Book Title: Parenting in the Age of Anxiety
Author: Abha Adams
What would another book on parenting say what hasn’t been said before? Shelves after shelves in bookstores and libraries are full of handbooks that avow to make you perfect parents. And yet, when an author is someone like Abha Adams, who works closely with state governments on policy-making, you know that the book will be much more than a regular parenting guide.
In ‘Parenting in the Age of Anxiety’, the innovative educationist looks at the challenges and choices parents have to make while raising children in the 21st century. Parents, teachers, counsellors, child psychologists, psychotherapists, family therapists and, most important, children come together to share their first-hand experiences. Besides capturing challenges like early puberty, advancing adolescence, fitting in with their friends to the pain points of teenage years, the book also deals with present-day issues like mental health along with the journey of parents raising children with special needs. Issues like substance abuse, self-harm, sexual orientation, suicide and teenage pregnancies, that largely remain brushed under the carpet, are discussed at length.
Eating disorders, depression, anxiety and bipolar disorders are not just clinical terms here but the realities our children are facing.
The two terms that reverberate throughout the discussions of the author, who was closely associated with The Shri Ram Schools and Noida’s Step by Step School, are connection and conversation. In the absence of proper guidance and mentoring, children are seeking virtual support on social media. Keeping the communication doors open is the only way to make our children happy kids, the author insists.
Besides giving valuable tips to parents, the book envisages a much larger role for educators and schools. It offers suggestions to make use of classes like ‘Circle Time’ to help spot early signs of a problem. It is impossible to find a rule book that offers a one-stop solution to all your parenting woes, but this heart-warming, exhaustive effort comes close.