Preparing for

55 Essential Conversations for
Couples Becoming Families

Can anyone really prepare for parenting?


Couples often spend surprisingly little time getting ready for this huge rite of passage. They may paint the nursery, but neglect discussing how their roles may change. They may have a car seat ready, but not a will.

The first of its kind, this interactive book provides couples with essential conversation-starters and action items to complete before becoming parents. In Preparing for Parenthood, you’ll discover how to transition to parenting in ways that best align with your own beliefs and values by:

•  Learning the biggest concerns couples face when becoming new parents and how to discuss them.
Finding your unique strengths as a couple and addressing challenges as you embark on this journey.
Developing greater confidence as parents so you can feel more relaxed and prepared.

Parenting is simultaneously heart-opening and heart-wrenching, humbling and humorous, joyful and overwhelming. But this small and indispensable book will help you alleviate stress and answer some of the biggest questions you’ll want to address before your baby arrives.

Winner of a bronze medal for Parenting and Relationships books in The 2022 Global Book Awards.

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Finalist in the 2023 Book Excellence Awards for Parenting Books.

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Praise for Preparing for Parenthood: 55 Essential Conversations for Couples Becoming Families

“If there is one book expectant parents should have on their shelf to learn how to move from a pregnant couple to a parenting family, it’s this one. This resource is so accessible, easy to navigate, and all-inclusive. Parenting can be a challenge in today’s world, and these conversations are essential for the health and well-being of the whole family. We both just wish we’d had this resource available when we were first expecting!”
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Jayme Crockett
student midwife, mother of 8, & Holly Lammer, RN, childbirth educator - Cohosts of the Mindful Birth, Peaceful Earth podcast
“This is a significant and profound book that has the potential to transform parenting from conflict and struggle to harmony and health. But even more so, it epitomizes and illuminates that children become what they live. I recommend this book to all prospective and current parents.”
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Dr. William Emerson
National Science Foundation winner for Contributions to Psychology, co-founder of APPPAH
“Not only is this book a key for rewarding parenting, but I believe it would be a great start for anyone leaning toward a long-term relationship.”
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Barbara Decker
pre- and perinatal educator, childbirth educator
“This is a book that could support a couple for years as they navigate discussions about evolving values, changing circumstances, and the multitude of roles becoming parents brings into their lives. It is a wonderful resource for getting parents to connect around all things related to parenting before problems arise.”
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Ellen Boeder
MA, PACT Level 3 couple's therapist, faculty at The Relationship School
“Dr. Stephanie Dueger is a warm, kind, brilliant, and compassionate person, who has devoted her life to helping create healthy relationships between humans. Stephanie has more hours of study, research, and practice in this area than most professionals I know. While extremely talented and competent, Stephanie is equally humble and approachable. One cannot help but to feel her care and understanding. If you are ready to take the next steps on your journey, I highly recommend Stephanie to be your guide.”
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Katie Asmus, MA, LPC, BMP
Psychotherapist, clinical supervisor, professor, and trainer
“Dr. Stephanie Dueger has done her own ‘inner work,’ as a human being and a mother. She is well qualified to help people of all ages to thrive, bond, and care for themselves, their families, and others. … Her thoughtful book, Preparing for Parenthood, is an invaluable resource for expectant parents and will help build a strong foundation for babies and their families.”
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Annie Brook, Ph.D., founder of The Brook Institute
Author of Birth’s Hidden Legacy, and The Developing Infant
“Preparing for Parenthood is exactly the type of communication guide the new parents I work with need! Becoming a family is difficult, and the couple’s relationship often suffers. When using this book, much of the relationship stress could be alleviated in the postpartum period, and the whole family would be happier. I think this book should be required reading for all new parents.”
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Dr. Jay Warren
Prenatal and Pediatric Chiropractor, Podcaster
“Preparing for Parenthood is an honest, down-to-earth manual for anyone thinking of having a child. Reading this book is like talking with a good friend or therapist who knows the territory because she has lived it and thought deeply about it. I am really happy that a book like this is finally available.”
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Dr. Thomas Verny
author of international bestseller, The Secret Life of the Unborn Child (with John Kelly) and founder of the Association of Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health (APPPAH)