Reviews

"The best parents are those that let their children be themselves. The Available Parent looks at various styles of parenting, and why they are good or bad. Communication and acting as a mentor, for example, are seen as good things, whereas hovering and lecturing are not. Although brief, it gives a thorough going-over of most parenting styles, with notes on how to make the most effective parent.

The idea of parenting is to raise children that become capable adults, but parents are not fully aware of the responsibility that it entails, or get overwhelmed by the responsibility. This book shows a parent how to tend to the path between the two extremes, where the responsibility of raising a child is understood, but there is plenty of room for error and even having fun with them. A parent needs to be unafraid of making some mistakes, and this book shows what the more common mistakes to avoid are, as well as excellent tips on how to take advantage of what tools you have. Better yet, it approaches the matter in a friendly, helpful manner.  For parents that are worried about the job they are doing, this is an excellent book."
Reviewed by Jamais Jochim for Portland Book Review
 

"Have you ever been bewildered by the changes in your child and your sudden lack of effectiveness as a parent? When hugs and family fun have been replaced by silence, slamming doors and an ever-changing array of moods, you need new tools. Top teen expert Dr. John Duffy has encountered all of this and more in his family counseling practice and offers excellent advice, clear strategies and teen-tested solutions in The Available Parent. Dr. Duffy can help you shift the dynamic in your relationship with your teenager. Imagine what it would be like if healthy conversations replaced angry outbursts or petulant silence. Using the techniques in The Available Parent, you can begin to enjoy a healthy, satisfying, new kind of relationship with your teenager – one based on a foundation of radical optimism, rather than fear-based control. At a time when many "helicopter parents" micromanage and under-appreciate their children, Dr. Duffy's step-by-step guide is an innovative approach to taking care of teens and tweens. 
read more at Hanging Off the Wire

"The Available Parent: Radical Optimism for Raising Teens and Tweens is a refreshing take on parenting. Dr. John Duffy, family counselor, life coach and “top teen expert” (an honorific all the more remarkable for its near impossibility) proposes proven techniques to negotiate the ever-changing, seismic shifts of puberty and beyond. What is an available parent? One who encourages a kid to feel heard, understood, supported. Not as a “friend,” but as an effective parent. The author boils it down for us: “Our goal is to foster an environment that is most likely to provide a sense of competence and resilience.” And by focusing on our own behavior (which looks as crazy to our kids as our kids’ behavior looks to us) we can open the lines of communication, establish trust and try to balance fear with love and acceptance. Parental behaviors that don’t work make an all-too-familiar list, including lecturing, micromanaging, smothering, coddling, bribing, waiting and snooping. Luckily, the bulk of the book is all about what does work, along with insider tips and exercises to make us truly available."
BookPage

"I recently read a great book about parenting teens and tweens called, "The Available Parent" by Dr. John Duffy, and I'd like to share some insights from this book with you. Even if you are not currently parenting a teen or tween, I think you will find these insights helpful because they contain advice on how to improve any important relationship in our lives."
read more at Living Compass

"The Available Parent is a valuable and thought-provoking resource that’s filled with many precious lessons and gives parents a unique perspective on cultivating a healthy relationship with their kids."
PsychCentral

"There’s no better audience for a parenting guide than someone with no kids, right? But The Available Parent was a fascinating read. Dr. John Duffy has wisely chosen to reintroduce some common sense into parenting theory. Put your tiger mama to bed, turn all your buzzy electronics off, and just be around for your kids. Wow! Who’d a thunk it?

Apparently, not nearly enough parents. Duffy cites case after case from his therapy practice where kids are ignored or scrutinized, sometimes both at once, by parents preoccupied with Blackberry screens, fantasizing about the future or assessing past actions.  With very little time spent just being present with each other, the relationship begins to deteriorate. Simply asking  kids about their interests and listening nonjudgmentally–being available, in other words–is vital to rebuilding that connection."
Donkeywork

“Duffy's advice for parenting adolescents springs from radical optimism, a form of practical spirituality that recommends being open and available to the possibility of change, essentially exchanging fear and the need to control for hope and positive results. Duffy challenges parents to stop micromanaging and judging their kids and instead acknowledge and accept them the way they are, respect their boundaries and abilities, and let them know they have the power to master their own world. Only then can parents be truly available to provide discipline, direction, understanding, and love in an environment that fosters competence and resilience.”
Publisher’s Weekly

“Raising a teenager can be just as much of an emotional roller coaster as being a teenager, but clinical psychologist, certified life coach and parenting expert Duffy assures parents that it doesn’t have to be such a turbulent ride for either party. Blending selfreflective exercises for parents with words of wisdom from teens and parents whom Duffy has counseled throughout his career, the author raises valid points about the benefits of being an available parent and offers valuable insight into the unique psyche of a teenager.”
Kirkus Reviews

“This book is written in a clear no-nonsense style using observations and examples from Dr. Duffy’s work with youth and their families. More than anything else, it is obvious that he understand the teenage “mind” and the psychological and social factors involved in changing children into adults…I highly recommend this book to parents and practitioners alike.”
PsychLinks

“Dr. John Duffy’s The Available Parent is a revolutionary approach to taking care of teens and tweens.”
My Bits and Bleeps

“You will find an abundance of ideas in Dr. John Duffy’s – “The Available Parent” such as helping your child build self-esteem, create positive values of self-worth, and creating behavior contracts between parent and child that actually work by making the child feel they have an equal part in the decision making process that affects them.”
Feature Me 2

“After reading the Available Parent, I know that if I ever have to seek the advice of a clinical psychologist and parenting expert, Dr. John Duffy would be my top pick. He is a young parent himself who really gets today’s teenager.”
Mom’s Own Words

“I agree that when it comes to your children, you should ask & listen. You can enjoy your children and still be a parent, if you continue to communicate with them after they become teenagers. MyParenTime.com recommends this book — if you don’t have an open relationship with your child, this book will help you discover ways to be there for them.”
My ParenTime

“In “”The Available Parent: Radical Optimism for Raising Teens and Tweens, Chicago teen therapist Dr. John Duffy gives parents a new strategy for helping their adolescents become competent, resilient, connected adults, based on his years as a family counselor.”
Dad of Divas

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