When I first signed up to review this book, I was hoping that maybe it would somehow get through to my daughter and help her learn a few tips to get along better with herself (and the rest of us), so that maybe (just maybe) things would be a little calmer around here. I'll be the first to testify that I am not, by any means, a wonderful mom. I've made more mistakes and epic fails than could be sanely stored on the memory card in my cell phone. I'm human, it's what we do.
What I was not expecting, however, was a book that pulls the reader into a whole new line of thinking: parents are people too! Jessie starts by explaining a little about her own teenage years, in the hopes of your daughter realizing that maybe Jessie actually knows what she's going through. And, even more important, maybe she can be a trusted ally in the journey to getting along with the rest of the world just a little bit more.
Through her witty sense of humor and candid honesty, Jessie shows our girls that they're not alone, and that they will (eventually) get through whatever troubles they're going through right now. She also makes sure to point out that maybe the self-focused world our girls are used to isn't the world they should be focusing on after all. Getting closer to God and His plans for their lives also means getting closer to us, their imperfect (and sometimes annoyingly screwed up) families.
Filled with wonderful suggestions and tips to improve communication and repair relationships, as well as quizzes and application questions to encourage our girls to take an honest inventory of their own little worlds, Family is a precious gem for our daughters who feel like they should be trying harder or doing better, but don't have a clue as to where to start.
Jessie tackles not only your family as a whole, but she also has chapter devoted to improving personal relationships with moms, dads, older siblings, and younger siblings. The chapters on how to be a better big sister and how to be a better little sister are a must-read, even for the only child. Jessie also encourages our girls to look past the current obstacles and imagine what their future will be like, both with their current families and the families they choose to create when they grow up to be self-reliant and fully responsible adults.
As for my own daughter, she has yet to read this book. But I'm confident that if she works through it and sincerely gives the tips, questions and quizzes a thorough chance to settle in and help her understand herself more, then we'll all be better for it in the end. Highly recommended for anyone raising a teenage girl and, of course, for your daughters to read as well. If you're not having problems, think of this book as a good premarital counseling workbook (for our girls to tackle on their own or for families to go through together), in order to help everyone relate to each other better before problems arise. 5/5 stars.
*Disclaimer: I received a complimentary print copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this honest review. All opinions are my own.*
About The Author (copied from back cover):
Jessie Minassian loves Jesus, sunshine, and sand between her toes. She's a speaker at churches and events across the country, an author of twelve books, including Unashamed: Overcoming the Sins No Girl Wants to Talk About, and the resident "big sis" at LifeLoveandGod.com, a popular website that helps teen girls find their identity, pleasure, and purpose in God. She lives in California with her husband and two daughters.Purchase Links: