Self Help Books Suck, Just Blame Your Parents

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In the midst of my triumphant return as the The Queen of Christmas Cookies, I have been mulling over a lot of mental…stuff

If I tried to tell it all to you well I could write a book.  Probably a series.  The crap that goes through my head everyday is unfathomable.  That is why I have a blog.

I used to read a lot of self-help books.  Whatever the issue I would buy or check out and devour every single book I could find on the subject.   Usually buy until I got the book about  curing addiction to ridiculous advice.

The problem is that each one had a different coping strategy, a different theory of WHY –

  • why our relationship is lame,
  • why our parenting skills suck,
  • why our parents are to blame for how screwed up we are,
  • why they aren’t,
  • why we are irresponsible twits

There are self-help books on everything you can think of that you need to help yourself on.  You think I am wrong?  Think of the strangest most annoying problem you have… now Google it.  See?   Somewhere in there is a self-help book or 500.  For someone like me, trusting, gullible, cracked, clueless amongst other things self-help books are a nightmare.

Each one promised to change my life.  Each one told me what I was doing wrong.  Gave me a game plan for making it right.  Each one promised to be the answer and I would be giddy (read mildly manic) as I devoured my newest edition and vowed to change my life.

Some give you permission to be wishy-washy by putting all the blame on your poor parents ignoramus parenting skills, while others explain in great detail how your own ignoramus parenting skills will destroy your kids lives.  It is a fact that I am haunted by all the ways that I have supposedly ruined my kids.  I don’t see any hope that The Gaggle, not one of them will pull themselves out of the hole I put them in.

Love the ones that tell you how stupidly you have done things and the damage that you can’t undo BUT if you follow the plan TO THE – T – you can salvage something of your worthiness.  And if you fail, you can always blame your parents.

Being as how I don’t like to make generalizations, or at least clarify when I do, I have to say they aren’t all worthless.  In fact once you realize that reading every book you can find on whatever bugs you will only screw you up more and that nobody died and made any of these self-help gurus experts and that there is something for everybody out there as long as you pick one  instead of 200, the right book can be quite helpful.

That’s the real problem, that  each one of these books is nothing but another person’s – ok well-educated usually – perception on the problem at hand.  They aren’t right or wrong really.  Just able to get it into some form of organization and market it well enough that they are given the dubious title of The Man, or The Woman or whatever.

All that being said I still read them just for fun.  My new approach is that if it is what I need to do it will stick with me.  In the last 20 years I have read a gazillion self-help books on everything from relationships to parenting to emotional abuse to of course Bipolar disorder.

My brain is bursting with all kinds of snippets of advice on how to make life better.  Maybe I should write a book.  I mean I have the perfect credentials right?  I have a degree in uh….or I was trained in ..well…ok forget the credentials, I can sound like I know what I am talking about.  That comes from being a Mom.  Then if I can get Oprah’s attention, I will be golden.

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The big decision would be what category to write about.  Parenting, relationships,  emotional abuse and domestic violence,  bipolar?  All of the above?  A how to book, if you will, and I will be the new self-help guru and authority on being a divorced mom of 6 kids with bipolar disorder and a crappy attitude about house work.  I can see the books flying off the shelves.

I have a few possible titles in mind;
  • Nobody Can MAKE you do anything.  Except your Mom.
  • Quit Your Whining in 3 Easy Steps – You Don’t have to act like a victim.
  • Vagina is Just Another Way to Spell Virginia.
  • Your Parents Don’t Live Here – Quit Blaming Them for Your Mess.
  • Understanding Your Inner Child is Not an excuse to act like a 2-year-old.
  • You Aren’t Crazy.  No Really.
  • Stop Being a Dick Magnet Except Where it Counts
  • Putting Your Kids on Lockdown Doesn’t Teach Them How to Live
  • Being Cracked in a Perfect World.
  • Spoiling Your Inner Brat.

OK.  I could probably come up with a few more but titles are just the hook.  I’ll have to think on this for a while.  At least until my next brilliant idea pops up.

The kitchen is calling and the cookies won’t make themselves.  It isn’t easy being Queen.  I will tell you all about it when the oven cools.

When the Oven Cools – Reflections of a Cracked Queen.   (Not to be confused with The Queen of Crack!)

That might be a best seller.   A great post title for sure.

I guess I should go ahead and give writing a self-help book  a shot.  If I can’t get it done or it’s a flop, I can always blame my parents.

 Yeah.  That will work.

14 thoughts on “Self Help Books Suck, Just Blame Your Parents

  1. All of those titles rock. But if you did write them all, would “Vagina is Just Another Way to Spell Virginia” be in the same section as “Your Parents Don’t Live Here – Quit Blaming Them for Your Mess”?

    I did once buy a tiny book with dating tips. That were useless. But unintentionally hilarious.
    I always wanted to write my own self-help book. I have a great title, but absolutely no idea what topic it covers:

    Men Who Wear Wool and the Women Who Hate Sheep.

    If you have any ideas, the title is yours to use.

    1. Hmmmmm…that is a good question. Yes? They could all be under it’s your parents’ fault anyways. (Which clearly I think is the most f***ed up excuse)

      I like those little books with snippets. I might have had the same book btw – sounds familiar 😉

      I will make that title work. I just have to because – yeah, I will be getting back to you on that.
      🙂 Peace

      1. Oh my god – a self help book entitled “Why You Need To Finish This Book”! you could put anything in it, but marketed at the right segment, only the first 10 pages need to be good. Then they’ll have to read all of it because they can’t half read a book..

        Please don’t let me know when this one is available, because yeah, I’m one of those people.

      2. Hahahahaha Good One! I am too – can’t put a half read book down no matter how sucky it is cause well;…it just MIGHT get better…. If I do this and become a famous authority I will split the royalties with you 🙂
        I won’t tell you when it’s dome I’ll just put the check in the mail with your cookies. Hell yeah!

  2. Maybe consider a book titled:

    “How Picking Your Nose Will End The World’s Energy Crisis”

    (Each book could include a small mirror which the reader would then use to observe progress in terms of technical skills gained, as well as the quality and quantity of daily output.)

    So…how would a book so titled help mitigate the everyday consequences of living a miserable life? Well, how better to gain (and sustain) a compelling sense of self-worth than to make a fortune by writing an international best-seller about nose picking? After all, the more popular topic of ‘finger pointing’ has been literally beaten to death over the years. And the first person to realize what a desperate need there is to change the subject will no doubt become heralded as the great new visionary of the future. (Time to move over Oprah!)

    Just a thought…

  3. How about a book of titles of self help books!

    I loved this. After spending most of my day on the freeway and in the dentist’s chair it was a pleasure to come home and read your blog.

    I’ve always been a big one for self help books too. But I came across one a couple months ago and actually bought it soley for the title. It was: Better Living Through Ventriliquism! It’s a real book! (The title was the only good thing about it, but it’s fun to have on the shelf).

    Go bake those cookies! Better living through baking Christmas Cookies, By Lizze Cracked, hmmm . . . I like the sound of that!

  4. Another WHY I always ask is – why are there so many self-help books? 🙂 People love this crap! Why is that so? Is it that we are too fucked cracked up for our own good, we need someone to tell us how cracked up we are and recommend solutions? (I sense a blog post coming on ;)) Anyways, love the potential best seller titles. My faves:
    1. Quit Your Whining in 3 Easy Steps – You Don’t have to act like a victim.
    2.Your Parents Don’t Live Here – Quit Blaming Them for Your Mess.

    Peace 🙂

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