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What happens to your relationship when you bring a child into the world?

Having a child is one of the single most amazing experiences you can have yet it can attract additional emotional challenges – not only to you but your relationship with your partner and how your relationship develops with your child and the bigger picture. The unconditional love you have for your child may threaten your relationship.

Some parents are “blessed” with a highly spirited or high need child. A child who sleeps badly, refuses food, and generally resists any form of “instruction”, wanting to do everything their way. Any “interference” is tantamount to controlling, and they resist at every turn. And when we see our child wanting to control the situation this may highlight our own need for control; after all, as the parent or guardian we know what we need to do, the plan of action and we simply need our child to fall into line.

What about those last minute scrambles to get your child into the car in time so you can get to school / nursery / pre-school? Or getting their laces tied / shoes buckled so you can walk out of the door in good time? Getting their hair combed with no tears?

As a result of these battles we find ourselves questioning our ability as a parent and wonder where we went wrong, seeing other peoples’ well-behaved children and these parents going on about how wonderful their children are, no wonder we may – at times – feel a failure.

There are many things you can do as a parent of a highly spirited child, but it would be wrong of me to suggest that one size fits all. The most important thing to remember is that we, like every person on this plant, is learning to navigate and find our way in the world, learning how to behave, how to fit in and how to make the most of our existence on earth. Children are no exception, it is simply that some are more immediately in tune with what’s going on, or are more laid back, others want to know everything, plan everything, in their own special way. They don’t call it the “terrible twos” for nothing (perhaps the terrible two’s is just a phrase for referring to the time at which most children start to exert their independence – some are simply more determined than others).

If you would like to meet with me and connect over a parenting issue – and I also touch on extended breastfeeding which has been in the news lately – please be assured you will receive a warm, non-judgemental welcome and together we can work out ways in which *you* can feel supported in your parenting decisions, finding effective ways to communicate with your highly spirited child, whatever the age and find some solutions that work for you.

In the meantime, here is some recommended reading.

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