Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Therapeutic parenting, right upside my head

You know when you’re super busy haughtily judging someone and it hits you... hard... right upside the head... that you do the same thing? Yeah, it hurts, and helps.

If you’re a therapeutic parent (by choice or not), you are supposed to be therapeutic for your child, the victim. Yes, you are *A* victim of trauma, but your child is *THE* victim. It’s VERY hard to parent these kids, but imagine how much harder it is to BE these kids.
A&T Network says Therapeutic Parenting is "the type of high structure/high nurture parenting that is needed for a traumatized child to feel safe and start relaxing enough that they begin to heal and attach.”
I suck at it, but I keep trying.  High structure is doable, but high nurture (with little "emotional return") is excruciatingly hard.  But either one, without the other, is useless.  

Some days I rock, but some days I forget the “for a child to feel safe” part and focus on the “for the mom to not be exhausted” part or the “for the mom to be pitied” part. Oh, those aren’t in there. That’s right. I’m not the victim; I’m the victims’ mom.  I’m an adult capable of understanding how abuse and neglect affect brain development, which affects behavior.  I'm able to (on most days) discern that my children’s behavior is not about me, but about their past.  Their past hurts much more than my present.

Today I needed this. I needed to cut short my pity party and grab a can of suck-it-up. If you need a can, please help yourself. And then help your child.

I think I’ll have another…


MRK said...

You had me at "and focus on the 'for the mom to not be exhausted' part or the 'for the mom to be pitied' part. This is so me these days. Once upon a time I rocked it more often. I need another can of that.

ttlyeightmom said...

I could use a case of that right now! Especially " the for the Mom not to be exhausted flavor"!! Some days I think more about how long until bed time then How much can fill their little broken hearts!

JennyV said...


JennyV said...

I love it !!!!!!