Positive Parenting Solutions Review 2020: Is It Worth It?
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Raise your hand if you’ve never yelled at your children!
Raise your hand if you have friends who never yell at their children!
If your hand is up… I am calling your bluff.
But if you truly believe that there are parents out there who never lose their cool… I have a unicorn for sale.
Listen, I’d wager that every single parent on this planet has lost patience with their child at one point or another.
And if they haven’t, they are likely going to give themselves a stroke from bottling up their emotions for so many years.
Kids are wonderful… but they can be challenging.
Brutally so at times.
The attitudes. Negativity. Defiance. Tantrums. Self entitlement. Mood swings. Bed wetting.
A dear friend of mine with grown children once told me, “Little kids bring little problems. Big kids bring bigger problems.”.
And he was right.
Our kids are going to test us.
So as parents, we are going to run the gamut of emotions.
From pride to disgust… from delight to worry… joy to anger.
But we are not alone.
You are not alone.
Positive Parenting Solutions (PPS) is an online course designed to help parents create a warm home environment and loving relationship with their kids. You know, the kind you see in Hallmark or Disney Movies.
As a mother of four small children (ages 4-9), I was more than happy to give PPS a whirl when my editor asked me to.
And if I’m being honest, I may come across as super easy going to my parent friends… but in all actuality, I have been yelling much more at home than I’d like to admit these days.
Which I feel downright awful about.
The kids also don’t really respond to my yelling… and I have simply felt lost.
In fact, the yelling left the house and creeped up in the supermarket last week when my daughter refused to put her cart back… yelled “no”, shoved it into the wall and then told me I was going to die someday after I grabbed her arm.
She’s five years old.
I was mortified. Almost cried on the spot.
But what I didn’t have the capacity to process in the heat of that awful moment, as my emotions were running super high, was that my daughter had just finished her second day of kindergarten.
In a new school.
Riding a bus for the first time.
Staying through lunch.
The school day was much longer for her now.
With so many changes.
And what I later realized was that she was physically and mentally exhausted… and that her fatigue came across as anger towards me.
But it had nothing to do with me, really.
I couldn’t see it at the time.
How did I get here?
Why are we both so upset?
When did I become the “yelling mom”?
I need to check out Positive Parenting Solutions.
I need to know I’m not alone.
You are not alone.
Today, I am going to give you my honest opinion of PPS.
- I’ll give you an overview of what the website offers.
- We will talk pricing.
- I will review the free online webinar, “Get Your Kids to Listen Without Yelling, Nagging or Losing Control”.
- I will discuss the effectiveness of some of the tools PPS offers with full membership.
So let’s not waste any time… peace and calm are within our reach!
What You Will Learn
What is Positive Parenting Solutions?
Positive Parenting Solutions creator, Amy McCready, is a mother of two boys.
Today Show contributor.
Nearly 20 years ago, Amy found herself struggling with how often she was yelling at her two young boys… and decided to do something about it.
So she spent years researching and studying… earning her certification in Positive Discipline. All of which she applied to her own family.
Sort of like test subjects.
But it worked.
She started seeing success and wanted to share what she learned with other parents.
Using her instructional expertise as a trainer for Fortune 500 companies, Amy was able to convert her experiences into an entire curriculum… and thus, the Positive Parenting Solutions course was born.
In 2004, Amy began teaching her course anywhere she could… in churches, YMCAs, community centers, preschools, companies.
She spent the next five years perfecting and refining it to ensure higher levels of success.
The feedback was so positive and the demand so great that she trained other instructors to teach the course… but still couldn’t keep up with demand.
So in 2008, Amy and her husband decided to commit themselves full-time to converting her classroom curriculum into an online course. After a year of planning and preparation, Positive Parenting Solutions launched their online course in 2009.
The online course provides parents with a step-by-step roadmap to help them tackle their biggest power struggles at their roots… ensuring a way to solve them once and for all.
How Much Does Positive Parenting Solutions Cost?
Let me start off by saying that Positive Parenting Solutions offers a 30-day money back guarantee.
No questions asked.
Or so they say.
That means this… for as little as $19.99 USD per month for 12 months or a single payment of $199, you will receive lifetime access to all of the tools you’ll ever need to deal with your child’s changing needs and difficulties throughout their life.
Positive Parenting Solutions provides:
The site offers a free sample webinar, which I strongly urge you to watch before considering the program. You can schedule to watch it whenever is convenient for you.
Upon completion, you will be given a code for 10% off and a free upgrade to the Silver Membership… for the price of Bronze.
But more on the webinar later….
Should you choose to pull the trigger, the 100% online course is divided into 7 modules.
Each one includes specific, battle-tested techniques. Not a theory.
You’ll be given word-for-word scripts that you can rely on, even in the heat of high-stress tantrums and fights.
You will learn exactly what to say and when to say it, no matter what life throws at you.
There are currently two promotions in play.
The Positive Parenting Bronze members immediate access to Silver level benefits:
- 37+ Tools
- 49 On-Demand Videos
- Downloadable Workbooks
- Parent Personality Assessment
- 25+ Advanced Power Struggle Modules
- LIFETIME Access
- Interactive Mobile App
The next gives Silver level members a free upgrade to Gold level benefits, which includes all of the Silver level benefits above, plus:
- Off-line Course Access
- ASK AMY Live Coaching for 1 Year
- Library of Recorded Coaching Calls
- Private Facebook Community
The off-line feature means you are able to download modules and listen to them on your mobile device or smartphone when you’re on the go… or even working out… without incurring any data charges.
This is huge when time is a factor… which, let’s face it… most always is as parents.
The ASK AMY coaching is exactly what it sounds like.
These are live group coaching calls hosted by Amy McCready herself… during which you can submit questions or ask advice on your specific parenting challenges, and get answers directly from Amy in real-time.
These calls are offered every week at a variety of times to accommodate parents around the world.
And each call is recorded and stored in an audio file library, which you will have access to for life as a Gold Member. You can even search by topic.
The private Facebook page is only for Gold Members and is a wonderful way to communicate with and bounce ideas off of other parents using the program.
Parents just like you.
The current price for the Silver level plan with a free upgrade to Gold (after the 10% discount) is $24.99 per month for 12 months, or a single payment of $249.
Obviously, the one-time payment saves you money (12 x $24.99 = $299.88)… about $50 USD to be exact.
Plus, that is the cost for lifetime access to the program… which is always adding new topics, sessions and materials.
So if you take into account the cost over a lifetime and the 30-day money-back guarantee… it seems fairly reasonable.
Especially if you feel as if you’ve tried everything to get your kids to cooperate.
Think about it… if you were to use the tools for 15 years (from age 3-18), that is just $16.60 USD per year.
That’s a fraction of what family counseling would cost.
And if you have more than one child, that is an even better bargain!
Many of the tools won’t work for children under 3 years, as they need to be able to communicate verbally to understand what is going on.
Also, if you are thinking that you won’t use some of the tools now… that is not to say you won’t in the future as your child grows and circumstances or situations change.
The modules are fresh and timely, often being updated.
“Get Your Kids to Listen Without Yelling, Nagging or Losing Control”…. The Free Webinar on Consequences
So if you are still having any doubts as to whether or not Positive Parenting Solutions is right for you… you can schedule to watch a free online webinar to get a taste for things.
The current topic is “Get Your Kids to Listen Without Yelling, Nagging or Losing Control”… and it’s brilliant.
- Don’t we all wish there was a magic spell for this? Potion? Jedi mind trick?
- Amy’s solutions seems so simple. Like, why didn’t I think of this simple.
Seriously… we’ve all been there.
Asking our kids to do something once… then twice… three times… four… until we can actually feel our blood pressure ever so slightly rising, our hearts beating a bit faster… until we blow!
Maybe even threats and punishments surface?
It’s ugly. It’s exhausting. And it can be avoided.
According to Amy.
I scheduled my webinar for a morning when I knew I’d have free time to really give it my full attention. This is important.
You’ll get a link to the webinar in your email upon registering, along with a downloadable workbook to follow along with.
You’ll also be asked for a cell phone number to receive text reminders.
This is a small note worth mentioning: in hindsight, I would not have done this.
Days after the webinar, sitting here trying to wrap up the article, I am still getting texts asking why I haven’t signed up for the program yet.
Or if I saw the coupon code.
Do I have any questions?
I’m not a fan of my phone getting alerts multiple times per day, essentially trying to sell me on a product.
You want to email me, fine. Knock yourself out.
We all have a “junk” email account.
If you don’t, you should.
But what I don’t want is PPS blowing up my phone… making me think there’s an issue with my kids or something else important like that.
There is an option at the bottom of the emails to unsubscribe…also worth mentioning.
Ok, moving on…
The webinar was extremely informative.
Amy starts off with stories, examples… letting us know that she has been in our shoes.
That we are not alone.
And that we are not bad parents for yelling.
She is big on getting you to free yourself of guilt.
She makes your believe you can really stop yelling and get your happy mom mojo back.
Amy is definitely a convincing speaker who knows which points to hit upon.
There was a clear and concise outline of what the webinar was going to cover… and clear goals were set.
I believe the phrase she used was, “You will become a recovering yeller”.
The webinar dealt with the consequence, and the importance of eliminating “willy nilly consequences” … otherwise known as ones you’ll never follow through with, and that don’t apply to the situation.
The tool being used in this lesson dealt with the 5 R’s.
Remember: Positive Parenting Solutions is based on a tool box strategy with more than 37 tactics to help you parent better and yell less.
The 5 R’s outlined in this positive parenting assessment were:
Here is an example.
Your child is enjoying some free technology time, yet they are having issues with turning it off when asked. You find yourself telling them multiple times to shut it down.
Instead of getting angry, making threats, punishing or yelling… Amy suggests you try having a conversation with your child.
Explain that they will face a consequence for not doing what they are asked to do the first time.
All people are born with free will. Children are no exception.
By being respectful of that and explaining the potential consequences of their actions, the child will feel that the choice is theirs. They will feel somewhat in control of their destiny and less “bad” about themselves.
Punishment, according to Amy, carries so much negativity… whereas related and reasonable consequences make them accountable for their actions.
During the conversation, which should be done during a calm time, explain the consequence to them.
If you don’t turn off the television show or video game when you are supposed to, you will lose your technology privileges for one week.
Now that the consequence is revealed, ask them to repeat it back to you.
If they can do that, and understand the consequence, their fate is in their own hands.
And this may be the right tool for the situation.
Sure, you can offer to help them succeed… there is nothing wrong with that.
Perhaps suggest setting a timer for when they have five minutes of tech time left.
Or simply offer a verbal heads up.
But the minute they choose (again, they choose) to not abide by the rules… they must suffer the consequence.
And if they don’t succeed the first time, be firm but encouraging.
“I see you chose to lose your technology privileges. Don’t worry, I have confidence that you’ll make a better choice next time.”.
It seems so simple, right?
I’m sure, like me, you may be wondering… “what if they throw a tantrum afterward?”.
Or talk back?
I actually asked the question during the webinar… typed it in the comments box.
Well, Amy had an answer for that too by way of a free gift titled, “Battling Backtalk”… which she sent to my email after completing the webinar.
In it, she listed five techniques to help win the backtalk battle once and for all.
1. Own your role
Be assertive, not bossy. Kids don’t like to feel like they are being pushed around any more than grown-ups do.
Amy explains how kids have two proverbial baskets that need filling… the power basket and the attention basket.
By owning your role without engaging in conflict, your kids will feel like the power is a bit more balanced.
2. Fill the attention basket
Giving your child too much negative attention (yelling, punishment) can result in neglect, masked in anger. But if you give your child enough positive attention every day, they are less likely to engage in negative behavior just to get you to acknowledge them. After all, negative attention is better than none to a child.
3. Give power to your people
A simple way to give your child the feeling they are in power on some level is to give them choices.
That is not saying let them dictate their own bedtime, but you can give them some semblance of ownership with harmless decision-making scenarios, such as:
4. Do not give your child the satisfaction of overreacting
As hard as it may be when you feel angry or frustrated with your child… simply say the words, “I feel hurt when you speak to me that way. So the next time you speak do it, I’m going to walk away. But I will be happy to try talking to you again once you’ve calmed down.”.
And then… walk away.
The next time it happens, don’t even speak a word of warning… just walk away.
Stick to your convictions.
They will eventually get the hint that you are willing to listen, once they adjust their attitude a bit.
5. Utilize the 5 R’s of Consequences
Make your conditions clear and stick to them.
If nothing else, the free webinar provided a taste of what PPS has to offer.
It cited a problem many parents have, and offered a clear and concise solution for it.
And while it may need some tweaks to fit your particular situation, it does offer enough insight to get you well on your way to calmer days.
The When, Then Tool – Lesson 23
So because I participated in the webinar, and still hadn’t signed up a day later, I was offered the chance to view one of the individual modules included in the Bronze membership… for free.
I was also given access to a previously recorded “ASK AMY” call, to see what those were all about.
I took advantage of both.
And one hour later, this happened.
The “When Then Tool” is one of the 30+ strategies available to you as a member of Positive Parenting Solutions.
The 7 Course Modules, or sections, utilize different tools in the tool box… depending on the situation.
This particular tool, although highly effective, may not work in every situation.
The 5 R’s may work better for instance.
Or maybe it’s the “redirection” tool.
Or the “distraction” tool.
But while Amy will suggest particular tools for a given situation… it is ultimately up to you to pick the one that works best.
A toddler, for instance, is not capable of communicating or processing information the same was as an 8-year-old.
Still, Amy says that most parents with children ages 2 ½ and older, find the “When Then” tool to be extremely helpful.
“Game changing” even… as one mother referred to it.
The minute I saw the video, I started to recall all of the situations with my kids during which this would have been helpful.
How many screaming matches could have been avoided?
Again, the “ah ha” lightbulb went off in my head like I was a cartoon character.
“When Then” is simply phrasing a demand you have of your child in a way that keeps it almost “closed ended”.
Calm and matter of fact.
They may suspect they have a choice in the matter, but they really don’t.
Let’s hash this one out for you…
Parent of 5-year-old: “Please put your toys away before dinner.”.
Child: “I will. Later.”.
Parent: “No, now please. Dinner is in five minutes.”.
Child: “I said I will do it after. I want to finish my tv show now.”.
Parent: [raising voice] “Clean up your toys or you won’t get dinner and go straight to bed.”.
Child: [stomping, screaming] “No! You’re the worst!”.
Parent: [yelling now] “Don’t speak to me that way. Go to your room now!”.
Child: [full on tantrum ensues]
When Then scenario:
Parent of 5-year-old: “Please put your town away before dinner. It will be ready soon.”
Child: “I’ll do it later. I want to finish my show.”
Parent: “When you put your toys away, then you may join us for dinner.”.
Parent walks away, leaving child feeling shocked… without anyone to argue with.
There may be some “backtalk” or push back at first… but if you remain calm and stick with your statement, they will eventually get used to it.
Amy’s word of warning here: do not follow your child up to their room if they are complaining. Sit down to dinner as you said you would. He or she will come once they’ve calmed down.
I took the “When Then” tool and applied it to the daily chores and obligations I expect from my children.
The “when” being completion of those items… the “then” being free technology time.
My kids love their Kindle Fires, video games and television time.
And so if they simply do what needs to be done, they can have it.
Today, my kids were anxiously reading the board and notifying items for me to check off as they were completed.
I haven’t yelled once.
It’s a strange feeling.
They actually see it as sort of a challenge and appear to have accepted it.
There was a little mumbling and groaning at first, but nothing too bad. And having my older two children on board has helped the younger two be okay with it.
For that tool alone… I’d pay Amy a membership fee.
And this is only one tool.
There are also tools for children with developmental disabilities, such as ADHD and autism.
She’s covered it all.
But you’re still having doubts if this is right for you?
If it’s worth the money?
Or maybe you partner is the one not sold on PPS?
Amy has a tool, a script, for convincing your spouse that Positive Parenting Solutions works.
While I initially didn’t feel ok with that… felt it to be a little manipulative… I could also appreciate a mother at her wit’s end who’s tried everything else to find balance.
And nothing else worked… for her.
Sure, there are therapists out there whom you can pay every week to teach you better coping mechanisms.
To vent your frustrations on.
But is that really necessary?
Not to mention, costly?
It will cost a lot more than $249 for regular private counseling.
That I promise.
So if your partner is anything like mine… and money is always a factor… I’d say put this little tidbit into your PPS sales pitch.
My Review of Positive Parenting Solutions
With full membership, Amy will suggest a tool for each behavioral issue you are facing… but that particular tool may not work in your situation.
She is very clear on that.
It heavily depends on the child’s age and mentality.
That is why it’s important to have access to the entire toolbox and set of learning modules.
Overtime, you will be able to choose the technique that works best for you in the moment.
Until you don’t need to use it anymore…
Your kids will transform into perfect angels.
Sure… you will resolve some struggles. And you will have peace.
For a time.
But kids do grow and, as they do, so do their problems.
Other issues may arise.
Positive Parenting Solutions promises to be there every step of the way.
For a single payment of $249… you will receive a lifetime roadmap to parenting for your children.
Not to mention never-ending support from the PPS community and Amy herself.
I’m sure you’ve heard the expression, “Don’t drink the Kool-Aid”.
If you haven’t, it’s basically a warning not to get involved in something that looks too good to be true… but is potentially high risk or dangerous.
Positive Parenting Solutions is not that.
Not in my opinion.
Pyramid schemes… stay away!
Determined as I was to think otherwise… figuring I had a handle on this parenting thing… Amy and her tools were pretty darn convincing.
Honestly, until I watched the webinar and some of the modules, I thought yelling was synonymous with parenting.
Par for the course, if you will.
Kids: misbehaving… not listening… throwing tantrums… talking back…
Parents: frustration… impatience… veiled threats… yelling…
My husband and I convinced ourselves this was the norm.
That all parents everywhere yelled at least once per day.
And although it’s common… it’s not normal.
Or at least it doesn’t have to be with Positive Parenting Solutions.
So give it a try for 30 days, risk-free.
I have a sneaking suspicion you’ll get hooked… and you’ll be happy you did.
Your children will too.
Imagine… days filled with laughter and positive communication, rather than guilt and yelling?
Imagine what a wonderful parent you can become.
And what a wonderful world this could be.
Nicole Krause has been writing both personally and professionally for over 20 years. She holds a dual B.A. in English and Film Studies. Her work has appeared in some of the country’s top publications, major news outlets, online publications and blogs. As a happily married (and extremely busy) mother of four… her articles primarily focus on parenting, marriage, family, finance, organization and product reviews.