"It's easier to build strong children than to repair broken adults.""An abnormal reaction to an abnormal situation is normal behavior.""Relationships are the agents of change and the most powerful therapy is human love."

"It's easier to build strong children than to repair broken adults."

– Frederick Douglass

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"An abnormal reaction to an abnormal situation is normal behavior."

– Viktor E. Frankl

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"Relationships are the agents of change and the most powerful therapy is human love."

– Dr. Bruce Perry

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“If I Knew as a New Parent What I Know Today…” A Gift of Hindsight

Six years ago, I began work on a book project.  I asked seasoned parents as well as  many experts and authors in the family/parenting world the following question

If you knew as a new parent what you know today, is there anything you might do differently in raising your children?”

I also invited them to write a brief note to their “younger parent selves.”

More people than I could have anticipated eagerly obliged and a beautiful and nuanced array of reflections was born.

The project came to a halt in the winter of 2012, when the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings occurred. 

Focusing on my town’s recovery efforts, the book project went on hold. 

Given how many parents took the time to open their hearts, the project is now  back on the table. It is important the voices of the parents who gave their time and hearts be heard. 

Thus, A Gift of Hindsight: Reflections on Successes, Failures, and Lessons Learned from Seasoned Parents and Parenting Experts, is back on the table.

Below, a sneak peek at a few excerpts:

 

If you knew as a new parent what you know today, is there anything you might do differently in raising your children?”

Brett Webb Mitchell

Author: On Being a Gay Parent

Yes. First, moved to a place in this country that was friendlier to children of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer-expressing (LGBTQ) parents and our families…Yet while I would like to have saved them from all kinds of hostility because their dad is an out gay man, they have surely shown that “what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.” There very character reflects that they are young adults who are resilient in facing adversity, sensitive to the oppression of themselves and others, and do not tolerate bigots well.

Christine – divorced mother of two

I would trust that my children will be okay.  Even though this is counter to everything I honestly believe and feel, I would try with ALL my might to trust those statistics that say your children will be okay coming out of the divorce.  I now believe it would have impacted the way I was able to parent through the process.  I see that the tremendous guilt I felt (and still feel) interferes with my ability to think through things clearly when disciplining, holding my children accountable and following through. I am often responding to my feeling to protect them both from any further disappointment, and in doing so compromise my role as their mother.

Please take a moment to write a note to your “younger parent self”:

Andrew Solomon

Author: The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression and, Far From the Tree: Parents, Children and the Search for Identity

Anne Ford

Author: Laughing Allegra: The Inspiring Story of a Mother’s Struggle and Triumph Raising a Daughter With Learning Disablities

 

Please feel free to share your own answers to this question below for possible use in the book.

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