5 Ways Parent Counselling Can Help Your Entire Family

It’s not easy being a parent. Feeling burned out from the heavy responsibility of parenting? You’re not alone. 

A study in 2018 by The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne revealed that over one quarter (27%) of parents felt stressed when dealing with their child’s behaviour every day. With the recent impact of the pandemic causing parents to spend significantly more time at home with their kids, stress levels have risen, leading to feelings of burnout in overwhelmed mums and dads. 

It is widely accepted that raising children comes with many challenges – being a parent or guardian is no easy feat. However, when parenthood continuously makes you feel helpless, or stressed to the point of developing anxiety or depression, it’s worthwhile engaging parental counselling for support.

What is parental counselling?

Parent counselling is a form of therapy that is designed to provide parents with the right support and strategies to support and communicate with their children. Through regular sessions with a psychologist, parents will learn how to manage the struggles they face as well as be equipped with skills to guide their children through life.

Who attends parent counselling sessions?

Parents counselling sessions are primarily designed to provide assistance to parents or guardians. While single parents or guardians may attend the sessions alone, it can be very helpful for any other parental figures in the family to join the session to benefit from the expert advice provided by the psychologist.

There may also be some sessions where the psychologist may recommend the attendance of all members of the family unit, including the children, to address any issues within the family dynamics.

5 important ways parent counselling can help your entire family

Parent counselling is one of the most supportive treatments for individuals who are struggling with the challenges of parenthood. The benefits of parent counselling extend not only to the individual parents or guardians themselves, but also to the family unit as a whole. Here are some important benefits of parent counselling for the entire family:

couple doing parental counseling

Improve communication skills

It’s important to understand that parents and children communicate in different ways. With parental counselling, parents can improve their communication skills to help them understand what their children are trying to say through their words and non-verbal behaviour. 

With better communication, parents and children can relate to one another better by expressing their thoughts and emotions more clearly, bringing them closer in the relationship. 

Address behavioural issues in children

Children, especially at a younger age, are in the process of learning how to express themselves and their needs. This can often result in the emergence of challenging behaviour such as tantrums and defiance.  

Parent counselling can help parents understand the potential root causes of these behavioural issues and gain effective disciplinary strategies to teach their children to behave better. Counsellors may guide parents in setting boundaries and consequences for their children rather than using punishment to foster a positive parent-child relationship. 

Create strategies for conflict resolution

Parent counselling can also help parents create effective strategies for conflict resolution. This can apply to common conflicts that arise between parent and child, as well as between parents. 

Being able to resolve these conflicts sooner and with better outcomes can help the whole family stay united and avoid fragmented relationships that can result from unaddressed disagreements. 

Reduced stress and anxiety around parenting

Parenting is not an easy responsibility, and it’s natural to feel stressed. Parental counselling can help to lift the burden of care by providing parents with an outlet to voice their worries and concerns, while getting professional advice that can make parenting less anxiety-inducing. 

Children often mirror the emotional state of their parents, so feeling less stressed or anxious around them will help to improve the overall mood of the family for an amicable home environment. 

Strengthen family bonds

Family bonds are built upon positive relationships between all members of the family. With the support and strategies provided by parent counselling, families can learn to grow and face challenges together, helping to develop stronger family bonds that last throughout life. 

Tips for finding the right parent counsellor

Parent counselling may be offered by various types of practitioners, and some will be more suited to offer the best support for your family circumstances than others. Here are some tips to help you find the right parent counsellor:

Check their experience

Experience is often the best indicator of how well a counsellor will be able to provide support for your parental challenges. Are you seeking guidance in a specific area – for instance, managing your child’s behaviour, stress and burnout, coparenting, parenting styles, or boundary setting? Some counsellors may be especially experienced in particular areas and it’s worth understanding the background of your practitioner. You may want to choose a therapist who has dealt with similar situations to yours to obtain more personalised and effective support. 

Check their qualifications

Not all parent counsellors have the same level of qualifications. To get the best possible experience, look into your counsellor’s academic and professional qualifications. You may also want to check whether they have additional qualifications in the areas of family and/or child psychology. 

Ensure that they are accessible for regular support

The challenges of parenting can arise at any time, which is why you should ensure that you have access to counselling support when you need it. Look for a counselling service that is able to provide you with regular support, whether it’s with weekly or bi-weekly sessions. 

Feel it out

When it comes to finding the right parent counsellor, the most important thing to do is to rely on your own intuition. You should feel more supported and relieved over time as you attend sessions and apply the parenting strategies you’ve learnt. If you don’t feel a significant difference in facing your parental challenges, it might be worth looking for a counsellor who better matches your needs

At New Vision Psychology, we offer effective parent counselling as part of our child and adolescent counselling services. Our highly qualified parent counsellors and child psychologists in Sydney will help you improve the relationship you have with your child, as well as provide you with targeted strategies to better manage your parenting issues. Contact us today to make a booking with our experienced psychologists!

Need support with your family?

New Vision Psychology can help.