Parenting Without Borders: Surprising lessons parents around the world can teach us.

Parenting_Without_Borders_coverAvailable May 2013.
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When my first child was born in 2000, I was living in America and started raising him the way I saw other parents around me raising their own kids. We were doing all the things we were told and we believed would help us to raise healthy, happy, thriving kids. Imagine my surprise when we moved abroad to Japan five years later to see that children there were being raised in a completely different way – sometimes the very opposite of how we had been told was the best way to parent – and yet they clearly were thriving too. Even though we were raising our kids in such different ways, in some important ways, we were both right; in some other important ways, I knew I had something to learn from their approach.

Our experiences raising kids abroad were so different and eye-opening that I started wondering what parents everywhere believe “good parenting” is and whether there’s something we can learn from their approaches too. I set out to discover how parents around the world successfully foster resilience, creativity, independence, and academic excellence in their own children. The result of my research is my book Parenting Without Borders: Surprising Lessons Parents Around the World Can Teach Us (coming out in May, 2013), a narrative and research-backed exploration of the myriad ways parents raise their children around the world. Drawing on academic studies, conversations with dozens of parents, experts and teachers, and my own experiences as a parent abroad, Parenting Without Borders reveals the surprising, often hidden ways in which culture shapes how we raise our children. I’ve come to realize how becoming aware of the cultural norms that influence our parenting will broaden our perspective in surprising ways that can benefit us – and our children.


Kirkus Reviews says, “An intriguing look at parenting paradigms in countries where children are deemed to be the best adjusted….Gross-Loh’s patient, grounded explication and engaging personal anecdotes make this a much more positive, culturally expansive contribution to the discussion than most parenting books.”