Parent Coaching for Defiance
All children and adolescents display defiant behaviors at times. As parents we may even want our children to challenge the status quo or authorities for certain reasons. That said, defiance becomes disruptive when there is a regular pattern of hostility, anger, regular irritability, unruly behavior and vindictiveness, and therefore results in problematic interactions with others. Frequent conflicts can result in impaired functioning in the family system and in the social and academic environments.
How can a parent coach help a parent support their defiant child?
While parent coaches can not diagnose disorders such as Oppositional Defiant Disorder or Conduct Disorder, they do collaborate with your treatment team to understand your child's unique makeup and therefore help you to understand how to best address situations that may arise. Children and adolescents exhibiting defiant behavior often have a need for control or a history of feeling disempowered, which leads them to find power in unhealthy ways. A coach will help you look, from a strength- based perspective, at what your child may be looking to gain through their behaviors and guide you to help your child feel in power in healthy ways. Your coach will help you create systems that define where responsibility, power, and control lie within the home and to develop responses that engage age-appropriate choice, critical thinking and collaboration. Your coach helps you to shift your interactions, responses and household structure to better support your child physically and emotionally as they manage the complex process of navigating the emotions that may lead to defiance.
How can a parent coach who may be resistant to treatment or coaching recommendations?
A parent who has exhibited defiant behaviors may struggle to be open to treatment recommendations and to work with a coach in understanding how their own behaviors or emotions may be affecting the family system. Coaches work to meet parents where they are in understanding the fear or need for control in particular situations and help parents to find a path that can work for them and their goals for the family system.
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