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Raising Your Child with Autism, ADHD, or OCD

You're nothing short of magical and beautiful to me. ~ Brandi Carlile

Empowering Parents of Children with Developmental Differences

For parents of newly diagnosed children, developing a solid understanding of the diagnosis and it's implications for their child's long term future is critical in terms of decision making for appropriate therapies, advocating school accommodations and generally knowing what is too much or too little to expect of their child. Additionally, it is not uncommon for parents of "atypical" children feel like outsiders when it comes to their child's therapy. This is not the fault of the therapists, but it may simply not be their role to educate parents about the nature of their child's needs and how they can help facilitate development at home. This can translate to an over reliance on outside supports (e.g., child-therapists, teachers, pediatricians) which can easily impede feelings of connection and influence in their child's life.

However, while outside professionals are working in your child's best interest, no one is more invested in your child's success than you. This is especially important given the amount of time and influence parents have with their child when compared to other health providers and educators. The more empowered with knowledge and skills parents have around difficulties their child is experiencing, the more positive and hopeful the future is for the whole family. 

Hot Air Balloons

Parenting A Child with Autism

Inside of Hot Air Balloon

There is a quote, "You've met one child with Autism, you've met one child with Autism." Capturing what Autism looks like is truly case-by-case. Tragically, in my 20+ years working with families affected by Autism, I have found no other diagnosis more misrepresented by the media, misunderstood by "professionals," and mishandled by well-intentioned but overwhelmed educators. This often leads parents of children diagnosed with Autism on an avoidably heartbreaking hit-and-miss approach in securing the best services for their child. Trying to rationally sort through available therapeutic options (many simply not helpful), unsolicited, but well-meaning, advice from friends and family and judgmental comments and gestures by the completely uninformed is a heavy burden.

 

In my work, I listen to parental fears and hopes for their child so that together we are able to critically examine potential gains and limitations of considered treatments, and (most importantly) learn ways to parent that supports development of lagging skills associated with Autism.

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Inside of Hot Air Balloon

Parenting a Child with ADHD

Raising a child with ADHD can challenge even the most patient parent. While most children diagnosed with ADHD eventually outgrow overt hyperactivity, they often continue to struggle with focus, planning & organization, and self-regulation into adolescence. Without appropriate parental investment, they are at greater risk for mental health issues, academic problems, unhealthy relationships and even addictive behaviors. I help parents learn how to foster key skills in their children to reduce these risks in a way that strengthens the parent-child relationship.

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Hot Air Balloons

Parenting a Child with OCD

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is an anxiety disorder which drives unhelpful thoughts and fears that often lead to compulsive behaviors. For kids, it's like having an inescapable bully that intrudes into every aspect of their life. This can be both frustrating and heartbreaking for parents to watch. The good news is parents can play a crucial role in mitigating symptoms of OCD. In my work with parents, we will review ways in which they can best support their child's progress toward a bully-free world.

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Why Parent Participation Outside of Child Therapy and Educational Supports Matter

Research indicates parental understanding of their child's needs to be one of the strongest predictors for outcome. Additionally, parents without adequate outside supports are at greater risk for mental & physical health problems, feelings of isolation, and marital distress. I use my expertise in developmental differences to help parents become more successful in fostering their child's own unique emotional, developmental and learning needs in a way that strengthens connection with their child.

Certainly, parents should consult with their child's pediatrician and/or a licensed mental health professional when concerns for mental health and developmental delays arise. However, regardless of whether your child benefits from outside supports, parents who receive help from an expert in Child Development report higher levels of parenting satisfaction, lower mental health concerns, and a better relationship with their child. And, not unimportantly, simply have more fun being a parent.

Call for your free consultation

Sprout - Erin Moran, Psy.D. | 500 Abernethy Road, Suite 203 | Oregon City, Oregon 97045

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