Parenting and Caring is demanding for most people with typical children. It can be difficult to find informed help even with typical challenges.
However if you are caring for a child with some additional challenges or complex circumstances then have you ever been advised that you will be needing to develop Advanced Parenting and Caring Skills? Do you think that would have been helpful?
So here are a few types of parenting and caring that I consider to involve Advanced Parenting-Caring Skills
+ Caring for Children with Challenging Behaviour
+ Caring for Children with Developmental Delays
+ Caring for Adopted Children
+ Caring for Children who are Looked After
+ Caring for Children with Disabilities
+ Caring for Children with Diagnosed Conditions
+ Caring Across Separated Households
+ Caring for Children with Mental Health Needs
+ Caring for children with Combinations of the above
In all of these cases what is involved does not just involve the child. There are relationships involved - sometimes several relationships
+ with partners
+ with siblings
+ with wider family
+ with school
+ with local community
+ with other professionals
Each of these relationships brings its own quirks and challenges. Each of them involves a huge number of skills that we have been taking for granted.
However relationship skills are something that we need support with - and so do our children. Children are born with an interest in other people but developing the skills involved that are key to happy and healthy relationships is really complex and a lot of support is needed.
So one of the most important roles of the caring adults is in scaffolding the emergence of healthy relationships and the skills on which they depend.
There are very specific steps involved.
Think about the care we offer our teeth.
We all know that teeth care matters
We all know that regular check ups help identify problems before they have got serious
We all know that sometimes teeth with complications need a brace so that they can grow through looking healthy.
When we neglect the regular checks and care, small problems can become big ones.
So it is with relationship health.
When we focus on the prevention of difficulties through learning to be observant and learning to do the right things then we can avoid small problems becoming big cavaties.
Relationship Health is more important to mental health and well being than we have acknowledged up to now. In fact in my view it is absolutely critical.
So I think it is time for a big rethink in health, education and community practice about this issue..
However what should we do right now? Fortunately, you don't need to wait for others to do a big rethink - as that might take a while. The good news is that once you understand the issue you can start to take action yourself in your own relationships and with your own children or clients, or community.
This is important - you don't need to wait for others.
This is an I Matter Journey. Your understanding and skills with relationships helps your child.
Where possible if you have a child that you are concerned about, you should be seeking help with an accurate relationship health and relationship skills focussed assessment.
Then you will be able to work with others in a systematic way to help your child make progress.
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The Five Steps To Success with Anxious or Challenging Children!
Dr Cathy Betoin
Clinical Psychologist, Teacher, Parent
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