by L.G. Mansfield, Merille Campbell Glover

Blue Fig Publishing, $14.95, 128 pages

Parents work hard to prepare children for life. Their goal is that adult children will live on their own as productive members of society. If you are lucky, a child becomes an adult and breaks away from family and home, confident in their strengths. Sometimes that doesn’t happen. Instead of moving forward adult children move sideways. Authors L.G. Mansfield and Merille Campbell Clover tackle this issue in Cutting the Cord. Sideways children are those who haven’t turned out the way their parents hoped. They make poor decisions about money, friends, jobs or lovers. They drink, do drugs or are homeless. And they often turn to their parents when times are toughest. Mansfield and Glover’s book suggests ways to “cut the cord.” Have a plan and consider questions like “Will I loan money?” and “Do I want my child to move in?” Follow the eight steps and read words of encouragement and experiences written by other parents in the same situation. The goal of “cutting the cord” is to transition from being your child’s caretaker to being your adult child’s mentor. This book offers an honest and sensitive way to do that.

Reviewed by Elizabeth Franklin