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What's Happening to Our Boys?

How the new techologies, drugs and alcohol, peer pressure and porn affect our boys

What's Happening to Our Boys? What kind of world are our boys to growing up in? Why are growing numbers of boys suffering body image and self-esteem problems? Why do they feel worthless without the latest branded toy, game or item of clothing? What makes soft drinks, snacks and fast foods so attractive? Why are they drawn to countless acts of violence on TV, in movies and in computer games? What impact does our highly sexualised climate, our emphasis on success and money, have on them as they grow? And why are so many boys vulnerable to cyber bullying and to porn?

Childhood and teenage life is changing rapidly, leaving parents exhausted and confused as to how best to tackle the many issues they face. How does this high pressure environment affect a boy's confidence, his values and aspirations, his wellbeing, his sense of community, his attitudes to girls and women?

In her follow-up book to What's Happening to Our Girls? Maggie Hamilton asks these and many other vital questions, as well as providing numerous tips for parents and educators on how to create a more promising future for our children.

Reading group notes for What's Happening to Our Boys? are also available online.

Links to podcasts on What's Happening to Our Boys?

ABC Conversation Hour, ABC Radio

ABC Life Matters, ABC Radio

Dads on the Air

ABC Adelaide - Drive with Sonia Feldhoff, ABC Radio

Advance praise for What's Happening to Our Boys

'In her new book, Maggie Hamilton has provided illuminating insights into the techniques used to undermine developing self-esteem and to sell products. In an immensely readable way, she provides practical tips for parents on many of the big issues facing adolescent boys- drugs, drinking, sexualisation, bullying and more.' - Barbara Biggins OAM, Australian Council on Children and the Media.

'As the father of two young adult sons, I didn't realise how much the world had changed and the challenges that today's boys and teenagers have to face. This book will open the eyes of parents and other adults. In addition to the bad and the ugly, it provides a lot of very good ideas on how to raise well-adjusted and resilient boys and young men.' - Gary Bryant, Executive Officer, Men's Advisory Network

'Maggie Hamilton's insightful analysis points out that although boys are the stronger sex in a physical sense later on, many boys are more vulnerable as newborns and struggle in early society that is playing havoc with not only our children's wellbeing but also our own. Her new book provides a formula for parents to get back to basics with boys, doing the things with them that build strong emotional bonds.' - Anne Crabb, Executive Officer, NSW Parents Council

'Maggie Hamilton's new book, What's Happening to our Boys is informative and readable. Perhaps most importantly, this book takes a positive view of boys: it sets out to build on what is good about being a boy and to strengthen that side. It also looks at the pitfalls facing boys in today's world. It gives insights to parents and concerned adults about how they can walk alongside boys on their journeys.' - Professor John J Macdonald, Foundation Chair in Primary Health Care, Co-Director Men's Health Information and Resource Centre

'What's Happening to our Boys is a must-read book for all parents with boys. Full of great ideas and practical solutions.' - Warwick Marsh, Dads4Kids Fatherhood Foundation

Viking, Penguin A$29.95 June 2010


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