My Approach To Supporting Parents
I delight in helping my clients uncover hidden strengths. Oftentimes, parents arrive in my office feeling depleted, anxious, and overwhelmed by life's obstacles. Working from a strengths-based perspective, we begin to examine what they consider even "slightly good" in their lives. A gentle reframe or suggestion from me, anchored in overlooked, prior successes, can lend optimism to an otherwise defeated client. Once the client perceives herself as somewhat competent again, she becomes unstuck and able to see solutions where she once was hopeless.
What can a client expect when working with me?
First, I want to understand the client's frustrations and disappointments in parenting. Then, we can design a long-term framework of strategies combined with a set of concrete, practical solutions---all of which will prepare the client to handle the wide array of obstacles every parent encounters.
Together, we can uncover patterns of behavior, blind spots, and triggers that may be impacting the client's parenting across a variety of issues and ages. We can establish healthy, firm boundaries between family members that allow both parents and children to succeed.
We can also practice new habits of communicating transparently and effectively via scripts, family meetings, and code words that can prevent predictable meltdowns. Finally, we can build the client's confidence by practicing action-oriented tools that focus on strengthening capabilities and fostering independence.
As a former teacher, my emphasis tends to be on finding patterns, establishing predictable responses, and determining which variables we can control and which ones we cannot. Perhaps this bend differentiates me from other practitioners because it means that clients problem-solve with me in the concrete and the present rather than in the abstract and the past.
Having trained at The Beck Institute in Philadelphia on the use of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and being a certified Positive Discipline Educator, my background provides me with the underpinnings necessary to help adults make the changes they desire.
Why is Parenting Education more important than ever?
“Parent education strengthens families by providing relevant, effective education and support and encouraging an optimal environment for the healthy growth and development of parents/caregivers and children.” (National Parenting Education Network)
Many parents are raising children in a different world from that in which they were raised. This includes having children at an older age; dual income households; more single-parents; and of course, technology. There are so many new opportunities and challenges.
Additionally, many parents are looking to develop a parenting style that is consistent with their current beliefs and values. This may represent a departure from their own childhood experience or an opportunity to build upon it. New times demand new ways of learning parenting skills and using them.
Today, all parents find themselves in situations where they wonder what to do and where to turn for answers. Parenting education provides a roadmap and guidance through all the years of the parenting journey.
Source: Parent Encouragement Program (http://pepparent.org)