Cover image for Say what you mean and mean what you say! : 7 simple strategies to help our children along the path to purpose and possibility
Say what you mean and mean what you say! : 7 simple strategies to help our children along the path to purpose and possibility
Hatchett, Glenda.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Morrow, [2003]

Physical Description:
x, 230 pages ; 22 cm
Added Author:
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Material Type
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HQ769 .H383 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Parenting

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"We live in a time of tremendous uncertainty," Judge Glenda Hatchett says. "Our children are constantly assaulted by all kinds of negative impulses and images that can pull them from the right road."

Parents have it tough. Kids have it tough, too. And few people are in a better position to guide readers through these tough times than Judge Glenda Hatchett. As chief presiding judge of one of the largest juvenile court systems in the country, she gained a front-row perspective on the hot-button social issues of our time -- including drug and alcohol abuse, truancy, date rape, and school violence. As presiding judge on the hit television series Judge Hatchett, she continues to build bridges between parents and their lost, angry, and alienated teens. And, as a parent, she's turned her professional experiences to personal advantage, helping her own children navigate through some of the more difficult dilemmas facing young people today.

Now, using her extensive experience as a judge and a parent, Judge Hatchett shares with readers seven simple strategies. Hard-won and heartfelt, these strategies show you how to become more involved in your child's life and maintain a strong relationship. And they can ensure that your child is happy, healthy, productive, and motivated. Throughout the book, Judge Hatchett uses concrete examples and illuminating anecdotes, all told with her trademark verve and passion.

Say What You Mean and Mean What You Say! is an essential tool for parents (and grandparents) and a compelling guidepost on what it takes to raise safe, smart, and successful children even in these uncertain times.

Author Notes

Writer and educator Daniel Paisner received a B.A. from Tufts University and an M.A. from Boston University.

He is an adjunct professor of journalism in the communication arts department of Long Island University.

Paisner is the author of Horizontal Hold: The Making and Breaking of a Network Pilot and has collaborated on works with the likes of George Pataki, Montel Williams, and model Emme.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

Judge Glenda Hackett, who presides over an eponymous daytime television courtroom, wants to protect children and adolescents so they can grown into estimable adults, and this work captures her forceful, occasionally strident, opinions on how to do so. Her early work as a chief presiding judge in a Georgia juvenile court, as well as her experience as the single mother of two sons, shapes the no-nonsense advice she dispenses to parents here. Her seven strategies encompass such basic wisdom as "listen carefully," "expect greatness" and "cheer" for your kids. Hackett and collaborator Paisner have a knack for using approachable, straightforward language: while their advice may not be groundbreaking, it's effectively presented. Readers will have to overlook Hackett's seeming insistence on a wealth-based concept of success, as well as the faint whiff of smug superiority that permeates the book. Instead, they should focus on the short sections of autobiography that reveal how Hackett's devoted parents inspired their daughter to move beyond the racism of the American South to achieve great things. Somewhere on that path, Hackett became both a television star and an advocate for children. When Hackett writes, "I've seen too many kids in my courtroom who don't have the first idea that they're part of something bigger than just themselves," and goes on to present powerful examples of kids gone wrong, then gone right again, most readers will forget her occasional self-congratulation and be moved to do more for children. Fans of the show, be warned that there is little here on that topic, but the impassioned calls to better parenting are worth a read. (Sept.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Library Journal Review

Advice from an expert: Hatchett is not just the first African American to serve as chief presiding judge of a Georgia state court, but she has her own TV show-seen by 2.7 million viewers daily. And she's a single mom. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Say What You Mean and Mean What You Say! 7 Simple Strategies to Help Our Children Along the Path to Purpose and Possibility Simple Strategy #1 Expect Greatness Allow me to repeat myself: expect greatness. Set the bar high. Encourage your children to reach beyond their wildest dreams. There, that gets us past the easy heading, but I can't move on without overstating what may or may not be so obvious: it's not the greatness that matters, but the expectation of it, the reaching for it, the setting it out as a goal or ideal. Let's be honest, even the greats stumble from time to time, but greatness is not the point. It's the prospect of greatness, the preparation for it, the willingness to let it into our lives. Expect it and it will come; reach for it and it will instill hope and dedication and purpose and all kinds of great things; take it for granted and it will always slip away. It has to do with destiny, don't you think? If we teach our kids to move about as if greatness is within reach, then it will be so. If we teach them to hang their heads and despair about ever reaching their objectives, then they won't. We parents must demand the utmost of our children, whether we're teaching them to tie their shoes, or read, or drive a car, or develop good study habits and a responsible moral code. And why stop at parents? Teachers, mentors, bosses, aunts and uncles ... judges. We should always expect the very best from our charges if we hope to see the very best in return. It's basic. And just to flip it around, we must also expect the very best from ourselves -- because after all, we set examples by our actions. You can't lead where you aren't willing to go. No mother is certain about what she's doing when she first has children. In a world of uncertainty, this is one absolute. Me, I wasn't clear on a whole bunch of things, but I had some ideas, and one of the big ones was that I should give my kids something to shoot for, help them walk a path that might allow them to discover their dreams and realize them as well. In so doing, naturally, I set the bar high for myself, but I figured my children had a right to expect a kind of greatness from me if I was expecting it of them. It's only fair, don't you think? I got this notion from my own parents, who nurtured and inspired my brothers and me to reach beyond our circumstances, but as hard as my mother and father worked to instill in me a sense of boundless opportunity and wonder, there were others working just as hard to tell me what I couldn't do, where I didn't belong, and when I shouldn't even bother trying. For every piece of positive reinforcement I took in at home, there were a dozen negatives out there in the rest of the world, and I came away thinking I'd have to level the playing field a bit when it came my turn to raise children. I didn't want them to have to deal with all these disapproving messages if they didn't have to, at least not at home, at least not on my watch. It's funny the ay a lot of my well-meaning friends and relations lined up to tell me how much trouble my boys would give me when they reached adolescence, based on how much trouble their own children had been giving them, especially boys. It's as if they needed to drag us down into whatever it was they were struggling through, either because misery loves company or because they couldn't bear the thought that they might have missed an opportunity to set things along a more positive path with their own children. "Enjoy them now," I'd keep hearing when my children were young, "because there's gonna be war in your house when they get older." Each warning was more ominous than the last: "Just wait till they become teenagers." "There won't be peace in your house till they're both off to college." "I don't envy you. Two boys. You're in for some real trouble." I refused to claim this mind-set as my own. I flat out didn't want to hear it. Why? Well, if you go in anticipating a negative outcome, the positives won't know here to find you, so from the very beginning I turned a deaf ear when someone tried to counsel me on what almost everyone assumed would be problems in my relationships with my sons. I wouldn't listen. When there was no avoiding it, when someone needed to download her troubles and let out a little steam, I nodded politely until she was through. I'd half hear these terrible things and promptly set them aside, never once believing that any of these worst-case scenarios would have anything to do with the positive relationships I'd carve with my own adolescent and teenage sons when the time came. Those negatives weren't mine,I told myself; they have nothing to do with me or my children. There's an old adage in the world of sports that suggests that great teams sometimes play down to the level of their lesser opponents. Conversely, there are lesser teams -- less talented, less physically gifted, less dedicated -- that play up against tougher competition. I've always believed that in cliché there is truth (sometimes, at least), and at this point I've seen enough high school football and basketball games to know that the adage applies, but I could never accept allowing my children the wiggle room to play down to expectations. What I mean by this is that I wouldn't give my kids an out, or an easy excuse ... Say What You Mean and Mean What You Say! 7 Simple Strategies to Help Our Children Along the Path to Purpose and Possibility . Copyright © by Glenda Hatchett. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold. Excerpted from Say What You Mean and Mean What You Say!: 7 Simple Strategies to Help Our Children along the Path to Purpose and Possibility by Glenda Hatchett, Daniel Paisner All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Table of Contents

Opening Remarks: Promises to Keepp. 1
Simple Strategy #1 Expect Greatnessp. 6
Side of Hopep. 30
Simple Strategy #2 Say What You Mean and Mean What You Sayp. 37
A Place to Belongp. 57
Simple Strategy #3 Listen Carefullyp. 64
Answering the Chargep. 82
Simple Strategy #4 Keep Your Wordp. 93
The Path Takenp. 122
Simple Strategy #5 Cheerp. 131
Cases in Pointp. 151
Simple Strategy #6 Make Money Matterp. 158
Have a Little Faithp. 184
Simple Strategy #7 Reach, Teach, and Preachp. 192
Closing Remarks: Call Him "Son"p. 216
Appendix Resourcesp. 223
Acknowledgmentsp. 229