Unparenting started out as a group of parents, teachers, and experts brought together by a shared desire to understand their children and a recognition that the conventional parenting methods most of us were brought up with, whether parent-dominated (authoritarian) or child-dominated (permissive), do not lead to true understanding. Nor do they lead to good results.
Over time, we developed a cohesive approach that allowed parents to understand their children more deeply and build a closer relationship with them, one built on trust, intimacy, and respect for each other. This distinctive approach, which we called Unparenting, began in 2013 in Prague, in the heart of Europe. In the first 10 years, we have had 531,000 people sign up for our courses or other content.
Every day we get stories from moms, dads, and grandparents about how Unparenting has helped them in daily life with their children and challenging turning points in life.
We hear from grandmothers who say they realize they made a lot of mistakes in raising their children, but that they’d like to do better with their grandchildren and understand them more.
Fathers write to us that they’ve finally found a way to be close to their children, to be both open and strong in their relationship.Mothers write to us that they had previously found motherhood a strain and didn’t know which way to turn, but now they can finally enjoy their children and get along on a whole new level.
Along with all these heartwarming stories, we also started hearing from parents in other countries. Czechs living in another country with a partner who doesn’t speak Czech. Then their friends, who had seen how Unparenting was working in their families.
They kept asking us, “Are you planning to translate Unparenting into English? I’d like my partner to hear it.”
Or, “My friend did your course in Czech. Are you going to do it in English sometime?”
Over time we got more and more of that type of message.
So we thought to ourselves, Okay then.
We had the course translated into English and now we’re working on translating all of our articles, webinars, and other content. Now you’ll be able to listen in the USA, Canada, Spain, Australia, or wherever else you are.
We believe anyone can benefit from this approach if they want to work on their relationship with their children and build more understanding, trust, and intimacy between them. We come from Europe and have had hundreds of thousands of people go through our program, including those living in English-speaking countries.
We went through online parenting forums around the world to look at the differences. And do you know what we found? The differences weren’t as big as you might expect. The details of life in different parts of the world do vary, of course, as do the particular solutions for different situations. The common thread we saw running through these parenting discussions from all around the world, though, was parents’ desire to have a good, healthy relationship with their children and their unhappiness and concern when the relationship was not going well.
When our children cry and we don’t know how to comfort them, it breaks our hearts. When they stomp their feet for the fiftieth time that day, we can feel our self-control starting to slip. But wherever we looked in the world, we found parents who wanted to understand their children and have a loving relationship with them.
Take whatever you find useful from our approach. Whatever language you speak, your parent-heart beats the same as ours. Love and understanding are the same all around the world, wherever you come from.
Unparenting doesn’t tell you exactly what you should do. Instead, it gives you solid principles to work with. The application might look different in every family. You may end up discovering your own parenting method that works in your family and might or might not look like parenting in the USA, in Europe, or in the house across the street from you.
Behind Unparenting is a group of authors, parents, grandparents, teachers, special education teachers, and other experts drawn together by the idea that parents and children can understand each other and have a good relationship. And that the way to achieve this goal is to approach problems together, not in opposition to each other.
Unparenting is not focused on expert advice, however. It’s focused on you: each parent, grandparent, teacher, or other adult looking for a way to understand children and feeling there must be a middle path between permissive and authoritarian parenting.
If that’s you, then welcome on board!