LettersLostPrairie 9781590561249_lg_Unchanged 9781590562345_lg_Changed
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Letters From Lost Prairie

Readers of the book get a vivid glimpse into the lives of intelligent teenagers and engaged professional staff who work together in affectionate mutual understanding and cooperation. The essays were written for parents of troubled children, but they are also relevant to all attempts by adults and teenagers to live together in a civilized society. They are an affectionate tribute to all parents and neighbors of the village it takes to help childeren grow up.

–Rosemary Mckinnon, MSW

An Unchanged Mind and To Change a Mind

These books represent two halves of one coherent large idea that became too unwieldy to fit inside one cover. In the first, An Unchanged Mind: The Problem of Immaturity in Adolescence (Lantern Books, 2008), I suggested that a teenager’s psychological development can be disrupted and delayed, resulting in an immaturity that causes protean symptoms, repetitive misbehaviors and global dysfunction—at school, at home, and socially among age-mates. An Unchanged Mind described and made sense of this common contemporary problem.

In the second, To Change a Mind: Parenting to Promote Maturity in Teenagers (Lantern Books, 2010) I describe a solution to this problem: parenting. A dual parental prescription — recognition + limit-setting, sustained over time — promotes maturation in normal teenagers, too, and should help all adults who inhabit the village it takes to transform an infant into a civilized adult. This is the sequel to An Unchanged Mind, but its discussion starts at its own beginning. Readers who haven’t read the first book can proceed to chapter one of the second book without risk of confusion. On the other hand, those who wish to understand the problem they’re trying to solve may find helpful the earlier book’s description of psychological development and its explanation of relative immaturity in adolescence.

–John A. Mckinnon, MD