"I always say moms have the toughest job in the world if you're doing it right."


"Don't be afraid to impose rules and structure, and don't try to be your kids' best friend. They can have lots of friends, but only have one mom and one dad."

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

"We have a hard time letting go of our kids and letting them discover their life."

Cheryl Saban, author

"Raising a child—alone or with a partner—may be a labor of love, but, as anyone who's ever sung 'The Wheels on the Bus' 11 times in a row can tell you, it's still labor."

Lisa Kogan , O, The Oprah Magazine contributor

"Children need to learn that truth is not something embraced when convenient, but is society's foundation of justice and is the basis of good character…Always tell your kids, 'It is better to fess up than ever cover up.'"

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

"[Autism treatments] may work for some, may not work for others. But that's what the warrior spirit is all about—trying, trying, trying."

Jenny McCarthy

"We've done parents a disservice in our society, acting as if parenting is either not very difficult or not very important. For every other job in our society that is difficult and important, you get some kind of training."

Dr. Michael Popkin, parenting expert

"To be an effective parent, at some point you need to pull out of the fast lane and think about things. You have to turn off the phone and the television, hand the baby over to your husband, and find a quiet spot where you can sit by yourself and meditate on what is important to you as a mother and a person."

Dr. Phil McGraw

"Most children need their parents' help and encouragement to discover the satisfaction of using their own imaginations. But the rewards of children's active, creative play last a lifetime."

Dr. Alvin F. Poussaint, psychiatrist

"Don't get me wrong, I love a thoughtful gift and I love when my daughter writes me a poem, makes me a card, bakes me a cake, e-mails me, washes my car or sends me flowers, all to say how much she loves me on Mother's Day. But, truth be told, I love being her mom most of all."

Sandra Magsamen

"I believe the choice to become a mother is the choice to become one of the greatest spiritual teachers there is. To create an environment that's stimulating and nurturing, to pass on a sense of responsibility to another human being, to raise a child who understands that he or she is created from good and is capable of anything—I know for sure that few callings are more honorable. To play down mothering as small is to crack the very foundation on which greatness stands."


"Children crave the love and attention from parents. So no matter what you've done, you might have to have remorse and apologize, you might have to keep trying, but children do open up. "

M. Gary Neuman, relationship expert

"Something I've learned as a parent is that giving all of this stuff doesn't necessarily create better people. And it doesn't necessarily prepare them to be making the kind of decisions that they should be making."

Chris Gardner, self-made millionaire

"I think that sometimes using phrases like that ['anybody can read your kid a book or cuddle your kid'] minimizes what being a stay-at-home mom is. It's not just about reading a book or wiping their nose. It's engendering in them a sense of independence and a quest for learning that is shaped by your values."

Whitney, a stay-at-home mom

"As a child, I was given reasons, but they were probably reasons to make it easier, not necessarily the truth. I'm very conscious of wanting to be honest with my daughter about my motives."

Téa Leoni, actress

"Each morning I rise up out of the mire of my own narcissism and set some parenting goals. Sometimes they're lofty: She will attend the ballet, eat organic blueberries, learn Malaysian, and be enveloped in a blanket of unconditional love. Other days my goals are a bit more basic: Please, God, let me just raise this kid so she doesn't end up in a Texas bell tower with a high-powered rifle and a grudge."

Lisa Kogan , O, The Oprah Magazine contributor

"The kind of parent you are makes the biggest difference."

Ellen Galinsky, president and co-founder of the Families and Work Institute

"It's been said that parenting is the toughest job in the world. Wrong. It's the second toughest: Stepparenting wins hands down. … I've been a stepmother three times. I know, from hard-won experience, that a great relationship with your stepkids is possible."

Rosemary Rogers , O, The Oprah Magazine contributor

"To hover above your kids all time, you are going to ruin them [because] you are going to teach them that life is going to harm them and that's why you are always watching out for them. You are going to give them a false impression of the world."

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

"Love—no matter how it's offered or when it comes—can build a bridge to something better."


"[Parenting] is not a popularity contest. It's not about being right—it's about doing what's right."

Rose Rock, mother of comedian Chris Rock

"As the mother of four daughters, I have repeatedly learned that the best gift I can give to my children is to remember that their feelings are simply feelings…without taking it personally. Most every parent would agree that it is considerably easier to listen to other people's kids than their own, especially when the kids are ready to explode. So, throughout this process the only thing a parent needs to remember is to listen, love and ask, 'What else?'"

An excerpt from Be the Hero by Yvonne (and Rich) Dutra-St. John

"New parents seem to like nothing more than to compare notes on their babies with other parents, eagerly looking for evidence that their resident genius is either miles ahead of the other babies or at least holding his own. … If your baby is excelling, you must be a super parent, and who wants to be judged as anything less?"

Elizabeth Ward, RD

"If there is positive male experience in her early years, she is going to do much better. … That's the power of a dad."

Dr. Meg Meeker

"I believe making sure that everything is in its place is very important as a parent, for your children's security and for yourself. That's all part of being a responsible parent—you have to make sure your children are taken care of if something happens down the line."

Laura Wellington, creator of the TV series The Wumblers

"I get a sense of control—of something. You can't change politics. You can't change the environment. But you can create something really terrific with your own children."

Robyn Lewis, mother of two

"Most of us feel guilty, like you have to be on the floor with them 24/7 and give them all your attention or you're not a good mom. Redefine it for yourself that way, like, 'It's okay that I'm on the computer and my kids are playing by themselves.' Make peace with that."

Trisha Ashworth, author

"The principal preparation for being a parent comes from the selflessness, patience and discipline we acquire before we become parents. The parental instinct is innate."

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

"You can say, 'Do what I say, not what I do,' all you want, but when you turn your head, the kids will do what you do. Actions speak louder than words. "

Bill Cosby and Dr. Alvin Poussaint

"It's so important to lose yourself when you're talking with your child. Meaning, it's not about how I feel about the child or how I am worried about them, it's really just trying to hear what it's like to be them in that moment. If you really do that in your heart, you will always say the right thing."

M. Gary Neuman, relationship expert

"The job is a labor of love. There are days that are painful and test you for sure, and then there are those glorious days where you pass with flying colors."

Sandra Magsamen