Parenting & Co-Parenting Counselling Services In Singapore
Parenting is one of the few things in life that is so extremely challenging yet so beautifully fulfilling. As parents, we are given the duty to ensure that our children grow up to become strong and well adjusted members of the society. From teaching them how to walk, talk, toilet train, to nurturing them to develop skills and values that are critical for survival. Being a parent truly isn’t easy.
Often, we find ourselves feeling burnt out, frustrated and extremely fatigued. Sometimes, we may even feel like we are failing our children as parents. Raising children is a lifetime commitment that not only comes with countless milestones and achievements, but endless hurdles too. Parenting can get overwhelming and we may not always have the best solutions for our family at the tip of our fingers. Without a strong and positive support system, parenting can quickly take a toll on your mental and physical wellbeing.
Moreover, parenting resources and advice that is widely shared by our loved ones can be a double-edged sword. While some of these parenting tips work, many of them don’t. We may even find different information on the same topic that contradict each other. Every child is different, and each parent has their own parenting style.
Common Issues In Parenting
Parents experience varying challenges with their own children. Some of these challenges may be specific to the stages of the child’s development, while others stem from other causes. Nonetheless, these are some of the common issues that many parents face during parenthood:
- Handling Tantrums
Children throw tantrums when they are emotionally overwhelmed. Children often throw tantrums because they have yet to learn how to regulate and express strong emotions. This often happens when they don’t get what they want, or when they are feeling tired and moody. Often, tantrums are harder to control in public, especially when there are many other people around. While every parent deals with their children’s tantrums differently, it is important for us to use healthy and positive techniques when calming them down.
- Aggression (In children, and yourself)
Having to fulfil so many responsibilities at once, we may tend to find ourselves going into an “auto-pilot” mode of sorts. During such times, we may find ourselves losing control momentarily and acting impulsively. This may cause us to snap and respond with aggression or violence whenever we feel overwhelmed, which almost always causes devastating consequences. It is critical for us to remember that our children are always watching and learning from us, and it is our responsibility to teach them that violence is never the answer.
- Not having enough time
All of us have 24 hours in a day. As if raising a child isn’t already difficult enough, many parents need to balance their time at home and at work. After having spent most, if not all, of your time and energy at work, parents have to go home to even more. As parents, we are expected to find time after work to clean, cook, spend time with our children and on top of it all, we still need to set aside some time for ourselves. Often, we may feel like it is almost impossible to fulfil all of these responsibilities in just 24 hours.
- Unrealistic Expectations from the Child
Sometimes, as parents, we develop unrealistic expectations and project them onto our children – even when we don’t realise it. With good intentions, we tend to be overly protective of our children and expect them to abide by every single rule that we have made for them. At times, we may even find ourselves comparing them with other children, who seem to be progressing and achieving much more. However, it is our job as parents to learn and accept that each child develops and functions differently. And that’s perfectly fine.
- Consistency in Parenting Style and Behaviour
Inconsistent parenting can lead to many problems that may affect your child’s development. . As much as possible, parenting should be kept consistent in terms of the rules and limitations that you set, which should be reasonable to both you and your child.
Tips on Improving the Parent-Child Relationship
A healthy parent-child relationship allows you to share both good and difficult moments with your child. Growing up, many children find it difficult to be heard and understood by their parents. As a result, many children tend to avoid their parents and hide things from them. While it may not be easy to listen to your child’s stories about their struggles or experiences without bombarding them with lectures about life, it is important to just sit down and listen to what they have to share once in a while. Sharing a supportive and loving relationship with your child is vital for their development. Here are some tips on how you can improve your relationship with your children: .
- Show your love as much as possible with eye contact, warm expressions, and encourage honest and real interaction
- Give them positive affirmations and say “I love you” as frequently as possible
- Set healthy age-appropriate boundaries, limitations, and rules
- Be mindful of what you say to the child, listen, and empathise
- Play and spend time together to understand your child in a distraction free environment
- Eat most meals together, and create weekly or monthly rituals of outings and events with your child
- Be present
How Parenting Counselling Works
Parents are one of the most influential people in a child’s life. This makes it all the more important for you to be equipped with the necessary skills and support system for you to be able to raise your children to the best of your ability. Being able to cope with and overcome the challenges of being a parent is crucial for you and your child’s development.
Counselling for parents provides you with a safe and non-judgemental space to talk about your doubts and struggles of being a parent. Our therapists, many of whom are parents themselves, are extensively trained in helping parents cope with stress and parenthood. Getting professional help when you need it is one of the best things that you can do for your child.
Counselling for parents, whether you are a single parent, new parent, co-parenting or just someone who needs a little extra support, can also serve as a platform for you to =tackle your personal issues and ensure that they do not affect your children.
At Incontact, we believe in creating a warm and loving environment for you and your children to develop and grow alongside each other. Our therapists are trained in adopting various different approaches that will be beneficial for you and your child, based on your specific needs and interests. We believe that every child and every parent is unique, and we are here to support you in your parenting journey in every way possible.
If you or someone you know needs a little extra support in their parenting journey, contact our mental health professionals who can help you. Book an appointment with us for an online or in-person counselling session today.
Remember, you can only give your best to your children when you are at your best.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: When should I seek help?
A: There are a few symptoms that tell us that we are struggling. If you or someone you know is experiencing many of the symptoms listed below, consult a mental health professional as soon as you can. Book an appointment with us for either an online or in-person counselling session. These symptoms may include:
- Feelings of hopelessness in life
- Loss of interest in activities (even those that were once pleasurable)
- Increased fatigue
- Changes in sleep patterns including insomnia and hypersomnia
- Feeling irritable
- Changes in appetite and weight
- Uncontrollable emotions
- Having suicidal thoughts and ideations
Q: Can I go for Parenting Counselling if I am a single parent or co-parenting?
A: At Incontact, we welcome all of our clients with open arms. Whether you are a single parent, co-parenting, a new parent, or a parent who just needs the extra support, our therapists are always ready to provide you with the help that you need. We provide a safe and non-judgemental space for anyone who needs it to express their struggles, and our therapists are here to guide you with ways to deal with them.