In This Article
In This Article
Becoming a parent is typically one of the most rewarding and satisfying experiences people can have, but raising children can also be highly challenging.
Parental support is defined by some as “parental behaviors toward the child, which indicate to the child that he or she is accepted and loved, such as:
Parents are expected to do so much: In addition to giving their children basic parenting care and love they need, a good parent must also set boundaries and teach their children the rules of the family and society they are expected to follow.
At the same time, a parent must also learn to take care of their own needs to avoid burning out.
Based on the level of attention given by a parent to their child and their communication styles, there are broadly 4 different parenting styles:
Each style comes with its own set of challenges and that’s where parental counseling can help.
Parenting counseling, also referred to as parenting therapy, can offer the tools and knowledge that make this responsibility much more joyful and less demanding. In parenting counseling, a parent learns how to respond to certain everyday challenges.
As a result, they can see a change in their behavior as well as their children. A good therapist supports and encourages parents so that they can begin to trust their parenting skills.
A parent counselor also provides a non-biased, outside view to problems that a family is facing. Because of these benefits, parenting counseling is recommended to all parents.
Parenting counseling can be done with an individual parent, both parents, and in a group setting. New parents, recently divorced parents, and parents of special needs children typically greatly benefit from the support that other parents can give to them.
Also, a group setting can make parents see that they are not alone with their struggles. Counseling that is given to an individual or a couple, on the other hand, can be more individualized than therapy in a group setting.
Occasionally, parents may want to combine these two types of support or seek out additional services to address all their concerns, such as:
It offers parenting education, communication training, support, and information about the resources that are available for parents and children.
Although such counseling is recommended to all parents, it is more common for parents to look for parenting counselors if they are faced with some kind of challenge. Many difficult parenting situations or parenting issues might make a parent feel forced to seek assistance in the form of counseling, such as:
As a subset, there could be cases where the child grew up in a traumatic environment where even the brain development was affected to a degree. Therapeutic parenting style can help in such cases but if that’s not possible, then counseling may be required.
All of this can make the job of parenting more challenging and you may end up asking yourself, again and again, the same question - what is good parenting after all?
Parenting therapy naturally aims to teach parents good parenting skills, but in addition to solving parental issues, good therapy also teaches parents self-care skills that are needed to avoid burnout.
This is especially important for single moms and dads who are often saddled with heaps of extra responsibilities.
Some parents are reluctant to come to parenting counseling because they think that it is their child that needs to be “fixed.” Regardless, every parent can improve their parenting skills.
Even if their child has behavioral problems, parental counseling or parental help will begin with the parent because they have the greater potential to make significant changes in the well-being of the family. Focusing on a child alone may not be enough.
Some parents are afraid to start parenting counseling because they are concerned that the therapist is going to judge them or accuse them of being a “bad parent.” This is not the case.
A good therapist is there to support and guide the parent. They are not there to work against a parent or to make a parent feel bad about themselves.
It takes time to change the family dynamics or the way individual people in the family behave. It will also take time to learn to implement new knowledge and skills.
Thus, it is not advisable to go to parenting help sessions or counseling for parents and children, thinking that parenting problems will be fixed overnight.
You must look for a therapist who is trained and experienced in parental therapy if you’re considering going to parenting counseling. This individual might be a clinical psychologist or a mental health counselor.
Make sure that this person is licensed in the area where they are practicing. If your child exhibits problematic behavior in areas outside the home, your therapist may want to see some documents from your child’s school that demonstrate this.
A good way to begin searching is by asking for recommendations or search online for “parent counseling near me” and start shortlisting from there.
Be prepared to answer a long list of questions to help the counselor understand the dynamics with your child and your individual personalities before he or she begins to offer parental advice.