What would you expect comedian Chris Rock’s mom to be like? Funny? Straight talking? Keeping it real? You’d be right on all three counts based on Rose Rock’s book: Ten Lessons for Raising a Houseful of Successful Children, written by Rose Rock with Valerie Graham. Mama Rock brings the experience that raising 10 children in addition to caring for 17 foster children gives you.
The result is a practical, easy to read book, that gives hands on advice that parents can begin to implement right now.
The advice given is stuff that we’ve all heard before, but that deserve repeating, for example the importance of family meals and following through with consequences when rules are broken. Also included are more controversial positions on parenting.
For example, Mama Rock feels it’s more important for you to be a parent than a friend to your child and that any weakness when it comes to that boundary is unhealthy. Also Mama Rock feels that parents should be straight forward when it comes to sex and sex education, even if this means arming our children with birth control. Mama Rock takes a pro-abstinence until you find “the one” position, but is realistic about the fact that kids still will have sex regardless.
What made the book unique was Rose Rock’s personal anecdotes that give the reader a glimpse into the Rock household. The Rock children also have anecdotes scattered along the side margins of the pages, showing just how well Mama Rock’s rules work in action.
What I really liked about the book was how it reminded me about how the small things make all the difference, like keeping simple family traditions or rituals. Mama Rock also tackles the race issue. While I don’t think it’s as simple to move ahead as a young person of color as Mama Rock implies, Mama Rock stresses the importance of parents in filling the huge gaps that schooling and society gives our children.
When we met her in Florence, SC., my daughters asked her if she acted like “Rochelle” in real life cause their mom does. She said no, but in the book, she clearly hints that she had a PLENTY of “Rochelle moments.”
I truly felt as though this book was a fantastic check up for me. I see a lot of myself in her & that’s wonderful thing. ( She even said so)
Some atheist parents may feel put off at the spirituality chapter , which places a string emphasis on prayer, but even here , much of the information is really accessible and applicable to all, like treating people the way you want to be treated and the importance of charity, which doesn’t have to be about a higher power but just about being a good person.
Take a good week to read Mama Rock’s rules.So mamas and soon to be mamas, grab a seat, a pen and a paper and let mama rock tell it like it is.