Mental Health and Parenting
How important is parenting?
Well, most of the research tells us that it is very important. How we are parented can affect how well we develop, learn and how we make and keep relationships. A lot of what we learn comes from our parents.
What is good parenting?
There is no single right way to parent. All parents want to be good parents, but children do not come with instructions, so most of our understanding about parenting comes from how we were parented ourselves. Good parenting includes a healthy parent-child relationship which allows a child’s needs to be identified and met most of the time.
Why do we need to learn how to parent?
Parenting is a big job and we don’t always get a lot of help with it. Some things can get in the way of people parenting the way they want to, eg health problems, money problems, depression, anxiety, other mental health issues. So learning different ways to parent and learning new parenting skills can help you become the parent you want to be.
What can a parenting group provide?
Attending a parenting group can give you a safe environment to discuss parenting issues and learn new parenting skills with other parents.
Some topics we cover in our group are:
- Positive Parenting, What is it?
- Causes of Child Behaviour Problems
- Mental Health and Parenting
- Promoting Children’s Development
- Developing Positive Relationships with Children
- Managing Misbehaviour
- Developing Family plans
What do we provide?
We provide a parenting program for parents who identify with experiencing a mental health issue, who have children in their care aged 2 – 10 years. This program is based on The Positive Parenting Program (Triple P) with additional modules addressing the impact of mental illness on parenting and developing positive relationships with children. All parents can benefit from new ideas and strategies. The program offers suggestions, ideas and practice around positive parenting techniques.
The program is FREE and consists of six weekly group sessions (3 hours) and four individual follow-up home visits to help implement new strategies. The program runs each school term in either the Gosford or Wyong area.
For more information or book into a group please contact:
Ruth Phelan ph: (02) 4328 7350
- Parent Fact Sheets Free downloadable parent easy guides for common parenting issues.
- Raising Children Information for parents.
- Parent Line Ph: 1300 13 1300
- Separated Parents Centrelink help.
- Parenting NSW Resources for parents.
Perinatal Mental Health (pregnancy to postnatal period)
Pregnancy and Mental health
If you are thinking about having a baby or are currently pregnant, these are some things you might like to know. Being pregnant and having a baby can be a high-risk time for the development or increase of mental health problems.
Pregnancy can be a wonderful experience, however, challenges can arise during this time. The parent-child relationship begins in pregnancy. Mental health issues can have an impact on the early development of the mother-child attachment process. Support given to mothers in this period can make the experience of pregnancy, birth and caring for an infant less stressful and more enjoyable.
What can help?
If you are pregnant or thinking about having a baby, it is important to find a GP that you are comfortable with, who can help manage your physical and mental health needs.
Talk to your doctor about having a baby, your medication and health care needs;
- You can ring Mothersafe ph: 1800 647 848 if you have any further questions about medication in pregnancy or medication and breastfeeding
- It is important for your partner or support people to be involved in discussions and plans with your doctor or health care worker
- Make a list of supportive people, ie: friends, family, health workers, neighbourhood groups etc.
- We would encourage you to get a copy of the booklet The Best for Me and My Baby when you are planning your pregnancy. This can be obtained free of charge from your local health service.
What can we provide?
Perinatal Infant Mental Health Workers will work with women experiencing mental health issues and their families from conception through the pregnancy and after the baby is born, around concerns that impact on parenting, relationships and emotional/psychological well-being.
The worker can;
- Provide home visits
- Assist in identification of needs/concerns
- Provide information and support around attachment and parenting
- Develop with the mother a personal Perinatal Care Plan to be shared with treating teams
- Assist with links and referrals to appropriate support services
For further information ph: (02) 4328 7350
If you are feeling suicidal it is very important to seek immediate help, preferably by a mental health practitioner.
Kids Helpline Ph: 1800 55 1800 www.kidshelpline.com.au
Lifeline Australia Ph: 13 11 14 www.lifeline.org.au
For urgent mental health issues call the Mental Health Line Ph: 1800 011 511 (24 hrs 7 days a week)