We believe all parents need support and equipping. The most accurate predictor of how you will parent is how you were parented. Human beings have a strong preference for the familiar. Unless we consciously think to do otherwise we will do “what comes naturally” and repeat what we used to, the way things have always been done. In order to do something different we need to become self-conscious about our functioning and take definite steps to replace the familiar with something else.
Conscious parents /caregivers are aware of themselves and how they were parented as children. Conscious parents are aware of their feelings, reactions and behaviour and its effect on the child. Conscious parent/caregivers are aware of their children and their feelings, needs, behaviour, stage of development, personality and temperament.
This parent is able to meet the needs of the child by providing safety, support and structure. The parent is intentional in his/her interactions with his/her child, rather than reactive. The parent has tools for dealing with his/her child’s frustrations, anger, and regressions that turn these potentially disruptive emotional expressions into occasions for strengthening the child’s ability and maintaining his/her connection to her parents, his/her immediate environment, and the larger world. And the parent has ways of promoting laughter, creative expression, spiritual depth, and moral character as his/her child experiences his/her own journey through life.
Giving the love that heals: A guide for parents
Hendrix & Hunt