Wolf, Anthony E. 1940-

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Wolf, Anthony E. 1940-

PERSONAL:

Born September 19, 1940; married; children: two. Education: Studied at Columbia College; City University of New York, Ph.D.

ADDRESSES:

Home—Suffield, CT. Office—C033, 813 Williams St., Ste. 205, Longmeadow, MA 01106-2052. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Clinical psychologist in private practice, Springfield, MA, c. 1983—. Frequent guest commentator on national television programs.

WRITINGS:

Get Out of My Life, but First Could You Drive Me and Cheryl to the Mall? A Parent's Guide to the New Teenager, Noonday Press (New York, NY), 1991, revised edition, Farrar, Straus & Giroux (New York, NY), 2002.

It's Not Fair, Jeremy Spencer's Parents Let Him Stay Up All Night! A Guide to the Tougher Parts of Parenting, Farrar, Straus & Giroux (New York, NY), 1995.

"Why Did You Have to Get a Divorce? And When Can I Get a Hamster?" A Guide to Parenting through Divorce, Noonday Press (New York, NY), 1998.

The Secret of Parenting: How to Be in Charge of Today's Kids—from Toddlers to Preteens—without Threats or Punishment, Farrar, Straus & Giroux (New York, NY), 2000.

"Mom, Jason's Breathing on Me!" The Solution to Sibling Bickering, Ballantine (New York, NY), 2003.

Why Can't You Shut Up? How We Ruin Relationships—How Not To, Ballantine Books (New York, NY), 2006.

Contributor to periodicals, including Child, Parents, and Family Circle. Monthly columnist for Child magazine.

SIDELIGHTS:

Anthony E. Wolf is a clinical psychologist. He has run a private clinical psychology practice near Springfield, Massachusetts, for several decades. He is also the author of a number of books, mostly geared towards parents for helping them deal with problems they may face with their kids.

Wolf published his first book, Get Out of My Life, but First Could You Drive Me and Cheryl to the Mall? A Parent's Guide to the New Teenager, in 1991 and later revised it to incorporate suggestions about gay teens and online safety in 2002. The account acts as a guide for parents in dealing with confusing and troublesome situations they will most likely have with their teenage children. Wolf addresses the problems teens give their parents as a fact of life, suggesting that they will happen and should not be treated as if the child is truly a rebel, but as a phase that both the teen and the parents must pass through before a normalization of relations will occur again. Wolf suggests that parents must set rules but understand that they will be broken at times. Wolf proposes that parents be firm and clear in establishing their expectations and values, noting that over time, the teen will internalize them.

A contributor to ParenTime recommended the book, noting that it is "easy to read, easy to understand, and contains suggestions that are easy to implement." The same contributor added that "Parents will feel like they have the answers on how to ‘deal’ with" any problems they have with their teenagers. A contributor to Publishers Weekly called the revised edition "as useful" as the original in helping parents cope with their teenagers. The same contributor commented that "in addition to providing excellent advice on particular situations," Wolf "makes the often obnoxious manner in which teens communicate with their parents understandable," describing it as a rite-of-passage that they will pass through with time. Suzanne Moore, reviewing the book in the New Statesman, remarked that "the tone of this book is earnest and remarkably useless." Moore felt that "this is not meant to be a book for anyone with a kid who has serious problems."

Wolf published his second book, It's Not Fair, Jeremy Spencer's Parents Let Him Stay Up All Night! A Guide to the Tougher Parts of Parenting, in 1995. The thesis of this book is that parents have power over their kids since the kids actually care about what the parents think. Wolf encourages a "tough love" approach, advocating that parents not be afraid to say no with the child. He also allows that parents' decisions do not necessarily have to be fair to their kids and being nonresponsive or continuously nagging both have their advantages in pushing the parents' side of an argument. A contributor to Publishers Weekly observed that the author "offers wise and witty advice to help parents preserve their faith in themselves along with their sanity."

In 1998 Wolf published "Why Did You Have to Get a Divorce? And When Can I Get a Hamster?" A Guide to Parenting through Divorce. Wolf explains that children first see the divorce as a disruption to the way of life they have thus far taken for granted. He reassures parents that children are not necessarily scarred for life due to a divorce, unless the parents do not deal with it appropriately. He gives suggestions as to how to tell the children about the planned divorce, what to expect from them at the announcement and how to counter their responses, and helping the children cope with their feelings of hurt. Wolf also assists the parents in living again as a single parent, dealing with problems from the former spouse, and introducing new significant others to the children. Booklist contributor Kathryn Carpenter related that the best advice Wolf gives to divorced parents is that "being good parents whenever they are with their children is the key to giving children" the happier lives they deserve. A contributor to Publishers Weekly wrote that every parent in the middle of a divorce "should have a copy of this book," adding that "Wolf's wise and specific counsel should help improve the success rate considerably."

Wolf published "Mom, Jason's Breathing on Me!" The Solution to Sibling Bickering in 2003. In the book Wolf outlines his approach to how parents can effectively deal with fighting among siblings. He proposes a three-part plan, noting that parents should not take sides; either intervene quickly or not become involved at all; and not to listen to the fighting or get involved unless physical violence is likely. Wolf opens a window into his own personal experience on this issue with his children, and his experience with his siblings. Booklist contributor Vanessa Bush mentioned that Wolf provides "an insightful approach that parents may consider worth a try."

In 2006 Wolf published Why Can't You Shut Up? How We Ruin Relationships—How Not To. In the book Wolf addresses his belief that everyone has a "baby self" that occasionally reveals itself in conflict. This reaction refuses to give in on arguments that are oftentimes a matter of simple, straightforward compromise and needs to be kept in check. Wolf suggests ways individuals can identify that side of one's behavior and ways to deal with it so it does not get out of hand. A contributor to Publishers Weekly observed that the book is filled with "sensible advice." Lucille M. Boone, writing in Library Journal, commented that "Wolf's simple approach may not be approved or applauded by everyone, but his guidelines are thought-provoking and insightful."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Booklist, November 15, 1991, Mary Barnes, review of Get Out of My Life, but First Could You Drive Me and Cheryl to the Mall? A Parent's Guide to the New Teenager, p. 587; September 1, 1998, Kathryn Carpenter, review of "Why Did You Have To Get a Divorce? And When Can I Get a Hamster?" A Guide to Parenting through Divorce, p. 45; September 1, 2003, Vanessa Bush, review of "Mom, Jason's Breathing on Me!" The Solution to Sibling Bickering, p. 36.

Kirkus Reviews, June 15, 2000, review of The Secret of Parenting: How to Be in Charge of Today's Kids—from Toddlers to Preteens—without Threats or Punishment, p. 874.

Library Journal, January 1, 2006, Lucille M. Boone, review of Why Can't You Shut Up? How We Ruin Relationships—How Not To, p. 139.

New Statesman, May 6, 2002, Suzanne Moore, review of Get Out of My Life, but First Could You Drive Me and Cheryl to the Mall?, p. 45.

ParenTime, October, 2002, review of Get Out of My Life, but First Could You Drive Me and Cheryl to the Mall?

Publishers Weekly, March 6, 1995, review of It's Not Fair, Jeremy Spencer's Parents Let Him Stay Up All Night! A Guide to the Tougher Parts of Parenting, p. 65; July 20, 1998, review of "Why Did You Have to Get a Divorce? And When Can I Get a Hamster?," p. 214; November 2, 1998, review of "Why Did You Have to Get a Divorce? And When Can I Get a Hamster?," p. 49; July 3, 2000, review of The Secret of Parenting, p. 68; July 8, 2002, review of Get Out of My Life, but First Could You Drive Me and Cheryl to the Mall?, p. 47; August 11, 2003, Elizabeth Kilstein, Sally Lodge, Karole Riipa, review of "Mom, Jason's Breathing on Me!," p. 236; November 7, 2005, review of Why Can't You Shut Up?, p. 64.

Today's Parent, April, 1997, review of It's Not Fair, Jeremy Spencer's Parents Let Him Stay up All Night!, p. 18.

Wilson Library Bulletin, May, 1992, review of Get Out of My Life, but First Could You Drive Me and Cheryl to the Mall?, p. 135.

ONLINE

Anthony E. Wolf Home Page,http://www.anthonywolf.com (January 31, 2008), author biography.

Parent Cafe,http://www.parentcafe.org/ (October 23, 2002), Wenda Reed, author profile.

Parent Press Web site,http://www.parentpress.com/ (January 31, 2008), Melanie Lawrence, author interview.