The Good Enough Child: How to Have an Imperfect Family and be Perfectly Satisfied - by Dr. Brad Sachs




"A compassionate, forgiving, wise book that is also eye-opening. If you read only one book on parenting and family life, make it this one."
--Dr. Sam Osherson, author of FINDING OUR FATHERS

"With wisdom, warmth, and wit, Brad Sachs puts the fun back into parenting, giving us the courage we need to abandon our Quixotic quest and the confidence to recognize that sometimes being human is better than being perfect."
--Armin A. Brott, author of THE EXPECTANT FATHER and THE NEW FATHER

All expectant parents dream that their baby will grow into the perfect child, one who will be everything they've imagined and make their lives blissfully complete. Of course, after the child is born, a less perfect reality will invariably replace those false expectations. Whether confronted with a colicky infant, a fractious toddler, a recalcitrant grade-schooler or a sullen adolescent, at some point those dreams of perfection will shatter. And when they do, the parents may react with feelings of disappointment, anguish, or even rage.

In THE GOOD ENOUGH CHILD: How to Have an Imperfect Family and Be Perfectly Satisfied (Quill/An Imprint of HarperCollins), noted psychologist Brad Sachs helps parents to recognize both the sources and consequences of their unrealistic expectations for their children. By freeing themselves from the crippling pursuit of perfection--and from false notions about who their child should be, rather than who he actually is--Dr. Sachs believes that parents can build loving, supporting, and realistic relationships with their children, and that those flawed and loveable children will grow to their full potential.

Drawing on his extensive clinical work helping hundreds of parents and children navigate through choppy waters, Dr. Sachs identifies the five stages of reconciliation, providing persuasive anecdotal evidence, and sharing stories from his many years as a family therapist (as well as his own time spent in the parenting trenches). The stories, which cover the spectrum from birth through the teenage years, will resonate with exhausted parents and overextended children everywhere. Dr. Sachs supplies hands-on exercises that guide parents to a greater understanding of how they can be good enough, rather than perfect, parents, and how they can attain a healthier dynamic within the family.

THE GOOD ENOUGH CHILD "is about forgiving, even embracing, imperfection, for I believe the search for the ideal is the enemy of the achievable and the realizable," says Dr. Sachs. "Once we let go of the image of the perfect family and accept ourselves and each other for who we are, we will become the best and most loving parents a child could ask for. To do so requires that we say good-bye to the tantalizing dream, it but enables us to greet a delicious reality, the reality of family love, with its wonderfully complicated texture, its bright and shadowy moments, its healing and redemptive powers."