Martha Heineman Pieper, Ph.D., is an author and psychotherapist who works with children and parents and serves as a consultant to family service agencies and other mental health professionals.
A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Radcliffe College, she earned her doctorate in Clinical Social Work at the University of Chicago. With her late husband, William J. Pieper, M.D., she wrote the bestselling parenting book Smart Love: The Comprehensive Guide to Understanding, Regulating, and Enjoying Your Child as well as the bestselling adult self-help book Addicted to Unhappiness.
In 2012, Pieper released her first children’s book based on Smart Love principles, Mommy, Daddy, I Had a Bad Dream! The book entertains children while it shows them how to understand and master their bad dreams. It also provides parents with loving and effective strategies for responding to children who wake them in the night with bad dreams. Mommy, Daddy, I Had a Bad Dream! won the 2012 Bronze IPPY Award for Children’s Picture Books, the 2012 Gelett Burgess Children’s Book Award for Storybooks, the Ben Franklin first prize for Children’s Picture Books from the Independent Book Publishers Association, Creative Child Magazine’s 2012 Book of the Year, and a Mom’s Choice Gold Award for Excellence. It also made the Indie Next List, was an Award-Winning Finalist in the Children’s Picture Book: Hardcover Fiction Category of the 2012 International Book Awards, won Best Book in two categories (Children’s Picture Book and Children’s Mind/Body/Spirit) of the 2012 USA Book News Awards, was named Best Children’s Book of 2012 by Sharp Writ Awards, and was a finalist in the 2012 Foreword Book of the Year Awards in the Children’s Picture Book Category.
Dr. Pieper published a follow-up to Mommy, Daddy, I Had a Bad Dream! in 2017. Jilly’s Terrible Temper Tantrums: And How She Outgrew Them tells the story of Jilly, a happy little kangaroo who has a series of Terrible Temper Tantrums. Her parents lovingly help her through them as she learns that seeking help is better than the misery of a tantrum. Jilly is a best seller on Amazon and has won numerous awards, including a Mom’s Choice Gold Award, a Silver Nautilus Book Award, a Feathered Quill award and a Book Excellence Award.
Martha Heineman Pieper’s professional experience and path-breaking research into the causes and effects of children’s inner happiness or unhappiness form the guiding principle for Smart Love Family Services, a not-for-profit agency in Chicago that provides psychotherapy services, parent education, and toddler and preschool programs.