"After a particularly difficult period with our toddler, it was a relief to find help. Rachel's knowledge is vast but she tailored it to our specific situations. We left more confident with many tools in our toolbox. I really appreciated the combination of scientific research and emotional intelligence she brought to the table. She took a wealth of information and boiled it down into usable strategies that we never could have gotten from all the parenting books in the library!" -mother of a 2 and 3 year old
Please call Rachel at (307) 732-0413 or Contact us for individual consultations to discuss your personal parenting challenges. Customized group classes are also available upon request.
Overview I believe that the most important jobs of being a parent fall into two categories:
To love our children unconditionally, accept them for who they are, and delight in their presence.
To teach our children skills to develop into kind, respectful, contributing, and thriving adults.
In some moments these jobs come easy: our kids are filled with contagious joy and hilarious antics. In other moments it feels as if we are climbing Mt. Everest to get there. We feel as if being a parent should come naturally; yet no one told us about...
the emotional turmoil we can find ourselves in when interacting with our children,
the loss of control we might feel,
the lack of ideas about how to respond to our kids’ challenging behaviors,
or the fears we might have about who our kids will turn out to be.
These are all a normal part of being a parent. And sometimes it’s nice to talk to someone to help us normalize our experience and guide us toward skills that can help bring more harmony into our family lives. Talking to a professional doesn’t mean there is something wrong with you or that you are a bad parent. It means that you care deeply about your family and you want the best for your children. It means that you see the value in being proactive about maintaining strong relationships with your children, relationships that researchsuggests lead to positive outcomes for your children. Today’s fast paced world where we are bombarded by busy schedules, extra curricular activities, the drive to “succeed”, technology and media, and exposure to the “adult” world at an earlier age does not make our job any easier.
So take a leap and dive in. Call Rachel to schedule a free 20 minute phone call to explore your needs and how I can guide you toward a thriving family who can weather the emotional storms that will inevitably arise when we love and live closely with one another.
How it works
1-hour sessions meeting in person or over the phone/Skype
Weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly
Discuss family dynamics; explore tools, strategies, and ways of relating; practice at home. Rinse and repeat as needed.
Rachel is there to support you through the process and fine tune as needed.
Families explore topics such as:
Parenting from your values - Explore your values, goals, and desired outcomes as a way to direct your parenting decisions. Consider where you are in your family life, and where you want to be - then discuss strategies that will help you get there.
Creating a parenting plan - It is easy to slip into old habits, forget family agreements, or give in to our children’s protests. Systems and routines help us stay on track so that we can be consistent and fair, and guide our family toward more harmonious relations.
Behavior- What is your child’s behavior communicating? Is his/her behavior developmentally appropriate? Which behaviors do you delight in and which do you find challenging? Explore ways to support your child in developing kind and respectful behavior, while meeting his/her developmental needs.
Reasonable expectations - What are your children developmentally capable of? Using brain science and child development research, Rachel will help you understand the developmental reasons behind some of your children's behaviors so you can respond in a way that supports their development.
Brain science - The brains of children and young adults function in a different way than those of adults. Understand the brain science behind your child’s behaviors and ways to support their developing brain.
Parents’ own strong reactions - Let’s be honest and normalize our experiences: we all lose it with our kids sometimes. Explore tools we as parents can use to be present for our kids’ strong emotions and model, and thus teach, emotional regulation and anger management.
Self-care and the balancing act of parenting - The cliche of putting on your oxygen mask before you put on your child’s is so true in being a parent. We cannot attend to our children’s emotional needs or hold them accountable if we ourselves are drained. Explore what you need to truly be present for your children and teach them skills for long term development.
Co-parenting - We all come from different backgrounds and have different demeanors, approaches, and tolerances. Whether together or separated from your parenting partner, it helps to align yourselves in a consistent approach.
Discipline- If discipline means “to teach”, how can we teach our children skills for their long term development in times when their behaviors are challenging. Explore ways to teach our children in ways that move beyond punishments, bribes, threats, and rewards.
Individual family challenges - bedtime battles, morning routines, homework hassles, back-talk, social pressures, pushing boundaries, not helping out in the home… bring in your individual challenge to work through with Rachel.
Working with Rachel can help parents understand the world from their children’s perspective so that they can understand their children’s behaviors, and feel empowered to react in a way that supports their children’s development. Rachel emphasizes the importance of a strong parent-child relationship, and the importance of relating to a child with sensitivity and empathy while at the same time establishing boundaries and limits that teach the child kind and respectful behavior. There is no one right way to parent. With this in mind, together with Rachel you will share ideas, discuss concepts about parenting and child development, and explore strategies that feel good for your individual family's personalities, values, goals, and needs.
Learn more about Rachel’s philosophy and approach here.
Think about it this way… As a goalie you can get thrown into the net with no preparation and no protective equipment while the offense who has moves you’ve never seen before shoots balls or pucks at you relentlessly from every angle. You try to defend the shots as they come but you have no training and no plan. You don’t know what to look for, where to look, or how to cut off the shooter’s angle.
Or, you can get the protective padding, the face mask and mouth guard, the goalie gloves; you can study the game, the players, and their moves. You can come up with ideas or a plan - if the player approaches from this angle, you know where to go. You have a coach who has taught you skills so you feel prepared and confident.
Now I don’t believe our kids are intentionally shooting at us or trying to win the game. Manipulationand the attempt for power are manifestations of deeper needs. However their behaviors throw curve balls, penalty kicks, and blinding shots our way at times, and it sure does feel nice when we feel calm, cool, collected, and prepared to meet their shots. Using courage, empathy, and faith in ourselves and our children we can often tame and diffuse their shots so that after time perhaps their shots don’t feel so wild, unpredictable, unmanageable, or personally threatening.
You may already feel like the experienced goalie, and if so, good for you! If you don’t, which approach feels better to you?