Parenting in the 21st century is challenging. We are raising our children in a world that, in many ways, didn't exist, when we as parents were children.
- Electronics like cell phones, gaming systems, downloadable movies, apps for just about everything, Facebook and so on create different parenting issues.
- More complex families with blended families, step families create challenges as new families are created. Blending families together makes for clashes of parenting styles, and huge adjustments for children and parents alike.
- The world is increasingly fast paced. Children tend to be very "booked" with teams, lessons, activities and clubs. Parents are increasingly concerned about children's safety. It can be more difficult to spend quality time being a family even though we may more involved in our children's lives than ever before.
Children need roots and wings. Children crave a stable base from which to explore their world. Children also seek to try new things and have support from their parents as they gradually move towards greater independence as they grow older. Finding ways to help children feel stable and securely loved is vital. Finding ways to let our children know we believe in them and trust them to venture out takes courage and confidence from both parent and child.
Parenting can be a challenge because parents have their own insecurities and personal challenges that can interfere with the important tasks of parenting. Without intending to, the need to look after oneself can interfere with the ability to parent in the way a parent wants to be with their child.
Children can be difficult to understand. Children are like sponges that never reach full saturation when it comes to a parent's energy. Children can tax the patience of the most patient parent, can make the calmest parent angrier than they can remember, and can have parents struggling to figure out how to connect and love the child. Children go through stages where it can be difficult to "like" them, even though the love remains.
Sometimes it just makes sense to have a calm, caring, and capable presence help a parent and child understand what developmental stage the child is in, what the dynamics are, and to generally "cool the temperature of the relationship down". A therapist can help unlock the unhealthy patterns between parent and child, creating room for each to be more themselves in a constructive way.