No doubt, as a parent, we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to do things the right way. As a parent, it's a very vulnerable feeling to wonder if you might actually be doing something to contribute to your child's struggles. Therapy is a safe place for your child to discuss not only the things they are struggling with, but to share some of the things they see in their family system that are difficult for them to cope with.
Why do parents sabotage therapy for their children?
Unfortunately, most parents do not even know they are doing it! When parents make the decision to bring a child in for counseling, it is possible that throughout the therapeutic process, the parents themselves can shift the focus of therapy and discuss their own issues, which can negatively impact or sabotage the counseling process for the child until these issues are resolved. In family counseling, when a child is presented in therapy as the "identified patient," parents often do not recognize that they are also part of the problem...and the solution.
Read about why this is and learn ways to prevent this from happening with your child.
This week on the blog we are discussing the importance of a parent’s role in their child’s counseling. So often, children do not receive the help that they need—not because their parents don’t care, but because their parents may not understand the ways they are sabotaging counseling. This week we hope to provide tips and encouragement so that all children and adolescents get the help that they need.
We have heard some great tips for parenting teens so far this week on Imagine Hope's blog. Today we will review the fourth and final tip:
4. Build a relationship with them.
As teens are appropriately distancing form you, they are letting go of the dependence they once had on you as their parents. Many parents struggle with this part of parenting, even though it is a normal and healthy part of development.
We are in the thick of teenage land in our home. I have to admit, many days are hard. I long for the “ease” of potty training and teaching “please and thank you”. Some days I want to ask my son, “What have you done with my baby?! Please bring him back!” I say that to be funny, but in all seriousness, It’s not for the faint of heart. Hopefully this week is helping you ease the burden and establish some roles when parenting your teen.
Ahhh, the teenage years. It's hard enough going through them, let alone parenting someone who is! Hopefully the roles we're identifying for parents this week will help.
2. Teach teens communication skills.
We've all heard it said that the best way to teach good behavior is to model it. Well, the same goes for communication. If you want your teen to speak "adult", then you need to model it and practice it with them.
Parenting a teen can be an extremely stressful stage for parents. They often feel overwhelmed and sucked into the wild roller coaster ride of adolescence. This can leave a parent unsure of what a healthy role looks like. This week Imagine Hope will help you see 4 key roles you should adopt when parenting the teens in your home.
One book that I recently read and highly recommend is "Parenting Your Out of Control Teenager: 7 Steps to Reestablish Authority and Reclaim Love" by Scott Sells. This book offers a hands-on approach to parenting a teenager who is struggling with parental boundaries and exhibiting hurtful behavior towards themselves and others.
One of the most important parts of positive communication skills is being a good listener. When you listen, a person feels cared about, important, heard, and loved. Being a good listener can help all your relationships achieve more depth and intimacy. That's why we are giving you an attainable goal each day this week to help you become a better listener.
Do you know the definition of insanity? We see it a lot in couples and individuals. It's what many of them need to remove from their life: Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results! We are constantly amazed at how couples, and individuals for that matter, continually do the same things and are surprised when they don't get a different outcome. Particularly with couples, they will come in and insist on fighting, the same way they do at home, only in front of an audience that they are paying. I will persistently try over and over to teach them to have conflict in a different, more healthy
Because Sunday is Father's Day we are writing about how our Fathers blessed us. Truly, I was so blessed with such an amazing Dad that it was difficult to pick one thing. He taught me about my Faith, how to work hard and serve others, and how to love unconditionally. But many times my mind goes back to the memories we shared.
As we have been discussing parenting a difficult child, we encourage you to keep in mind that parenting isn't just about teaching your child how to "behave"-- It's also showing them love by teaching them how to navigate their world and learn more about themselves. Today we will complete the series on strategies for coping with difficult behaviors in kids.