Unconditional Parenting – Alfie Kohn


I think this book is fabulous and important enough to have on our parenting bookshelves (or at least borrow from the library) .

It is reseacrh based and anecdotal and it’s a refreshing/uncomforatble/thoughtprovoking read. It advocates parenting and demosntrating loving for our children without condition and being WITH them in their challenging times not ostracising or punishing them when they don’t please us.

I have never been too comfortable with bribes and the naughty step. They never happened to me as a kid and I was pretty well behaved (honest) I won’t lie I have resorted to both when super tired or frustrated but they make me feel really controlling and a bit like a dog trainer. I’m all for calming down kids and naturally reinforcing positive behaviur but I was looking for another way to parent rather than the naughty step and this book gave me some good ideas.



Kohn encourages you to think long term and to be your child’s supporter as they work through problems not another stressor. This book is about building long term relationships with our kids and encouraging them to be creative, imaginative, passionate not sheep like and easily controlled. Its definately not supernanny and it does challenge the ‘parent in complete control’ idea that pervades parenting guidance literature.

Well worth a read – if only for a different perspective.

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  1. savvymum4
    September 6, 2010 / 1:27 pm

    The naughty step has never worked for me anyway. its nice to see another perspective thanks

  2. Becky Goddard-Hill
    September 6, 2010 / 1:34 pm

    No nor me really though I spose it has given my son a chance to calm down and I have uused this. I call it the thinking spot! I worry though that it's like segregating someone who is stressed and unhappy and saying these emotions are socially unacceptable?

    As an adult if we were sent to sit by ourselves because we were sad/angry we would only get more so!

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