Your child’s OCD doesn’t stay neatly in its lane. It involves everyone around them, especially their family. It will try to get family members involved in their compulsions. It will use family as a tool to grow OCD. Knowledgeable family members get this. That is why family members will often pull back their accommodations and their entanglement in growing the OCD. When family members pull back, it is common for OCD to feel the rage of not being fed. This might overcome your child or teen in that moment. In this week’s Youtube video I talk to kids and teens about how to handle the anger that comes when family members won’t accommodate their OCD and how to see the long term benefit of this type of support.
So many parents ask me, “How can I stop my child’s compulsions?” The quick answer is, you can’t. You can stop your participation in them, but you can’t force your child to not do compulsions. And even if you can, it isn’t going to bring your child long term success. In this week’s AT Parenting Survival Podcast I address this common question and explore what parents can and cannot do to help their kids with OCD.
One of OCD’s most powerful weapons is the threat that if the compulsion is not done, something bad will happen. This will look different for each person depending on their theme, but the overarching message is, your worst fear will come true if you don’t do what I want. In this week’s Youtube video I am teaching kids the idea of OCD magical thinking and I explore how they can entangle themselves from this threatening relationship.
How our kids talk to their OCD can make or break their long term progress. Do they argue, debate or try to distract themselves from OCD’s banter? Or do they outsmart OCD accepting the thoughts or even sarcastically agreeing with them? In this week’s Youtube video I talk to kids and teens about how to talk to OCD in a way that will propel their progress.
Having a child with anxiety or OCD can be a challenge, but when it impacts eating, it can become a major health issue. Many kids with anxiety or OCD struggle to eat for many different reasons. In this week’s AT Parenting Survival Podcast I explore common core fears that drive restrictive eating and what you can do if your child has ARFID (Avoidant Restrictive Food Intake Disorder) or is working their way towards it.
One of OCD’s most powerful weapons is the need to know things for certain. This can happen in so many OCD themes. . OCD convinces you that you won’t feel relief until you know *for sure*. The only problem is we’ll never be 100% certain about anything? So, in this week’s Youtube video I talk about how to handle OCD’s taunts about uncertainty and how to push back with your own powerful weapon – acceptance.
As therapists, we teach people with OCD to accept their intrusive thoughts without doing compulsions. We might even suggest that they sarcastically agree with their OCD thoughts so they don’t fall into the trap of arguing with OCD. But what if OCD uses those skills against them? What if OCD tells them that because they are able to accept or even sarcastically agree with their intrusive thoughts that somehow they are true? In this week’s Youtube video I talk to kids and teens about how OCD can try to outsmart them and how they can stand their ground.
Our kids with anxiety or OCD will often have moments of fear and avoidance. What we do in those moments can have a big impact on their long term success. In this week’s AT Parenting Survival Podcast I talk about how to turn some of those fearful moments into an opportunity to sit in discomfort and walk towards fear.
Often our kids with anxiety or OCD have BIG emotions. These emotions can be exhausting or overwhelming for us to handle. In this week’s AT Parenting Survival Podcast I talk about how to shift our perspective when these big emotions show up and how to turn a dark moment into an opportunity for growth.
There are two ways to approach OCD. The first is to align with OCD and appease, negotiate and listen to the rules it dictates. The world outside of OCD is the problem. The second is to recognize that OCD is not a friend, confidante or protector. It does not dictate rational rules to keep you safe or comfortable. It is the discomfort maker. In this week’s Youtube I am talking to kids and teens about this and asking them, which way do they want to see OCD?
As parents we want to encourage our kids with anxiety or OCD to move towards their fears and discomfort, not away from them. But how do we do that? In this week’s AT Parenting Survival Podcast I talk about the small steps we can take to help our kids move towards their fears. I also talk about effective ways to offer encouragement and instill the feeling of success.
It is not uncommon for our kids (and us) to worry about worrying. They might wonder: What if my anxiety or OCD grows bigger? What if I am not able to go to school or get a job? What if I can’t find happiness? Feeling worried about their future can impact their present. It can also rob them (and you) of any energy they might have to meet these struggles head on. In this week’s Youtube video I talk to kids and teens about how to handle their fears of the future, while making progress in the here and now.
OCD isn’t always about fears, sometimes it is about feelings. A feeling of incompleteness is common in OCD. One way OCD shows up is in the feeling you didn’t “catch it all.” You might have a feeling of incompleteness or it might trigger other themes like, “am I lying if I said I read this?” Or “will something bad happen if I don’t reread or rewatch this?” This can cause people with OCD to read and reread lines, paragraphs or chapters. It can make people rewind and rewatch videos over and over again. It can make you ask people to repeat themselves or explain themselves over and over again.
You finally found help for your child with anxiety or OCD but they don’t want to work on it. Now what? That can be beyond frustrating! Especially if it took you a long time to connect with the right resources or help.