Childhood Emotional Behavioural Challenges
Although we wish we could always protect our children from difficulties and challenges, especially early in life, the reality is that it is not always possible. A range of emotional and behavioural difficulties can show up for any child.
One common occurrence is dangerous behaviour that is at a higher or more intensive level than is typical for your loved one’s age group. Examples include aggression to others, hurting themselves, or environment destruction such as breaking things in their home etc.
The first thing to know is, though difficult and distressing for you and your child, you are far from alone in facing these difficulties.
The second thing to know is that with help and support, you and your loved one can (as many children before have) move through and past these challenges and go on to lead full and successful lives.
My approach to childhood difficulties is based on the principle of whole family support and getting everyone on the same team. It brings together, and transfers to you and your child, knowledge and strategies from evidence based approaches in both developmental and behavioural sciences, as well as my own 20 years of experience supporting kids with childhood challenges.
My approach is consistently effective in producing meaningful and long term improvement for everyone involved. I look forward to sharing it with you.
Family Support Model
Parent Consultation and Coaching
Children are significantly influenced by interpersonal dynamics and their desire to have safe, loving and meaningful connection with the important people in their world. The words and actions of their family, teachers and friends can have a significant impact on the way they relate to the their emotions and how they respond to their world.
Further, Parents and guardians have a high level of control over their loved ones world and those variables that impact their behaviour. Even something like sleep, which seems like it may be simply physiological, is significantly effected by how a child’s environment is arranged and how significant caregivers in their life react when those sleep difficulties show up.
Given the level of influence you have over your child’s world often the simplest and most powerful approach to supporting your child to thrive is to consider adjustments in the actions of the most influential variable in their life i.e. you!
With this in mind, initially we will focus in our work together to identify areas in which areas you can make reasonable and practical adjustments in the variables you control and in your interactions with your child. Your knowledge of your child, combined with our knowledge and experience, will allow us to identify those areas which will have the most powerful impact on your child’s behaviour and how they relate to the world around them.
Teaching / Coaching with your child
It would be wonderful if simply changing the way we respond to a child could be enough to support them to move through, and overcome the difficulties they are facing.
However, often there are areas of emotional, cognitive, social and psychological development that need strengthened in order to significantly reduce their suffering and increase their ability to engage flexibly with their world.
Examples of skill sets which sometimes need strengthened include, but are not limited to, emotional regulation, self soothing, time management, adapting to change, tolerating delays in or ending of preferred activities, accepting and tolerating when their needs or demands cannot always be met, noticing and tracking emotions, connecting actions with outcomes, communicating and accepting of difficult emotions, problem solving and perspective taking.
Therefore, the second element of our work will be in supporting your child to be an active participant in identifying, and then learning, new skills in any areas of development where they are struggling. Further, making sure these skills translate into real and functional improvements in their ability to engage with the world in a meaningful and flexible way without feeling the need to resort to more dangerous behaviours.