Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Review of the Pearls

Michael & Debbie Pearl have a website, family ministry, and have written several books, including To Train up a Child and No Greater Joy. Here is the review I left on Amazon about it, for what it's worth if anyone is looking into these books or site.

"I hate to focus just on the things that I don't agree with, but I think if you are going to hold yourself up as an expert and write books for others to follow, you need to be above reproach. I do not disagree in general or even with perhaps most of their teachings, but these... are you KIDDING ME?? (direct quotes from their website)

"If a child cries out in loneliness and is rewarded by being picked up, you have trained him to repeat the crying any time he wants to control the adults in his life." (talking about babies!)

"If an infant sticks his finger in his eye, the pain will discourage him from repeating that on himself, but he may try it on you. That is unless you should make his unwelcomed advances unpleasant for him. The first time an infant pulls your hair, if you pull his, he will never be a hair-puller." (Actually, my 5 mo old still pulls his own hair & scratches himself. That means he does not yet have the ability to relate the act to the consequence. He is learning but is not there yet, so I will wait until I know he is before "training" him. There is plenty of time to teach a child not to do things when he is old enough to do them ON PURPOSE, but until he's ready, WEAR YOUR HAIR UP!)

"Parents do not start trying to train their children until they are convinced they can receive instruction, by which time children are already confirmed in carnality, addicted to the pleasures of hedonism." (so train them before they are able to understand it? makes sense.)

(talking about a 10-mo old)"Just as you are about to feed her, tell her to stop crying and you will feed her. You do this when you are sitting in front of her, preparing to feed her. When she stops, brag on her for not crying and then reward her with food. By this you are conditioning her to the concept that she gets fed when she is not crying." (so every time she isn't crying, she will get fed? you are going to end up with one fat baby! Since 10-mo-olds can't talk, how else should she communicate she is hungry?)

(again, 10-mo-old)"Wait one minute, and then tell the baby to stop crying. If he doesn't, again swat him on his bare legs." (spanking a 10-mo-old for crying is never ok.)

[question] "Is it right to spank a 7-month-old for crying when put down for bed? I grew up with just ignoring the child, thus training them that they will not get their way. My husband wants it to stop all together."... [answer:] "Daddy needs to be in charge, and you need to learn to trust and honor his judgment." (um, NO, not when the husband wants to abuse the children! We are to honor them, but not when they are going against what God wants.) [Micheal's answer to the same question:] "As a last resort, you may have to prove the power of your word by enforcing it with one or two stinging licks (applied with a small flexible switch) to the child's leg." (a 7-mo-old??)

"At less than three-months-old this little girl had discovered the power of emotional manipulation. For several days she refined her technique of control. She discovered how to use the mother's guilt against her....This wise mother decided to retrain her three-month-old baby. She laid her down knowing she would cry. The mother calmly ignored the crying. When Suzzie stopped crying and became cheerful, Mother picked her up and played with her. When Suzzie was placed in the crib and again cried, the mother again ignored her until she became cheerful." (squashing any attempt at communication- & at 3-mo- crying is all they have. sad.)

These speak for themselves, don't they?" 

Debbie has written a book, Created to be his Helpmeet. Great concept. Not a great book. Here is a good review of it:



  1. What kind of education does this woman have on child development? Sounds like they took their mama's practices and wrote them in a book.

  2. Oh, I SO agree with your review. A friend sent this book to me to read because it was a favorite resource of hers and I just had to put it down because it made me so angry, and frankly, scared for the children of people reading and believing this nonsense! My blood is boiling just thinking about it! Don't agree with a lot of Ezzo stuff, but STRONGLY disagree with the Pearls.

  3. I have such strong feelings about the Pearls I can't even comment without becoming angry. b