“How do I get my child to stop throwing a tantrum every time he doesn’t get his way?”
“Why doesn’t she understand that I want to help, but I don’t know what she wants when she screams?”
“When will my kids stop fighting with each other and start enjoying family time?”
(These are just a few examples of the questions parents ask me when their child is in therapy, expecting the results to be linear, immediate, and maybe a bit magical.)
Quick answer: (there is none)
Real answer: coping kits + time.
So what is a coping kit? Well, pretty much how it sounds! It’s a box (or a bag) filled with items that helps your child manage and communicate with you about difficult emotions. These items can be store-bought things, such as a sand timer, bubbles, or a fidget toy, or they can be things you create with them, like self-affirmation cards, a “coping-catcher” paper game, or a list of supports.
Here are some store-bought ideas (check out this post for materials you can create):
When I work with my kiddos, one of the most important parts about their treatment success is caregiver involvement. The more you show them you’re on their team, the more they feel supported and able to work towards change.
What are some resources that work for your child? Let us know!
See Part 2 to get ideas for materials you can make with your child as a fun activity or (probably much needed) one-on-one bonding time.
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