Summer Reading List for Parents

Another school year has wrapped up and that means your kids are one year closer to high school, or driving or (gasp!) college. As kids get older, their lives get busier and, unfortunately, our interactions with them can become less frequent.

We know it can be tough to connect. Sometimes all you see is the top of their head as they’re buried in their phone. But connections, conversations and the bonds that result are so important—for you and your child.

While your child is working through his or her summer reading list, here’s one for you, too. This summer reading provides many helpful tips and insights to help parents understand how your child thinks and interprets communication, what drives them, what they’re dealing with, and why connecting with them now is so important.

Buzzed: The Straight Facts About the Most Used and Abused Drugs from Alcohol to Ecstasy by Cynthia Kuhn Ph.D., Scott Swartzwelder Ph.D., Wilkie Wilson Ph.D.
Buzzed is revised and updated with the most recent discoveries about drugs. It includes new information about biological and behavioral changes in addiction, the prescription-drug abuse epidemic, distinctive drug effects on the adolescent brain, and trends from synthetic cannabinoids to e-cigarettes. “Lively, highly informative, unbiased, [and] thorough” (Addiction Research & Theory), this no-nonsense handbook surveys the most used and abused drugs from caffeine to heroin to methamphetamine. 

Crossing The Line From Alcohol Use To Abuse to Dependence by Lisa Frederiksen
This book can be used by parents, students, people worried about their drinking, clinicians, policy makers, law enforcement officials, doctors, veterans, domestic violence professionals, social workers, family law attorneys, medical school students, family members, business leaders and treatment center providers – the list is endless. Here readers will find the latest brain and addiction-related research and science discoveries written for the general public that debunk the common myths about drinking alcohol. For it is in believing these myths that a person’s drinking can cross the line from alcohol use to abuse to dependence. 

Do I Get My Allowance Before or After I’m Grounded?: Stop Fighting, Start Talking and Get To Know Your Teen by Vanessa van Petten
Every parent fears losing touch with their child. But in this revolutionary book, youthologist Vanessa Van Petten translates what parents want to say into what teens want to hear.  

Field Guide To The American Teenager: A Parents Companion by Joseph Diprisco and Michael Riera
Addressing the isolation, fear, and silence parents endure during their child’s adolescence, authors Michael Riera and Joseph Di Prisco get beyond the stereotypes to expertly guide parents to a better appreciation of their teenager’s frustrating if not completely troubling behavior. 

Hot Buttons (a series) by Nicole O’Dell
From dating to drugs, modesty to purity, morals to popularity, teens face all sorts of tough issues. How teens respond to these hot-button issues can have lasting effects on who they want to be and who they actually become. What if parents can help their teens prepare for these hot buttons–before the issues become a problem? 

Just Say Know: Talking with Kids about Drugs and Alcohol by Cynthia Kuhn Ph.D.
All of our children deserve the chance to be as bright, successful, and healthy as they can be. But our kids are threatened by the wide availability of alcohol and other drugs in our society. Everyone agrees that the best protection is education, but exactly what do you say? Just Say Know gives parents, educators, and health professionals powerful tools to talk with kids about how alcohol and other drugs interact with their minds and bodies.

Reality Gap: Alcohol, Drugs, and Sex – What Parents Don’t Know and Teens Aren’t Telling by Stephen Wallace
Every day, even in ‘safe’ places like school, teens face complicated decisions about personal behavior, involving everything from drinking and drugs, to sex. Unfortunately, many adults don’t fully grasp the true scope of this perilous world. Stephen Wallace points out the ‘reality gap’ separating parents and adults from young people at the time they need them most – adolescence – and offers concrete solutions to bridge this gulf. 

Staying Connected To Your Teenager: How to Keep Them Talking To You and How to Hear What They’re Really Saying by Michael Riera
A book of sage advice that will help frustrated parents reconnect with their teenager and keep that connection even in today’s often-crazy world. The first step is simple: realizing that inside every teen resides two very different people-the regressed child and the emergent adult.

Teenagers, Alcohol and Drugs: What Your Kids Really Want and need to Know about Alcohol and Drugs by Paul Dillon
Aimed at parents who are wondering how to talk meaningfully to their kids about drugs, this book offers guidance in determining when is the right time to start talking to kids about drugs and how to reduce the influence of peer pressure.

Take the opportunity to reconnect with your child this summer. One conversation might be all it takes to re-open the lines of communication and being building a stronger, more open relationship.


The books included in this blog are recommended in good faith and for general information purpose only. Talk It Out does not make any guarantees about the content of the book.