One of the most stressful things any of can experience as a child or as a parent is the break-up of a relationship and a divorce. Emotions are raw, there is a great sense of loss, confusion, regret, resentment, and then practical arrangements have to be addressed. Most importantly around the children and then around finances and living conditions and arrangements, none of it is easy even when everyone does their very best. Children can sometimes feel like small boats cast adrift on a stormy sea and not sure where to go to for a life jacket or boat to rescue them. They will mirror the emotional state of the adults around them and have many unresolved emotions and practical questions which is where Sue’s Fink Cards are invaluable.
My Parenting Impacted by Trauma Fink Cards offer an opportunity for a parent to process their emotional responses and reactions and the often complex relationship and behaviours their child may present them with at this difficult time, and sometimes even more so once the ‘divorce dust’ has settled! Why? How we were responded to emotionally as a child matters, what our pregnancy was like matters, how we were able to meet our baby’s emotional needs really matters. Looking for information as to why they are reacting so much to the divorce, why it is going on for so long and aimed mostly at you can really make a difference to how we can then view them and support them whilst being kind to ourselves.
One of my Fink Cards questions is,
Q. Who did you turn to when you had difficulties as a child?
It’s not about blaming our parents but realising that we may have been raised, not to ‘make a fuss’ and cope with our own feelings from a young age can be a useful clue as to what is now going on for us as a parent when faced with our child’s big, over whelming feelings relating to our divorce. Being curious about,
Q. How do you know when you are worrying too much?
Might help us stop and feel more able to explore this for ourselves but also to recognise it in our children so we can step in to offer support and access it for ourselves.
When we are very young our brain is not very developed and we are quickly emotionally overwhelmed and need a calm, soothing adult brain to come and sort us out and help us to feel regulated and comfortable again. The more often this happens the more we can internalise this to use as we mature. When this is absent or erratic our developing brain and body experience this as stress and it causes anxiety and at time of great stress within a family this will emerge in us and our children so its’ good to have an understanding of this to allow us to be more compassionate and nurturing of ourselves as parents and our children as we move forward to a new life.
Jane Evans who has been working with families with complex needs around early childhood trauma for over two decades.
As a passionate advocate of offering an understanding of the impact of early childhood trauma in all areas of our lives, Jane speaks and trains around the World. Jane has written two books to be used for young children who have lived with domestic violence (How are you feeling today Baby Bear? & Kit Kitten and the Topsy Turvy Feelings) and her work with traumatised families has also featured in Channel 5’s documentary ‘My Violent Child’.
For more information about Jane visit: www.parentingposttrauma.co.uk or find her on twitter: @janeparenting2
Fink Cards is a leader in the field of creating powerful conversations, creating award winning publications that start positive conversations.
Parenting Impacted by Trauma cards launch 24th June and contain 48 compelling questions . The cards are published by Fink Cards, priced at £14.99 and available from www.finkcards.com http://finkcards.com/products/parenting-impacted-by-trauma
For more information visit: www.parentingposttrauma.co.uk or tel: 020 8242 4055