How to Help Kids with OCD Checking Behavior It starts off with a little nag. Did you do it? Are you sure? The uncertainty grows. The nagging impulse grows. Check! Check again! Until eventually the child caves and checks. But OCD checking behavior is a trap. Mental quick sand, I like to call it. It catches people in a vicious loop that they can’t get […]
Moving our Kids with Anxiety or OCD from Dependency to Resiliency We all do things for our kids. But there comes a time when we do too much. We inadvertently send a message that they are not capable of doing things for themselves. Ironically this directly impacts their ability to independently fight their anxiety or OCD. In this episode of the AT Parenting Survival […]
Helping Kids Realize that Avoidance Grows Anxiety & OCD One of anxiety and OCD’s favorite behaviors is avoidance. Avoidance grows these struggles quicker than any other behavior. Anxiety will whisper, “just don’t go.” OCD will plead, “just don’t touch it.” The more our kids avoid (and the more we help them avoid), the bigger these issues grow. In this week’s kids YouTube video, I talk […]
Helping Kids with OCD Realize Reassurance Can be a Compulsion The compulsion is disguised as reassurance. You think you are talking to your child, but you are really talking to OCD. “Will I get sick if I…” “Am I a bad person if I…” “Do I have a fever…” “Did you touch that?” “Can that hurt me…” “What if I called you a bad name […]
People think OCD is about germs or neatness, but many don’t realize that OCD can cause images to get “stuck” in a child’s head.
This isn’t about seeing something upsetting and worrying about it. This is about a particular image, scene or character literally “stuck” in their head.
In this monthly series on the AT Parenting Survival Podcast, I interview parents from the AT Parenting Community as part of our member spotlight. In this month’s episode, I talk to Tiffany as she shares with us her trials and tribulations of raising a child with OCD. She discusses how she learned her son’s tics were really OCD compulsions and the struggle she had finding a professional skilled in treating OCD.
You make the appointments. You drive your child each week. You hand over your credit card. But how do you really know if your child’s therapy is working. What should you look for? What are some red flags? Therapy can be time consuming and expensive, so it is important you know you are on the right track sooner rather than later!
Motivating Kids by Asking, “What is Anxiety or OCD Ruining for You?” It can be hard to motivate kids to work on anxiety or OCD. It can be a hard sell to tell them that the more they do hard things, the easier it will become. Anxiety or OCD can be demanding and convincing. So how are we supposed to motivate our kids to work […]
Parenting a child with OCD can be overwhelming and lonely. The first Tuesday of every month, I am highlighting a member of the AT Parenting Community. We can learn from the real stories of others living a life, similar to ours. In these stories we can see our own.
No one will get it. They’ll think you are crazy. Your thoughts are ridiculous. You better keep them to yourself.
Anxiety and OCD’s most powerful weapon is shame and secrecy. That is why the very first thing I do with kids is normalize their anxiety and OCD. Right after that I let them know anxiety and OCD’s favorite tactic…secrecy.
Sometimes it just seems impossible. Beating anxiety or OCD seems like an insurmountable task that is not worth taking. This is especially true for our kids. When just getting them to do their homework or eat healthy is an uphill battle, how on earth can we encourage them to take steps towards their fear?
You are not alone. That is the main message from my new segment on the AT Parenting Survival Podcast called, Member Spotlight Segment.
One of the biggest struggles parents have is motivating their child to work on OCD. Who can blame them? Working on OCD can be extremely difficult and overwhelming. But, there is a tool in the toolbox that many parents haven’t explored – that’s ACT.
My daughter stands over the balcony. “I’m scared. I can’t sleep.” I look up at her little body. “Brave face!” I encourage. She sighs and then strikes her brave face power pose. Her head held up high, her arms on both hips, her lips pursed and eyes ready for battle. “Good!” I say. “Now what do you need to tell yourself?” She holds her pose and says the words I was hoping she would say, “I am safe in this house! We are all safe in this house!” And with that she is off to go try again.
It’s always something. Right now it is doorways. She has to tap them twice as she enters or leaves a room. Next month that will go away and something equally bizarre and irrational will come and take its place. But she’s not hurting anyone. She just always has some “quirky” behavior. But what if it isn’t quirky behavior. What if it isn’t a habit or a routine? What if it is an OCD compulsion. A compulsion that when done over and over again strengths her need to do more and more compulsions.
OCD loves when others write it off. It loves when it is not taken seriously. It hides behind words like habits, routines and quirks. It hides behind ignorance. If a child is showing any OCD compulsions it is important to start working on the issue right away. When OCD hasn’t been around for years and years it is much easier to defeat.
So are you missing your child’s compulsions? Let me explain how to spot the difference.