18 Best Parenting Teenagers Books for Advice, Encouragement and Solutions

by Nancy Reynolds

This post: 15 Best Parenting Teenagers Books for Advice, Encouragement, and Solutions

Written by: Marybeth Bock

No sooner have you finally made it through the sleepless nights, endless trips to the pediatrician and temper tantrums and, seemingly overnight, a teenager emerges on the scene offering you a whole new set of challenges to navigate.

With massive changes happening within their bodies and brains, unpredictable mood swings, pimply cheeks, and gawky arms and legs, our kids’ teen years are anything but boring. Add in the fact that they’re on a desperate quest for independence as they ready their wings to fly, all while we’re grabbing hold of any hint of control trying to protect our teens and it’s easy to see why sparks sometimes fly. 

For parents, the teen years can be perplexing, confusing, exhausting, and perhaps even agonizing. And, while there’s also plenty of magic and wonder, fulfillment, and pure joy, most parents agree, it’s no easy task guiding our kids on their path to adulthood. 

If you’ve ever felt clueless, helpless or lost while raising your teen, check out this list of popular (well-reviewed) best books for parenting teenagers that will provide you with invaluable information, suggestions, solutions, and encouragement for all types of challenges we face while parenting our teens, and young adults. Here are the best parenting teenagers books we’ve found for advice, encouragement, and solutions. 

18 Best Parenting Teenagers Books for Advice, Encouragement and Solutions

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Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions into Adulthood 

Author: Lisa Damour, Ph.D.

One of the best books for parents of teen girls, Dr. Damour, a regular contributor to CBS News, draws on decades of experience and the latest research to reveal the seven distinct—and absolutely normal—developmental transitions that turn girls into grown-ups, including Parting with Childhood, Contending with Adult Authority, Entering the Romantic World, and Caring for Herself.

Providing realistic scenarios and welcome advice on how to engage daughters in smart, constructive ways, Untangled gives parents a broad framework for understanding their daughters while addressing their most common questions. Dr. Damour has also written Under Pressurea companion guide to coping with stress and anxiety among girls. 


Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen: The Essential Conversations You Need to Have with Your Kids Before They Start High School

Author: Michelle Icard

This book for parents of tweens and younger teens focuses on big, thorny topics such as friendship, sexuality, impulsivity, and technology, as well as unexpected conversations about creativity, hygiene, money, privilege, and contributing to the family.

Icard outlines a simple, memorable, and family-tested formula for the best approach to these essential talks, the BRIEF Model: Begin peacefully, Relate to your child, Interview to collect information, Echo what you’re hearing, and give Feedback.  Consider this book an essential communication guide for life with teenagers.


Brainstorm: The Power and Purpose of the Teenage Brain

Author: Daniel J. Siegel, M.D.

Between the ages of twelve and twenty-four, the brain changes in important and, at times, challenging ways. In Brainstorm, the renowned psychiatrist and bestselling author of Parenting from the Inside Out, The Whole-Brain Child, and Mindsight, Daniel Siegel busts a number of commonly held myths about adolescence — for example, that it is merely a stage of “immaturity” filled with often “crazy” behavior — to reveal how it is in fact a vital time in our kids’ lives as they chart the course into adulthood.


The 5 Love Languages of Teenagers: The Secret to Loving Teens Effectively

Author: Gary Chapman

In this adaptation of the #1 New York Times bestseller, The 5 Love Languages (with more than 10 million copies sold)Dr. Gary Chapman explores the world in which teenagers live, explains their developmental changes, and gives tools to help you identify and appropriately communicate in your teen’s love language.


The Teenage Brain: A Neuroscientist’s Survival Guide to Raising Adolescents and Young Adults

Author: Frances E. Jensen, MD

Dr. Jensen, a renowned neurologist, researcher, clinician, and mother, gathers what we’ve discovered about adolescent brain function, wiring, and capacity and explains the science in the contexts of everyday learning and multitasking, stress and memory, sleep, addiction, and decision-making.  In this groundbreaking yet accessible book, her findings also yield practical suggestions that will help adults and teenagers negotiate the mysterious world of adolescent development.


Decoding Boys: New Science Behind the Subtle Art of Raising Sons

Author: Cara Natterson, MD

As a pediatrician and mother of two teenagers Dr. Cara Natterson explains, puberty starts in boys long before any visible signs appear, and that causes confusion about their changing temperaments for boys and parents alike. Often, they also grow quieter as they grow taller, which leads to less parent-child communication. But, as Natterson warns in this book, we respect their increasing need for privacy, monosyllabic conversations, and alone time at their peril. Explaining how modern culture mixes badly with male adolescent biology, Natterson offers science, strategies, scripts, and tips for getting it right.


Parenting Teens with Love and Logic: Preparing Adolescents for Responsible Adulthood, Updated and Expanded Edition

Authors: Foster Cline, MD, and Jim Fay

From the authors of Parenting with Love and Logic, this helpful book empowers parents with the skills necessary to set limits, teach important skills, and encourage decision-making in their teenagers. Covering a wide range of real-life issues teens face―including divorce, ADD, addiction, and sex―this book gives parents the tools to help their teens find their identity and grow in maturity.


Smart but Scattered Teens: The “Executive Skills” Program for Helping Teens Reach Their Potential

Authors: Richard Guare, Ph.D., Peg Dawson, EdD, and Colin Guare, MS

If you’re the parent of a “smart but scattered” teen, trying to help them grow into a self-sufficient, responsible adult may feel like a never-ending battle. Now you’ll have an alternative to micromanaging, cajoling, or ineffective punishments. This positive guide provides a science-based program for promoting teens’ independence by building their executive skills–the fundamental brain-based abilities needed to get organized, stay focused, and control impulses and emotions. Learn step-by-step strategies to help your teen live up to his or her potential now and in the future–while making your relationship stronger.


Love Her Well: 10 Ways to Find Joy and Connection with Your Teenage Daughter

Author: Kari Kampakis

Author and blogger Kari Kampakis suggests it’s time to change the narrative and mindset that lead moms to parent their teen girls with a spirit of defeat, not strength. By improving the foundation, habits, and dynamics of the relationship, mothers can connect with their teen daughters and earn a voice in their lives that allows moms to offer guidance, love, wisdom, and emotional support.


He’s Not Lazy: Empowering Your Son to Believe in Himself

Author: Adam Price, Ph.D.

On the surface, capable teenage boys may look lazy. But dig a little deeper, writes child psychologist Adam Price, and you’ll often find conflicted boys who want to do well in middle and high school but are afraid to fail and so do not try. This book can help you become an ally with your son as he discovers greater self-confidence and accepts responsibility for his future.

Have a New Teenager by Friday

Author: Dr. Kevin Leman

Now that you have a teenager in the house, life never quite be the same. But it can be better than you ever dreamed. In fact, you’re just five days away from your teenager asking, “What can I do to help?” With his signature wit and commonsense psychology, internationally recognized family expert and New York Times bestselling author, Dr. Kevin Leman, will help you gain respect from your teenager, establish healthy boundaries, communicate with the “whatever” generation, turn self behavior around, pack your teen’s bag for life now and in the future and become the major difference-maker in your teenager’s life. 


Parenting the New Teen in the Age of Anxiety: A Complete Guide to Your Child’s Stressed, Depressed, Expanded, Amazing Adolescence

Author: Dr. John Duffy

Kids are growing up with nearly unlimited access to social media and the internet, and unprecedented academic, social, and familial stressors. Because of the exposures they face, kids are emotionally overwhelmed at a young age and often are continuing to search for a sense of self well into their twenties. Dr. Duffy, a nationally recognized expert in parenting for nearly twenty-five years, provides a guidebook for parents raising children who are growing up quickly and dealing with unresolved adolescent issues that can lead to anxiety and depression.


Hold On to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More Than Peers

Author: Gordon Neufeld, Ph.D., and Gabor Maté, MD

Hold On to Your Kids explains the causes of the crucial breakdown of parental influence in today’s peer-oriented world—and demonstrates ways to “reattach” to sons and daughters, establish the proper hierarchy in the home, make kids feel safe and understood, and earn back your children’s loyalty and love. This updated edition also specifically addresses the unprecedented parenting challenges posed by the rise of digital devices and social media. By helping to reawaken instincts innate to us all, Neufeld and Maté will empower parents to be what nature intended: a true source of contact, security, and warmth for their children.


Live Love Now

Author: Rachel Macy Stafford

With illuminating, straightforward strategies, New York Times bestselling author, Rachel Macy Stafford’s book, Live Love Now, reveals the importance of practicing acceptance, pursuing peace, and exploring wellness and purpose for yourself so you can be the kind of real, relevant, and lifelong role model your child needs. Engaging and thoughtful, each chapter includes moving stories from Rachel’s personal journey as a mom of a teen and pre-teen along with illustrative narratives and prompts to help you reflect and take steps toward becoming the kind of adult your teen can trust.


How to Raise an Adult: Break Free of the Overparenting Trap and Prepare Your Kid for Success

Author: Julie Lythcott-Haims

Lythcott-Haims, Stanford University’s former dean of freshmen and undergraduate advising, uses research and personal experiences to highlight the ways in which overparenting harms children, their stressed-out parents, and society at large. While empathizing with the parental hopes and, especially, fears that lead to overhelping, she offers practical alternative strategies that underline the importance of allowing children to make their own mistakes and develop the resilience, resourcefulness, and inner determination necessary for success.


Staying Connected to Your Teenager, Revised Edition: How to Keep Them Talking to You and How to Hear What They’re Really Saying

Author: Michael Riera, Ph.D.

Family psychologist Mike Riera explains that inside every teen resides two very different people-the regressed child and the emergent adult. With ingenious strategies for coaxing the more attractive of the two teen personalities into the home, the author gives new hope to beleaguered and harried parents. From moving from a “managing” to a “consulting” role in a teen’s life, Staying Connected to Your Teenager demonstrates ways to bring out the best in a teen-and, consequently, in an entire family.


Unconditional: A Guide to Loving and Supporting Your LGBTQ Child

Author: Telaina Morse Eriksen

Author Telaina Eriksen, a professor at Michigan State University and the mother of a gay daughter, explains what she and her husband have learned through experience, including how to deal with gay children coming out, tips on confronting bullying of gay children, guidance on becoming an advocate for gay children, and advice on building a support system in a gay family. Throughout the book parents and kids who have been there, share their stories.



When Parents Hurt: Compassionate Strategies When You and Your Grown Child Don’t Get Along

Author: Joshua Coleman, Ph.D.

A unique book helping parents whose relationship with their older or adult child has not turned out as they expected deal with their pain, shame, and sense of loss, and take steps toward healing. Dr. Coleman helps support parents who have lost the opportunity to be the parent they desperately wanted to be and who are mourning the loss of a harmonious relationship with their child. By helping parents recognize what they can do and let go of what they cannot, the author helps families develop more positive ways of relating to themselves and each other.

Other NEWLY RELEASED Best Books for Parenting Teenagers with GREAT REVIEWS!

The Parent Compass: Navigating Your Teen’s Wellness and Academic Journey in Today’s Competitive World

Authors: Cynthia Clumeck Muchnick, Jenn Bowie Curtis, Denise Pope

Many parents don’t know how to best support their teens, especially when everyone around them seems to be frantically tutoring, managing and helicoptering. For anyone daunted by the unique challenge of parenting well in the pressure-laden and uncertain era, The Parent Compass provides guidance on what parents’ roles should be in supporting their teen’s mental health as they traverse the maze of the teen years. 

52 Modern Manners for Today’s Teens (52-Week Calendar)

Author: Brooke Romney

The only thing harder than parenting a teen is being a teen! This 52-week calendar of creative and crucial tips for teens will help both parents and teenagers navigate our modern world with confidence (and manners!). 


If you enjoyed, “18 Best Books for Parenting Teenagers,” here are a few other posts you might enjoy reading:

10 Things You Probably Don’t Know About Your Teen’s Brain

13 Things You Shouldn’t Stop Doing When Your Child Becomes a Teenager

Tell us in the comments section below: What are your favorite best books for parenting teenagers?

About Marybeth Bock:

Marybeth Bock, MPH, is Mom to two young adults and one delightful hound dog. She has logged time as a military spouse, childbirth educator, college instructor and freelance writer. She lives in Arizona and thoroughly enjoys research and writing – as long as iced coffee is involved. Her work can be found on numerous websites and in two books. Follow her on Facebook and Instagram.

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