Helping Your Child Through Transitions | Part 5

Helping Your Child Through Transitions | Part 5

Aug 30

The Ultimate Transition Is Leaving Home

While seemingly a more painful transition for the parent the ultimate transition of childhood is leaving home.  We must as parents remember that this is what we are training for.  When I left for college my freshman year was awesome! I had no homesickness and being an extreme extrovert made friends easily. My sophomore year, however, was very different.  There were several circumstances that happened my first few weeks back on campus that made me feel very removed from what was going on at home and lonely.  All I wanted was to come home. My mom spent many hours on the phone with me those first few weeks back and I know consistently prayed for me.  My dad wrote me letters every day, he had done this the entire previous year as well,  but this second year those became a lifeline as I struggled emotionally those first few weeks.  The funk that I was in passed quickly but I know that it did because of the support of my parents.

It is important to continue to communicate your support especially through this transition of leaving home.  You may never know the impact that support has on your child!

 

Listen to today’s podcast for more insight on this topic.

 
Helping Your Child Through Transitions | Part 4

Helping Your Child Through Transitions | Part 4

Aug 29

Family Transitions

The transitions within a family can be difficult for any of us but can be devastating to a child. There are major transitions such as a divorce or death that obviously have to be worked through by all.  (click here for more on helping your child through a divorce) There are also good transitions that may be an adjustment for a child such as the birth of a sibling, a sibling leaving for college or moving out. The remarriage of a parent can be a major change for children as well.  (click here for our series on blending families)

Like we have stated earlier this week the thing that must be done through any transition but is especially important through big ones is communicate.  Pursue relationship with your child so you can observe where they are at emotionally. Family transitions can be busy times for the whole family so it is especially important that we are intentional to spend time simply listening to each other.

 

For more on this topic listen to today’s podcast.

 
Maintenance

Maintenance

Aug 29

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Helping Your Child Through Transitions | Part 3

Helping Your Child Through Transitions | Part 3

Aug 28

Social Transitions (new school, friends or church)

The social transition for a child may vary depending on their personality.  An extrovert may miss their old friend but the prospect of making new ones may be an exciting challenge.  Your introverted child however may really struggle with a social transition.  We have to know this as parents and pay attention to what each child may need individually.  Like we discussed previously one of our jobs through the transitions is to be available to listen as our children emote and work through the transition emotionally.  We have to be careful not to belittle what they are feeling or compare them to one another.  We have to keep in perspective that the challenge of a new school may not seem significant to us but it is our child’s whole world.  So statements like “This isn’t that big a deal” or “your sister…” can be crushing and alienate your child.  We must take the time to understand and help them through the big deal this is to them.  Another thing we can do as parents is to make sure that we create time for fun.  This is especially important for those times of transition in the social arena.  Finally, in a new social setting we can direct our child and help them process through making wise friend choices. We may have more input in these choices as friendships are budding rather then established.  But again this takes not only hearing about your child’s day but really listening.

 

For more on this topic listen to today’s podcast.

 
Helping Your Child Through Transitions | Part 2

Helping Your Child Through Transitions | Part 2

Aug 27

The Key Is Listening

Like we discussed yesterday most of us don’t like change, but for a child transitions in life may be difficult. They may include a move, the birth of a sibling, a new school, a new family configuration or a loss.  Watching our child work through a difficult situation can be even more difficult for the parent.  It is very tempting for us to attempt to rescue the child from the situation or “hover” as it’s happening.

We must realize that this training process begins with the parent.  First, we need to consciously let go and realize that this is a training process.  We need to allow any insecurity of the “new” and “different” work itself out.  What we can do actively is be there to “debrief” the situation.  Children and teens need to be consistently trained to communicate about what they are dealing with.  The age of the child will determine the type of communication role we take as parent.  With a young child we need to ask leading questions to help them understand the connection between their emotions and the situation.  With a teen we can be there and pursue relationship to give them a chance to open up about what they are feeling.

It is our job to always be there for our children as their support system and cheering section, but we are to ultimately point them to the One who will always be there to comfort and direct their path!

 

Listen to today’s podcast for more insight on this topic.