This being suicide awareness month, I just finished watching a Gathr at Home film - Tell My Story. In this film a father whose son died by suicide shares his journey of grief, understanding and bringing together information about why suicide continues to increase in causes of death, especially in children 12-24. And most importantly, what can parents do to prevent these tragedies.
Many parents I have met in past 19 years have blamed themselves for their child's suicide. They all believe that they could have done something. Maybe that is true. Maybe there are some things we can do as parents that would allow our children to know that their life is worth living and that the pain they feel can be talked about.
Being a parent whose child died by suicide, it was hard to watch this film and yet, it also brought forth information about what parents can do to be more supportive for their kids when they are hurting. I realized I could have done better with my son. My son, like many kids who suffer from depression, become very good at hiding his true feelings. As he got older, he turned to alcohol to deaden the feelings. I tried to connect with him, but I really didn't know how and was often afraid to see him feeling so bad and I didn't know how to make it better for him.
I have been playing with the concept of acknowledgement, I find myself automatically labeling what I am acknowledging as good, more so than as bad. Being of a curious nature, I began to ask what that was all about. What was GOOD about that experience, that choice, or that situation? What does good really mean?
As I explored further, I found that by going beyond GOOD, I found a treasure of information that I could connect to on a more energetic and empowering level. Come journey with me as I share a few examples that I have had as well as what my clients have shared with me.
When you see that your child could use some advice, how do you get them to be receptive to you? Are they eager to hear what you have to say? Or do they put up walls and shut down, or go immediately into defending themselves? This is actually a very natural response, when confronted about something that isn’t working out.
You will find that your child will be more receptive if you approach them in a way that doesn’t put them in defense mode and instead will get them to be more receptive to you through listening and sharing with you. (no more eye rolls!)
How do you do that?
Online Schooling means having the kids at home for school lessons. This can certainly be a challenge. Parenting is a challenge and while we usually do not ask for more challenges, what if this is an opportunity for something great to happen? I have heard plenty of parents complaining about the inconvenience and the hardship that they anticipate having their kids home for schooling will create. I have also heard parents approach this new adventure to help their child face a new challenge and work together to figure it out.
Which parent are you?
Did you know that you do not have to go it alone in this new challenge? What if you AND your child looked at what needs to be done to make this work? What if you were both willing to continue to try things to see what will create the best outcome? If you are making yourself the sole decision maker, you are missing out on empowering your child to take ownership of their learning and developing a team effort that includes both of you.
Questions you can ask of you and your child:
Note from Be You Parenting: It doesn't really matter what time of year it is, getting kids outside can sometimes be a struggle for parents. If you are looking for a variety of ways, not to mention reasons, to encourage your kids to get outdoors the following article gives you a complete list of ideas. The article was shared with us from Courtney McNally. Tag this article as a resource to return to refresh your ideas and to share with your children the many ways that they can grow, learn and thrive by being outdoors.
Garden Activities for Children
Children need to be raised in a healthy, balanced way. To achieve this balance, it’s essential to create activities for kids that help improve their mental and physical health. In this article, we’ll examine the benefits of introducing children to outdoor activities and the numerous ones available. So, if you are a parent looking for ideas with which to engage your kids, then read on.
Do Kids Listen to You?
Parents and adults often wonder why kids won’t listen to them or do what is asked. If you have experienced this, it can be very frustrating and you can find yourself getting angry with the child as well as with yourself.
When we are confused and frustrated it often means that we don't have enough information. So how do you get information that will allow a person to listen and act according to what you desire? The solution to getting more information is to simply ask a question either of yourself or of the child when a child is not engaged in listening.
I recall working with two boys on their reading comprehension. One of the boys noticed one of the keys to success that I had posted on the wall above me. He asked me what the key meant. The key had the words, "You are Awesome!" on it. I asked him if he was awesome. He shrunk back and sheepishly said, "No I don't think so." The other boy who was with him also said that he, himself was definitely not awesome. I was so surprised by not only their words but their body language as both boys became so much smaller.
After playing with them a bit and asking some questions about what would make a person awesome and what were their specific gifts, both boys were able to state with confidence that, 'Yes I am Awesome!" repeatedly in my presence. One boy talked of his gift of knowing all about dinosaurs and how proud he was of all that he knew about them, especially after I shared that I knew only a little about dinosaurs. The other was keen on his gift of drawing and how he could make stories of his drawings. It was a joy to see them expand out of their smallness and into the awareness of their own greatness.
As soon as mom showed up, the boys went back to being small and they saying that they weren't awesome. Interesting huh?
Submitted by Laura Pearson
Keeping your kids engaged and learning outside of the classroom is challenging at times, even for the most creative moms and dads. However, there are ways to raise the bar on informal education, and it doesn’t need to feel difficult or unwieldy for you or your children. In fact, with the following ideas incorporated into your strategies, you might find it feels quite natural—and even downright fun!
It is that time of year where we look for the perfect gift to give to our loved ones.
What if there were a gift that you could give that would not only be the BEST gift you can give but also the gift that allows you to receive more than you may have ever thought possible?
While your loved ones may not be formally asking for this gift, I know that in their hearts, it is what they would truly like, even love, to receive from you. And they may not thank you right away for this gift, but in the future, they will look back and be grateful that you chose to give them this gift.
This gift requires more than a shopping trip, it will require a deep desire to truly want to deliver this gift all year long.
What could this gift possibly be, that would be so fulfilling and even life changing?
The holiday season is a cause for joy for many reasons. There's time with family and friends to enjoy, presents to give and receive, and festive food to indulge in. Kids, in particular, get excited about this time of year, especially about the presents. As a parent, however, meeting the expectations of your little ones can be daunting. Surveys suggest that many moms and dads worry about being able to fund their children's wishlists. If you find yourself stressing about this point, follow this guide to budget-friendly gifting for kids.
Mary shares her desire to create different possibilities for families and individuals who are looking to live a more conscious and aware lifestyle. BE YOU Parenting is for parents who want to BE all that they truly BE and to allow their kids the same privilege.