Counseling and Therapeutic Services

  • Parenting Styles

    Every person has a different parenting style. Think back to when you were a kid, your parents probably had a different style than you. Each style can have a positive and/or negative impact on your child. There are four different parenting styles: Authoritarian, Authoritative, Permissive and Uninvolved.

    Authoritarian Parenting Style:

    • Parents are controlling, strict and not nurturing.
    • They have stern discipline and punishment for their child not following the rules.
    • Parents have high expectations with little flexibility.

     Impacts of Authoritarian Parenting:

    • Children become less independent and often unhappy.
    • Children become insecure with low self-esteem.
    • Poor academics and social skills in children with behavioral problems.

    Authoritative Parenting Style:

    • Parents are responsive and show both strictness and warmth.
    • Parents create clear rules and expectations.

    *Try creating a rule chart in your home, make sure to include the whole family*

    •  Parents have appropriate and open communication with their children.

    Impacts of Authoritarian Parenting:

    • Children are happy and independent with good self-esteem.
    • Children grow up to be responsible adults with good mental health.
    • Children develop social skills and achieve academic success.

    Permissive Parenting Style:

    • Parents are caring but not strict with rules.
    • Parent-child relationship is friendly with open communication.
    • Parents have low expectations of their child.

    Impacts of Permissive Parenting:

    • Children have poor self-control and are unable to follow rules.
    • As adults, children develop egocentric behavior and have relationship problems.
    • Children take decisions instead of following rules.

     Uninvolved Parenting Style: 

    • Neglectful parents show neither strictness nor warmth.
    • No specific discipline strategy and lack of communication.
    • Parents have no expectations of their children.

    Impacts of Uninvolved Parenting Style:

    • Children are impulsive and have difficulty managing their emotions.
    • Children develop mental health and behavioral problems. 

     

    Try this quiz to identify your parenting style: CLICK HERE!

      

    Positive Reinforcement

    Positive Reinforcement:

    Parents can reinforce their children’s behaviors utilizing praise, rewards, extra privileges etc… It can be easy to not identify your child’s  positive behaviors when you have multiple responsibilities and roles. Using positive reinforcement will enforce appropriate behaviors, encourage and motivate your child to be responsible. 

    Behavior Charts: 

    Remember when your child was potty training and you used a sticker chart to encourage them to go? Well, behavior charts don’t need to stop there. Behavior charts can be utilized for:

    • Appropriate Behaviors in School

    Ask the staff for a daily or weekly update on their children’s behavior. You can also add an additional section for attendance. 

    • Appropriate Behaviors at home/community

    Identify key inappropriate behaviors and create a chart that is specific to the child. 

    Examples: Fighting with siblings, using profanity, not coming home at curfew 

    • Personal Hygiene Chart

    Parents sometimes have difficulty with getting their children to participate in self-care habits. 

    Examples: Showering, brushing their teeth, use deodorant 

    • Chore Chart 

     These charts are examples of easy low-cost things you can do in your home to increase appropriate behaviors and provide positive reinforcement. 

    *Don’t forget to include the whole family in creating a chart*

    Rewards:

    Each child responds to different motivators. It’s important to inquire what rewards would motivate your child. Children respond well to immediate gratification however, it may not be financially realistic for your family. Immediate gratification would be presenting a reward immediately following the positive behavior and/or the same day. You can utilize free or low-cost rewards for your child. 

    Low-Cost Reward Examples:  ice cream, verbal praise, stickers, extra time on a video game, extending a curfew, movie night, pizza, park, game night, sleeping in

    It would be helpful to include your child in the choice for positive reinforcement as it will encourage them to be an active participant in their rewards. If a child has appropriate behaviors coinciding with the chart for a week or a month these are some rewards examples. 

    Weekly/Monthly Reward Examples: monetary reward, gift card, special outing, a video game/movie, car privileges, redesigned bedroom, new book, new clothes, hobby items

    Verbal Praise:

    Verbal praise is one of the most important positive reinforcement tools for parents. It can be easy to encourage your child to clean their room or wake up on time. However, most of the time parents can forget to specifically reinforce a positive behavior. In order to remind yourself to praise your child daily, set up an alarm on your phone or write a small reminder for yourself. Sometimes parents think that they have specifically praised their child for a behavior but the child is unaware that they received praise. 

    Examples of Verbal Praise: 

    “Bryan, great job cleaning your room.”

    “I didn’t notice you took the garbage out, thanks for helping me.”

    “ I really like when you come home on your curfew it makes me less nervous about where you are.”

    “I saw you got up on time for school today, that’s awesome.”

    *Don’t forget to specifically address the behavior*

     

    Consequences and Discipline

    Natural and Logical Consequences:

    Children’s inappropriate behaviors need to be specifically addressed in the moment that the incident has occurred. There are two types of consequences: Natural and Logical. 

    Natural Consequence:

    Occurs without any help from the parent.

    Examples:

    If a child doesn’t put on their gloves, they will feel cold.

    If a child doesn’t wake up on time for school then they will be marked as late.

    If a child does not do their homework then they will fail the assignment.

    Logical Consequence: 

    Involves action taken by the parent. The logical consequence should have a cause-and-effect relationship to the child's behavior. It should be related back to safety or helpfulness.

    Examples: 

    If your child is up playing on their phone after their bedtime, take away the phone for a day.

    If your child doesn’t come home on curfew, move the curfew up. 

    If your child doesn’t wake up for school on time then they can’t go out with their friends after school.