's" as well as the "how to's."

The theoretical material is presented in a manner readily understood by the intelligent layperson, and the practical recommendations are spelled out clearly, enabling the parent to readily use the advice provided. Although primarily written for parents, therapists have also found this book useful, not only in their own therapeutic work, but as a way of advising parents.

The wide range of common childhood problem areas are covered: love of children-too little, just enough, too much; raising children’s self-esteem; eating problems; childhood sexuality; guilt-too little, just enough, too much; anger-parent/child, child/parent, child/child; reward, discipline, and punishment; children's play; education-the parents' role in the process; television.

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