The Benefits of Parenting Consultation
By Rebecca Landau-Millin, Psy.D.
Parents of young children are often told that the earliest years of their child’s lives are some of the most precious times that will pass so quickly that every minute should be enjoyed to the fullest. However, the day-to-day life of parenting a young child is typically an experience filled with many stressful challenges such as bedtime troubles, power struggles and tiring efforts to help a child manage intense emotions. So many parents find it difficult to feel confident in managing these times and in deciding the best responses to their child's demands. Often, parents have the impression that other parents have found easier ways to parent with fewer struggles and less stress. Social media compounds these feelings by promoting images of “perfect families” without sharing the challenges, doubts and anxieties many parents face. As a result, so many parents find themselves feeling anxious about the best way to respond to their children and often feel guilty for the difficulties their children face. Parenting is, in fact, an inherently complicated and sometimes demanding and difficult experience, perhaps increasingly so in our faced-paced, digitally driven world.
Parents have much to feel optimistic about in facing these difficult times as parents of young children have enormous potential to support their child (or children) through various childhood challenges. As parents are the most important people in their child’s lives, parents can utilize parenting consultation to help their child through many of the expectable and unique challenges of childhood. Parenting consultation provides parents with support through these challenges as well as the opportunity for parents to discuss and to understand their concerns through the context of developmental expectations and to develop enhanced, effective strategies in support of their child and family. Meeting with a child psychotherapist who provides parenting consultation can help parents to sort out the best way to help their child and family in a manner that fits each parent's style and consistent with the goals and values of each unique family. Child psychotherapists are familiar with the strong feelings that parenting a young child can evoke for parents and can help parents feel more prepared for a confident in parenting during this challenging and also very important time in their child's development.
Some of the reasons that parents seek out parenting consultation and support include:
- Comfortably managing separation anxiety (such as going to school or camp)
- Managing and responding to sibling rivalry
- Promoting successful emotional coping skills
- Receiving support and guidance for major life events, such as:
- A family move
- The birth of a sibling
- The deployment of a parent
- Separation and Divorce
- Enhancing positive family relationships and optimal bonding
- Dealing with the death of a family member or beloved pet
- Coping with medical conditions and medical or dental procedures
- Deciding when a child should receive an evaluation for treatment
Meeting with a child psychotherapist to discuss the various options, including parenting consultation and support can help to create a treatment plan best suited to address the needs and preferences of parents in each unique family. For more information about parenting consultation and support, please contact Dr. Rebecca Landau-Millin at (301) 922-1114.