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Grown and Flown Book Review: For Parents Navigating Young Adulthood

Grown and Flown: How to Support Your Teen, Stay Close as a Family, and Raise Independent Adults by Lisa Heffernan and Mary Dell Harrington

The co-founders of the popular online parenting community Grown & Flown have taken their show on the road, so to speak, with a new book called Grown & Flown: How to Support Your Teen, Stay Close as a Family, and Raise Independent Adults. Much like the website, Grown & Flown is a treasure trove of valuable resources for parents navigating those challenging years heading into young adulthood.

Authored by Lisa Heffernan and Mary Dell Harrington, Grown & Flown is the type of parenting book you will come back to again and again over the years.

The online community is intended for parents of kids 15 to 25. The book follows suit—though the book seems particularly geared toward parents of older teens and new college students. Covering topics such as family life, health, relationships, academics, and all things college, the book is written in a friendly, conversational style.

At the center of Grown & Flown is the idea that you can stay close to your teen through their tumultuous teen years and still launch a self-sufficient young adult into the world. What that transition looks like will depend on your relationship with your teen and your family dynamics. But Heffernan and Harrington make it clear that supporting our teens—in the choices they make, the difficulties they face, and the goals they set—is our main job as parents during these years.

“Parenting is and always will be about letting go, about preparing our kids for the road they will travel without us,” Heffernan writes.

Letting go may be inevitable, but we are not alone. Fans of the online Grown & Flown community will feel like they are among trusted friends as they read each section and absorb the practical wisdom, parental insights, and expert advice.

Grown & Flown the book is a valuable companion to the existing online community and a must-have for parents who want to be as prepared as possible for the “flown” part of parenthood. But be warned: You may want to keep a box of tissues handy for the inevitable tears that the book—and the experience of letting go—will trigger.

Kristina Wright is the digital editor at Your Teen.

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