About Alyson

Alyson Schafer is a family counsellor, author and internationally acclaimed parenting expert who empowers families by sharing her principles, rules and tools for raising happy and healthy kids. Parents can count on help from Alyson whether they are simply looking for a bite size tip to see them through a melt down or delve further to transform their family life. Her style is fast, witty, warm and encouraging. Alyson delivers her deep insights in ways that today’s busy parents can easily understand and apply immediately.

As Canada’s leading parenting expert, Alyson promotes a firm but friendly “democratic parenting” style and offers practical solutions backed by extensive research. Her own experience with raising two children using this parenting technique was so eye-opening and effective, she felt compelled to share her knowledge. Her work aims to make life better for all kids through effective child guidance.

Armed with years of research, clinical and field experience, Alyson can provide a new, positive understanding of your current family dynamic with actionable solutions that will give you the hope and confidence needed to transform your family.


Best-Selling Author – Alyson is the international best-selling author of three parenting books published by Harper Collins Canada: Breaking the Good Mom Myth (2007), Honey, I Wrecked The Kids (2009), and her latest Ain’t Misbehavin (2011). Her books have been translated into Russian, Korean, Spanish and Bulgarian. She also contributed a chapter about resilience in families with children with special needs in the US textbook, Handbook of Family Resilience.


On TV – Alyson is the resident parenting expert on The Marilyn Denis Show and CTV News Channel. She hosted six seasons of The Parenting Show, and has appeared on Canada AM, The Agenda with Steve Paikin, Steven and Chris, Breakfast Television, Global’s The Morning Show, Montel Williams and more.


In Print – Alyson has been interviewed by publications such as Cosmopolitan, Real Simple, Parent Magazine, Reader’s Digest, Canadian Family, Oh Baby, Canadian Living, Toronto Star, Globe & Mail, Metro News and more. She was also an “Ask an Expert” Columnist for Today’s Parent magazine.


Online – Besides being the resident expert for AOL’s Parentdish.ca, Canada’s go-to portal for parenting info, Alyson has also appeared as a guest-blogger on PTPA.com, Mabel’s Labels, Yummymummyclub.ca, ParentingPink.com, HitchedMag.com, DrLaura.com, Wellness.com, HealthyWealthyWIse.com, EverydayHealth.com, Sharecare.com, Parentingbookmark.com, Pregnancy.org and more.


International Speaker – Alyson is a highly sought-after speaker who presents at conferences and corporate events around the globe. She recently spoke at the inaugural TEDxKids in Brussels, Belgium.


Consultant – Alyson sits on the Health Advisory Board for Chatelaine magazine and is the parenting expert for The Bank of Montreal’s SmartSteps for Parents program. She has been the spokesperson for a variety of PR campaigns, and was a contributing editor to the Ministry of Education grade 11 textbook on Family Studies. She conducted staff training at U of T’s renowned Institute of Child Studies Laboratory, North Toronto Early Years Learning Centre, and Foundations Private School, and was a regular speaker to staff and parent for chain of 30 child care centres in York Region. Alyson was also the Canadian Co-Chair of Family Education for the North American Society of Adlerian Psychology (NASAP).


Education – B.Sc., M.A. Counselling; OACCPP (Masters of Arts – Counseling from the Adler School of Chicago, and an Honours Bachelor of Science from the University of Waterloo)


Family Counsellor – Private Practice – Alyson is currently seeing clients in person and via Skype. Please visit the Counselling page for more information or to request an appointment online.


Social Enthusiast – An early-adopter, Alyson has pioneered parenting advice in social media. She has been a panelist at Social Media Week, BlogWest,  Blissdom and #140 NYC. She engages parents on Twitter and Facebook and through her own parenting blog, as well as guest expert blog posts.


Family – A lover of books, art, music, food, travel and the great outdoors, Alyson lives in Toronto and has two young adult daughters who are finishing their university studies in the social sciences . . . just like their mom.

Alyson offers a range of speaking topics in various formats. For a list of topics and to watch her reel click here: