Reviewed by Poppy Johnson

Brad Sachs, author of Emptying the Nest, is a psychologist, and he writes with authority on the topic of preparing young people to make their way out in the real world. Sachs makes the case that parents should never give up on their children. He stresses that the parents have not completed their job until the child moves successfully through adolescence to adulthood, to become an independent adult.

The advice offered in the book is appropriate, since parents have many “excuses” for the reasons that their children are not independent of the parent’s sphere of influence or control. There is a fine line between supporting a child and enabling the child, and Sachs goes into detail on where the lines should be drawn.

It is important for parents to read Emptying the Nest well before their children are planning to strike out on their own. There are many important skills that parents should teach to their children and young adults at various stages in their lives. Notably: worldliness, how to act in the workplace, hot to develop and build relationships, how to budget money, etc.

Parents are entrusted with teaching their children the art of separation, according to Sachs. He notes that children who have been encouraged to be self-reliant usually will thrive when pushed to make their way in the world. Other issues discussed in the book include: failure of the child to launch, the “rites” and wrongs of passage, and understanding how to communicate with young people at any age.

Emptying the Nest includes communication and discussion topic starters, answers and suggestions to how parents can open talks with their children on tough issues, and more. I would suggest that parents read the book when the children are entering high school, then they will be able to ensure that they are ready to move on after high school ends, and to be independent and successful in their own way. The book is easy to read, and will offer parenting tips for anyone interested in brushing up on their skills where young adults are concerned.

Rating: 4/5

After a decade of working in several NYC law departments and teaching, Poppy decided she enjoyed writing full-time. She currently works as a freelance writing consultant, and lives with her husband and sons on the East Coast.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Palgrave Macmillan. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.