• Christina Van Starkenburg

Review: When Your Kid is Hurting by Dr. Leman



As parents, one of the hardest things to watch is when your child is hurting. Especially when it feels like there is nothing you can do to help, like when their best friend teases them and decides to befriend someone else instead or when you and your partner get divorced?


What if something you say makes it worse? Or if your child won't speak to you about it at all?


Dr. Kevin Leman, an internationally known psychologist, understands how delicate the situation can be. And how hard it can be for both you and your child to "navigate these real-life "out there" and "in here" issues; understand your child's world, experiences, and fears; and [to know] how your child grieves" (15). This is why he wrote When Your Child Is Hurting: Helping Your Child through the Tough Days.



In the different chapters he discusses some problems your child might face both in the larger world but also in their own homes, how different children grieve, when you as their parent should step in and when you should just offer your support, and how you can turn their trauma into a teachable moment.


At the end of the book, Dr. Leman includes a Q&A section where he responds to specific questions different parents have asked him, so you can get an idea of how to apply the information he shares in the first half.


Although, I believe that this book is filled with good information for parents who's children are or will be struggling (so every parent) I found the first half of the book difficult to read. It is very informative and filled with a lot of common sense suggestions, but it is also rather dry. It wasn't until Dr. Leman started answering specific questions that he became more personable and conversational. And I wish his personality came through sooner.

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