Wednesday, April 18, 2018

"To Train Up a Child" negative book review

Michael Pearl is the author of the parenting book, "To Train Up a Child". I have repeatedly been asked to give my thoughts on the book. Here is my review of it.




It is not possible to give a full review of this book without also doing a review of its author. There are just too many weird and creepy things about Michael Pearl to ignore the 'red flags.' Here is my video giving more insight into his personality.





31 comments:

  1. Good video. However, you look so sad.

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    1. You would, too, after reading the book twice, back to back.

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    2. There are dead kids from,this book.,enough said.

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    3. I applaud your bravery in reviewing this book. Thank you for reviewing it.

      You are a well-respected voice among some Christians, and I hope that they will listen to you regarding this book.

      Also, let me warn you about the Pearl supporters who love to go and 'troll' anyone who criticizes this book. Or those who will claim that you are "making Christianity look bad" by reviewing this book.
      (Just because one refuses to shine a light on the cockroaches, doesn't mean that they are not there.)

      I've heard of it way before. This book may be partly responsible for the deaths of Hana Williams, Lydia Schatz, and Sean Paddock. (Google those kids if you dare.) Their parents were BIG believers in Pearl's methods.

      This book has been critiqued at "Why Not Train Up a Child" and "Christianity Today". It's been reviewed too, at atheist web blogs. There are reviews at Amazon.

      Yet the Pearls are still making money off sales of this book. I have no idea why people buy this book, thinking it's Godly. It's like they think God speaks the truth through Mikey Pearl's mouth.

      I can see abusers buying this book, as it justifies their abusive tendencies.

      I just don't know why anyone else would buy this.

      Anyway, hugs (and virtual soda) to you for reviewing this book. Good luck with the trollish Pearl supporters.

      Perhaps your review of this will prevent another Lydia or Hana dying from their parents' attempting to follow this book. Or a Zariah with permanent damage to her health.

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  2. i am absolutely speechless....It breaks my heart he feels the need to dehumanize children. Sorry, you cant train children as you would a dog or horse. Thank you for taking the time to review this.

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  3. Thank you for this. I bought this book years ago because I needed help with parenting but I couldn't get past the first 1/3 of the book. I couldn't quite put my finger on what was wrong with it but everything you said is true.

    This book is horrible and he is creepy. I can't believe that potty training chapter, thank goodness I never got that far.

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  4. Thank you for biting that particular nasty bullet for us, I really appreciate it. I thought you managed to highlight the most important issue although one could probably do a 3 hour video and there would still be a lot more craziness to discuss!
    Is there any chance you might do a video about disciplining your children in a way that is biblical and also practical and non-abusive? I really enjoy your content on your blog and I'm sure there are a lot of young mothers who would benefit from it!

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    1. Yes Trina! I would love for her to do a video on Biblical discipline too. Mrs. Anderson, I know the Bible says to spank. My Husband and I decided early on that when God gives us children we would spank. Should parents give the same number of swats each time a child is spanked , or is it different based on the offense

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    2. Hi Ashley! I think its wonderful that you're putting so much thought into how you will raise and discipline your children in a biblical way. I would ask you to consider whether or not hitting your child is even necessary. Children will absorb the kind of environment that they are consistently exposed to, and gentle correction and discussion will have better long term results. I actually did spank my oldest, and it seemed as though he would stop with the original offense, but it did nothing to teach him good overall behavior. I amended my parenting style, stopped hitting and started listening, and have done so with my other five as well. My children are calmer, kinder and more reflective. I just thought I would share my experience! Have a blessed day!

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  5. I actually agree with what you said about Mr. Pearl. I did a fb search of his children and came up with Shoshanna and watched some of her videos on raising children. She actually seemed delightful and I couldn't find much to criticize her on other than her constant use of "train" your child. I hate that word. Just say teach.

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    1. The bible uses that word.... "Train up a child in the way he should go"

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    2. We must have discernment and wisdom from the Holy Spirit to understand the Word and what it means. Certainly the word train should not be used to train children as a dog or mouse, but to teach them as Son and Daugther of God, the latim word EDUCARE mean "to bring outside", then i would say it is to bring their Christ' Mind. "With the Spirit the Word is dead!"

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  6. I wish I could have heard this years ago. I have Debbie Pearl's 'Created To Be a Helpmeet' Book. What is your opinion on that one if you have read it? I feel like it helped me when I read it as a new christian, but after finding out more of Michael Pearl's beliefs, I may get rid of it an quit recommending it to people!

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  7. Oh! Forgot to mention just for the record. I gave my husband the book by Michael Pearl, 'Created To Need a Helpmeet'. He started it and said he wasn't going to read it because 'the guy is a bragging, creep' so I guess that should have given me more of a clue!!!

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  8. Thank you for doing this. I commented on your YouTube video . I have watched so many of their videos, and I have read much on their website . I think he is a very controlling and domineering man. His grown children seem to love him. My sympathies to his wife. I think it would be so hard to be in a marriage like that. My Husband is kind and loving to me, I have never had to deal with a controlling spouse. Mrs. Anderson, would you please do a review on the Created to be His Helpmeet book by Debi? I have yet to read it. I have heard some say its good and others that it is over the top. God bless you!

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  9. Wow, that was fascinating. Absolutely fascinating.

    I have read the book TTUAP, and I think I learned some good things from it. BUT. BUT. BUT.

    Firstly, I have to say that the sexual imagery that you mention is quite frightening, especially taken in totality. And that part went totally over my head. I just did not see it. They (both husband and wife) have such a habit of being gross/vulgar in their writing that I tend to skim over all of that, because I have learned that it is just a constant. So the passages you mentioned did not strike me in the way that they should have. And they are alarming.

    Secondly, I really appreciate the words of grace that you give parents in terms of consistency and children's obedience (i.e. it's okay not to be 100% perfect). As a parent who is often struggling, I experienced the examples of good parenting/bad parenting in TTUAP as a further sign of my own total failure, rather than seeing them as unapproachable standards. (There is NO WAY that I could take my children to someone's house and have them play silently for two hours with no interruptions. Two minutes, maybe.) I appreciate the voice of reason that you shed on those expectations.

    Looking forward to your next video!!

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    1. Ok I must tell you I read this book and cried. I thought wow I guess I won’t ever be able to effectively discipline my child because I can’t bare to do what he asks. I cried and told my husband I can’t do this I want a better behaved child but I can’t do this. I thought something was wrong with me maybe I was too emotional a mother and a failure. THANK YOU so much now I don’t feel crazy!

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    2. kendra_m, being a christian still requires you to think for yourself and not to blindly follow another human. Why is it that so many christians are so gullible and easy to influence?

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    3. Diana, I can TOTALLY relate to what you said!!

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    4. I read the book as a young mother and after reading the parts that I hated to my husband....we threw it out in the rain. Switching 5 month olds and spraying little kids with hoses...it was just too much...I literally cried reading it.

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  10. So glad you wrote this. I remember Jessica Argon blogging about this book. Unfortunately positively.

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  11. The "sham wow" of parenting books - how appropriate. I have never read the entire book, I couldn't get past the blanket training part, it really upset me. I watched a Youtube video of Michael Pearl and the man makes my skin crawl. There is something so sinister about him. Thank you for this review, the more people who speak out against this book, the better. ~ Sweet Lilac

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  12. Mrs Anderson, I have watched your book review and yes, I believe Michael Pearl is a false teacher with his sinless perfection theology. However, I think some of the stuff you said about him is quite slanderous and you have no prove whatsoever. You have accused him of physically abusing his wife and sexually abusing children, but you have zero witnesses for any of these claims. You are therefore spreading rumors which is a sin.

    You and your husband might be right about many things (and also wrong about others), but the spirit you are operating under is full of malice, completely lacking the grace and mercy that has been extended by God to you. It's often painful to listen to you and although I think one can learn a lot from both of you I think it comes at the high price of possibly being influenced into becoming a self-righteous, arrogant person.

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    1. Your last paragraph hit the nail on the head. They do nothing out of love, rather out of a hateful spirit. Totally lacking any compassion and show zero love or mercy.

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  13. It is so good that you are brave enough to take a stand against a book and author like Michael Pearl. Good for you.
    Though not a book I would ever read, I could warn others against it.
    Thank you for calling it what it is. A manual for child abuse.

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  14. Thank you for sharing this! This book was recommended to us when I was pregnant with our first child. Thankfully, my husband and I had the same reaction after reading it. We found "Shepherding A Child's Heart" by Ted Tripp to be far more helpful, effective, and God-glorifying.

    By the way, I just found you on YouTube and am a new subscriber! It's so lovely to find fellow homemaking/homeschooling/Christian moms in the vast internet wasteland. Blessings to you and your family!

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  15. I wrote a little about their marriage book here, although I didn't name the book. I mentioned that they obviously took the personality analyzation ( which I find most unbiblical) from a book by Tim and Beverly LaHaye which I believe they wrote a couple of decades ago. The "personality types" was taken from Ancient Greek psychology. Here is where I cautioned people about putting their trust in authors. http://homeliving.blogspot.com/2018/01/being-cautious-about-authors.html

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  16. While I agree and disagree on some of the points you talked about, I do see your point on a lot of the issues addressed, however the potty training is not as weird as you would lead us to believe. My son is a year old and has pooped in his diaper very seldom since he was 3 months old, we of course did not discipline when he had accidents, because it was obviously unintentional, peeing he has more accidents, but he also does very well on that when we take him to the pot and say "pee pee". I became a firm believer in it when my son was about 6 weeks old and we were traveling and he of course in his car seat, and he just was not happy and could not be soothed, so my wife says he probably has too pee, so we stopped and when I took off his diaper he started peeing right away and he peed for a while, (a lot for 6 weeks old) after that he was happy in his car seat and we resumed our trip, so I would say it was obvious that he was able to hold it for at least a little bit. We did not sit behind him while naked or any of that, we tried to make it comfortable for him. I just want to point that out to anyone that might be considering Infant potty training. I just wanted to share our personal experience and not just our opinions. May God bless you for all that you do for His Kingdom

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  17. I came to your blog bc I listened to one of your husbands sermons and loved it. I have 7 kids homeschool and this review of the Pearl's teachings is so sad. We know the Pearl's personally. We know all 5 of their kids and lived on Kauai with both their boys, Nathan and Gabe and have gone to the Pearl's house is Tenn several times. They are amazing people. Mike is socially awkward and I don't agree with the sinless perfection thing but one thing he knows how to do is tie strings with his kids and genuinely build strong, loving relationships with them. All 5 of them love him and are not weird at all. I was hoping to follow you but wow! After this review I'm torn. The sermon I just listened to your hubby preach was about self-control and not uttering everything we think...you assumed and spoke out of turn on the Pearl matter.

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  18. This used to be a very popular book among super conservative circles. Glad you didn't join that group of fans!

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Your KINDLY WORDED, constructive comments are welcome, whether or not they express a differing opinion. All others will be deleted without second thought.