We will all fall short sometimes and so will our children with anxiety or OCD. They will avoid, they will crumble, they will give in to their anxiety or OCD. That is all par for the course. More often than not they will view these situations as “failures.” They might beat themselves up or use the experience as evidence that they can’t do it again.
Summer is here and with that comes extra free time for most of our kids with anxiety or OCD. You would think that would be a wonderful thing. Less pressure from school, homework and peer interactions. Less places to be and less things to do. But for some of our kids that extra downtime can actually increase their anxiety or OCD issues.
It’s hard enough to parent a child with anxiety or OCD, but when your own mental health issues are added to the mix, it can be all-encompassing. But it’s not all bad. Having your own anxiety or OCD issues can help you be a better parent to a child with anxiety or OCD.
It is so tempting to try and rationalize with our child’s OCD. It’s a knee jerk reaction that most of us do at some point. We might try to problem-solve their OCD issues away. We might try to bombard them with facts. We might try to convince them that their compulsive behavior won’t do what OCD says it will do.
How often do we hear from family, friends, and even doctors that we should “wait and see” if it gets worse. We should wait and see if the anxiety or OCD grows bigger. We should wait and see if anxiety or OCD becomes debilitating. We should wait and see if it is truly an issue.
OCD can be stigmatizing enough, but when you add sexual themes it can add another layer of guilt and shame. It can also make parents and even therapists uncomfortable! How are you supposed to deal with a sexual intrusive thought that makes you squirm? What if your child’s lack of motivation is due to the embarrassment over the content of their thoughts?
Many kids have fears of animals and insects, but for some it can dominate their lives. They might worry about seeing the feared animal or insect. They might go out of their way to avoid an encounter. It might be an all consuming fear that impacts the things they love and enjoy.
There are many things that can put a strain on marriages. Once the honeymoon is over it can be a struggle to agree on finances, household chores and parenting. When anxiety or OCD is in the mix it can make a hard situation even harder.
Helping Kids with “Pure O” and Mental Compulsions Many kids have what some people call “pure O” or purely obsessional thoughts. But more often than not those obsessional thoughts are quieted by a menu of mental compulsions that go along with it. So what is a parent to do if their child is doing unseen mental compulsions? I explore “Pure O” and mental compulsions in […]
As parents, we all struggle with our children’s tech use. It seems like most kids have their heads buried in their phone, computer or game console. But what if it goes deeper? What if they are using technology to avoid their anxiety or OCD? What if they are using tech to do compulsions? Or what if tech is part of what is actually growing their anxiety?
OCD is often like whack a mole. Just when you get one OCD theme under control, BOOM, another one creeps up to take its place.
How the Inhibitory Learning Model Changes OCD Treatment OCD approaches are constantly evolving and changing. This is in part due to the wonderful, ongoing research around OCD. In recent years we’ve seen a growing number of OCD therapists incorporate ACT, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, into OCD therapy. We’ve also seen more clinicians embrace the Inhibitory Learning Model approach and have seen practitioners adapt ERP (Exposure […]
PSP: 253 Helping Kids with Anxiety Reframe Anxious Thoughts Anxious thoughts grow, build momentum and turn into an avalanche of overwhelm. But what if kids with anxiety were taught how to stop the mental chaos before it grew out of control? What if they were able to reframe their fears and calm their mind? When kids have anxiety, one of the most powerful tools at […]
Conscious Parenting with Sue DeCaro Parenting can seem overwhelming and exhausting. But when you look at it through the lens of conscious parenting, it can offer some hidden gems. Parenting can tell us so much about ourselves. It can offer us insights that we might not have gotten otherwise. Our kids can also be our teachers. They come with so many gifts if we allow […]