There is no right way or wrong way to raise your children. Everyone has a different style and idea of what works with their own children and that is why sometimes parents become overwhelmed by good meaning friends and family who are often so quick to offer advice and help-no matter how well meaning it might be.
Working as a team
If you have a particular problem with your child’s behaviour and this is affecting them both at home, at friend’s houses or at school then you will have to take some steps to try and find out what the problem is, why and when it seems to be happening, and what can be done about it. Working together as a team with friends and family, your child’s school and maybe outside agencies such as your GP and health visitor can really help move things forward and find a solution that suits all of you, and ultimately results in a happier and well balanced child.Everyone has different ideas for dealing with challenging behaviour and encouraging good behaviour so do not be too quick to dismiss people who want to offer help.
Sometimes, when our children are displaying behaviour patterns that we are not used to and that we find difficult or embarrassing to deal with, it is very easy for us to ignore it and even deny that there is a problem. It is hard to accept that there might be a problem, and constantly trying to handle a difficult situation on your own can be wearing, depressing and frustrating-in many cases it just won’t work either.
Accepting that you need help
Accepting that you need help with your child’s behaviour is never easy, but it is the first and most important step in finding a solution. You may feel that you are very alone as dealing with problems can be an isolating experience. But at the same time, the thought of involving other people, in some cases complete strangers, in your life to help with your problems can fill anyone with horror. However, other parents who have been through similar difficulties will be only too happy to help you and will be delighted to share their techniques and experiences with you to help your situation.
As well as enlisting the support of trusted family and friends to try and help you sort things out, consider talking to your children’s teachers. Remember that by working as a team in this way, you will gain a valuable insight into your child that you might otherwise have never been aware of. It is all too easy to get into the “can’t see the woods for the trees” situation, and a fresh pair of eyes and ears could be just what you need to progress things positively.
Communication between you, your child and your support network is vital for success. If your school suggests having a meeting then do not hesitate but to say yes. Schools and teachers are hubs of expertise when it comes to children and their behaviour and they will support you and family as much as they can. They also have access to other experts who can help such as educational psychologists, special educational needs experts, dieticians and nutritionists and behavioural experts.
By combining all this help and expertise with the work that you are already doing with your child, you will be able to find a solution. Every situation is very different and all experts will offer different advice and help. Ultimately their goal will be to help you and your child and offer you positive support with your difficulties so do not be afraid to ask for help and work as a team.