Both Dads and Daughters Will Benefit From This Book
Realizing the Power
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What made you decide to write a book for dads and daughters?
A grassroots effort has begun in America to try and recreate the role of the father and to promote responsible fatherhood. The social science data strongly suggests that our fatherless society is having a critical impact on our personal and public lives. Additionally, teens want a better relationship with their parent and want to be friends. Many good dads that we know have good intentions and want to know what they can do to improve their relationship with their kids.
This is especially true for father-daughter relationships. Needless to say, the role of the father is important and the role of the dad is even more critical.
Jennifer and I worked hard to achieve our “best friend’ status and writing "Realizing the Power of Love" was our way of helping dads and daughters to benefit from our success. It was our way of giving something back for all the blessings we have received.
2. What makes “Realizing the Power of Love” different and unique?
"Realizing the Power of Love" is different and unique in that it is the first self-help
book co-authored by a dad and teenage daughter. It compliments other books about dads-daughters that offer advice or information on how to improve parenting skills. Our book focuses on improving communications and problem solving. It is a practical book based upon real-world professional, and personal experiences instead of theory. It also contains optional activities to help dads and daughters to begin their journey of becoming best friends.
3. Today, dads and daughters are busier than ever. Do you really expect them to do the optional activities in "Realizing the Power of Love?"
"Realizing the Power of Love" was written with busy schedules in mind. Both Jennifer and I have extremely busy schedules, and we were not only able to accomplish becoming best friends, but also were able to write our book. In fact, I had to come to terms with the fact that I was a workaholic. Many times, people who say they are too busy are just procrastinating as they are not sure what to do or how to get started - even if they are well intentioned. The activities in "Realizing the Power of Love" will help dads and daughters to overcome these obstacles, and the book actually shows them how to enjoy the journey to an improved relationship.
4. What is the primary message of "Realizing the Power of Love?"
The primary message of "Realizing the Power of Love" is that mutual trust is the foundation to developing a father-daughter “best friend” status. Essentially, the amount of trust that is received is in proportion to the amount of freedom and independence earned. This is a win-win scenario. Trust provides fathers with greater peace of mind concerning their daughter, while daughters can achieve and enjoy more freedom and the independence to live their own lives. Our book helps dads and daughters to define what trust really means to them and helps them to work together to develop that trust into a “best friend” status.
5. How are you qualified to write the book?
V. Michael Santoro has raised three children – two stepsons and a daughter. Additionally, he has over 10 years of experience working with teenagers as a professional educator. His educational background includes a Masters degree and post-graduate work in Education. He is also certified in Training and Development and has over 18 years of industry experience in the fields of Training, Management, Marketing and Communications.
Jennifer Susan Santoro recently graduated from high school and is currently enrolled at Florida State University. Her high school achievements include being inducted into the National Honor Society; elected Treasurer of her class, and has received several other awards. She was also inducted into the Thespian Society for her accomplishments in dance and choreography.
6. How would you describe the book?
The book is structured as a step-by-step quick reference guide with real-world case studies. Realizing the Power of Love contains practical information that can be immediately applied. If dads and daughters want to spend quality time together, then this book can help them to quickly get started, as well as showing them how to expand their quality time if they so desire.
The book is divided into three parts: Part One is for dads; Part Two is for the teenage daughters; and Part Three is the optional activities that are designed to build upon Parts One and Two.
The book is based upon real-world professional, and personal experiences instead of theory and provides the following:
Fathers are shown how to successfully use their work-related communication and problem solving skills, to become better dads for their teenage daughters.
Daughters are shown how to earn more freedom and independence by learning how to better communicate with their fathers, while demonstrating that they can maturely work with their dads to help solve their problems.
Together they can complete optional step-by-step fun activities that will assist them in breaking down any barriers to a better relationship. They will also learn how to continue the process of building trust; that will ultimately help them to develop a true friendship while enjoying the journey.
7. How did both of you learn to communicate with each other?
I made a conscious effort to talk to Jennifer as an adult, while keeping in mind that she was still a kid. I started this early in her life. We had an agreement that she could always come and talk to me regardless of topic, and she would not be judged. I also encouraged her to be part of the decision making process in subjects that were important to her. It was also stressed that mistakes were okay if she learned from them and did not repeat them. We actually followed the processes that we documented in our book, Realizing the Power of Love.
8. Was there ever a time that you didn’t agree and how did you handle it?
Yes, on several occasions, we did not agree on subjects that were important to Jennifer. The way we handled it was to ensure that we discussed the problems and possible outcomes. Jennifer knew that our discussions were to help her problem solve, as opposed to control her life. When she discussed a topic, I asked questions to ensure that I understood the issue, as well as her potential options. We set guidelines that if she could not answer my questions, then she would do additional ‘homework’ on the topic.
We would then have further discussions until she discovered the best outcome. Another guideline was that no decision would be made in an emotional frame of mind. Once all the facts, options and questions were answered, then Jennifer would make her own decisions. This process greatly reduced the amount of times that we disagreed. If she complied with the above, then she was allowed to make her own decisions. If things did not turn out as expected for her, she knew she could come back and talk to me about it without me being judgmental. Essentially, she never had to dread hearing, “I told you so.”
9. What was the most difficult situation that truly tested your relationship?
It was her reltionship with her first “real” boyfriend. I did not feel that they were right for each other and Jennifer was not ready to deal with it. As such, our communications became strained. Rather than pulling rank, I monitored the relationship as it went its course and tried to get to know him better. I was upfront with Jen and had candid conversations with her that was more to guide than to control her. After the relationship ended, we had open discussions about it to see what she had learned and what she would do differently. Then I thanked her for the additional gray hair! :-) By the way, her second and probably last serious boyfriend is terrific, even by my standards, so the myth about fathers - that no one is good enough for my daughter – is really not true.
10. How did you develop a trust between each other?
The first thing we did was to have a discussion about what trust meant to each of us, and what each of us wanted to gain from that trust. While I wanted peace of mind and knowing that she would think before acting, Jennifer wanted to have a major say in decisions that affected her life, and more freedom. She also wanted to feel that she could come to me when she needed to without fearing my reaction. Once we understood what we each wanted, we agreed on guidelines of how we would communicate. This allowed for flexibility that proved better than me making rigid rules for her to follow. By striving and achieving consistent behavior within the guise of the agreed upon guidelines, we developed a lasting trust. It also helped us to achieve what was individually important to each of us. How we accomplished this is covered in our book,
“Realizing the Power of Love.”
11. As a young adult, how has your relationship with your dad benefited or hindered you?
I do in fact believe that my relationship with my dad has benefited me as a young adult. I am able to talk openly and honestly with him, and I know that I can always go to him for advice. Our relationship has helped me to learn how to think before I made decisions and not to act too impulsively. I also don't have the stresses of worrying about my relationship with him.
12. As you become older Jennifer, would you say your relationship is stronger or weaker with your dad?
I think that my relationship with my dad is just like my relationships that I have with my best friends - it's constantly growing. So, yes I would have to say that the relationship has grown stronger with each conversation, each obstacle, and each experience we share together. Our relationship has in fact changed from the time when I was a high school teenager to now when I am college student. It has grown more into an adult friendship and I wouldn't change it at all.
13. When your daughter developed relationships with her boyfriends, how did you feel about the “competition?”
I was not as concerned about the competition for time as I was for Jennifer dating boyfriends that would respect her. Since Jennifer and I had achieved our best friend status by the time she was old enough to date, we openly discussed this, as well as other sensitive topics. It was important to me that Jennifer felt comfortable with discussing her social life with me, and inviting her boy friends home to meet her parents. This topic is discussed in detail in "Realizing the Power of Love."
14. How did you feel about “letting go” when she left for college?”
I have to admit that I felt a sudden emptiness that comes when you realize that your child has grown up from that little girl with the ringlets and big blue eyes, to
a fully capable young lady that was leaving the nest. Although logically I knew we would always be close, I was sad to realize that a chapter was now closing. That I would be relinquishing my remaining control and would now have to really "let go!" However, I felt she is an exceptional person, and that she would do just fine with her life. I also took comfort in knowing that she knew that I would always be there for her when she needed me. The good news is that she still talks to me when she has to make decisions or just wants to share some news – or if she suddenly needs some minor financial assistance. :-)
15. Did Jennifer’s relationship with her mother compliment or compete with your father-daughter relationship?
Jennifer’s relationship with her mother definitely complimented our father-daughter relationship. She felt comfortable talking to either, or both of us about things that were important to her. With major issues, we discussed them as a family. No matter whom she chose to talk to, her confidentiality was always respected.
She was also encouraged to communicate with others, if she felt a topic was too personal to confide in her parents. By others, we mean, a close friend, teacher, school psychologist, our pastor or anyone that she trusted. We stressed that she should never feel that she had to face things alone or solve problems by herself.
Our book, "Realizing the Power of Love"
retails for $19.95.
However, Jennifer and I are offering a special discount. Order today and you will receive our book for only
$9.95. This is a $10.00 discount and also includes the shipping cost in the price. This is a $13.00 savings.
We will also send you our full color bookmark-ABSOLUTELY FREE!
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