________________ CM . . . . Volume VI Number 9 . . . . January 7, 2000

cover Between Mother & Daughter: A Teenager and Her Mom Share the Secrets of a Strong Relationship.

Judy Ford and Amanda Ford.
Berkley, CA: Conari Press (Distributed in Canada by Raincoast Books), 1999.
275 pp., pbk, $22.95.
ISBN 1-57324-164-4.

Subject Headings:
Mothers and daughters.
Parent and teenager.
Teenage girls-Family relationships.

Grades 6 and up / Ages 11 and up.
Review by Stephanie Yamniuk.

**** /4


A mother's point of view:
I often felt neglected because fourteen-year-old Amanda would rather 'bond' with friends than with me. In desperation I tried a more creative approach: I thought of things we could do together that would be fun.

A daughter's point of view:
When I lived at home, I disagreed with my mother on a regular basis. The fights that we had rarely started over big, controversial issues, but were usually about something small, like who last used the scissors and didn't put them back. Before we knew what was going on, my mom and I would be involved in a screaming war over something completely trivial.

Written by a renowned family therapist and her teenage daughter, this inside-look into the ever-evolving relationship between mother and daughter shows the strong bond between two women. The authors, a winning-combination of mother and daughter, use a very effective way of telling their story: they use different colored print in the book to show their unique perspective on issues that come up between an independent daughter and her protective mother. They share tips to survive the adolescent years and give homework assignments to mothers and daughters who are trying to strengthen their relationship.

This how-to book covers issues such as creating your own identity, giving yourself space to grow, dieting, sex, accepting your body, and friendship. In a section entitled "Aren't I Good Enough?" teenager Amanda asks questions such as: "Doesn't it always seem like everyone around you has it better than you do? You notice great things in everyone else, but can't seem to find them in yourself." The book handles such questions with honesty and openness that is rare to read about. Each author gives solutions to create a positive relationship between woman and evolving woman. Mother Judy gives advice to mothers: "Good Messages Mother Can Send - I love you! There is nothing that will make me stop loving you. You are remarkable! You can do anything. You have courage, brains, and heart. I believe in you." This kind of modeling is followed throughout the book to give mothers and daughters confidence and encouragement as they work to begin a lifelong friendship.

I think this book can be used as a tool by parents and teachers alike, in trying to understand the many faces of a teenage woman. As well, it can give a teenager a look into the thoughts and concerns of the adult women in her life. It is a very positive book, though it sometimes repeats ideas for emphasis.

Highly Recommended.

Stephanie Yamniuk has taught grades 1 - 12, and works at the University of Manitoba as the Faculty of Management's International Exchange Program Coordinator.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364