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Parental Expectations, Childhood Anxiety and Self Esteem: What is the Connection?

In Therapy by debbieconley

It seems to be that no matter what age children are, parental expectations come into play. When children are infants we expect them to sleep through the night at some point!  When they are around 1 years old, we expect them to begin to walk , later on toilet train and God forbid they are not reading by Kindergarten!  The list goes on and on.  Parental Expectations.  There is nothing wrong with them.  We expect our children to be polite, share, do homework, help around the house etc… What if these expectations are not developmentally appropriate?  What is the expectations are unrealistic?  What if they cause undue stress?  Sometimes as parents, we may not even know we are creating this stress.  Think back to your own childhood.  What expectations were …

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Helping Children Cope with Death

In Therapy by debbieconley

Recently, in the midst of this beautiful summer, there have been several families that have been coping with the loss of young family members. None of us live forever, but most of us expect to live a long life. When or if we have the opportunity to discuss death with our children, we usually say something like, “When people get old and their bodies don’t work well anymore, they die”. But what if this is not what happens? We are all thrown off kilter when life throws us a curve ball and doesn’t follow the normal sequence. It is difficult enough for adults to deal with the loss of a young person, but is more difficult for children. How do we deal with our own grief and help them as …

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Consistency: What’s the Big Deal?

In Therapy by debbieconley

I’ll admit it. It’s the end of the school year. We are all running out of steam, kids, parents, and I’m sure we can add teachers to the mix as well. Do we really have to finish strong? Let me be clear. There is a difference in being flexible and being consistent. Sometimes we just can’t get to school on time, or miss a homework assignment. Life happens. That is different from being inconsistent and all over the place. Why is consistency so important to kids? Kids thrive on predictability. They like to know what comes next. They need to know what is expected of them. Kids also need to know we as parents and caregivers will do what we say. Kids don’t act like they want or need limits …

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What Can Parents Expect When They Bring Their Child to Therapy?

In Therapy by debbieconley

One topic I have been eager to educate parents about is what parents can expect when they bring their child to therapy. Every therapist has their own style and practices differently and has their own unique style. I can only speak for how I have chosen to practice. First, I made the choice to only see children 13 and under. (Occasionally I will see kids up to 16). In my practice, I meet with the child’s parents without the child for the first session. I want to hear from them what brought them here, why now, and what are they hoping to accomplish by bringing their child for therapy. I make them aware that they will be a big part of their child succeeding in therapy. I see their child …

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Making the Decision to Bring Your Child to Therapy

In Therapy by debbieconley

How do I even know my child needs therapy? Let me talk about making the decision to bring your child to therapy. For some parents, it’s an easy decision. They may have been receiving phone calls from school “strongly recommending” they seek counseling for their child. Other parents may be given the suggestion from their pediatrician. Some reasons you may consider bringing your child to therapy can be that your child’s behavior is interfering with his or her quality of life. The following list will give you some examples. I’m sure I have missed a few, but generally if you have concerns, don’t delay! Get Help!!

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Welcome!

In News by debbieconley

Hi! Welcome to my Blog. I hope this will be an informative place where you can get information on parenting issues that affect your family. First, so you know a little about me. I have been a therapist for over 25 years. I have worked in two Trauma Centers, a Burn Unit and a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. I have also worked for 12 years for The Children’s Advocacy Center with children who have experienced physical and sexual abuse. Currently, I have my own private practice and work with The Kane County Advocacy Center. I also work with The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Most importantly, I am a mom to 3 daughters who are all adopted. The twins are 20 and their little sister is 9. Somewhere …