It is easy for parents to get so absorbed in the raising of their children that they lose sight of who they are as individuals. When you add to the mix a child with a disability, it becomes almost impossible to feel anything other than overwhelmed. Working with a special needs parent coach can help families get connected to the information and people needed to help. In my practice, parents and families have benefitted when we have worked to strengthen them in the following key areas:
Connection with other parents
My kids did not come with an instruction manual. If yours did, would you mind sending it to me? Connecting with parents who have children like yours is essential. When you have a fellow parent to share stories with, the sense of isolation begins to melt away.
Information – How do you get your info? Do you spend all night on the internet? How about the library? Do you go to any parent groups in your area?
Emergency plan – What happens if you have an adult-only emergency that your kids should not attend? What if you are single parenting it and one of your kids gets sick and needs to go to the emergency room in the middle of the night and you have more than one kiddo? Do you know who to call to help? Do they know what to do with your kids?
Regular respite – Is there a regular date night on your calendar this week? Even if it’s a date with yourself at the mall, you need to have a scheduled time each week to relax and recharge. You can’t do that with the kids around. Have you scheduled some time for someone else to watch your kids for a while each week? Seriously – it’s important. We’ll talk about how to make that happen!
Self care – Do you get enough sleep? What about some sort of regular exercise? Have you had a haircut from an actual haircutting professional lately? Read any good books? Taking time to take care of yourself is hard to do sometimes…
Relationships – How’s the love life? How many close friends do you have that don’t live in your house? When was the last time you talked to them? Kids see their friends every day – why don’t grownups? Developing friendships that don’t have anything to do with your kids is key to your sanity!
Finances – If you were to have a financial check up today, how would you score? Why is that? Do you have all the money you need to provide for your kids? Do you have insurance? Do your kids? What about saving for a rainy day or a vacation? We’ll talk about some things you can do to help the bank account out!
What to do when the knot slips….
You know the saying: “When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on!” What happens when that knot slips? I have heard lately about parents who have fallen off their rope and done some horrible things to their kids. There are some really good things you can do for yourself and your child to prevent this from happening to you. Let’s form some knot-slipping strategies.
Words are powerful – It’s so easy to be hard on yourself and blame yourself for things that are not your fault. We can work together to identify the negative patterns in your speech and thinking and replace them with the good stuff! Build yourself up instead of tearing yourself down and you will be stronger for yourself and for your family.