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Divorce counselling Educational Psychologist Midstream Centurion Pretoria

Konflik tussen ouers wanneer hulle ouerskapstyle verskil

Konflik tussen ouers wanneer hulle ouerskapstyle verskil

(Saamgestel deur Dr. Marisa van Niekerk, vir publikasie in Vrouekeur)

Dit is inderdaad so dat die meeste ouers gewoonlik sê dat hulle in die beste belang van hulle kinders probeer optree. Maar daar is ‘n kinkel in die kabel en dit is dat die “beste belang” verskillende betekenisse vir ouers het.

Paartjies praat, voordat hulle ‘n verbintenis aangaan, oor belangrike dinge soos godsdiens en politiek, en of hulle kinders wil hê of nie, maar hulle praat nie oor die tipe ouers wat hulle wil wees nie.

Ouers besef dit nie, maar dit is meestal hulle verskillende ouerskapstyle wat die bakleiery ten opsigte van dissipline aanvuur. Die ouers wat die meeste bots, is die ouers wat te outoritêr, of te instemmend is. Wanneer mense tot ‘n verhouding toetree, bring elkeen sy eie waardes vanuit sy kinderdae saam. Dit beteken egter nie dat dit die beste manier is om jou kinders groot te maak nie. Die geheim lê daarin om met mekaar te kommunikeer en mekaar in die middel te ontmoet.

Slaaptyd is ‘n aspek wat groot gevegte tussen ouers ontlok. Hoe kan ouers mekaar by die kwessie van slaaptyd in die middel ontmoet? As Pa byvoorbeeld wil “sleep train” en Ma kan nie die geskree uitstaan nie, moet Ma probeer om uit die huis te wees (of in ‘n ander vertrek met ‘n toe deur en dalk besig om badwater in te tap), of selfs met pluisies in haar ore.

As dit ‘n ma byvoorbeeld grief as sy tuiskom (nadat haar man na die kinders moes kyk) en haar kinders is aan die slaap in die ouers se bed, kan dit in ‘n “wen” situasie vir albei omskep word as die pa die kinders na hulle eie beddens toe dra.

Ouerskapstyle: Ouer teen ouer, of ondersteun ek my kind oor hoe om op te tree en probleme op te los?

Huwelike is ooreenkomste tussen mense van verskillende familie-agtergronde. Bogennoemde kan lei tot spanning tussen ouers. Een ouer mag byvoorbeeld baie spraaksamig wees teenoor sy kind terwyl die ander ouer stil en gereserveerd is. En raai wat? Albei style is goed genoeg!

Dit is die verskille oor besluite wat ouers moet neem (ten opsigte van hulle kinders) wat die probleem is. Een ouer glo byvoorbeeld dat sy kind swaar gestraf moet word as hy jok, terwyl jok nie vir die ander ouer so ‘n ernstige oortreding is nie. Hier begin ouers baklei oor wie nou eintlik “reg” is, en die effek op jou kind is as volg:

  • Die situasie maak dat ‘n kind onseker en onveilig voel (ongeag sy ouderdom);
  • Baie kinders begin sulke situasies gebruik om hulle ouers te manipuleer;
  • Die fokus verskuif van die kind en sy swak / verkeerde gedrag en opvoeding na ‘n bakleiery tussen die ouers.

So ouers, hou op om voor jou kinders te baklei. Dr. Phil sê dat om voor jou kinders te baklei, is niks minder as mishandeling nie.

Divorce counselling Educational Psychologist Midstream Centurion Pretoria
Verskillende ouerskapstyle kan lei tot konflik voor die kinders

Gevolge van botsende ouerskapstyle is die volgende:

  • ‘n Kind raak verward tussen dit wat reg en verkeerd is, van wat hy moet doen en hoe hy moet optree en die vraag van wat nou die “eintlike” reëls is;
  • ‘n Kind word een of albei ouers se vertroueling, omdat sy ouers veld trek teen mekaar. So ‘n kind voel verantwoordelik vir die konflik tussen sy ouers en ontwikkel skuldgevoelens wat hoegenaamd nie veronderstel is om te gebeur nie;
  • As die ouers gereeld in konflik is, kan ‘n kind as gevolg daarvan angs en/of depressie ontwikkel – weer eens as gevolg van die verwarring en die skuldgevoelens wat hy ervaar;
  • ‘n Kind kan begin om een van sy ouers “af te gradeer” en homself met die ouer te vereenselwig wat volgens hom die beste styl het en / of die een wat vir hom die meeste voordele gee;
  • Uiteindelik is die kind se siening van homself in gevaar as gevolg van die toutrekkery wat hy tussen sy ouers veroorsaak;
  • Die kind word ‘n slagveld tussen die ouers in plaas daarvan dat hy in sy ontwikkeling deur sy ouers ondersteun en begelei word;
  • As volwassenes voel hierdie kinders negatief teenoor ‘n huwelik, hulle kies baie maal om self nie kinders te hê nie of, nog slegter, hulle herhaal die sinnelose patroon van om met iemand te trou met ‘n ouerskapstyl wat radikaal van hulle eie styl verskil en sodoende herhaal die hele negatiewe proses van voor af;
  • ‘n Kind vanuit ‘n huis met baie konflikterende ouerskapstyle mag depressie of angstigheid as volwassene ervaar, omdat die voortdurende konflik sy psige negatief beïnvloed.

As jy voor jou kinders baklei plaas jy jou drang om te ontplof bo dit wat in die beste belang van jou kinders is. Jou kinders gee nie om wie reg is nie, hulle wil net hê jy moet ophou om met jou maat te baklei. Dr. Phil sê verder dat net jy jouself kan beheer. En vir ouers wat hiermee stry vra hy die vaarg of hulle voor hulle base of in ‘n restaurant voor vriende sal baklei. Dan maan Dr. Phil met hierdie woorde “Maak die keuse om jou impulse te beheer”.

Ouerskapstyle: Is daar ‘n positiewe kant?

Indien verskillende ouerskapstyle korrek hanteer word, is daar ‘n positiewe kant. Wanneer ouers bereid is om te kommunikeer en mekaar meer in die middel te ontmoet, het ‘n kind die geleentheid om in die praktyk te sien hoe daardie verskillende ouerskapstyle mekaar kan aanvul en komplimenteer. ‘n Kind kan leer dat daar baie maal verskille tussen ouers is, net soos wat daar verskille tussen mans en vrouens is.

Kom ons kyk na die volgedne voorbeeld: Kevin is ‘n 12 jarige seun en sy beste vriend het hom uitgenooi om saam met hom en sy familie te gaan visvang. Hulle gaan by die see visvang, wat ‘n paar ure se ry vanaf hulle tuisdorp is. Kevin benader sy ma eerste en haar onmiddelike reaksie is nee, omdat sy bang is dat dit te gevaarlik is.

Daarom besluit Kevin om sy pa te benader, omdat hy moontlik makliker sal toegee en vir Kevin sal help om sy ma van besluit te laat verander. Sy pa dink dat die visvang-kans ‘n goeie geleentheid is en dat dit pret sal wees. Sy pa sê egter dat hy nie dadelik ‘n antwoord kan gee nie en dat hy en sy ma eers sal praat en dan saam ‘n besluit sal neem.

Wanneer Kevin se ouers praat, identifiseer hulle vereistes waaraan voldoen moet word. Die vereistes sluit in dat hulle met die vriend se ouers sal gesels sodat hulle die detail van die planne kan bespreek. Kevin se ouers wil ook uitvind wat die veiligheidsmaatreëls vir die visvang is en maniere waarop hulle in kontak met Kevin se vriend se familie kan bly, vasstel. Nadat daar aan die vereistes voldoen is, besluit Kevin se ouers om hom te laat gaan.

In bogenoemde voorbeeld sien ons dat Kevin van die begin af geweet het hoe sy ouers sou reageer en hy het hierdie kennis gebruik om te probeer om die situasie te manipuleer om in sy guns te tel. Uiteindelik het hy nie tussen sy ouers gekom nie, maar net ‘n beroep op beide gedoen van wat hy wou hê. Sy ouers se slim gedrag het tot gevolg gehad dat hulle opponerende kampe bymekaar kon kom en die probleem kon oplos.

So ouers, plaas jouself op die agtergrond en jou kind se ontwikkeling op die voorgrond en bring jou en jou maat se opponeredne kampe nader aan mekaar om saam ‘n wenspan in die dissplinering van jou kinders te word.

 

Bronverwysings:

http://www.whattoexpect.com/playroom/playtime-tips/rough-and-tumble-play.aspx

http://www.todaysparent.com/family/relationships/different-parenting-styles/

http://www.empoweringparents.com/when-parents-disagree-10-ways-to-parent-as-a-team.php

http://www.twoofus.org/educational-content/articles/compromising-when-you-have-different-parenting-styles/index.aspx

School readiness assessment

School readiness assessment

Frequently asked school readiness assessment questions, by parents

Nowadays you will hear professionals rather talk about “readiness to learn than school readiness.

What determines a child’s readiness to learn (school readiness)?

  • His ability to focus and concentrate. The kind of activity on which the child needs to concentrate on plays a role here.
  • The child’s own motivation to learn. Parents and factors beyond the child can influence this.
  • The child’s state of health. A healthy child has more energy and is thus more capable of learning.
  • His emotional maturity. An emotional stable child learns easier.
  • A child’s intellectual ability. Though some children learn more easily than others, a child with an average intellectual ability can be successful in school.

When does readiness to learn (school readiness) start?

  • Readiness to learn (school readiness) starts in the mother’s womb and it is an ongoing process.
  • A child is always ready to learn new knowledge, skills and behaviour.

Above mentioned stresses the role of the parent and teacher to provide appropriate opportunities and activities for the child to learn.

Is school readiness assessment is really needed or am I wasting my time and money?

 Yes and yes again. This is why a school readiness assessment, by an educational psychologist, is needed:

School readiness assessment
School readiness assessment

The school readiness assessment is:

  • objective;
  • formal;
  • done by a professional person;
  • detailed, which contains both an intellectual and emotional part.

A school readiness assessment provides information of the level of development of a child.  Problems are highlighted through a school readiness assessment and can be addressed in time.

School readiness is also done by school teachers. Why should I, as a parent, choose an educational psychologist to do the school readiness assessment?

The school readiness (learning readiness) tests by teachers are usually screening tests. These tests are effective and very helpful in screening a child to determine whether he is ready to learn (school ready) and to identify any problems and / or areas of development in the child. These tests take more or less between 45 to 60 minutes and are in small groups of children, between 4 and 10). If any area is suspected as a problem and / or gap in a child’s development and if you want to determine your child’s emotional level, read further:

Only an educational psychologist is allowed to use psychometric tests to determine a child’s intellectual ability (including an IQ test) in his level of readiness to learn (school readiness). An educational psychologist is further qualified to assess your child emotionally in order to determine whether he will be emotional ready to learn (emotional level of school readiness). This assessment takes more or less between two to four hours and is done with only one child at a time. A school readiness assessment by an educational psychologist is usually divided between two morning sessions. Parents receive a formal written report from the educational psychologist.

References: Dr Susan le Roux (Educational Psychologist); The Reception Year: Learning through play. Drs Reda Davin and Christie van Staden.
Teacher training and development workshops in South Africa

Teacher training and development

Teacher training and development: Introduction

Teacher training and development is not something that happens at the start of your career only.  It is an ongoing process, especially in our modern-day world.

Being a teacher is not easy.  It takes a lot of hard work and dedication, and even so, it can sometimes be a thankless job.  Teachers face a lot of challenges in their daily work, and even pre-primary and primary school teachers face difficulties dealing with discipline, and abnormal behaviour in class. Read more

bullying workshops for teachers

Bullying workshops for teachers in South Africa

Bullying workshops for teachers

Are you a school principal dealing with bullying or other behaviour problems / issues at your school.  Maybe you are part of the school governing body at your child’s school, and have heard about the problems with bullying facing our schools. Read on to see how educating end empowering the teacher’s at your school can help to solve this issue, through practical on-site bullying workshops for teachers in South Africa.

Bullying workshops for teachers: Introduction Read more

Trauma therapy after death

Trauma therapy after death and loss

Trauma therapy after death and loss: Introduction

Death is well known as one of the top three traumas that a person can experience. When a person close to you dies, the impact of the shock affects you as a “person in total”. “Person in total” means that it can affect every part of your life (or at least some parts).  For this reason, it is recommended that a person seeks trauma therapy after death, or a loss.

Trauma therapy after death and loss: Person as a whole

Examples of the various parts of a person are:

Emotional being
– anxiousness / aggressiveness / having a bad feeling in your stomach / dry mouth / hypersensitive for noises.

Physical state
– without any feelings / alone / shocked / guilty.

Social state
– irritated between people (even between friends) / withdraw into yourself / want to be left alone.

Thoughts
– confused / forgetful / problems to concentrate / dreaming / feels the presence of your loved one.

Behaviour
– sleeping problems / restless / change in eating patterns / tearful / avoid memories of your loved one.

Trauma therapy after death and loss: Do and Don’t

How to handle a grieving person:

DONT’S
– talk too much (to hide your own uncertainties);
– say things like: * God has picked the most beautiful flower in the garden; *
– your’e parent was old, it’s not so bad;
– things will get better;
– pull yourself together;
– handle your friend different from what you did in the past (he has a need to be treated as normal).
DO’S
– Just be there: give a hug (don’t say anything, because you are probably as stunned as the grieving person himself;
– visit the grieving person again in future (he’ll need you even more than now);
– let him know on special days, for example his loved one’s birthday / Christmas, that you think of him (not just a once off);
– invite your friend for a coffee / nice outing (keep on asking – even if he refuses to go; tell him that you really want to have coffee with him);

Trauma therapy after death and loss: what’s next

In my next post, I will talk about 7 ways to deal with your own grieving process.

Keep well!

Seven hints for a grieving person

Seven hints for a grieving person

Seven hints for a grieving person: Introduction

Grieving people are usually concerned about their feelings and experiences. They wonder: Am I normal? What is wrong with me?  So here are seven hints for a grieving person.

Seven hints for a grieving person: Dealing with the changes

As discussed in a previous post, a grieving person may experience a lot of changes and feelings throughout his body as well as in his relationships with other people. These physical-, social-, and emotional changes (see a previous post) are normal. If you are going through the immense pain of the grieving process, print out the following seven hints for a grieving person and read and remember it many times during your days:

1. You are loveable even when you are a confused mess.
2. Crying is a gift.
3. Almost every thought, behaviour and feeling is normal.
4. You are not alone.
5. People are uncomfortable with grieving people.
6. No matter how bad you feel, you will survive.
7. It takes as long as it takes.

Mary Kelly Perschy

Trauma counselling Pretoria, Centurion, Midstream

Trauma counselling: Centurion Pretoria

Trauma counselling: Introduction

Is trauma counselling relevant in the 21st century, or in South Africa?  It is a shocking reality that trauma such as divorce, death, abuse, suicide, natural disasters, hi-jacking and housebreaking is part of our everyday lives.

Trauma counselling: how to recognise trauma

How do I know whether my child or member of my family is traumatised? Read more

Dealing with change Educational Psychologist

Dealing with change by a psychologist

Dealing with change: Introduction

If you are reading here, you are a human being and if you are a human being you certainly had experiences with dealing with change, or will experience a lot of changes in your life.

I meet a lot of people every day who struggle dealing with change and who wants to know how to teach their children to deal with change.

Adults, children as well as old people are all fighting a huge battle to cope with the changes that life brings us, AND we get scared and overwhelmed in trying to cope with these changes BUT most of us have to hold the pose in order to cope with the peer pressure and other people’s remarks about whether we do cope/or don’t cope with change. In this process, we even experience more pressure in order to cope with our changes.

I’ve read a wonderful practical book (which includes lots of pictures) “Who moved my cheese?” by Spencer (dad) and Christian (son) Johnson. It’s about dealing with the change of new circumstances. The book compares things that are changing in your life with a heap of cheese that is suddenly moved, leaving some “mice” confused. The story then tells the tale of how the mice deal with this situation.

Dealing with change Educational Psychologist
Who moved my cheese?

Dealing with change: Personality impact

Every person has different personality traits that can assist in dealing with change, for example:

– noticing change early;
– scrambling into action;
– denying fear;
– withstanding fear;
– adapt in time;
– see that change can lead to better things.The moral of the story is that change doesn’t mean bad things.  Change in this book brought a better life, better cheese that the mice could have ever imagined themselves to have and they got ten times more cheese and more variety than before.

Dealing with change: what is in it for you?

What can your magical cheese be?

Some important lessons that the mice teach us about dealing with change:

– Know the different parts of your personality.  Know your own strong and weak points.
– When you stop being afraid, you will start to feel good.
– Don’t cling to the old cheese (your job, school, city).  The sooner you will let go of the old cheese, the sooner you will be able to find new cheese.
– See a picture of your new cheese in your head.  This picture will help you to find the new cheese.
– Smell the cheese often, so that you will know when it is getting old.  This means to be able to stand aside and take a look at yourself and your situation, so that you could make changes if needed and not get stuck in your own old ways of thinking and doing.
– Move with your cheese and enjoy it, which means that life changes daily and you also change daily.  So, move out of your safe zone and start to enjoy the new things (there’s a big chance that it could be better than your old life!).

Dealing with change: Fun activity (make your own collage)

– Cut out at least ten pictures (use old magazines) that you’ve got in your head of your new cheese (example if I have to move to a new city I will cut out pictures of a smile; a second picture of me reaching out and talk to new people, a third picture of myself (writing next to it “You can do it!” or “I am proud of myself!”).
– Glue the pictures on a carton and make your own collage (it means using a lot of pictures to make your own personal story).
– Write words and/or sentences of motivation next to your pictures.Dealing with change Educational Psychologist
– Put it on a wall/place where you could see it every day.
– Take at least three minutes every day to look at your picture and imagine yourself doing the actions.
– Make it part of your day to think and re-think your new cheese.
– It will soon become part of your thinking and it will help you to start living these new positive ideas.
– Enjoy your new cheese journey!
– If you want to teach your children how to deal with change, talk to the them about change, what change means, what feelings both they, you and the rest of the family are having.  Every family member needs to put his own feelings into words.  If your child is still young (under six), use a story about dealing with change to explain to him what’s going to happen (for example when you move).
– Teach your child to enjoy new cheese and not to get stuck with the old cheese. 

If you are struggling with dealing with change, why don’t you try these fun activities, and join your fellow humans in dealing with change.

Discipline problems educational psychologist Midstream Centurion Pretoria

Discipline problems

Discipline problems: What if my child doesn’t like the sound of “NO”?

In her book about discipline problems “I just don’t like the sound of NO!” Julia Cook tells the story of a boy who tries his best to convince his dad, mom and teacher to change “NO” into “Yes” or at least into “Maybe” or “Later” or “I will think about it”.

Discipline problems: What to do

Cook gives the following tips for parents and educators when dealing with discipline problems:
1. If your child doesn’t take “NO” for an answer, and you as parent give in, you are rewarding him and he will learn that “NO” doesn’t mean “NO”…but it means “Keep Trying!”
2. It is important to always praise your child verbally whenever he accepts “NO” for an answer or when he disagrees appropriately. Important: The praising should be genuine.
3. When your child appropriately disagrees with you, reward his behaviour by actively listening to him.
4. When you give your child a reason for saying “NO” be to the point. A long explanation won’t be appropriate and won’t have results.
5. Parents can always explain their reasons at a more appropriate time when their child is calm.
6. Set clear rules and boundaries for children as well as reasonable consequences when they are violated. Important: Follow through with the set consequences.

Discipline problems: The key

CONSISTENCY therefore will be the keyword to you as a parent when dealing with discipline problems. The results that you will “reap” in being consistent will make the effort more than worth it. So, just go for it. You can do it!

Exam stress tips for parents midstream pretoria

Exam stress management

Exam stress management: Introduction

Few words can cause so much anxiety and stress than the word “exam”. The mere mentioning of the word can cause people of all ages from getting a good night’s sleep, and is some cases can even lead to more severe symptoms.

So what can we as parents do to help our children cope better with these stresses?

Below is some extracts from an article by Kerry Acheson, entitled “Coping With Exams: How Parents Can Help”. The full article is available from http://www.claremontpractice.co.za/newsletter-0913.html.
Exam stress
We know the following about exams:
Exams are stressful events;
Exams cause dread and a feeling of butterflies in the stomach;
Exams are inescapable;
Exams can cause anxiety, nightmares, stress and worrying.

Ways in which a parent can support his child with exam stress:

Support your child to gain more control over his exams by dividing his subjects into small tasks and to make exam notes every afternoon.  Keep the atmosphere at home as calm and quiet as possible.

Teach your child to be self-aware by observing his:
Ø thoughts
Ø feelings and
Ø body when he gets anxious.

Encourage your child to catch and replace negative thoughts.

Put up affirmation statements around the house, for example:
Ø I do my best every day;
Ø I take the exams one step at a time;
Ø I can do it;
Ø I achieve my goals every day;
Ø I am calm and relaxed.

Deep breathing exercises and/or seeing a peaceful scene in his mind can be effective in reducing exam stress and anxiety.  Also, help your child to develop a study schedule.

Exam stress management: preparation is key

A study schedule is made by:
Ø Calculate the available days for studying until the end of the exams.
Ø Estimate the needed hours of study.
Ø Divide the needed study hours between the days on the study schedule.
Ø Schedule the harder study times to the times of the day that your child is most alert.
Ø Review and adapt the study schedule along the way.
Ø Tick off each completed study session to gain a sense of progress and achievement.
Ø Encourage your child to have breakfast in the morning.

Exam stress management: On the day

On the day of the exam:
Ø Do deep breathing exercises;
Ø Calmly “imagine” the exam procedure;
Ø Use positive affirmations – tell yourself you will do well;
Ø If your child experiences “going blank” encourage him to do the breathing exercises and affirmations;
Ø Encourage your child to tell himself: “…it’s ok to be nervous, this will pass….”..

Mastering exam preparation is an art. It will take consistency from both you as a parent as well as your child to change his exam coping skills, and manage his exam stress.

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