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Books and resources

Mental health

Jenny is scared: When sad things happen in the world Shuman and Pillo

The boy who didn’t want to be sad Goldblatt

What to do when you worry too much by Dawn Huebner

Feeling better: A kid’s book about therapy Rashkin

Kids power tactics for dealing with depression Dubuque

When nothing matters anymore: A survival guide for depressed teens Cobain

Depression is the pits, but I’m getting better: A guide for adolescents Garland

The anxiety cure for kids by Spencer (this book is mostly for parents)

Parenting your anxious child with mindfulness and acceptance by McCurry

More than Moody: Recognizing and Treating Adolescent Depression by Koplewicz (book for parents, from 2002– some of the material on specific therapy is dated, but it’s a very good primer on recognizing depression and telling “normal teenage” behavior from behavior that raises red flags.)

Think Confident Be Confident for Teens by Fox (A self-help book for building confidence and self-esteem, there is also a version of this book for adults.)

Get out of your mind and into your life for teens by Ciarrochi (helps teens learn to get past feelings of embarrassment, fear, self-criticism– whether or not formal diagnosis of depression or anxiety is appropriate. There is a version for adults, too.)

Beyond the Blues: A workbook to help teens overcome depression by Schab

Stopping the Pain: A workbook for teens who cut and self-injure by Shapiro (This book is best used as a resource while working with a mental health professional.)

National alliance on mental illness

Families for depression awareness

The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry has an excellent, comprehensive resource center with specific areas devoted to anxiety, autism, ADD, bullying, depression, substance abuse, and other topics. You’ll find family- or child- focused handouts and lots of solid, up-to-date information.

Magination press From the American Psychological Association, this is a collection of books for kids on a wide range of issues: divorce, family issues, ADD, school concerns, fears and anxieties, medical problems– and a lot more. You can browse by subject or age-range, and preview most of the books online to make sure you find what you’re looking for.


Mommy Laid an Egg: Or, Where Do Babies Come from? by Babette Cole (preschoolers and toddlers)

It’s Not the Stork: A Book About Girls, Boys, Babies, Bodies, Families and Friends by Robie H. Harris (preschoolers)

It’s So Amazing!: A Book about Eggs, Sperm, Birth, Babies, and Families by Robie H. Harris (age ~ 4-8)

 It’s Perfectly Normal: Changing Bodies, Growing Up, Sex, and Sexual Health by Robie H. Harris (~ 9-12 year olds)

What’s Happening to My Body? Lynda Madaras (separate versions for boys or girls, age ~ 9-14)

Deal with It! A Whole New Approach to Your Body, Brain, and Life as a gURL by Rebecca Odes (puberty)

Changing Bodies, Changing Lives: A Book for Teens on Sex and Relationships by Ruth Bell (teens and parents)


Siblings without Rivalry: How to help your children live together so you can live too Faber

The Connected Child: Bring hope and healing to your adoptive family Purvis and Cross. (Especially for parents adopting from overseas or from troubled backgrounds, also helpful for parents striving to connect and bond with children while teaching better behavior.)


Solve your child’s sleep problems by Richard Ferber (The classic, detailed sleep book by a leading sleep researcher.)

My Child Won’t Sleep: A Quick Guide for the Sleep-Deprived Parent by Kansagra (A wonderful, very short book with a variety of sleep training techniques to fit your child and your parenting style.)


Teach your child to behave: Disciplining with love age 2-8 by Schaefer, de Geronimo

Setting Limits with your strong-willed child by Robert MacKenzie

Parenting a Strong Willed Child by Rex Forehand (esp for age 2-6)

Secrets of feeding a healthy family by Ellyn Satter

The Explosive Child: A New Approach for Understanding and Parenting Easily Frustrated, “chronically Inflexible” Children by Ross W. Greene

Raising your Spirited Child: A guide for Parents whose child is More Intense, Sensitive, Perceptive, Persistent, Energetic by Mary Sheedy Kurcinka (workbook also available)

SOS! Help for parents: a practical guide for handling common everyday behavior problems by Clark (good for many parenting challenges, but especially for children who are defiant or oppositional.)
School problems

Overcoming dyslexia by Sally Shaywitz

Taking charge of ADHD by Barkeley

Healthy eating and weight concerns

Mindless eating: Why we eat more than we think by Brian Wansick

Secrets of feeding a healthy family and How to Get Your Kid to Eat: But Not Too Much by Ellyn Satter