Topic - Parenting

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We've gathered Psychotherapy Networkers most popular posts and arranged them here by topic.

Repairing the Father-Daughter Disconnect

Five Principles That Build Engagement and Trust on Both Sides

Cara Brendler

By Cara Brendler - Bridging the gap between fathers and daughters is one of the great challenges for family therapists. The most familiar dynamic we see is estrangement: fathers and daughters orbiting in separate worlds, each invisible to the other. Here are five approaches that I’ve developed and used throughout the years that have proven to be effective in many situations like this.

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Intimate Enemies

A Stepson Reconsiders a Long-Held Resentment

Barry Jacobs

By Barry Jacobs - A lot of blended families don’t really blend: the new “relatives” at first try to join together, but then they quietly distance themselves, however awkwardly, as differences and conflicts emerge, even as they try to pretend otherwise. My stepfather, Steve, and I made no such pretense—we were enemies from the start.

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Effectively Treating Eating Disorders Is a Matter of Life and Death

What Needs to Happen in the First Session

Sandra Wartski

By Sandra Wartski - Any therapist who's worked with eating disorders knows that treatment can be a rocky journey. While it can be unpredictable, scary, and slow, my work with one client helped reinforce my optimism that recovery is possible.

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Promoting Positive Caregiving

Helping Clients Escape Negative Cycles in Caring for Aging Parents

Barry Jacobs

By Barry Jacobs and Julia Mayer - The bedraggled, beleaguered, and bereft family caregivers who come to us for therapy have a common litany of complaints. They feel overburdened by caregiving tasks, unacknowledged by those they’re caring for, and unsupported by family members who take their herculean efforts for granted. Here's how to help them approach the caregiving experience more positively.

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VIDEO: Attuning to Reluctant Teens

Getting Through to Shut-Down Kids

Dan Hughes

Most therapists are aware of the perils of trying to connect with teenage clients. Teens are often brought to therapy against their will by adults, which can make them especially unwilling to let therapists in. And don’t talk to them like kids--they’re too old for that. But don’t bore them with stereotypical “therapist talk” either--they’re expecting that. So how do therapists relate to teens without seeming patronizing, clueless, or invasive? Therapist Dan Hughes explains...

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The Remarriage Triangle

Working with Later-Life Recouplers and their Grown Children

Patricia Papernow

By Patricia Papernow -  Later-life recoupled families are appearing more and more often in therapists’ offices. Although divorce rates have dwindled in the United States over the last two decades, they’re soaring among people over 50, along with rates of remarriage. However, these later-life recouplers face many of the same challenges that younger stepfamilies do, complicated by the long-standing networks of relationships that come with this life stage.

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The Risk-Taker’s Advantage

Are Today's Parents Too Overprotective?

Michael Ungar

There’s now consensus among social scientists that children in developed countries have never been safer. But the new normal is a growing pattern of overprotection that I’ve seen emerging as one of the thorniest clinical issues for therapists because it can look so reasonable. Rather than insisting that parents change their behavior and supervise their children less, I focus on how they can give their kids opportunities to experience the manageable amounts of risk and responsibility needed for success.

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Expanding Your Therapeutic Presence with Self-Compassion

Moving Beyond Mindfulness by Embracing Our Suffering

Christopher Germer

With the rapid proliferation of new therapies for every possible difficulty in life, it often seems that we’re trying to do the impossible---eliminate basic human suffering. But suffering doesn’t seem to go away, no matter how many therapies or self-help strategies we employ. When we’re overwhelmed with intense and disturbing emotions, such as shame, just noticing what’s happening is often not enough. We need to embrace ourselves. Self-compassion allows us to do this. It means treating ourselves with the same kindness and understanding with which we’d want to treat someone we truly love.

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The New Family Attachment of Parenting Adult Children

Martha Strauss on the Merits of Enduring Connection with Our Adult Children

Martha Straus

Just a generation ago, the child-rearing contract was clearly designed to last for about 18 years. By the time we'd finished high school, it was more than reasonable for our parents to assume that we'd move out and one way or another start to stand on our own two unsubsidized feet. But today, growing numbers of the emerging adults (and parents) I treat are trying to stay deeply connected, rather than separate from each other. These days, I'm working to support them, rather than to challenge their dependence.

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Raising Healthy Children Through Parent Communities

Strategies for Raising and Disciplining Children in the 21st Century

Ron Taffel

On top of losing faith in a secure future, mothers and fathers deal with everyday dilemmas that make a joke of traditional rules and childrearing practices. Unfortunately, many therapists still seem to believe that reliable solutions to the problems families face can be readily found in standard evidence-based protocols. But mental health workers underestimate the importance of having people discuss ordinary concerns on their own turf---in churches, synagogues, and community centers. There’s nothing like understanding that you’re not alone to raise the spirits and strengthen the spine.

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