Just in time for Father’s Day, we chatted with How to Talk to Girls bestselling author, 10-year-old Alec Greven, who is now sharing his insights into dealing with parents! His latest books, How to Talk to Moms and How to Talk to Dads, arrived in stores in April.
Greven wrote his first book as a school project, where it quickly became a top seller at the local school book fair. After a local news program covered the fair and Alec, he was discovered and booked to chat with Ellen DeGeneres – and signing a book deal shortly thereafter.
According to Alec, the great things about dads are that they “help you become you … one big thing your dad does for you is when you fall off your bike, your dad will help you up, but makes you get back on. It’s stuff like that.”
He cites a recent chess game, where his dad didn’t just let him win. “When I pay chess with my dad, he helps me with tips and tricks, but goes his hardest … if he just let me win, I would get too confident and then when I am actually playing someone else who is dad’s height, I would get beaten.”
Alec says the way to get to dad’s heart is to “help out around the house without being asked.”
He also talks about avoiding what he refers to is dad’s dark side. “You don’t want to get on dad’s dark side. I say it depends on his mood and your attitude. Dad could be in a bad mood, but if you have a very good attitude you could take him to the good side! If he’s in a good mood and you have a bad attitude, you could take him to his dark side – that’s definitely not fun.”
As far as moms go, Alec says they are really “smart cookies,” and tend to be enforcers of tough rules like drinking milk instead of soda. One of his best tricks: “If you want to watch a movie or something, you ask dad first, so he then says yes and mom can’t get angry with you because you never even asked her!”
Alec also warns against being a pest and tattling – except under certain circumstances! “Tattling gets on mom and dad’s nerves, but sometimes tattling can be a good thing. If your brother and sister are sticking art to the floor with glitter glue, you should tell your mom and dad. If they are wrestling over toys, stay out of it unless they are getting into a blood bath!”
Some of Alec’s other tips for how to talk to moms and dads:
~ Leave nice notes and give hugs
~ Don’t use your shirt as a napkin or a Kleenex
~ When you meet a new person, shake their hand and look them in the eyes. Dads get upset when you don’t look people in the eye
~ Don’t pull the “Mom lets us” trick
Photo by Cheryl Ungar