SOCIAL SCIENCES

Failure To Launch: Why Your Twentysomething Hasn’t Grown Up...and What To Do About It

Putnam. Jan. 2020. 320p. ISBN 9780525542186. $27; ebk. ISBN 9780525542209. CHILD REARING
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Psychologist McConville (Gestalt Inst. of Cleveland) has worked with hundreds of young adults who have struggled with the transition from childhood to adulthood. Studies show that one-quarter of Americans, ages 25 to 34, neither work nor attend school. So what’s causing this phenomenon? Helicopter parenting is one source, writes McConville, which results in parents staying engaged in twentysomethings lives to a degree not present in previous generations. Other factors include decreases in earnings, increases in housing costs, shifting norms around sex and marriage, lack of ownership, and fear of rejection. McConville’s plan to help young people acquire “adulting” skills—becoming responsible, relational, and relevant—also addresses the vital role that parents play in the issue and ways for establishing healthy boundaries and keeping communication lines open.
VERDICT McConville is well qualified to guide parents through the challenges that many face but are less frequently examined. A valuable go-to resource for parents and teens alike.

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