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Summary

How do today's parents cope when the dreams we had for our children clash with reality? What can we do for our 20- and even 30-somethings who can't seem to grow up? Who can we turn to when the kids aren't all right and we, their parents, are frightened, frustrated, resentful, embarrassed, and especially, disappointed? In this groundbreaking book, a social psychologist who's been chronicling the lives of American families for over two decades confronts our deepest concerns when our grown kids have failed to thrive. She listens to a generation that "did everything right" and expected its children to grow into happy, healthy, successful adults. But they haven't, at least not yet - and meanwhile, we're letting their problems threaten our health, marriages, security, freedom, careers, retirement, and other family relationships.

With warmth, empathy, and perspective, Dr. Adams offers a positive, life-affirming message to parents who are still trying to "fix" their adult children - Stop! She shows us how to separate from their problems without separating from them, and how to be a positive force in their lives while getting on with our own.

©2003 Jane Adams (P)2016 Tantor

What listeners say about When Our Grown Kids Disappoint Us

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 18-06-19

Spot On!

I have been struggling to move on from my adult son for almost a decade and this book reinforced the decisions I am making are positive and I can finally move forward without the guilt.

The advise in this book has been monumental for me to hear and know that my story isnt unique, its a text book story for the parents of addicts and we have tomlet go and move on.

great book.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Michelle A
  • 18-07-18

Purposeful Parenting

I wish I bought this book before having kids so that I woukd have known what to expect and be better prepared for it. just the way the author could explain the very challenges I face(albeit on a much minor scale) definitely helped to ease and understand some of the frustration that a parent can face with adult children. Jane, everything in this book is useful, if not for ourself, but for some other adult child who is just not thriving. The book was such a great comfort to the issues I faced, that I went back over them again and again. I feel much better equipped now.What a relief to know I wasn't alone, an even greater relief that our issues can be remedied. Thanks Jane

2 people found this helpful

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  • Englund Family
  • 03-12-19

Was hoping for more

The basic messages are 1. accept that your kids’ choices are not your fault, 2. Learn to detach, 3. Get on with your own life. I did journal a good quote from this book... “now is the only time I can make any difference”, so at least I got that. This audiobook was difficult to listen to, the author narrates herself, and she does not have a good narration voice. I’m glad the book was as short as it was, otherwise I would have had a hard time finishing it.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Tabitha
  • 01-08-16

I'm about to read it again.

I've read many, many books on this subject including Al Anon books. They all have their place and time. But this book captures them all.

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  • Mr. Coder
  • 03-02-21

3 hours in. 3 hours of other people's problems.

The title and writeup imply that the book will answer the question of WHAT TO DO. I assume there's advice in there at the end, and it probably only takes 30 minutes to lay out. But publishers don't like 30 minute audiobooks.. So the first hours get filled up with personal stories of other parents and their problems with their kids... WITHOUT ANY HINT OF SOLUTIONS.

I don't care if there's advice at the end or not - I don't like to be taken advantage of, nor do I like wasting my time. And frankly, if the author can't provide anything helpful in the first several hours, I find it unlikely she has any truly actionable solutions.

I think the positive reviews are from parents who are simply celebrating the realization that they are not responsible for solving their adult kids' problems. Well of course they're not. If they didn't already know this... That's sad. What is needed next is advice on how to deal with the intrusive, unwanted thoughts about all the suffering the adult kids are going through and likely will for their whole lives. It is very depressing, distracting and reading about more depressing situations... How is that supposed to help?

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  • Lori Hug
  • 14-12-20

i struggled to finish

I was hoping for more suggestions or guidence on teaching. when to say no to enabling verses yes to helping.

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  • Pam Shamblin
  • 23-11-20

this book helped me tremendously

perfect read for this time in my life. I am 61 my daughter is 26. she is addicted to heroin and her 4 month old was taken by child protective services. She has chosen drugs over her son at this point. (he is in foster care and is currently 11 months old). I hope she straightens out before it's too late, but I cannot make her go to rehab. I had to distance myself. She will go when she is ready.

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  • Jacquie C. Dickerson
  • 31-01-20

Too many sad stories

Good inspiration to know you're not alone and that you don't need to feel guilty for your adults. It just took too long to get to the end.

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  • SOPHIA SAGE
  • 05-09-19

Weak no real solutions

Empathic but weak on solutions because she completely ignores how the American dream has been stolen from our children at all levels of our society by a tsunami of invaders.

THIS is the social, economic reason American adult millennials are far g to thrive all Americans generally.

its not our parenting which has been better with each generation.

overall waste of my hard earned credit don't buy

1 person found this helpful

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  • teresa leonard
  • 05-12-16

superficial advice, noting nothing knew .

the material was superficial, learned nothing new that I have not already realized myself, without a P.H.D. I expected in depth insight into practical ways to change my behavior. disappointing, would not recommend.

1 person found this helpful