For a few months, we’ve been looking for some guidance and help in new approaches to parenting McGrew and Dibble. The traditional ‘Supernanny’ approach just isn’t working!
Some professionals have pointed us in the direction of the ‘Beyond Consequence Institute‘ and in particular one of their books – Beyond Consequences, Logic and Control.
It was the subtitle that really caught our eye – ‘a love based approach to helping children with severe behaviours’.
A love-based approach!
‘Is not all parenting love-based?’, you may ask… That’s what I thought.
But cctually, many of the traditional approaches seem to be based in fear:
- If you don’t do this, then such and such will happen.
- If you do x, y and z, then you will get a star on your chart.
It all hinges on fear of what will or won’t happen. And for our boys, more fear is the last thing they need. They’ve had fear in bucket loads in their short lives already.
Beyond Consequences approaches it differently, based on the principle that all negative behaviour arises from an unconcious, fear-based state of stress. And in children who have experienced significant trauma, the unconcious state of stress is high most of the time. It’s had to be that way for them to have survived in the past.
So instead of consequences, Beyond Consequences suggests that we respond to negative behaviours with love, reassurance, calm, soothing and an understanding that in the moment of the behaviour, the child is highly stressed, full of unconcious fear and unable to regulate themselves.
We’ve been trying (and often failing) this approach for just a few days now, but already the results are amazing.
Much more calm.
Much less stress – not only in the boys, but also in Mrs DHG and me…
I’ll let you know how it goes!