The Danish Way of Parenting

I recently communicated with a previous podcast interviewee, Ansgar Bittermann (2020) – who resides overseas, covering a variety of things, including family history, differing cultures, world travel, etc.. He’s a well educated man in his mid forties, who became a father for the first time, nearly 2 years ago, married to a well educated foreign woman, who was raised in a completely different manner and in a culture that bears very little resemblance to his own. 

The video, which I took from YouTube and edited, by trimming out the opening and closing minutes (which weren’t pertinent or connected to the interview), and eliminating any possible AD interruptions and/or distractions, that you would incur watching it on YouTube. This is the final product, about 54 minutes long (original on YouTube is over an hour).

I believe this information may be of benefit to present and future generations of children (and of course their parents and everyone they’ll encounter in their lifetime). This is isn’t about touting a perfect society or a perfect solution, as neither is being suggested or promoted. It’s just another exploration or consideration, which will hopefully be of some benefit. 

About the Interviewee…

A Parenting Playbook for Raising the Happiest Kids on Earth with Jessica Joelle Alexander

Who really knows the secrets of raising happy children? Parenting expert, researcher and author Jessica Joelle Alexander has devoted her professional life to providing culturally validated answers to this very question. In her bestselling book “The Danish Way of Parenting: What the Happiest People in the World Know About Raising Confident, Capable Kids” (co-authored with Iben Dissing Sandahl), Alexander reveals the essential parenting principles of the happiest people in the world. For four decades in a row, Denmark was voted the happiest country in the world. According to Alexander, the reason for this is simple: “Happy kids grow up to be happy adults who raise happy kids, and so on.” 
But it turns out that parents from everywhere and from all walks of life can apply this successful Danish parenting playbook — referencing Alexander’s easy-to-remember “PARENT” acronym — to raise well-adjusted kids: Play, Authenticity, Reframing, Empathy, No ultimatums and Togetherness. Take off your “cultural glasses” and learn how to improve your family’s well-being with Alexander’s actionable strategies. 
Danish parenting expert Jessica Joelle Alexander is a best-selling author, columnist, speaker and cultural researcher. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, Time, BBC World News, Vanity Fair, NPR, Huffington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Salon, The Atlantic and many other outlets. She is the author of three books that have been published in more than 32 countries; “The Danish Way of Parenting: What the Happiest People in the World Know About Raising Confident, Capable Kids” is one of the most-sold parenting books of all time. Alexander writes a regular column in The Copenhagen Post, and researches and writes for the University of California Berkeley’s Othering & Belonging Institute.

Children & Parenting

Esther Perel On 3 Hidden Dynamics Governing Every Relationship


In this session from Summit LA18 (November 2018), famed relationship therapist and bestselling author Esther Perel digs into the three hidden dynamics governing every relationship, explores the self-imprisoning paradox of social media, and lays out why certainty is always the enemy of change.

Tami Simon Interview with Gabor Mate

‘The Roots of Healing’ – Recorded in 2017 (I leveled the audio and edited it to just the conversation, removing ads/promos, etc.) – Approximately 64 minutes

Accompanying text…

Dr. Gabor Maté is a renowned speaker and bestselling author, and is highly sought after for his expertise on a range of topics including addiction, stress, and childhood development. Gabor Maté has written several best-selling books including the award winning In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction and When the Body Says No: Exploring the Stress-Disease Connection. He’s also the cofounder of Compassion for Addiction, a new nonprofit that focuses on addiction.

In this episode of Insights at the Edge, Gabor and I spoke about the immune system and how it is connected to healthy, emotional expression, and why it matters so much that we own our healthy anger and express it. We also talked about how our body can function as a teacher, and how he views such diagnoses as ADHD and depression, and how his views differ from the way the medical community views those conditions. We also talked about understanding healing through a bio-psycho-social lens and how a great number of mental health issues can actually be traced to childhood compensation. Finally, we talked about what Gabor is currently focusing on as he enters his 73rd year of life. Here’s my conversation with the very direct and brilliant Dr. Gabor Maté:

Rod Serling

Rodman Edward Serling (Rod Serling) (December 25, 1924 – June 28, 1975) was an American screenwriter, playwright, television producer, and narrator known for his live television dramas of the 1950s and his anthology television series, The Twilight Zone. Serling was active in politics, both on and off the screen, and helped form television industry standards

I’ve edited the audio track and slightly modified the video track to fill the screen (video shown below). Here’ s the original video:

An afternoon of questions and answers (recorded in the early 70’s) from the very gifted Rod Serling…

Rod Serling on Writing

The Social Dilemma – Official Trailer – Netflix

We tweet, we like, and we share— but what are the consequences of our growing dependence on social media? As digital platforms increasingly become a lifeline to stay connected, Silicon Valley insiders reveal how social media is reprogramming civilization by exposing what’s hiding on the other side of your screen.

Noam Chomsky, one of the most important intellectuals in life today, has drawn up the list of 10 media manipulation strategies.

1-The strategy of distraction
The primordial element of social control is the distraction strategy which consists of diverting the public’s attention from major problems and the changes decided by political and economic elites, through the flooding technique or flooding continuous distractions and insignificant information.
Distraction strategy is also essential to prevent the public from becoming interested in essential knowledge in the area of science, economics, psychology, neurobiology and cybernetics. Keeping the audience’s attention deviated from real social problems, imprisoned by themes without real importance.
Keeping the public busy, busy, busy, with no time to think, back to the farm like other animals (quoted in the text ′′ Silent weapons for quiet wars ′′).

2-Creating problems and then offering the solutions.
This method is also called a ′′ problem-reaction-solution “. It creates a problem, a ′′ situation ′′ planned to cause a certain reaction from the public, with the aim that this is the source of the measures they want to accept. For example: letting urban violence intensify or intensify, or organize bloody attacks, with the aim of the public being those requiring security laws and policies to the detriment of freedom. Also: create an economic crisis to make social rights demotion and dismantle public services accept as a necessary evil.

3-The Strategy of Graduation.
To make an unacceptable measure accepted, you only need to apply it gradually, to dropper, for consecutive years. This is how radically new socioeconomic conditions (neoliberism) were imposed during the decades of the 80 s and 90 s: minimum state, privatisation, precariousness, flexibility, mass unemployment, wages that no longer guarantee dignified incomes , so many changes that would have brought about a revolution if they were implemented at once.

4-The Strategy of Deferring.
Another way to get an unpopular decision accepted is to present it as ′′ painful and necessary “, gaining public acceptance, in the moment, for future application. It is easier to accept a future sacrifice than an immediate sacrifice. First, because effort isn’t that taken immediately. Second, because the public, the mass, always tends to naively hope that ′′ everything will be better tomorrow ′′ and that the required sacrifice could be avoided. This gives the audience more time to get used to the idea of change and accept it resigned when the time comes.

5-Reach to the public like children.
Most advertisements directed at the large audience use speeches, arguments, characters and a particularly childish intonation, many times close to weakness, as if the viewer was a few years old creature or a mental moron. When you try to deceive the viewer the more you tend to use a childish tone. Why? Why? ′′ If someone addresses a person as if they are 12 or under, then based on suggestionability, they will probably tend to a response or reaction even without a critical sense like that of a 12 person. years or less ′′ (see ′′ Silent Weapons for quiet wars ′′).

6-Using emotional aspect much more than reflection.
Take advantage of emotion it’s a classic technique to provoke a short circuit on a rational analysis and finally the critical sense of the individual. Additionally, the use of emotional register allows the unconscious access door to implant or inject ideas, desires, fears and fears, compulsions, or induce behaviors.

7-Keeping the public in ignorance and mediocrity.
Making the public incapable of understanding the technologies and methods used for their control and slavery.
′′ The quality of education given to lower social classes must be as poor and mediocre as possible, so that the distance of ignorance that plans between lower classes and upper classes is and remains impossible to fill from the lower classes “.

8-Stimulating the public to be complacent with mediocrity.
Pushing the audience to think it’s fashionable to be stupid, vulgar and ignorant…

9-Strengthening self-guilt.
Making the individual believe that he is only the culprit of his disgrace, because of his insufficient intelligence, skills or efforts. So, instead of rebelling against the economic system, the individual devalues himself and blames himself, which in turn creates a depressive state, one of whose effects is the inhibition of his action. And without action there is no revolution!

10-Knowing individuals better than they know themselves.
Over the past 50 years, science’s rapid progress has generated a growing gap between public knowledge and those possessed and used by dominant elites. Thanks to biology, neurobiology, and applied psychology, the ′′ system ′′ has enjoyed advanced knowledge of the human being, both in its physical and psychological form. The system has managed to learn better about the common individual than he knows himself. This means that, in most cases, the system exercises greater control and greater power over individuals, greater than that which the same individual exercises over himself.