Healing From A Family Crisis Through Counseling

 

Source: rawpixel.com

 

We usually begin life on a building block known as family. If you’re born into a family or belonged to one through foster care or adoption, the family impacts your personality and what you will become in the future. It is the most vital relationship where you primarily learn and develop values and communicate with others.

When confronted with unpleasant life encounters, you run to your family for comfort and strength. When you feel miserable, you will most probably seek support from members of your family who know you and truly care for you. No matter how it is built, your family impacts almost all areas of your life, from the day you were born up to your last moments.

However, there are unfortunate times when, regardless of the support and comfort pervading within families, something goes awry and destroys at the very core of the family connection. Outside forces are usually the reason for family arguments and conflicts, although it is not uncommon for much stress to happen within the home. This is because no one family, not even the strongest, is free from crisis and struggle. Crises can present in various ways, but overcoming a family crisis is possible with the help and guidance of an experienced and compassionate family counselor.

Crisis In The Family

Family crises affect a transition in the whole unit. It is a critical point where things worsen or get better. They may begin from small arguments and bundle up daily until it progresses into an overwhelming burden of stress. At times, a family crisis may be unforeseen, like a flash of sudden lightning that abruptly hits its members, like disaster, death, or tragedy.

Source: rawpixel.com

The entire family could also be confronted with a developmental issue. It may be considered a natural occurrence, but a crisis like this may unintentionally lead to stress for all family members. The birth of a new baby, retirement, marriage, or illness are some of the transitions that may affect the family gradually, dramatically, or suddenly. These transitions frequently force the family to adjust to their functions and roles to meet the demands of the new crisis.

Signs Of A Crisis In The Family

The response of every family to crises differs. No matter the nature of the crisis, it almost always produces stress and may interrupt its typical functioning structure. In any crisis, families may discover that their common problem-solving skills and coping strategies do not work. Consequently, family members become anxious, depressed, and susceptible. A family that is incapacitated because of a crisis typically goes through a range of damaging effects, some of which include:

  • Constant squabble about who’s right.
  • Fewer (if not lack) family outings and other quality moments together.
  • No positive communication among family members
  • No positive problem-solving skills
  • Presence of stress symptoms like anxiety, depression, memory gaps, sleep and appetite problems, and disorientation.

Adults in the family are inclined to be affected more than children, although the latter could also present with signs of stress, particularly when they are going through a crisis in the family. Some manifestations may include:

  • Sleep problems
  • Strange silence
  • Hostility
  • Anxiety and worry over the family crisis
  • Recklessness

Family Crisis For Overcoming A Crisis

In some circumstances, some families, in their attempts to lessen the effects and increasing tension resulting from the crisis, may seek support from close relatives and friends. So if the family accepts help, then competent mediation by a professional could be more advantageous. Each family may also go through a turning point for success and relive a fresh sense of motivation, protection, and safety that a credible family counselor can offer to resolve the situation.

Family counseling is a type of treatment committed to addressing certain matters impacting the mental and emotional health of the family. When a major life change leads to a decline in the family’s mental and emotional states, family counseling is the best way to treat and manage a family crisis.

Source: providencetreatment.com

It is vital to keep in mind that family counseling does not essentially involve blood-related family members. It also includes members who play a constant supportive function in family members living in the same home. With this, when a crisis arises, the reassuring mediation of a family counselor may be necessary to surpass the struggle and for all members to develop and adjust to the changes involved in the crisis. Conversely, a family that permits a crisis to win against them without finding help and resources accessible to them may be caught up in a gamut of events or past experiences that only contribute to the already overbearing stress.

Reformation After A Family Crisis

A family experiencing a challenge that results in a disastrous transition in their life may very well benefit from family counseling. Parents who suffer from a gambling problem or a teen battling against depression, or perhaps a child with autism, is a matter that requires individual and focused intervention. However, the struggle has most probably affected the parents, kids, and siblings as well.

 

 

 

How Parents And Children Can Benefit From Family Counseling

 

Source: remedytherapy.com

 

For several years, consulting a counselor brought a particular stigma in many circles, frequently believed to be something to be hidden from society. Fortunately, trends change, and now more and more of us don’t feel awkward going to a counselor or therapist seeking help dealing with a gamut of problems and challenges that life confronts us with. Individual counseling is not the only solution, though, as family counseling has shown to yield excellent outcomes as well.

A family that suffers from a crisis can certainly find family counseling or therapy valuable, as this can guide family members how to learn to honestly express themselves, improve on the way they communicate with each other, and establish stronger relationships. There are many encounters where families should consider counseling and a lot of benefits to doing so. We will elaborately discuss these benefits here.

When Does Family Counseling Help?

Counseling is beneficial during a family crisis. Nowadays, a crisis can denote several things to various individuals. Oftentimes, families can be chaotic. This implies that family members can merely get used to their situations and become unmindful of certain issues, such as anxiety, negative behavioral patterns, and depression.

This may sound tolerable to some, but neglected family matters can potentially damage us can lead to further issues in the long term. One of the most prevalent predicaments that many parents are confronted with but do not usually face head-on is their kid moving forward to college life. This leads to a major transition in the family dynamic, even though the rest of the kids are still staying with them.

Source: rawpixel.com

This situation is also quite hard for the siblings that are at home. It can lead to a disconnect on most, if not all, family ties and can tremendously impact the mental health of each member of the family. Other events that may elicit a family crisis that can’t be fixed without efficient communication include:

  • Opening a new business for the family
  • Undergoing divorce
  • Giving birth or adopting a new child
  • Taking care of senior parents
  • Grieving the death of a loved one

Identifying whether or not your family requires counseling can be daunting. However, when something is not right, and you as a parent feel that you can’t talk it out with the family, then counseling is strongly recommended.

Typical Outcomes Of A Family Crisis

Each person has his own way of coping with a crisis, and others manage it better than the rest. But although you have a normally ‘problematic’ family, there are actually warning signs that could show you when counseling is necessary.

Adults and kids normally have various ways of manifesting their struggles, and being aware of the signs and reacting to them is a great way of managing the situation. Adults usually try to avoid the truth of their dysfunctional family by drowning themselves to work intentionally, always going out for drinks after work, spending more time with their sports or other hobbies so that they have fewer hours at home. Obviously, among the more evident signs are substance abuse and infidelity.

Source: rawpixel.com

Teenagers are inclined to manage their problems by playing video games to avoid listening to arguments and conflicts within the other family members. They are overly focused on their phones, often active on social media, turn to alcohol or drugs, and sleep too little or too much.

Young children are the toughest to perceive when they feel depressed or anxious or going through a dilemma, so observing their overall behavior is recommended. If you notice that they’re more withdrawn than usual and do not join in family conversations, this might be a cause for concern. Conversely, the child expresses how they feel through negative behavior and frequent tantrums. Consult a counselor if your child is clearly starting to behave differently without a certain cause, for example, a physical disease.

Benefits Of Family Counseling To Parents And Children

Family counseling has shown over time to be valuable to families, particularly during an emotional crisis. To note, counseling does not produce 100% positive outcomes. Still, a counselor is committed to helping family members learn how to cope with their problems by utilizing effective techniques through their years of experience.

If you are part of a family suffering from an emotional crisis, you will eventually realize that communication is almost gone between each other, as none of them knows exactly where to start. Though the issues have existed for some time, it can still be hard to address or recognize them. Now the role of the counselor is highly appreciated.

Among the most important assets of the family, counseling is establishing stronger family ties. All families encounter misunderstandings and conflicts, but it may not be difficult to the point where everyone’s heads are clear if a conflict is regular in the family. In family counseling, your feelings towards your family members are corrected and taught new practices that can help strengthen their ideas.

Source: counselingwellnesspgh.com

Additionally, family counseling allows open communication while the counselor walks them through how to succeed as they work as a team. Weak family dynamics and unhealthy relationships can also have permanent consequences for young kids. They eventually feel poorly about themselves, and they lose their morale and self-esteem. When parents argue or when they don’t get along, kids may blame themselves for the conflicts or feel distressed for their incapacity to do something to pacify the situation. Ultimately, they will grow up with insecurities and have trouble connecting with other people and having relationships in adulthood.

When all these negative circumstances are resolved through family counseling, it instills a sense of value and pride in each family member. Going through and surpassing conflicts together and beginning to see hope increase both self-confidence and determination. Indeed, family counseling helps each member learn significant coping strategies that are emotionally and mentally beneficial. Each family member learns how to become better children, parents, friends, neighbors, and lovers.

Frequently Asked Questions About Separation Anxiety

 

In my 25 years of existence, I have been asked about my greatest fear a couple of times already. Honestly, I am so fed up with the question that I now have a script on that one. At first, it was all like, “that’s so lame, and I don’t want to answer it” thing. But now, I always feel like I have to tell the world about this fear and anxiety that lingers in me.

Part of my greatest fear is to be alone. I don’t want to even slightly think that I will have to deal with things in life all by myself. I know I would not make it emotionally and mentally. That ideology sticks with me for a long time now, even though I am quite aware that it would never “literally” happen. I mean, I have my and friends, relatives, colleagues, and neighbors, so pretty much the fear of being alone is nearly impossible to take place at the moment.

However, as much as I want to stay confident with my connection with the people around me, things are different when it comes to family relationships. Juggling everything altogether seems a little complicated as family issues affect each member. And when there is an unresolved problem, usually, all ties break loose.

Source: pixabay.com

But the issue here is still not the family stress. Instead, it is the separation that haunts me. I know I can’t control things, and I know that uncertainties always catch me on guard, but separation from family members cannot be handled. Thus, everything goes back to the only fear that makes me mentally and emotionally unstable – being left alone.

I don’t entirely need to elaborate on the details of how my family ended up breaking each other’s trust, care, and love for one another. I am too focused on dealing with the aftermath of everything. Right now, there is a mental health struggle called separation anxiety that I need to overcome.

How do I know if I have separation anxiety?

Individuals who experience separation anxiety have heightened anxiety levels and occasionally even manic episodes, particularly when their loved ones are not in sight. Those with this type of illness may be aloof or present with severe sadness or trouble focusing when they are away from family and significant others.

What triggers separation anxiety?

Separation anxiety disorder frequently emerges after a loved one’s death or a major event like moving into other homes. You most probably will develop the disorder if you had this when you were a child.

How do you deal with separation anxiety?

To deal with separation anxiety, consider taking some action such as busying yourself with important and valuable things. YOu can also change your mindset and learn to be more positive. Acknowledge that your emotions may be heightened and that you may feel more negative than positive. You can journal your thoughts and activities daily. Remember that you don’t need to wait for reassurance from others.

What are the three known stages of separation anxiety?

The three stages of separation anxiety include protest, despair, and detachment. The first phase starts the following separation instantly and lasts weeks until the end. It presents through external indications of distress like tantrums, awaiting the return of the parent/s, and crying.

What is the best-recommended treatment for separation anxiety?

Separation anxiety is typically managed with psychotherapy, sometimes complemented with medication. Also called talk therapy, psychotherapy entails reaching out and working with a mental health professional to alleviate anxiety symptoms.

How long can separation anxiety last?

Separation anxiety disorder usually persists for two-three weeks but could emerge from infancy towards toddlerhood up until childhood.

At what age does separation anxiety begin?

Despite the fact that some infants show separation anxiety and object permanence as early as four to five months, most of them develop stronger separation anxiety at approximately nine months. What’s worse with the leave-taking is when your baby gets sick, tired, or hungry.

What is a separation anxiety disorder?

Separation anxiety disorder is made official when symptoms are severe for the developmental age and results in tremendous distress in everyday functioning. These symptoms include excessive and persistent concerns about awaiting or being apart from loved ones or home.

Source: pixabay.com

How do you manage bedtime separation anxiety?

Here are several steps on how to deal with bedtime separation anxiety:

  • Learn a regular calming ritual. This will be relatively easy for children.
  • Bid your kids goodnight or goodbye when you leave their room.
  • Reevaluate your day and night schedule. Often, kids don’t have age-appropriate schedules.

It’s totally fine to provide extra encouragement and support at bedtime, although you’ll need to be cautious about presenting new routines.

 Does co-sleeping cause separation anxiety?

Bed-sharing has been linked to an increased prevalence of mental health problems generally, but it was also associated with several disorders, including depression and anxiety. Additionally, some parents claim that co-sleeping causes children to become clingy. Still, they believe that when they have a safe and secure foundation and their emotional needs are met, and they eventually grow up healthy and secure.

At what ages is sleep regression?

Sleep regression can happen at just about any age, including 4, 6, 8, and 18 months, even until babies reach two years old. The 12-month sleep regression appears when she is almost one, although some start to regress when they are 10 or 11 months old.

Why is my kid afraid to sleep alone?

All children are scared of sleeping alone at one point in their lives. Most of them who have chronic and anxious sleep behaviors are afraid because a bad routine begins and persists. Conflicts at home, stress at work or school, a scary movie, worries about failing – all these can lead them to an anxious night and a persistent dependency on their parents.

What is sleep anxiety?

Sleep anxiety or phobia causes severe fear and anxiety around the idea of heading to bed. It is also called clinophobia, sleep dread or hypnophobia.

At what age should a kid sleep in his room?

The safest way to co-sleep with your child is to share a room. Your baby can sleep in your bedroom but in her bassinet or crib. Additionally, experts suggest sharing a room with your child until he is at least six months of age and perhaps until he is one.

Source: pixabay.com

Takeaway

There is nothing more exhausting and complicated in life than realizing your own mental health struggle. Stress, anxiety, depression, and all other mental condition exist because we are all drawn to perfection. We don’t entirely see the importance of “just living” because we always fear something.

 

Frequently Asked Questions Solution-Focused Family Therapy

Some situations call for assessing the problem from its roots, but it’s not always healthy to dwell on the details of how it came to be. In Voltaire’s words, “the longer we dwell on our misfortunes, the greater is their power to harm us.” 

When dealing with family problems looking for solutions often only requires directly addressing the issue at hand. Going beyond the current issue and fixating on things we can’t change may be pointless and even detrimental. To develop adaptive problem-solving strategies, individuals can turn to solution-based therapy.

Source: pexels.com

Solution-focused therapy, also known as solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT), prioritizes looking for solutions instead of analyzing the problem. SFBT is different from the conventional forms of psychotherapy, where the past is thoroughly picked apart to address the present and future. 

Psychotherapists Steve De Shazer and Insoo Kim Berg developed SFBT in the late 1970s. De Shazer and Berg wanted to discover what people want. 

SFBT takes a postmodern approach, where there are no fixed truths. The truth, instead, is presumed to lie in whatever the client presents. With this, the therapist pays close attention to the client’s language. From there, they determine the solution. 

In the postmodern view, the client is the expert, not the therapist. The therapist believes that clients already possess the necessary tools and skills to solve their problems at hand. Therefore, the therapist’s job is to help clients reconstruct their stories and see their problems differently. It is also the therapist’s responsibility to help clients try something different if the current strategy isn’t working. 

Since SBFT relies on collaboration, the therapist and the client work together in setting goals, formulating solutions, and implementing these. It follows that the therapist should be flexible with the client’s resources when creating a plan. The client’s input is key in the process because clients are more likely to follow through with strategies that they’ve had a part in developing. 

If you want to understand the mechanisms of SBFT further and learn how it can benefit families, read the frequently asked questions below. 

What is solution-focused family therapy?

Solution-focused family therapy is goal-directed and future-focused. It shows families how not to dwell on the problems but to prioritize creating solutions together. This process mainly involves establishing a common mindset that leaves the past behind. The clients are then tasked to use these difficulties and challenges to develop a solution roadmap they all agree with.

What is the solution-focused brief therapy model?

A solution-focused brief therapy model refers to a goal-oriented model anchored on a person’s present and future life. It leaves behind what happened in the past. The therapist uses a model that helps the clients develop a vision and goal for the future. They support this goal by assisting the patients in co-constructing skills, abilities, and resources that will enable them to reach their vision.

What are the benefits of solution-focused therapy?

Solution-focused therapy is beneficial in many aspects. For one, this lets you draft measurable short- and long-term goals, which serve as your primary directive. This therapy aims to encourage you to capitalize on your strengths to achieve your goals. This therapy also allows you to know yourself best. Aside from reassessing what happened in the past, you also get to establish your identity by articulating properly what your vision is.

What are the three rules of solution-focused treatment?

The central philosophy of solution-focused treatment revolves around three rules:

  1. If it’s not broken, do not fix it.
  2. Once you have pinpointed what works for you, do more of it.
  3. If you’ve observed that something does not work, do not do it again; instead, do something different.

How do you implement solution-focused therapy?

In this type of therapy, it is necessary to determine the patient’s goal from the sessions and how it would affect them once they solve these problems. After setting up a measurable goal, they can work hand-in-hand to find the best solution.

One strategy is to determine the client’s behavioral pattern in the past and come up with methods to stray away from it. Then, the therapist guides the patient in reinforcing the positive qualities so that every solution will anchor on these strengths.

How long is solution-focused therapy?

Solution-focused therapy is relatively shorter as compared to other types of therapy because of its goal-oriented nature.  This intervention only needs around four to five sessions, which typically last for 45 minutes each. Once a particular issue has been solved, then the client and the therapist can close that chapter. With this, we can say that solution-focused therapy is less time-consuming than usual behavioral therapies.

Is Solution Focused Therapy Effective?

Yes, it is effective, given that solution-focused therapy works towards crafting solutions. It’s even mostly recommended to older children and teens since they’re more willing to collaborate with their therapists in reaching their set goals. However, individuals with complicated emotional difficulties may find this treatment challenging and ineffective.

Experts recommend that these people go through long-term therapy rather than solution-focused therapy.

What are the strengths and weaknesses of solution-focused therapy?

The primary strength of solution-focused therapy is that it is measurable. After the goal-setting process, your progress can be measured by how near or far you are from your established vision. Your therapist also gives you tasks that are realistic, consistent, and manageable.

One weakness that this treatment type has is that it does not address the problems’ root cause. Since it rarely looks back into the past and deep dive into the details, the drafted solutions only serve as band-aid solutions.

Source: pexels.com

How do you focus on a solution at work?

First, develop a beginner’s mindset even if you’re in the field for a long time. Having a fresh mind can help you eliminate the biases you gained throughout your experience at work. These inclinations may tend to blind you from the creative ideas that are lingering around you.

Every surprising solution comes from a beginner’s point of view. Once you have erased all biases, break down all your work problems and set your goal for each one. If something’s working, replicate it; but if it’s not effective, then do something else.

What is an exception question in Solution Focused Therapy?

Exception questions give the clients the chance to determine the circumstances when it has been different for them. Some examples of this include:

  1. Describe the last time you felt that you had a better day compared to the rest.
  2. Can you think of the times when you don’t feel sad or angry?
  3. Tell me about the time when you thought you had no problem in your life and felt the happiest?

What is a solution-based approach?

A solution-based approach highlights the act of searching for solutions instead of dwelling on problems. In short, it is a strengths-based strategy. Patients set aside all the resources they can find and utilize this to solve the issues that are bothering them. It’s in pursuit of a purposeful and positive quick change.

What is the role of the client in solution-focused therapy?

The role of the client is to be the expert in their lives. They will serve as the architect in building their paths. They will be the ones who will decide which factors are small, achievable, relevant, and complicated.

What is the difference between solution-focused therapy and narrative therapy?

Narrative therapy focuses on the stories that each individual carries throughout their lives. They give meaning to the personal journey they have experienced in the past or the influence that others gave them. These things serve as their anchor on how they see themselves and the world around them.

On the other hand, solution-focused therapy does not dwell on what has happened but focuses more on how they will solve their current problems and achieve their vision.

Source: pexels.com

Families can be dysfunctional when they don’t employ proper problem-solving techniques. It’s common for family members to fixate whose fault it is or what could have gone differently. Past issues may be brought up and may hinder resolving the current problem. 

Solution-focused therapy is effective, especially for individuals with relationship problems such as in families. Just like any other therapy, however, SFBT isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. SFBT is limited to addressing the present problem and not issues from the past. Because of this, SFBT may not be suitable for those experiencing severe mental health disorders that need extensive programs for their root causes to be addressed. 

Despite SFBT’s limitations, multiple studies have provided empirical evidence for its efficacy. In particular, meta-analyses have shown that SFBT’s effectiveness is equivalent to other evidence-based approaches. Some studies produced significant results in less time and at less cost. A cost-effective program available can be beneficial, particularly for families who lack financial resources or insurance coverage. 

Implementing solution-focused therapies was successful among families with members who suffer from abuse disorders, drinking problems, childhood behavioral problems, etc. This approach may be a considerable shift from conventional psychotherapies. Still, it has proven its capacity to reconcile and restore relationships. 

If you are currently experiencing family problems, know that things can get better and that recovery is possible. Contact your local mental healthcare provider further to discuss the available solution-focused programs or other alternative methods. 

Family And Mental Health: How Your Childhood Experience Impacts Your Parenting

Have you ever thought about how different your life would be if your parents did everything in another way? Have you ever considered some of their decisions inappropriate given in any situation? Have you thought about their options back then that was supposed to change everyone’s lives? The answers to these questions can link you back to childhood. Childhood is your life’s most crucial phase. It is where your experiences mold you to face everything in your life. That includes your responsibility to your children (if you plan to have kids or already have one).

Source: pixabay.com

It is essential to note that everything you do regarding parenting comes from your own experience as a child. That explains why you tend to pass on life lessons from your parents to your kids. Basically, that is the cycle of life. However, there are instances that your childhood is not typically helpful in future parenting. Perhaps there are some things you experienced in life that is not worth sharing for. There could be some incidents that limit you to do the right thing. Honestly, you have your reasons. But for the sake of the family relationship and mental health discussion, let’s talk about that.

Source: pixabay.com

Abuse During Childhood

Any type of abuse during childhood is detrimental to anyone’s mental and emotional health. If you are one of those who experience some of it during your younger days, there is a tendency that the way you perceive things can be unconstructive. As a result of child abuse, you begin to compare their achievements to yours. In some instances, you become so damaged that you want your children to experience the same pain you experienced from your parents. You want your kids to feel devastated so that you can validate your mental and emotional trauma. But that is not often the case. Sometimes, instead of intentionally hurting your children, you tend to act the other way. You have this urge never to allow your kids to experience any abuse you have experienced during your younger days. You become overprotective that you carry it out to an obsession. That links to stalking and getting abnormally involved in your kids’ lives, which often leads to a significant lack of trust. Sometimes, it also ends up impossible and unresolved hate between you and your children.

Source: pixabay.com

The Lack Of Being In Control

Experiencing a lack of control when it comes to life decisions often leads to your mental and emotional breakdown. Though many people do not often see it that way, the experience from childhood can make you feel helpless and depressed. In some cases, it makes you turn to power. That explains your eagerness to control things whenever you can because you cannot do that when you were a kid. It was a psychological cycle that pretty much impossible to break. Maybe because that is a solitary way to can make you feel normal, you think that for you to be able to function differently, you need to become the abuser. And the only possible victims that can consider and think differently of that dysfunctional behavior are your children. You are confident to use your “parent” card because you know your kids will somehow understand. That being said, you feel safe in controlling your kids because your actions are justified.

Source: pixabay.com

Receiving Harsh Reactions As A Kid

The idea of openly telling yourself that your experience as a child is different from your kids is well-accepted. Of course, things back then were different, and your kids probably understand how complicated it was for you to deal with things manually. Thus, if you experience harsh reactions from your parents’ way before, it could impact your parenting. But the good thing is, you have two options. You either follow your parents’ style of harsh parenting, or you don’t. But when you see yourself shutting down your kids’ emotions, such as telling them that they should not be upset for little reasons, it is a sign that you are doing what your parents did to you. Thus, the tendency of sharing the same reaction as your parents will become your involuntary trait when handling your kids.

Source: pixabay.com

Insight

Apparently, the result of most childhood experiences runs in a loop. It is where you experience something good and bad in life that you somehow feel the need to repeat the cycle. However, it is a dangerous mental integration because not all childhood experiences are helpful in adulthood, especially in abuse and maltreatment cases. However, as mentioned earlier, two things can still happen. It is either you allow the repetition of bad childhood experience to your kids, or you choose better and aspire to become a better parent. If in case you prefer the latter, always remember not to overdo it. Try to become a better parent with compassion and selfless love.

My Son Has ASD And ADHD: Occupational Therapy And Counseling Can Help

Source: flickr.com

 

What Was Your First Reaction?

 

 

Of course, I blamed myself at first. I mean, what happened? Why does my only son have these disorders? I look back from six years ago and think deeply. Did I smoke when I was pregnant with him? I sure as heck stopped wine when I learned I was pregnant. And yeah, no smoking either. I’m pretty sure that I had almost perfect health back then except for a terrible cough when I was in the 8th month, but my OB prescribed me cephalexin. It’s safe for pregnant women.

 

Genes And Environmental Factors Can Affect ASD/ADHD Development In Kids

 

My eyes had tears in them as I asked the doctor, “Why does he have this, doc?” He told me with an as a matter-of-fact tone, “Genetics can play a big role in this disorder development on your child. The environment is also an issue. Do you have a history of autism or ADHD in your family?”

 

Source: en.wikipedia.org

 

I said NO, we don’t have those disorders. As for the environmental cause, well, as I said – no smoking, no drinking, no bad thing that happened to me back then, and our home was well-kept.

 

“How about your husband’s family?” And there, I think, I heard a DING-DING-DING inside my head! His cousin has low-functioning autism. My husband’s aunt has Asperger’s. I’m pretty sure his dad was depressed, but not diagnosed. His cousin has Bipolar Disorder and well, the list goes on. Now, I know the answer. Genetics. My husband is the reason why my son has these disorders.

 

It’s not his fault that his genes are built that way, and so I cannot entirely blame him for something he cannot control. Right now, what we had to do was stick together, have a treatment program or therapy plan for our son, and support him all the way. That’s all we can do. And yes, pray that everything will be alright in the end.

 

Treatment Programs For Children With ASD And ADHD

 

“When people think about attention deficit disorder (ADHD), they usually consider it a childhood problem. However, a large proportion — between 30 and 70 percent — of children with the condition remain affected throughout adulthood.” Ben Martin, Psy.D said. But there were three programs recommended by the neurodevelopment pediatrician for my son – Occupational Therapy and Counseling, Speech Therapy, and Educational Therapy. He was delayed at least a year on all of his skills, and the doctor even mentioned medication use. My husband denied the last one and said that if his hyperactivity will ever be extreme, then that’s the time we’ll use prescription drugs.

 

Occupational Therapy

 

Source: army.mil

 

Kids can learn how to manage their ASD and ADHD symptoms through occupational therapy. Here they will be able to enhance their various skills – cognitive, physical, sensory, and motor skills. As for my son, during his OT sessions, he was given eight rules always to remember:

 

  1. Sit on the chair.
  2. Hands-on the table.
  3. Eyes in front or on the teacher.
  4. Shut your mouth and no talking to others when in class.
  5. Listen attentively to the teacher.
  6. Finish your work.
  7. No hitting your head.
  8. No slapping, grabbing, and pushing others.

 

If he were to deviate from the rules, my son was given an X-mark which he doesn’t like. This forced him to curb some of his unintentional misbehaviors. (If you need online assistance on this, BetterHelp is your best choice.) Dr. Chantal Gagnon Ph.D. LMHC “Therapy can be adapted to meet a variety of individual needs and goals.” I believe that.

 

Speech Therapy

 

He was taught how to speak his mind with articulation, and how to start and end a sentence correctly. The therapist helped him how to be vocal about his feelings and emotions. It was a big help for my son.

 

Educational Therapy

 

At six years old, my son couldn’t read at his level. His writing ability was that of a four-year-old, and he is just so non-compliant when it comes to reading and writing. Educational therapy has helped him with reading and comprehension, and practice on his penmanship, among other intervention methods.

I also tried reaching out to BetterHelp, an online platform that is committed to assisting mothers like me in dealing with their children’s mental health issues, including ASD and ADHD. I read great reviews about their counselors before I considered signing up. If you’re in the same situation as I am today, why don’t you try it out yourself?

It’s tough to have a son with a disorder. If only I could take it away from him and put it on me, I would do it. But it’s not that simple. Kara Tamanini, M.S., LMHC reminds us all to “Target the most pressing problems. Avoid trying to fix too many things. You will get bogged down that way.” These disorders will be for my son to bear forever and I will do everything I can to support him and assist him all the way. I mean, what else can I do, right?

 

How To Handle A Stressful Therapist

The primary reason why you are seeing a therapist is that you want to confide in someone. You are probably looking for a professional who could help you deal with a personal problem or dilemma. However, unfortunate events can happen such as meeting a therapist who is adding more stress to your life. We know that this kind of experience can be frustrating. You may end up becoming more problematic than ever.

Continue reading “How To Handle A Stressful Therapist”

Children With Bipolar Disorder

Source: static1.squarespace.com

The likelihood of bipolar disorder inflicting on young children these days is slim, but it can occur. If you are bipolar, it is highly like (about 15-30%) for your child to have it too. Now, if you and your spouse or partner both have the disorder, then, 75% of your children will have it as well.

In the US today, 2.8% of the adult population is suffering from bipolar disorder. It means, at least 30% of that number will have kids with bipolar disorder.

Continue reading “Children With Bipolar Disorder”

Family Issues: Signs Your Parents Are Hurting You Emotionally And Mentally

When battling with mental and emotional issues, you must have a reliable support system. That is why you need to have your family by your side. However, it can be difficult when the people who should take care and support you are causing your instability. If you feel that your parents are causing you anxiety, stress, and depression, there is an underlying problem. Here are some of the signs that you can tell your parents are to blame for the trauma you are trying to undo.

Source: pexels.com

They Do Not Listen To You

One of the reasons why you may be suffering from an emotional and mental issue is when your parents don’t try to listen. Usually, it becomes visible when they make decisions for you without even considering how you feel. Your parents only care about what they want because they believe they know what is best for you. With that, you end up sacrificing your happiness only to please them. They think they are entitled to force you to walk on their chosen path, such as in your career, relationship, and whole life. You don’t have the freedom to say yes or no.

They Put A Lot Of Pressure On You

Your parents can make you feel unhappy and depressed by putting too much pressure on you. They try and make you live up to their unrealistic expectations. Because of this, you are forced to put their happiness above yours.  Usually, your parents do this because they want you to achieve the things they once thought they could have. It is a behavior that represents their frustrations in life. In unfortunate instances, it makes you feel disconnected from your desires and ambitions, which somehow spiral into having a dysfunctional emotional ability. Thus you always end up feeling mentally and emotionally exhausted around them.

Source: pexels.com

Their Presence Overwhelms You

When you feel uncomfortable and tense around your parents, perhaps there is something emotionally wrong. When you always feel alone, even if you are with them, it means there is a barrier that sets you apart. If their actions are too harsh and inconsiderate, which makes you want to isolate yourself, it means they are toxic. These unfortunate situations can bring trouble in your ability to control your emotions, which can have a damaging effect on your social and romantic relationships. Thus, it can make you break down, and it can easily upset you.

They Are Emotionally Unavailable

Your parents are hurting you mentally and emotionally when they act cold and distant towards you. It is when you feel that you can’t connect with them. Often, you find it hard to show vulnerability because they somehow do not care about your feelings. Most of the time, they think that your frustrations are less of a concern. They never show empathy and frequently tell you to quit acting like a child. It is problematic because this type of treatment often leads to a hard time maintaining a relationship as you grow older. In worst cases, this can become normal to you too, and soon you will end up adapting to it.

Source: pexels.com

They Are Abusive

Parental abuse can have a lot of damaging effects in your life, whether physical, emotional, and mental. Their abusive behavior can traumatize you since it can last for a long time. Their repeated ways of intimidating and threatening you put your mental health at risk. In some unfortunate cases, you develop a mental illness because of that. The worst part, your parents will contribute to making it so much harder for you to recover. Abusive parents do not make an effort to educate themselves in the danger of violence. Thus, it will become impossible to instantly heal emotionally and mentally, especially when they are around.

They Compare You To Others

It is usual for parents to admire the likes of other talented kids. That explains why they somehow like you to become the best in everything. But when they continuously compare you and feel disappointed when you never reached the desired goal they want for you, it means they are unfair. Soon the behavior leads to an unappreciative behavior. They will end up complaining more about the things you can’t do. In some unfortunate cases, they will force you to become somebody else because they will become too attached to perfection. This behavior ends up with you doubting yourself and losing all the confidence you have.

Source: pexels.com

Honestly, it is okay to admit that you somehow feel that you don’t want to be around your parents. That is if they bring along negative vibes in your life. It is your responsibility to take care of yourself. Thus, it would be best if you always chose to put your emotional and mental health first before anything else.

When you feel confused, depressed, or alone, you don’t have to look very far. Reach out to one of the capable and dedicated therapists at BetterHelp. By subscribing to the online app, you get to talk to someone who is trained at dealing with your particular mental health concern – with professionalism and compassion. Check out BetterHelp’s client reviews and know more about it today.

 

 

How To Turn Staying At Home Into A Positive Experience For Your Kids

Most of us haven’t been at home for as long as the coronavirus pandemic has made us experience. As social beings, this results in anxiety and stress. You may not notice it, but your kids are also negatively affected by the quarantine. But that doesn’t have to be the case. You can turn things around and make stay-at-home a positive experience for your kids with these tips!

Model Positivity

Source: pexels.com

Your kids feel it when you worry. So, your anxiousness can double their anxiety and make the situation worse for them. The first step you can take to turn staying at home a positive experience for your kids is to model positivity. 

Bryan Robinson, Ph. D. shares, “Optimism is some of the best medicines to thrive during COVID-19 quarantine, no matter how dire the circumstances. You don’t possess some magical joy juice. And you don’t have to become a smiley-face romantic with your head in the sand or look through rose-colored glasses.” Don’t let your children mimic your worry; show them something positive amid this uncertainty, like getting to spend more time with you and having fun while at home.

Practice Gratitude

While you’re modeling positivity, practice gratitude with them, look for something to be thankful for. You and your kids may talk about these small things over food, or through post-it notes on your refrigerator door. Look for a fun way to introduce gratitude in your daily routine and notice how fast it will change your home’s mood.

Bond With Them

Source: pexels.com

Before this pandemic happened, you probably were the hardworking parent who does everything for their family. However, your kids, especially younger ones, may not see it that way because they get to spend lesser time with you because of your work. This fact is further proven by reports that show that some kids are happier these days. Make their happiness extra special by doing relaxing activities together. Like at-home-spa, maybe?

Learn Something New

Now that you’re spending more time with your children, why not learn something together? You and your kids may start learning a second or third language; there are many free language apps online. Or why not try baking together? Find something that you and your child can enjoy and have a new skill to show off when you meet with friends again.

Read Books

Source: pexels.com

Besides bonding and learning a new skill, find some time to read books with your kids too. School may have stopped, but learning continues. You may ask their previous reading teachers what they can recommend, or you and your kid can find books about topics that you like. Do not limit what they can read to books that you think are good for them; let them read comic books. Although, we still suggest some parental control over content that may be too mature for your kids.

Dedicate An Art Time

Modeling positivity and practicing gratitude with your children helps them alleviate their worries. But they may still feel anxious, especially with how much negative news there is online and on television. To help them rid of this anxiety and stress, you can do art with them!

There are more benefits to doing art with your kids than developing their inner Picasso. It can be a great stress reliever. Furthermore, art also affect your young one’s fine motor skills, cognition, mathematical abilities, and language skills! Pinterest is an excellent place to look for craft ideas and DIY projects to try with your children.

Keep Them Social

Source: pexels.com

This coronavirus pandemic has us staying at home, physically distancing from our friends, and loved ones. As much as it puts a toll on you, it does so too for your kids. So, to keep the quarantine from being a bad experience for your kids, help them connect with their friends now and then. If they’re too young to use social media, use your own account to contact their buddies. The practice of physical distancing does not need to affect your child’s social life, right?

Exercise

Lastly, find time to exercise together! This pandemic has made all of us cooped at home, affecting our physical health. So, stay healthy and reduce anxiety by doing physical activities. YouTube has tons of exercise videos that you and your kids can follow. Find the best physical activity for you and your children and have fun while staying healthy.

This quarantine has made a massive impact on our lives, pulling us from our regular routines. But it must not only affect us negatively. Turn things around and stay positive with your children while at home!