Infancy and childhood are special times of life with unique joys and stresses for families.
There are many reasons for these to be difficult adjustment times for parents, especially if they themselves have complicated histories from their own families of origin or otherwise find themselves emotionally challenged and stressed. Much can be improved and prevented with early professional intervention.
Consultations usually involve receiving direct advice and help with understanding and structuring expectations and experiences.. They may be sought by parents for any behavioral or psychosocial concerns or for any issue to do with the parenting relationship. They usually involve a few or several sessions around a specific problem.
Parents may have a specific complaint or concern about a child’s socio-emotional development or behavior including some combination of the following:
- temper tantrums,
- sleep problems
- toilet training
- temperament (extreme shyness, emotionality, spiritedness)
- separation issues
- gender identity
- illness and vulnerability
- sibling rivalry
Parents may be concerned about:
- methods for sleeping and feeding
- developing secure attachment in their children
- Developing better attunement with their child
- Providing scaffolding for their child’s development
- Managing their own anger and frustration
- Developing greater patience or empathy
- Non aggressive approaches to limit setting
- Preparing children for certain types of separations and transitions
- How to achieve a good divorce
- Coordinating multiple caregivers
- Offsetting the impact of their own emotional problems
- Helping children master losses and mild traumas
- Enhancing self-esteem in children
- Feeling in charge
- Feeling valued and empowered
- Enjoying the role of parent
Consultations may help parents better understand their child’s issues and problems and help develop a process for children to talk through and work through rather than withdraw, act out or get into trouble. Consultations may target specific difficulties before they become major sources of emotional disturbance. They can develop the parenting relationship and strengthen family connections.