A Healthy Mind: Parenting Tips for Kids with Mental Illness

A Healthy Mind: Parenting Tips for Kids with Mental Illness

Girl crying beside the windowMental illness affects one in five adults or 43.8 million adults in the United States in a given year. That includes parents who power through challenges to raise a happy, healthy, and well-adjusted child.

Some parentsĀ put their child in daycare facilities, whether they’re based in Salt Lake City or somewhere else. This measure can benefit them and their child. Other groups of parents dealing with the same situation find strength and encouragement. Other techniques parents may employ include:

Daycare and Connection

Good daycare programs can give parents some breathing room to deal with their schedules and illnesses while allowing their children to thrive. Working with a daycare allows parents with mental illness to form a support network for their child in case of a crisis. Daycare counselors or teachers can provide specialized support for children, which may not always be possible when a parent’s mental health worker is focused on the adult’s care.

Daycare counselors, as well as mental health workers, can help parents stay connected with their child. Learning what the child feels and how to respond to it, despite the difficulties from symptoms, will help children feel loved and understand what their parent is going through. Explaining the situation to kids who are of the right age, with guidance from professionals, may also help them understand that they are not to blame for their parent’s condition.

Seek Treatment and Create a Crisis Plan

Mother and child talking to a psychiatristBefore problems get worse, they need to be treated right. Parents may find it difficult or embarrassing to seek help even from family members, but getting professional and familial or friendly help is ideal. Seeking help will also instill to children that there is no shame in asking for help and tell them that making healthy choices is important.

While undergoing treatment, parents must also create a crisis plan for their children and/or partner. These plans are for emergencies, such as hospital admission or mental health-related incidents. Therapists and doctors can help create a contingency plan that will deal with the welfare of children.

Make Connections

Staying connected to people encourages parents to seek help. Having strong connections will also help in case of emergencies, secure their children during the said incidents, and help against regression.

Doctors and therapists can refer clients to specialist support services and mental health organizations. Family therapists under support services can, in addition to helping with the parents’ needs, aid children with misunderstandings or problems related to their parents’ illness.

Mental health organizations are made up of specialists and other parents who are also coping with mental illness. They provide support and resources for parents and families who deal with various mental illnesses.

Adjusting the Day-to-Day Minutiae

Creating a schedule or routine and adjusting how one behaves or acts every day can help parents with mental illness deal with their kids. Parents need to choose their battles, not just with their chores, but with their kids. Kids are susceptible to trauma, so parents must exercise control over which behaviors need lecturing and which are just minor annoyances.

On the matter of chores, being organized, as well as having proven stress relief routines such as exercise and a healthy diet, will help accomplish these critical tasks without overloading the parent.

Mental illnesses make parenting difficult. With the right help, whether it’s clinical or through the support of daycare centers and guardians, the task of being the parent becomes easier.