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Open Right

Maggie Hamilton

Author, Education Consultant, Personal Development, Social Commentator

Writer and social researcher Maggie Hamilton gives frequent talks and lectures; is a regular media commentator and a keen observer of social trends. She has held a number of senior roles in publishing and at the ABC. Her professional memberships have included serving on the Executive of the Sydney Peace Foundation.

Maggie enjoys sharing her research in a lively and engaging way with community groups, and at numerous conferences across Australia and New Zealand.

Her books, have been published in over a dozen countries worldwide, and include What Men Don’t Talk About, which examines the lives of real men and boys; What’s Happening to Our Girls? and What’s Happening to Our Boys? which examines the 21st century issues boys and girls face; and now When We Become Strangers; How Loneliness Leaks Into Our Lives and What We Can Do About It.

What themes are recurring in your work?

I’m fascinated by people’s lives and big issues – what makes us tick, what are the big questions and where are the solutions? How do we create a better future? And what can bring us unstuck?

What are your five basic Dos and Don’ts to raising girls and boys right now?

  1. Don’t try to be your child’s best friend. It’s not cool, it’s tragic.
  2. Give your kids boundaries. Be clear about consequences. Don’t forget to praise them when they get things right.
  3. Take an interest in tween and teen culture. Be positive about the good bits, and informed about the dubious bits
  4. Get clear about your own values – your need to shop, your anxieties around possessions and body image, because they rub off.
  5. Be an interesting family to belong to – plan a camping weekend, get involved in family community events, have a garage sale for charity where the whole family’s involved.

Anything else you’d like to share with us?

When I get the chance I love to get out in the desert – one of my favourite locations on earth – here in Australia, in America and in the United Arab Emirates. There’s no room for in-authenticity in these great spaces. What’s unimportant soon slips away, leaving you wiser, clearer, more at peace.


Your information is invaluable … Thank you for empowering me as a parent, teacher and coach.

—Rosanna, Sydney

Hearing Maggie’s take on modern, western childhood and it’s unique stresses helped me to understand just why so many kids in school are unhappy and making each other unhappy.

—School counsellor, Manly Village Public School

Congratulations Maggie on the great job you did at the conference.

—Nirimba Education Precinct

Thanks for contributing to our conference.  Your expertise and pertinent comments were most appreciated and added so much to the success of the panel.

—Women in Educational Leadership

We have had a lot of positive comments about your presentation, which people found to be engaging and very interesting … thanks for speaking at the conference dinner and helping make it such a success.

—Educational Assessment Australia, Sydney

Thank you for bringing my awareness to this and lighting a passion … for motivating and inspiring me.

—Keira, Brisbane

Probably one of the best speakers I’ve ever heard! Definitely eye-opening, but extremely realistic and encouraging. Fantastic.

—Participant, Grandparents Raising Grandchildren National Conference, Auckland

Teachers commented about the suitability of Maggie’s material, her engaging approach, and the ways Maggie helped this group of just under 200 children begin to develop an awareness about some of the ways marketers target children to cultivate product dependency.

—R. Bourchier, Mooroolbark Umbrella Community Group, Nov 2013

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