Parenting Support
& Family Therapy

When you thought ahead to parenthood, you may have imagined laughter with your kids over dinner and fun outings as a family. You pictured relationships that were loving and joyful.

You didn’t bank on epic meltdowns over turning off video games, an anxious teen refusing to go to school, your own level of stress being so high, or your patience being so low. You didn’t anticipate your child having needs that are so difficult to cope with, such as being extremely sensitive, easily frustrated or inflexible. It is understandable that you are finding the reality of parenting more complex and challenging that you expected.

You want to feel close to your child. However, you may notice that your fatigue and your own intense emotions affect the way you react. You want to be patient, but some days you are just at the end of your rope.

All parents certainly feel that way at times. However, many children are born with more sensitive and spirited temperaments. You may have noticed from an early age that your little one struggled to deal with change and transitions or to regulate emotions. Or, perhaps the challenges started more recently. I am drawn to working with families experiencing these particularly difficult interactions with their children.

My philosophy is that we must always start with connection. I teach strategies to parents that help them strengthen their bond with the child, which can be frayed by the conflict or stress. These strategies involve teaching you, as the parent, actual therapeutic techniques to use with your children, so that you can effectively help them to feel soothed and calm. Once your child feels understood and validated, their behaviours often de-escalate, and then we can start problems solving with kids and teaching them new skills to regulate their emotions.

The children who are struggling the most also need the greatest empathy, unconditional love and support. They crave feeling connected to the adults who are able to keep them safe and guide them in the right direction. Their relationship with you is more important than any other in their life.

I am here to cheer you on and celebrate your accomplishments, or validate the frustrations. There is no judgement or criticism, just support and guidance to help your family life feel more peaceful, calm and fulfilling.

"A child whose behaviour pushes you away is a child who needs connection before anything else."

- Kelly Bartlett