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Counseling Helps Family Stress

Updated on March 27, 2013

Don't Wait, Nip It In The Bud

Raising kids today is very challenging. Sometimes there is a clash of ideas between husband and wife about raising kids and WHAM! A disagreement results into conflict. I think this happens more often than not.

We are all genetically, wired differently. I saw that from the very first day I gave birth to my girls who are now teenagers. My first one woke up at 5:30am with a curiosity to get out of the crib by 6am. My 2nd one slept with her blanket over her head til 8:30 am. The 2nd one does not like to wake -up and jump out of bed. I would say she is not a morning person. They say the first one is the trend setter with a lot of leadership qualities. That may be true. The 2nd child in my home rules the roost and is vocal about her every thought. She also the one whose temperment is volatile. She is sensitive to any form of criticism. Her tongue can be as sharp as a knife with nothing to spare when you get into any disagreement. This has been a source of pain as parents.

Living in a house with teen girls is a challenge. You have raging hormones, sports activities, social life, the importance of getting A's, looking good, looking thin, looking fashionable, Face Book, texting, dating, home comings, sleepovers...shall I say," It is STRESSFUL for them!!"

My husband, the only male in our household, doesn't understand, why (we)girls have to whine and yell so much. I have told him it is because we are girls.Teenage girls can cry and laugh within seconds and a parent can be left wondering, "What happened?" Just giving a glance at my daughter when she is not wanting to communicate can leave you speechless with her glare.

Finding A Solution Is Not Complicated, Just Time Consuming

I have always had strong interest in psychology. My husband laughs because I always manage to come up with a label from the books I have read. We have debated back and forth about our own observations and could not find a fair solution. We are not trained to counsel. However, I do think that 14 years of parental observation has some value. A counselor can dispel any notions and beliefs and clarify what parents think is going on.

Marriage and communication is hard when we are so busy. Often times parents are left not communicating except through emails and text at work. I can tell you things go amiss and are easily misconstrued. I know our tone is curt. The end result is hurt feelings, annoyance and thinking that neither one cares or respects. A marriage suffers because parents are not able to get across what they meant in a loving way.The kids get more stressed. Everyone's emotions get heightened.

Go With An Open Mind

I think the hardest part in looking for any therapist or counselor is finding one you can trust and relate to. The only way to find one is meet each one and interview them to get a sense if the person is a good fit. I would look at your insurance policy to see if there are any in your network. Then find out what your out-of pocket is. You don't want to get sticker shock. But check your insurance before booking any appoint. You will also need to know who is in your network, how many visits you have per calendar year and what your co-pay is.

There are social workers/ counselors and psychologists. I would call several and see if they specialize in family counseling. Some work with only children and or adults. The important thing is to find someone you feel you are comfortable with and someone your kids can relate to. Be sure to find a counselor who has availability when you can see her/ him. Many are so booked, you can't get in. Once you become established with someone, if a crisis emerges, you can usually be seen sooner.

It helps if your spouse is on the same page and willing to go. Our family communication had deteriorated. There was much needed improvement. It is great for kids to see that seeing a counselor can help resolve conflict. Sometimes, kids do not want to share their anxieties because they fear you will not be empathetic or they are embarrassed. Kids do not want to hear parental comments and criticism. Our kids at first did not want to go, but we explained to them it would be helpful to the family.

Counseling Helped Strengthen Our Family

It has been 1 year and I can say, Sarah at Fit Mind of Cleveland has done a fantastic job helping our family through crisis of raising kids and helped all of us communicate better. She has helped us look at things objectively. My kids really like her. She has a good handle of communicating with kids and can get them to talk about things that bother them.

With regard to marriage, she has helped my husband and I in the area of nurturing our relationship. All to often as parents, we do so much for the kids and do not do anything to nurture the marriage. Yes, there is hope. It isn't easy to agree to disagree. Respect for each other is big and a contributing factor to help each other. Patience to listen when we each speaks is helpful. You have to make time for each other. It can be as little as one hour a week together ( no kids), just to catch-up. You can do it over a coffee, a cocktail or even just a leisurely walk. Just do it!

How Would You Rate Your Experience?

5 stars for Fit Mind of Cleveland


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    • alphagirl profile image

      alphagirl 4 years ago from USA

      Hey jackie Lynnley, I am told the teen years are the most challenging. Living it is believeing. No book out there can give the exact advice. How old is your daughter now? Do you have a good relationship now?

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      It would be fantastic I am sure. I sure could have used some help raising my teen daughter, what a nightmare of a time with few good memories! ^

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      Sounds like Fit Mind has done some wonderful work for your family. We had six girls in our home and one boy -- the raging hormones were something for him to deal with also. Good post and interesting.