Sober Parenting


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3 Things Every Recovering Parent Can Do To Raise Happy & Resilient Children and Teens

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#1 Put On Your Own Oxygen Mask First! What Does This Look Like For You? 12 Step Meetings Attend to your spouse and/ex-spouse (yes, this matters for your child's wellbeing) or partner. Exercise Time with Friends/Fellowship Sleep - 8 hrs really does matter. Creative relaxation - painting, journaling, reading, etc. Ditch the guilt & perfectionism.

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So What Can This Look Like For You? Let's Create a Schedule... Break-out sessions of small groups with self-care worksheets. Be mindful not to overbook yourself! Return for discussion & challenges.

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#2 Build A Village and Have Fun Doing It! Family Meals...still the golden rule for happy children. Create social supports for your children Share rewarding activities together Invite another family over for a picnic Play board games and invite kids from the neighborhood over. Have a fun movie night at home Bake cookies Go camping Pick out a TV show and watch it together Go roller skating together, get playful! Go to a local fair or farmer's market

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Making Sure Shared Fun… Is Really Fun When you and your child disagree, keep communication brief - no lecturing! If emotions run hot, cool down before doing anything else. Speak face to face, never by texting or phone calls... Watch your body language: aggressive posturing speaks volumes to a child! If you need to ask your child for something, use a positive and specific approach: what you want (not what you don't want) and what, where and when.

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How Do You Share Fun Times With Your Children? Large circle discussion regarding having fun with kids and creating community in today's hectic and multi-tasking world. Do you feel comfortable being playful and acting silly? Is it confusing sometimes knowing what normal fun is? Following discussion and creative suggestion building, each participant creates a list of 5 fun things that their children would enjoy and 3 community building methods for their family - and builds it into their original Oxygen Mask Plan from Workshop #1

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#3 Problem Solving 101 Solve Problems with Your Kids - Without "losing It"? We no longer have the "dubious luxury" of acting out our anger on our children when they are behaving like, well...children. So what to do?

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Simple Problem Solving for Real People with Real Kids Let's face it, we all feel like "losing it" sometimes... But we chose to be parents, our kids didn't choose to be we don't get to lose our temper when we feel like it! So how do we solve problems effectively when they come up without looking like we're the one throwing a temper tantrum?! Let's look at some effective strategies - with practice they can be second nature:

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Problem Solving in the Real World for Real Parents Stop, Define, Create Options, Consider Consequences, Evaluate STOP: We tend to believe that when there is a problem we need to DO something right away. In fact, the best thing we can do is PAUSE and STAY CALM. The bigger the problem, the more we need to pause. DEFINE: what is the real problem? Not our feelings about the situation, but the real issue at hand. Define it clearly, possibly even STOP long enough to write it down, before going any further.

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OPTIONS: consider the possible courses of action you could take in the situation. CONSIDER CONSEQUENCES: Think through what the potential consequences may be for each course of action you're considering. (I know this is a lot of work, but undoing a poor course of action will take a lot more effort!) EVALUATE the outcome - celebrate successes and learn from mistakes without judging yourself harshly. Was it a successful outcome for your child? Did he or she get to learn something important from the experience? Did you?

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Final Thought (#4 disguised) Finally - another thing everyone can do with their children is to Catch Them Doing Something Nice! Did they ask you how your day was? Or share a toy with their brother or sister? Clean up their room? Remember to praise them when you Catch Them Doing Something Nice!

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