Five books to help mothers & daughters share, learn, and grow together through the tween and teen years.
A strong mother-daughter bond can be a very powerful thing! But as girls grow older, especially as they reach their tweens and teens, that bond is often tested as girls increasingly exercise their growing independence. Investing some extra time and attention to this relationship pays big dividends for both of you — after all, you’re on this journey together!
With that in mind, we’ve collected our favorite books to help build strong mother-daughter relationships. Whether you’re sharing a journal, finding a fun activity to do together, or discovering a great new book, these titles will help moms and their Mighty Girls deepen their relationship and learn more about one another.
For more books, including many fictional stories, that celebrate the relationship between mother and daughter, check out our blog post Celebrating Mighty Moms & Their Daughters.
Mother / Daughter Bonding Books
This bestselling guided journal helps moms and daughters establish fun, thought-provoking ways of communicating with each other, especially as daughters enter the often challenging tween and teen years. Meredith and Sophie Jacobs started sharing a journal when Sophie was nine and now they have applied their experiences to creating this fun resource to help other mother and daughters connect in a new way. With its thoughtful writing prompts and intergenerational advice woven throughout, this journal helps promote discussions about friends, school, crushes, and many of the other joys and difficulties faced growing up. There is also plenty of space provided for drawing, list-writing, and free writing on whatever inspires you. There are also journals by these authors to help strengthen the bond between grandmothers and granddaughters, Just Between Us: Grandmother and Granddaughter, and between sisters, Just Between Us: Sisters.
A strong mother-daughter bond provides special security during the teenage years: Mom can become an ally and a place of safety, while the Mighty Girl explores her newfound independence and brings a new perspective back home. Mother Sil Reynolds and daughter Eliza Reynolds have written an innovative dual guide for moms and daughters. The authors provide more complex techniques for the moms, drawn from Sil Reynolds’ clinical experience, while the advice to daughters features age-appropriate suggestions for balancing the need for independence with a positive relationship with mom.
If the job of an adolescent is to become an adult, how do you know when they're there? Lisa Damour, director of the Laurel School's Center for Research on Girls, draws on the latest research to reveal the seven key transitions — including Parting with Childhood, Contending with Adult Authority, Entering the Romantic World, and Caring for Herself — that an adolescent girl needs to make before she reaches adulthood. Equally importantly, she shows how uneven progress through these transitions explains the sometimes erratic behavior of teenage girls, and how parents' responses can help strengthen their relationship so she can complete her journey healthy and happy.
Reading together, and talking about what you’ve read, is a great way to build a strong relationship, and it’s even more fun when you do it with a group of friends. Hudson provides tips on the nuts and bolts of setting up a book club — everything from choosing books to how often to meet — as well as online resources and even recipes for fun book-club treats to make together. She even addresses how to handle it when difficult topics, like sex, drug use, and other touchy subjects, come up in your reading. And who knows? Your Mighty Girl just might introduce you to a new favorite author! For reading recommendations for Mighty Girl Book Clubs, check out our book club reading lists.
One thing many mother-daughter pairs find lacking in modern culture is a sense of the “specialness” of growing up. What if we celebrated the milestones of the tween and teen years the way we celebrated her first steps? This book explores ways that moms — and the broader community of women — can make the transition to womanhood meaningful. With ideas for rites of passage from cultures around the world, and stories that recognize the power of reaching adulthood to share, this book shows how the mother-daughter relationship isn’t diminished as the daughter matures: in fact, it can become deeper.
Additional Recommended Resources
- For more books that celebrate the relationship between mother and daughter, visit our blog post Celebrating Mighty Moms & Their Daughters.
- For gift ideas to inspire the Mighty Mom in your life, visit our blog Mother's Day Gifts for Mighty Moms.
- For parenting books to help you build a strong relationship with your Mighty Girl, visit our Mother & Daughter Relationships section.