Parenting in stressful situations – how to use it as an opportunity for growth

This is a really lovely article in the Metro that all parents should read and we can all learn from! To have a read, click on the link above the picture. 

The angle is focused on parenting during the pandemic but the tips provided by Tina Montreuil, (assistant professor, department of educational and counselling psychology, associate member, department of psychiatry, and director of childhood anxiety and regulations of emotions (c.a.r.e.) research group, McGill University) are applicable to parenting during any life stressor – whether that be due to separation/divorce, financial worries, or grief.  

The parenting philosophy here is similar to that expressed in popular parenting books such as “The Whole Brain Child“, “No Drama Discipline: The Whole-Brain Way to Calm the Chaos and Nurture Your Child’s Developing Mind” and “The book you wished your parents had read“.

We also found that invalidating childrenĀ’s emotional expression or ignoring or dismissing the childĀ’s emotions contributed to poorer emotion regulation skills in children, and that such less-supportive parenting practices were linked to anxiety in adulthood. When parents themselves match or exceed their childĀ’s emotions, they also offer less adaptive emotional coaching.

Parents may have heard the airplane safety tip to always don oneĀ’s own oxygen mask before helping a child: the same applies with emotional regulation.