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Coping with the terrible twos and beyond
They say it's the toughest, the most difficult and the most rewarding job in the world.
While Bette Davis was famous for saying that, "Aging ain't for sissies," she might as well have been talking about parenting. As parent and non-parent alike knows, it's not for the faint of heart.
Once parents have survived the terrible twos, they're faced with a tempermental 'tween, and a few years later, a testosterone-filled young man who thinks Mom and Dad are the village idiots.
For parents facing any of these scenarios, the good news is that help is just a workshop away.
On Monday, June 16, the New Life Community Baptist Church will host a free parenting workshop, led by Dr. Frank Groenewold, a counsellor with 30 years counselling experience. The former school principal has worked with a wide range of children and teens, including young offenders. While semi-retired, he still maintains a part-time counselling practice and is working with residential school survivors.
"Unfortunately, children don't come with instruction manuals, it's tough for parents who don't have any family support or anyone to bounce ideas off of," said Marita Rosenlind, pastoral assistant and care team co-ordinator for the New Life Community Baptist Church."You may be blessed as a parent and have really good children and only have a few problems, but for other parents, the challenges can be overwhelming and leave you with a really lonely feeling."
Rosenlind said that the church wanted to provide some tools because it recognized the unique challenges parents face in today's stressful, fast-paced environment.
"Often parents feel alone with few back-up resources to use as a sounding board. We believe the workshop will offer tools to help parents strengthen and deepen their relationships with their children for life."
For Groenewold, at its core, a strong parent-child relationship is all about developing a strong sense of self, in both parent and child.
"You can't create a strong relationship with others if you don't have a strong sense of self," he said.
Like generations before them, today's children and youth are dealing with alcohol and drug issues. But unlike generations before them, today's children also have to contend with ever-advancing technological changes including social media.
"There's lots of anger out there; lots of cyber-bullying going on," Groenewold said.
A byproduct of being inundated with a 24-hour news cycle is increased stress, in both children and adults.
"The world seems to be out of control and this has a domino effect, it impacts kids," he added.
In the June 16 workshop, which runs from 7 to 9 p.m., a variety of topics will be covered, including the fundamentals of communication, what impedes communication, and nine ways to talk to kids.
"We know every parent wants their child to reach their maximum potential," Rosenlind said. "We hope to help parents learn to avoid the common parenting mistakes that cause or worsen their childrens' behaviour."
The workshop includes time for questions and answers and also a list of resources.
While the workshop is free, seating is limited. To register, call 250 748-6521 Ext. 64 or to go www.newlifechurch.ca/register.
What: Free parenting workshop
When: Monday, June 16, 2014
Where: New Life Community Baptist Church, 1829 Tzouhalem Road.
To Register: Call 250 748-6521 Ext. 64 or register online at www.newlifechurch.ca/register