REVIEW OF RECENT COURSE:
UNDERSTANDING TRAUMA AND BEHAVIOR IN CHILDREN
My sincere thanks to all who attended the recent course I offered entitled Understanding Trauma and Behavior in Children – Effective Strategies for Parenting with Love! I hope your lives were enriched as I was enriched and moved by each of you! Together we are strong!
I am posting a testimony from one of my course participants. It not only sums up this course very well, but relates how this participant has gained a new view of working with families and children. Read on!
“Although I consider my kids to be well behaved and managable, I felt the need to take this parenting course. Being a pastor in an impoverished area and interacting with kids from all backgrounds, this course was necessary. I was able to learn how to not only improve my own parenting skills, but also share with my wife and have a greater positive impact on the lives of the children in the church and local community.
I learned there are multiple traumas that can affect children, such as, physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, adoption, bullying, pre and peri-natal birth trauma, etc. Research shows that children can retain these types of trauma in their memory. These memory states are broken up by leading trauma specialist, Dr. Bruce Perry as, cognitive, emotional, motor, and state memory. Traditional ways of raising children are ineffective when rearing children with diagnosed disorders and trauma histories. I listened to the experiences of other parents and heard how devastating the most minute situations can be for these children and families. It is crucial for children with trauma to have a consistent routine and a loving and nurturing environment.
Parents of traumatized children must use various strategies to maintain a safe and healthy home environment to be successful within this family dynamic. Techniques such as taking long breaths (theraputic breathing), walking away from the situation (regaining self-regulation before addressing the issue), calmly speaking (presenting the caregiver as the regulatory factor in the interaction), positive reinforcement (modeling positive behavior while empathizing with the child), respecting personal space (remaining with the child instead of isolating him and understanding that physical space or closeness has the ability to insite and/or calm the highly sensitive child, and how to use this wisely), are excellent ways to work to secure a reciprocal relationship with troubled kids.
I have also learned that parents need a strong plan and outlet to relieve some of the overwhelming stress felt from raising their children. I learned parents need to consider the child’s present state of mind in the moment, connect with that child at their current functioning levels, and connect the behavior with their child’s trauma in order to better understand what is driving the underlying behavior.
I have used these parenting strategies with my own children throughout these ten weeks with wonderful success! When my oldest daughter is particularly upset we sit and breathe deeply together. I can remember to speak lovingly and calmly to my son even when I am upset over his behavior. I have an enhanced ability now to really listen and connect with my youngest daughter as she struggles to express what is important to her. I also have exercised the “walk away for a few minutes to regain my own calm” method when I felt upset and wanted to use my old conditioned parenting responses. I have experienced first hand how viable these techniques are, and how they enrich family life and interaction.
This course is well presented! It opened up my understanding to new and different methods in effectively understanding and treating children and adolescents of any age, including interactions with other adults! This course has given me another avenue in which I can relate to parents with children with behavioral difficulties.
I strongly recommend that every parent, at some point, take this course. A course which will enrich and strengthen their family!”
Pastor Roy E. Cook
Thank you Pastor for sharing your heartfelt experiences with us. I am glad you have gained so much!
Contact Deborah for updates to this and other courses and private coaching services offered from Together At Last Family Support.