Got an Angry Kid? Parenting Spike: A Seriously Difficult Child

Got an Angry Kid? Parenting Spike: A Seriously Difficult Child

by Andrew D. Gibson

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Overview

  • Does your family live in conflict?
  • Does your child have a psychiatric label (such as ADHD, oppositional defiance, conduct disorder, bi-polar disorder) or the behavior that would get him/her one?
  • Have you lost (or nearly lost) control of your child?


    If you answered YES to any of these three things, then PACT can help you as it has helped thousands of other families restore love and integrity to their relationships!



    What Others Say About Got An Angry Kid? and The PACT Training Program


    "The family is much calmer. Taking PACT Training was the best decision I ever made. It's the best hard work I've ever done. PACT was the light at the end of the tunnel for us."

    --Ms. K. D., Willimantic, CT, Mom and Dad of an adolescent girl placed in foster care


    "From my professional experience as a manager in the field, PACT is one of the very few services which has been held in high regard by our professional staff as well as the families which benefitted from Dr. Gibson's excellent program."

    --Ms. Helen Lawrence (retired) Connecticut State Department of Children and Families (CTSDCF)


    "I have had to fight for every service for my family. PACT is my best chance to [create] change. Thanks for everything."

    --Ms. K.M., Vernon, CT, single Mom of an out-of-control son


    "Although I was only a few weeks into PACT, I felt myself becoming calmer, more hopeful, and more in control. PACT is putting life into my parenting and does what three years of residential placement didn't."

    --Mrs D.W., Hamden, CT, single Mom of a seriously emotionally disturbed boy


    "Again, I can't say enough about how this program has changed my life."

    --Mr. L.C., New Milford, CT, single parent of a foster child


    "PACT and Got An Angry Kid? is brilliant."

    --Parenting consultant



    About the Author


    Dr. Gibson earned his PhD in Education at the University of Connecticut in 1987 under the tutelage of Richard Bloomer. He poured everything about his childhood and his experience as a parent went into what became Parenting Angry Children and Teens (PACT) Training and the book, "Got An Angry Kid?" In 1993, the Connecticut State Department of Children and Families adopted the PACT methodology and since then 500 families have completed the year-long program with remarkable results.

    For more information, visit www.DrAGibson.com



    From Loving Healing Press www.LovingHealing.com


    Family & Relationships: Parenting - Child Rearing
  • Product Details

    ISBN-13: 9781932690897
    Publisher: Loving Healing Press
    Publication date: 05/13/2009
    Pages: 188
    Product dimensions: 7.44(w) x 9.69(h) x 0.40(d)

    Read an Excerpt

    CHAPTER 1

    Introduction to P.A.C.T. (Parenting Angry Children and Teens)

    Got An Angry Kid features a self-help program called, Parenting Angry Children and Teens (P.A.C.T.). It is directed to parents of out-of-control children. Those children are seemingly unparentable.

    Out-of-control means what it says — parents no longer control their child. Unparentable means what it says, too. There is little the parent can do in the name of reward or punishment that works.

    Got An Angry Kid? introduces Spike and his family. Spike and his family tell the P.A.C.T. story. His family is defined by his out-of-control behavior. Spike may resemble your child. Spike didn't become Spike as a result of some cataclysmic event. He could have. He just didn't. As it happens, his story is benign compared to many. It doesn't really matter. There are lots of ways of making children miserable. Most of them are benign and unintentional.

    Spike is both worldly and naïve. He is, after all, a child. Don't expect him to understand a lot of what goes on around him. He does and he doesn't. He needs his parents to fill in the gaps, but he won't accept them.

    • Spike's parents need to recoup lost respect. But Spike will never give it if he can't learn to value his parents first. Parental attempts to get his respect by asserting themselves on him will keep him fighting. Forget telling him what to do. It's a losing strategy. Instead, back off.

    Spike is miserable. He needs treatment for emotional disturbance, but he won't accept it, either. He is miserable both to himself and to those around him.

    The goal of the book is to get Spike's family to function as a family Spike's parents must change how they interact with their son.Got An Angry Kid? will show parents how to restore control. Spike's misery will seem much less significant.

    If the answer to Got An Angry Kid? is, "Yes," then a piece of cold comfort is that you have lots of company. The woods are full of Spikes. Many of them are friends of your child. But, you probably knew that already.

    None of their parents like your child any more than you like theirs. The fact that your child acts awful and hangs around others just like him is a problem. It will take something special to get his attention. That something special is you.

    The parent who can answer the question, Got An Angry Kid? with a "Yes" is miles ahead of the parent who is still asking, "If only I knew what was troubling my child." Getting to "Yes" is a milestone many parents can't achieve. If the answer is "Yes," then the next question is, "Angry at whom?" Like it or not, deserve it or not, your child is focusing his anger onto YOU.

    Spike's behavior is a risky inconvenience. Problems magnify if they linger into adulthood. He will take his emotional baggage and produce failed marriages, failed jobs and failed children. He will blame you. He will also swear he will do a better job of parenting. It isn't true. He hasn't the foundation. There is nothing on the horizon to suggest that he will get it.

    Parents teach P.A.C.T.'s 28 goals to themselves. The process takes about a year. You will have a calmer, more respectful and optimistic family. The difference is often dramatic.

    How rotten does Spike have to be? There is no law that says you have to have a child as awful as Spike before you learn P.A.C.T. However, most parents wait until their child is Spike-like, which is too bad. It is not too late, but it sure isn't any easier.

    P.A.C.T. is not clinical. P.A.C.T. doesn't figure out why the child is angry. That is a question for therapy. We accept that he is angry. The child controls the atmosphere of the household. No one is spared. He gets anger in return for his behavior. He seems to thrive on it. That must stop. For his sake and for your sake.

    P.A.C.T. can change the parent vs. child struggle in your home. Changes occur because parents care enough to adjust how they parent their Spike.

    P.A.C.T. concentrates on getting rid of parenting that's going nowhere fast. Behavior that works will gradually emerge both in the parent and then in the child. The parent takes the lead.

    There is a lagtime of approximately eight weeks between parent change and child change. P.A.C.T. challenges every assumption you have about parenting. Most assumptions will be replaced. The child will wait to see how serious you are before adjusting himself.

    P.A.C.T. works best in conflict. Conflict drives parents to participate. Conflict ebbs as the parent learns. It will become clear that the child's behavior and the parent's learning are linked.

    What do parents learn?

    That they are in a codependent relationship with a child.

    That they have become victims.

    That victims act in stereotyped and counterproductive ways.

    That everything traditionally passing for parenting can enable the behavior parents say they don't want.

    That boundaries between parent and child have broken down.

    That the parental ineffectiveness and childhood opposition feed on one another, creating codependence.

    That the need to fix the child needs to be augmented by fixing the parenting style.

    Cake mixes have directions. So does P.A.C.T. They are:

    Learn one goal at a time.

    Do not go to the next goal if you have more than four errors.

    Whenever your error rate goes above four errors, stop.

    Repeat the weakest goal until the error rate declines to four or fewer. Simple.

    If you think this is tough, consider the prospect of living with your child for the rest of your life.

    The more insecure children are, the closer they stay to home. They rightly suspect that you will always bail them out, emotionally and otherwise. They will cycle between needing you and rejecting you. You don't want that. You want them to stabilize.

    P.A.C.T.'s experience suggests you have one of two reactions to the list:

    1. "This looks so simple any idiot could do it!" or

    2. "Oh, my God, you expect me to learn all that?"

    If you have reaction number one, you don't have a problem. You clearly don't have a Spike. You may not even have any kids at all. What's worse, you probably don't understand parents who are in this pickle or face the challenge of reversing every parental impulse they have. This means you will have a hard time supporting a parent who identifies with the goals. Unfortunately, those parents who have reaction number two know that you don't understand them, don't sympathize with them and don't have patience for them. They feel isolated as a result.

    If you have reaction number two, you are bowled over, don't know where to begin, and you think this is impossible. That means you are connecting with the list. And that makes you a prime candidate for reading further.

    So, peel yourself off the floor and let's think about this. Yes, the list looks overwhelming but many parents have gotten through it so don't worry: You will, too. Is it hard? Sure, it's hard, quite possibly the hardest thing you will ever do. It is like losing 100 pounds. What makes it hard? You will be required to change how you parent. Period. These are not 28 suggestions; they are 28 requirements. Unlike diets, however, once you learn P.A.C.T., you probably won't slip back into failure. You will be changed forever.

    You can learn P.A.C.T. if you like your Spike a little. If you despise him, you won't get far. This program requires self-discipline in the name of love. It may seem like a gift your Spike doesn't deserve. If that is what you think, you have a shoe on the wrong foot: Stop concentrating on Spike. Concentrate on yourself. If you take care of you, then Spike will take care of himself. For better or worse — and admit it, it's been mostly for worse — you have been concentrating on Spike for a long time. Spike has become the family centerpiece. It's time to get some flowers instead.

    At this point, you can turn to Part II, which is the program, and get to work. Or, you can keep on reading the Introduction. Or, you can flip back and forth. Do whatever works for you.

    And, by the way, the list isn't a random collection. The list represents a universal set of enabling behaviors parents use hoping their child will change. He won't. These enable the behavior you say you don't want. You can keep these and self-righteously defend your right to be angry. If so, you will feed your kid's insatiable need to oppose you. Or, you can give them all up, thereby removing the single most important source of disapproval, rejection, and criticism your child has in his life: YOU. If you do the latter, you will be rewarded. If you continue the former, you will set your kid up for failure.

    We assume since you've read this far that you are willing to consider giving up the former. Wonderful. Now, back to work. ...

    CHAPTER 2

    Meet Spike and His Family

    A Portrait of a Dysfunctional American Family

    Spike is angry, surly, and mean.

    His behavior tells us that he feels someone has driven over him with a tank. He feels confused, scared, alone, and stupid. He doesn't often use those terms, at least not directly. He acts them out. He fights without a moment's notice. Everything becomes a target, and his parents are the handiest. Fighting is easier than thinking. Thinking feels bad and makes him depressed.

    Spike lives with his parents and an idiot sister. His Mom is always saying, "Spike, honey, you shouldn't talk to your mother that way." Sometimes his Mom cries when he talks bad to her. Sometimes she screams at him. "For what? 'Cause I called you a bitch? Big deal," Spike snips.

    And his Dad? "That loser?" Spike snorts, "He gets all puffed up and says, 'Spike, I'm warning you!'"

    "You should see it. Dad looks ridiculous, all serious and worked up. I laugh myself sick sometimes. His warnings are nothing. I suppose he thinks he can make me sit in a corner. Forget it! I'm not sitting in any fucking corner for him or anyone else. He can kiss my ass."

    Spike's disrespect is a clue that his future is in doubt. He will look for rebellion. He may cover his body in tattoos and shout that he is unique. He will insist he needs no one as no one measures up to his uniqueness. He will edge away from the mainstream. He will push away those who might like to know him. He will profess his uniqueness too loudly. Actually, he will fear the rejection he is likely to get.

    Yet his choices, without a change in attitude, have disappeared. He won't need to worry about a future. It's been decided for him. He can start practicing this useful career mantra right now:

    "You want fries with that, mister?"

    The Rest of the Family

    We have Mom, Dad, the annoyingly perfect Angelique and, of course, Spike with his faithful bulldog, Ruff. You can see that Spike is about to push Angelique into the next county. We don't know what Angelique did. Maybe she whispered, "'tard!" in his ear. If so, she may as well have lit his hair on fire. If she did whisper in his ear, she whispered quietly, so her folks wouldn't hear. She did it so that she could get a reaction from Spike; so she could scream, "Mommy! Mommy! Do something!"

    Both Mommy and Daddy pick up their cues: "Spike, you are such a bully! What's the matter with you? How'd you like a taste of your own medicine?"

    And then they comfort poor Angelique: "We're so sorry, sweetheart. Would ice cream make you feel better? Come sit on my lap."

    All that parental honey makes risking a sock in the head worthwhile. Every whimper makes Spike despise her more. Spike, after all, has a lousy reputation. If something is wrong, Spike is assumed to be in the middle. That's because he generally is. But Mom and Dad learn too slowly that Angelique isn't always as innocent as she pretends.

    Mom and Dad are a professional couple. They married early. They had their children later, stitching together an education and career. Family wasn't always first priority. Spike, the first born, was pressured as firstborn boys sometimes are. These folks had their limitations as young parents do. They both came from families that had problems, although they are certain they are superior to those old family problems. But, their hands are now full. They've watched Spike get worse. Nothing they do makes a difference — not therapy, not drugs, not special programs, not in-home services. For one thing, those services are often given by twenty-something human service workers who are cheap hires for their agencies but who have no clue what it's like to live with a child like Spike. There is nothing wrong with them that time and the right experience won't cure, assuming they can put up with the low pay and occasional brutal experiences to get it.

    Even when Spike's folks encounter a professional their age, a gulf of inexperience remains. His folks feel guilty when they can't make everyone's advice work, and they also resent the advice. After all, they really don't know what to do, so they try everything. Everyone, they say, brims with authority about how to proceed although nobody has actually lived the program they promote. This becomes a problem.

    Spike's folks lose confidence. All those appointments are like Al-Anon meetings without a recovering drunk for a leader. Everyone bases their experience with normal children. Spike isn't normal. None of the programs make many demands on Spike's folks, other than to insist they "put boundaries around that child" or give assurance that they will drive Spike from one appointment to another. P.A.C.T.'s idea that the mess be dumped on parental shoulders seems preposterous. They tried family counseling thinking that if they talked out their problems, everything would be better. Spike disagreed. Getting him to the appointment wasn't worth the hell he made it. He hated being there. First, he said he wasn't crazy, they were. Second, it wasn't a simple matter of telling his folks how he felt, not that he knew how he felt anyway. He was confused about how he felt. He was sure they'd never understand. All he wanted was to be left alone, providing, of course, he could be in charge. He has no desire to negotiate away his right to be angry.

    Spike's Dad is a good guy, but he's wrapped up in his own world. He's too preoccupied to engage his family. He is a hard worker, creative, has scads of friends, a non-stop social life but lives in the future. He is independent to a fault and refuses to be pushed. It all comes at a price. Spike feels his Dad is never 'there.' Life with Spike's Mom is a struggle. His folks love each other, but they don't complement one another; they compete. Spike sees the struggle, but doesn't see the love. Spike's Dad is an illustration of how love without engagement feels like rejection to a little child.

    Spike's Mom is a highly involved Mom, but she is also a controller, demanding, loud, insistent and always right. She doesn't show respect easily although she insists on it for herself. She can be unkind but expects kindness in return. She won't accept blame and can't stand to be poked at in fun. She is a professional woman who is hard working, bright and thoroughly dedicated to her family. She is a traditional Mom in the cookie baking tradition. She can be loving and giving, but her love comes at a price. She gives orders. She reminds everyone about everything and always nags. She is a committed back seat driver. She is an illustration of how love without tolerance feels like rejection to a little child.

    So, we have a child who needs therapy but won't accept it. We have parents who are searching for a solution they can believe in but can't find. Desperation worms its way in.

    Spike's sister, Angelique is insufferable. First, "the little shit," as Spike calls her, is nearly perfect. Second, she makes sure Spike knows it. They pretty much hate each other. Spike has no problem punching her if she steps across the line. He gets a roar of parent anger whenever he hits her, but he doesn't care. She irritates him on purpose. He unfailingly obliges a reaction. She then runs screaming as if the world is coming to an end. But she returns to do it again. She gets preferential treatment from her parents. They always speak nicely to her. Spike, on the other hand, must suffer their sarcasm, their nasty tone of voice and their assumption that he is always wrong. She is good if for no other reason than Spike is bad. But Spike wouldn't follow her lead if his life depended on it. It is a matter of pride for both. If he is to be convicted before he opens his mouth, so be it.

    She, on the other hand, wins the spelling bee, has acceptable friends and doesn't generate irate phone calls from the school. Spike gets himself thrown off the bus, not Angelique. "Why can't you be more like your sister?" the school says, which just sets his teeth on edge.

    (Continues…)



    Excerpted from "Got An Angry Kid?"
    by .
    Copyright © 2009 Andrew D. Gibson, Ph.D..
    Excerpted by permission of Loving Healing Press, Inc..
    All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
    Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

    Table of Contents

    Preface: Author's Biography,
    PART I: Understanding Spike,
    CHAPTER 1: Introduction to P.A.C.T. (Parenting Angry Children and Teens),
    CHAPTER 2: Meet Spike and his family: A Portrait of a Dysfunctional American Family,
    CHAPTER 3: Spike's Story: Spike Tells Us What it's Like to Be Abnormal,
    CHAPTER 4: Spike's Story: The Experts Take a Look at Spike — What Makes Spike Abnormal?,
    CHAPTER 5: Frequently Asked Questions,
    CHAPTER 6: Case Studies: What are the Experiences of Other Families in P.A.C.T.?,
    PART II: Parenting Spike,
    CHAPTER 7: The Three Basic Goals: The Rudiments of P.A.C.T. are Established (Goals 1-3),
    CHAPTER 8: The 25 Advanced Goals: The Rudiments are Refined and Reinforced (Goals 4-28),
    CHAPTER 9: Finale: So Now What?,
    Appendix,
    Bibliography,
    About the Author,
    Index,

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    Got An Angry Kid? Parenting Spike: A Seriously Difficult Child 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
    crazypsychobookloverLC More than 1 year ago
    Got An Angry Kid? Parenting Spike: A Seriously Difficult Child Author: Andrew D. Gibson, PhD Publisher: Loving Healing Press ISBN: 978-1932690897 Kids-raising them and caring for them can be pretty challenging. Add a psychiatric label or behavioral problem such as ADD, ADHD, bi-polar disorder, oppositional defiance, etc., and parenting can become what seems like a hopeless and insurmountable chore. Dr. Gibson has worked with families of angry children for many years. He has developed an innovative and proven technique in the form of a self help program he calls PACT (Parenting Angry Children and Teens). The author introduces us to Spike and his family, a fictionalized take on the true life experiences of his patients and their families. Case studies of actual families are also explored, covering a wide range of problems and circumstances. The rest of the book covers the goals you as a parent will work through. These steps are well detailed and clearly explained, along with explicit instructions and helpful hints to get you through. To change your child's behavior, you first need to address your own behavior and the reactions you have to the behavior problems your child exhibits. The 28 steps detailed will probably take about 8-10 weeks to implement, and probably about a year to see the improvement fully in your child. It's not easy, and not a quick fix. But easy solutions and quick fixes do not exist for these situations. There is a chart included so that you can make notes as you work through the goals, and you don't move on to the next step until the one you are working on is satisfactorily completed. By breaking it down this way, a daunting task is made to seem much more doable and less stress inducing. If you are a parent, counselor, grandparent, clergy member, caregiver, or anyone else who deals with an angry and difficult child, you may well find that this book is a lifeline. If you know someone who could benefit from it, tell them about it or buy it for them. They will thank you for helping them change the life and dynamics of their families
    MaidaH More than 1 year ago
    This is a self-help book for parents who have seriously angry children. It gives parents a series of changes they can gradually make that will have a startling effect on their child's responses to them and others. You can save your child with this book. Numerous mini-case studies illustrate the author's points.
    LauraFabiani on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
    Rivalry in families causes stress and breakdown. When a parent loses control of a child and a child is angry and unresponsive, parents get desperate and things get out of hand. Is there a solution?Dr. Andrew D. Gibson definitely thinks there is an effective one and he's written a book about it. Got An Angry Kid is a self-help 28-step PACT (Parenting Angry Children and Teens) parent survival program. Out of everything I have seen in this field, this is one of the best behavior management programs for families willing to do all they can to help their child and improve their family situation.What makes this program so good? It can best be summarized by what the author himself states in Chapter One: ¿This program requires self-discipline in the name of love.¿ Whose self-discipline? The parents! This program asks parents to change the way they interact with their children. It deals fully and profoundly with the fundamentals of good parenting: No yelling, no threatening, no nagging, no accusing, no name calling, no sarcasm, no arguing, etc. Does any of this sound familiar? Even the best of parents get caught yelling and screaming at their kids in moments of stress.Dr. Gibson is honest and forthright. He says, ¿Nobody wants to be dysfunctional, but a lot of us are. Practically no one is spared.¿ He is never negative, only realistic and hopeful as he continues to say, ¿Forgiveness is at the heart of banishing dysfunction.¿The book is divided into two parts. The first part is about understanding Spike, a fictional child that represents the difficult child. This section helps the reader understand what makes this child abnormal, the portrait of a dysfunctional family, what psychological experts say about the Spike child and portrays case studies. Because of my professional background, I really liked reading this part, and as a parent it was a good wake-up call. I recognized some tendencies in me that could be changed. Part II is the PACT program explained step by step. A parent could skip some of the info in the first part and go directly to the program, or go back and forth between the two parts. It's an easy book to read with no psychological jargon and a layout that makes it easy to scan when looking for info.Even if you don't have an angry, problematic child, this program is worth following. It will test your parenting skills, your patience, your love for your child. Is it easy? No. It's hard work, and it takes a lot of effort because, guess what? parenting today is challenging. One of the reasons I'm impressed with this book is because I saw instant results when I followed its advice but also because its advice is Bible-based, whether the author knows it or not. And I believe knowledge based on God's wisdom is the best.I highly recommend this book for all families, whether you have a difficult child or not. The advice is invaluable and can nip the bud of any problem that creeps up on families as they work on raising their children successfully.
    HeatherMS on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
    ¿Got An Angry Kid? We have a solution. Parenting Spike: A Seriously Difficult Child¿ by Andrew D. Gibson, Ph.D., is a book that outlines P.A.C.T. ¿ The Parenting Angry Children and Teens Training Program. This book is for parents of a child who is in a constant state of anger and the parents feel like they are fighting a losing battle and losing control of their child. Dr. Gibson came up with P.A.C.T. when he was dealing with a son who had anger issues. He can definitely relate to how parents are feeling with an out-of-control child.Dr. Gibson illustrates what he means by an angry child by telling us the story of ¿Spike¿ throughout the book and then talking about what parents can do based on these situations. He offers 28 steps that the parent will need to implement to bring about some peace in the household. As he states, ¿Your task is not merely changing your interaction with Spike. You must change your interactions everywhere so that you don¿t run the danger of bringing them back to Spike.¿ It isn¿t about just changing the behavior of the child, but the parent has to change his/her behavior also. Only by the parent willing to change will the child be able to change.Dr. Gibson uses real life stories to demonstrate the bad behavior and then how to use P.A.C.T. to implement changes. He holds your hand throughout the process and gives encouragement along the way. By using this training program, I can definitely see how it would positively affect the lives of angry children and their family. By incorporating the 28 steps into your daily life will give you the skills to deal with some of the challenges that you encounter with other people. It definitely takes a commitment to follow P.A.C.T., but Dr. Gibson shows that if you are committed, then things can and will change for the better. It won¿t happen overnight, but it will happen if you have patience.
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Taralovesbooks More than 1 year ago
    While my family has not had the chance to start to use the skills and resources presented in this book I truly enjoyed reading it. The format of this book was well organized out in that the story was told through the eyes of the child and the issues that he faced and how this factored in and affected his family. I liked that there were case studies of families that showed the issues they faced and what their family experienced in using the P.A.C.T. system. Whether your child fits exactly into the model of the child in the book there are valuable lessons to be applied in your parenting. As well this book also gives the child areas to work on alongside the parents, making it a cooperative effort. The book is structured so that once you start you have several goals and only move on once your goal is completed. There is enough structure provided to guide you along with valuable additonal information to help change your family dynamic. I also liked that the author chose not to focus neccessarily on why the child in the story was the way he was, that ulitmately this was not pertinent and what was important was his behavior and how this affected the family, which in turn the family further affected the child. The emphasis was on how to change the behavior, as the thought since the reasoning (or a particular diagnosis if applicable has already been determined thus the focus is instead put on changing the behaviors of family as a whole). I would definitely recommend this book for any family to read as I am sure that everyone has a time where they could use some assistance in parenting and managing family life.
    code7r More than 1 year ago
    “Got An Angry Kid? We have a solution. Parenting Spike: A Seriously Difficult Child” by Andrew D. Gibson, Ph.D., is a book that outlines P.A.C.T. – The Parenting Angry Children and Teens Training Program. This book is for parents of a child who is in a constant state of anger and the parents feel like they are fighting a losing battle and losing control of their child. Dr. Gibson came up with P.A.C.T. when he was dealing with a son who had anger issues. He can definitely relate to how parents are feeling with an out-of-control child. Dr. Gibson illustrates what he means by an angry child by telling us the story of “Spike” throughout the book and then talking about what parents can do based on these situations. He offers 28 steps that the parent will need to implement to bring about some peace in the household. As he states, “Your task is not merely changing your interaction with Spike. You must change your interactions everywhere so that you don’t run the danger of bringing them back to Spike.” It isn’t about just changing the behavior of the child, but the parent has to change his/her behavior also. Only by the parent willing to change will the child be able to change. Dr. Gibson uses real life stories to demonstrate the bad behavior and then how to use P.A.C.T. to implement changes. He holds your hand throughout the process and gives encouragement along the way. By using this training program, I can definitely see how it would positively affect the lives of angry children and their family. By incorporating the 28 steps into your daily life will give you the skills to deal with some of the challenges that you encounter with other people. It definitely takes a commitment to follow P.A.C.T., but Dr. Gibson shows that if you are committed, then things can and will change for the better. It won’t happen overnight, but it will happen if you have patience. **This book was received for free through Goodreads First Reads. That in no way influenced my review.**
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    LauraFabiani More than 1 year ago
    Rivalry in families causes stress and breakdown. When a parent loses control of a child and a child is angry and unresponsive, parents get desperate and things get out of hand. Is there a solution? Dr. Andrew D. Gibson definitely thinks there is an effective one and he's written a book about it. Got An Angry Kid is a self-help 28-step PACT (Parenting Angry Children and Teens) parent survival program. Out of everything I have seen in this field, this is one of the best behavior management programs for families willing to do all they can to help their child and improve their family situation. What makes this program so good? It can best be summarized by what the author himself states in Chapter One: "This program requires self-discipline in the name of love." Whose self-discipline? The parents! This program asks parents to change the way they interact with their children. It deals fully and profoundly with the fundamentals of good parenting: No yelling, no threatening, no nagging, no accusing, no name calling, no sarcasm, no arguing, etc. Does any of this sound familiar? Even the best of parents get caught yelling and screaming at their kids in moments of stress. Dr. Gibson is honest and forthright. He says, "Nobody wants to be dysfunctional, but a lot of us are. Practically no one is spared." He is never negative, only realistic and hopeful as he continues to say, "Forgiveness is at the heart of banishing dysfunction." The book is divided into two parts. The first part is about understanding Spike, a fictional child that represents the difficult child. This section helps the reader understand what makes this child abnormal, the portrait of a dysfunctional family, what psychological experts say about the Spike child and portrays case studies. Because of my professional background, I really liked reading this part, and as a parent it was a good wake-up call. I recognized some tendencies in me that could be changed. Part II is the PACT program explained step by step. A parent could skip some of the info in the first part and go directly to the program, or go back and forth between the two parts. It's an easy book to read with no psychological jargon and a layout that makes it easy to scan when looking for info. Even if you don't have an angry, problematic child, this program is worth following. It will test your parenting skills, your patience, your love for your child. Is it easy? No. It's hard work, and it takes a lot of effort because, guess what? parenting today is challenging. One of the reasons I'm impressed with this book is because I saw instant results when I followed its advice but also because its advice is Bible-based, whether the author knows it or not. And I believe knowledge based on God's wisdom is the best. I highly recommend this book for all families, whether you have a difficult child or not. The advice is invaluable and can nip the bud of any problem that creeps up on families as they work on raising their children successfully.
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago