Dr.Irvin Martin Kraus, DO, LCPC, is board-certified in psychiatry with a focal interest in treating grade school aged children. This message is meant for parents of older children/those on the road toward adulthood, whatever their struggles. I treat children and their families using medical psychotherapy, facilitated by hypnosis and hypnoanalysis and whatever works. I work with other physicians who may prescribe medication as part of their care of patients. Some of the best outcomes is using both medication and psychotherapy. The message I wish to share with you and your adult children is TO BE WITH THEM, rather than to DO WITH THEM. It is better to believe that they are capable to think for themselves, even if decisions don’t work out the way you desire. When my children were a lot younger, I felt impelled to help them along the way, which I considered most important. That met with a lot of resistance. I’ve come to appreciate that there are many pathways toward growth, choices they make for better or worse on their own. It is more myth than reality that as parents we can prevent their suffering through our good advice. In most cases, we need to honor each adult child’s unique qualities that they bring into their own personal lives. I suggest that advice is better accepted when offered by one’s sibling or someone else in the family the young adult trusts, than the parent. Why would this work better, with less resistance? Coming back home (like seasonal visits from college) for an adult child fosters regression. The visiting adult child and parent begin to relive old memories/patterns of behavior that trigger each other into old ways of feeling/reacting. This occurs subconsciously and then it’s like reliving past struggles that help no one. The old ways of relating are better left alone. If not honored, then you might get the humorous comedic misery, the subject matter of many holiday season movies. Put into psychology 101 language, as parents, whatever we have to say has an intra-psychic telescoping-like effect on our young adult children that not only touches the present moment, but triggers past memories/childhood beliefs and subconscious perceptions loaded with strong feelings and high energy that can explode in our parental faces. It also affects you, the parent along similar pathways. It is the responsibility of the adult child to find their own way by gaining counsel and support from whom they feel most comfortable. Too much parental intervention/advise/and doing leads to distancing by the adult child from the parent, the opposite affect most of us desire. Most parents would rather have our adult-like kids come closer to us requesting advice. What I suggest is giving less, so that their struggles stimulate their own thinking about their own initiatives. A little distance between the parent and adult child is healthy and provides space for personal reflection and hopefully emotional maturation. Boundaries allow us to gain respect for ourselves and appreciation for those who love us by accepting where we are at any given moment in life challenges. This may sound easier to understand than to do. It may take time to actually perfect as a parental practice. Don’t give up; practice, practice, practice and you will get better at it. Become curious by looking inside yourself and become closer to your own personal experience.
Dr. I.M. Kraus, Naperville Family Counseling, 630-527-1631
Posted in Naperville Family Counseling, Naperville Family Counseling: Families, Naperville Family Counseling: Hypnosis/Hypnoanalysis, Naperville Family Counseling: Kids & Teens
Tagged Be with rather than try and teach, Emotional flooding stops maturation of the young adult, Everyone wants to feel loved, Healthy boundaries build trust, Observe what is going on without being triggered, Regression is universal during holiday family visits, so be accepting, Try to just enjoy what is
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Changes of our midwest seasons bring on new challenges. As parents, everything falls upon our shoulders caring for our children. YOU need to give first priority to yourself. If you get sick, then your family suffers. Managing your own personal daily energy resources is imperative toward setting priorities. Do you know that 2000 Units of Vitamin D3 seems to be beneficial toward boosting your immune system? You can fight off a lot of viral bugs with a good immune system. (Milk only has about 100 units per glass) and Walgreen’s multivitamin A to Z contains only 500 Units. Fish oil (without mercury) seems to help stabilize moods. Exercise is a great help toward mood stabilization, heart health, and perking up your brain pathways to take on new daily challenges. As an antidepressant exercise is usually considered equal to antidepressant medication without the side effects of weight gain and libido issues. If these little suggestions also help in your relationships with your significant other and children, then great. Got some of your own Self Care Tips that you would like to share? I appreciate all of your comments. Also take a look at the book by Joel Fuhrman,MD, SUPER IMMUNITY, THE ESSENTIAL NUTRITION GUIDE FOR BOOSTING YOUR BODY’S DEFENSES TO LIVE LONGER, STRONGER AND DISEASE FREE. Thanks for reading and sharing.
When people seek help for their child who is having difficulties, the parents are usually operating in emergency mode and feeling at least as bad as their child with high anxiety, confusion and uncertainty about what to do next. They are looking for the best clinician, located nearby who has almost immediate time available to see and fix the situation. The first consultation gives the parents a chance to assess the clinician to see if the clinician can emotionally connect, is able to tune into the current crisis and misery the parents are experiencing and begin to offer hope that things can get better. It takes a lot to begin trusting a new stranger who wants to become a new functional part of the family. It’s a big responsibility that weighs heavy on everyone’s shoulders. Parents are looking for some kind of wisdom that can reduce their sense of helplessness. It is a highly charged emotional situation and it is not about theory out of some book. It’s about the emotional interaction between all concerned which will also soon include the child/adolescent. As a Blue Cross PPO Provider, if you want a responsive therapist who can jump into the family system and help with your child in distress, give my office a call for a medical consultation. I am not a medication-pushing psychiatrist; I can help you with a referral for medication evaluation and management, if that is your wish. I will accept children on medication if there is a wish to reduce dosages, as the child gets stronger through our work together. My focus is getting to the root of the presenting problem(s). At the core of being helpful, I find that the relationship we work toward establishing is essential toward getting the job done. So it is important to meet and see if we can connect. I usually begin by getting a history from the parents about your child/adolescent. I am fortunate to have Medox Billing helping us with billing issues. Medox is also helpful in applying what we need to know about diagnostic procedure in using the new DSM5, the standard used in payment for certain psychiatric diagnoses. You as parents need to address another important issue, however. There is a theoretical divide regarding medical psychotherapy. One side focuses on the need for medication to control higher levels of anxiety, sadness, chaos of feeling states, which may lead toward all sorts of difficulties that range from addictions, eating disorders, academic problems, and you name it. A number of kids may show up with severe depressive symptoms because they worry that they don’t fit in because they are “gay”, “weird”, or “life is’nt worth living”. If you look for medication to cure these kinds of complaints, then think again. Can “Dr. Right” value and understand that the root cause of the childs’ complaints may be subconscious or unconscious and therefore not available to the child/teen for easy discussion of the presenting complaint(s)?. A common response to my first question to the youngster may be something like: What’s the problem, what is going on in your life now? A typical response of the youngster may be: “I cannot really say or put it into words”. That may be the sort a teen gives who has been thinking about suicide or another drastic ways out. The parents are panicky and feel they cannot help so they focus instead on something more tangible like the teen’s plummeting academic performance. The school would like to help, but since each social worker/counselor is inundated by several hundred kids each, there is not enough support to go around. So the bigger question falls on you the parent(s): Do you want to get to the root cause of the problem in your teen/child? How long, how many sessions will this take? Depending on the motivation of the child, usually about 12 hours of office time may be enough to get a conscious understanding of the underlying subconscious root cause of the problem that causes misery in the family at large. The other “shorter” route is medication oriented but many times meds only cover over deeper issues and miss the psychological root cause of the problem. The pharmaceutical industry suggests that the use of medication is more scientific than talk therapy, but research suggests that the development of new brain pathways, strengthened through mindsight techniques as part of medical psychotherapy facilitate life long improvement in the child’s ability to handle stress more flexibly over time and maturation. As the prefrontal cortex becomes stronger as several new healthy adaptations occur: (1) I would enjoy meeting parents who can appreciate that psychological growth is possible when we work as a team helping your struggling child. Thanks for reading.
Posted in Naperville Family Counseling, Naperville Family Counseling: Couples, Naperville Family Counseling: Families, Naperville Family Counseling: Hypnosis/Hypnoanalysis, Naperville Family Counseling: Kids & Teens, Naperville Family Counseling: Marriage Counseling
Tagged counselor, long term outcome is improved vs medication alone in most cases, medical psychotherapy aided by hypnosis gets to root causes of pain, medication can be life saving in acute situations and medication doses reduced as child gains strength, parents are supported and experience relief along with their child, physician, Psychiatrist, treatment of children and adolescents in context of family