Review: The Danish Way of Parenting by Jessica Joelle Alexander, Iben Dissing Sandahl

The Danish Way of Parenting on December 2014
Genres: Non-Fiction
Pages: 224
Format: Physical Book
Source: Bought
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4 Stars

What makes Denmark the happiest country in the world--and how do Danish parents raise happy, confident, successful kids, year after year? This upbeat and practical book presents six essential principles, which spell out P-A-R-E-N-T:

Play is essential for development and well-being.
Authenticity fosters trust and an "inner compass."
Reframing helps kids cope with setbacks and look on the bright side.
Empathy allows us to act with kindness toward others.
No ultimatums means no power struggles, lines in the sand, or resentment.
Togetherness is a way to celebrate family time, on special occasions and every day. The Danes call this hygge--and it's a fun, cozy way to foster closeness. Preparing meals together, playing favorite games, and sharing other family traditions are all hygge. (Cell phones, bickering, and complaining are not!)

With illuminating examples and simple yet powerful advice, The Danish Way of Parenting will help parents from all walks of life raise the happiest, most well-adjusted kids in the world.

There is a big punch in this small non-fiction book about raising children the Danish Way. I’m interested in how other people across the world raise their children, and how Westerners, Americans in particular, do what we do and why we think it’s better. (Everyone should watch the documentary Babies for some fun viewing.)

I found this book in my audiobook search on Audible one day and bought it thinking it was interesting. My husband read it first and wanted desperately to talk to me about it. I started it right away and I’m really glad I did.

There’s a lot of information in the book and I won’t go into details but, yes, the way that they raise their children is decidedly different than Americans. And their way of life is as well. I’m mesmerized by their ideas and patience, their happiness and trust.

While not everything will work in an American house, I really enjoyed the chapter on how they talk to their children about hard work, instead of just empty praise. I’ve noticed that even with myself. When I find something challenging, I may stop because I’m frustrated instead of plowing ahead and working harder. The Danes don’t feel this way. They want to instill hard work in their children.

Honestly, it’s a wonderful book not only because of the information inside, but also because it got me talking to my husband about how we want to raise our daughter. Not just general things- compassion, intelligence, good schools etc. And not just about bad like discipline. Mostly, we started talking about a way of life, our American views and desires for more more more instead of time. More time with each other, more time with family, a sense of home and love and self confidence and support.

Both of us are going to listen to this audiobook again. So we don’t miss anything. :)