Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Overcoming Toxic Parenting: A Book Review

About The Book:

You can break the cycle of toxic parenting
Parenting is hard enough when you had good role models in your own parents. But what if your parents were absent, neglectful, or abusive? Are you doomed to repeat their mistakes with your own children? As a parenting expert and someone who experienced negative parenting firsthand, Rick Johnson answers that question with an emphatic "No!"

Anyone can be a good parent, even if they didn't have one. In this compassionate and practical book, Johnson shows you how to identify the ways in which your past experiences affect your own parenting choices. Then he walks you through the process of healing the emotional and spiritual wounds toxic parenting has left behind. Finally, he outlines healthy habits and practices to take the place of the negative ones that were modeled for you.

With Rick as your sympathetic guide, you can break the cycle of abuse, neglect, or absenteeism and create a positive family environment now and for the future.

You can read an excerpt of Overcoming Toxic Parenting here, in PDF format

About The Author:

Rick Johnson is the bestselling author of That's My SonThat's My Teenage SonThat's My GirlBetter Dads, Stronger Sons; and Becoming Your Spouse's Better Half. He is the founder of Better Dads and is a sought-after speaker at parenting and marriage conferences. Rick, his wife, Suzanne, and their grown children live in Oregon. Learn more at

My Review:

As a young toddler I was placed in foster care, and ultimately adopted by a loving, Christian couple. It was not until years later that I found out just how rough my life started out. There was suspected abuse, and certain neglect.

 Growing up in an adoptive home, we were seemingly the quintessential "nuclear family". While I grew up in a Christian home, with two parents and three sisters, we were not immune to dysfunction. As a young adult, our family dealt with mental illness in the form of anxiety and eating disorders among a number of our family members. It was a journey that started years prior but we just did not realize (or perhaps did not want to admit what was truly happening). 

As a university and college student I studied pyschology and became somewhat familiar with Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE's) and how they can impact people into adulthood in so many ways. Then, during the last 20 years as an Early Childhood Educator I have once again become reacquainted with the topic of ACE's. I even did an ACE test on myself and was astonished at how many I had experienced. Not all, but a good number of them. 

Reading Overcoming Toxic Parenting was, at times, difficult to read. It reminded how much adoption changed my life, and helped to make me who I am now, a Christian women in her 40's. It has also shown me how, as a parent of two, how much my growing up years has impacted me now as a parent. While most of my growing up, and most impacting, years were good, some experiences still affect me today. The book was sobering to read, and gives some great tips and ideas to overcome the past, and remember that just because we start out rough, it doesn't mean we have to let it determine our future. Nurture versus nature is a true and real battle. I know first hand what a harsh and loving environment can do to a child. This book says that while we cannot control what has happened to us in the past, we certainly can have the tools to overcome and create a healthy future, both for us as a parent and our own children. It was a powerful book to read but definitely shows us how we can overcome hurt to be better for our own children. A great encouraging read to overcome generational hurt! 

I highly recommend this book, both for those who are parents, who have experienced ACE's, those who work with children who have, and teachers and caregivers. 

I give this book a huge thumbs up. 

BUY IT: You can purchase Overcoming Toxic Parenting at your favorite Christian retailer from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group

***I received a complimentary copy of this book, courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications Inc., for the purpose of review on this blog. All opinions expressed are my own and I have not been compensated in any other manner***

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