How Mental Health Affects Your Child’s Behavior

Parents provide their children with basic needs such as food, shelter, clothing, education and health care, among other things. Frequently, however, we forget to check up on another equally important aspect of every person’s life: mental health. 

According to data, around 10% of young people aged 5 to 16 years old have a clinical mental health problem. Among the most commonly diagnosed mental disorders in children are anxiety, depression, ADHD, and behavior problems. 

The World Health Organization also found that 20% of adolescents experience a mental health problem every year. Unfortunately, around 70% of these cases are left unaddressed and surface in their older years. 

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Common Risk Factors Of Mental Health Issues In Children

External influences like culture, family, and upbringing are critical during the formative years. Although each child has their temperament and characteristics, they are still like blank slates who mostly rely on the environment. The things they learn in these critical years may be hard to change once children grow older. That’s why good parenting and a healthy environment throughout childhood are essential. 

To better understand how a safe environment for your child looks like, first, let’s take a look at the common causes of mental health issues in children:

1. Bullying And Peer Pressure 

Bullying comes in many forms – it can be verbal or physical, and it can also be from anywhere – either in school or at home. Most bullying accounts are unreported because it’s either the child is not aware of it, or the bully is threatening the child.

In any case, these can have detrimental effects on the child’s well-being. It can lower their self-esteem, develop trauma over time, constant stress, anxiety, and even depression. 

2. Frequent Lifestyle Changes

Children’s comprehension and emotional regulation abilities are generally not as developed as adults. Children could have more difficulty adapting to changes, and it can be harder for them to make sense of.

Some of these changes include moving into a new house, changing their schools, having a new sibling, or even a parent’s divorce. If not appropriately handled, events like these may cause depression, anxiety, or behavioral problems on a child. 

While these events are sometimes inevitable, take extra time to talk to your child about their feelings toward the changes and explain the situation in a way they will understand. 

3. “Bad” Parenting 

Children look up to their parents no matter the case because parents can both provide and deprive the child of their need. Parents affect the children by the rules they implement and how they make them feel.

Bad parenting doesn’t just mean the failure of giving the child’s necessities, but it can also pertain to unhealthy or inconsistent discipline styles

An extreme authoritarian parenting style can make your child feel unheard and that their feelings are unconsidered if the rules should solely be up to you. A permissive parenting style wherein you set rules that you barely follow can also be confusing and detrimental to the child.

For example, they may not learn at all, or they could feel entitled and spoiled. And worse, an uninvolved parent who doesn’t spend time asking or bond with their child can also create issues with the child’s social and self-esteem aspects. 

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It is recommended that parents keep an authoritative kind of parenting style. It is the middle-ground that balances between strict enforcement of rules and keeping the caring side of parenting.

With an authoritarian parenting style, parents take the time to create and maintain positive relationships with their children by getting to know them and letting them talk about their feelings.

You also have rules, but you explain the reasons behind them, rather than just saying “because I said so.” In this way, you create a loving, friendly, and guiding relationship with your child with a foundation on respect and love. 

Why Is It Important To Take Care Of Our Children’s Mental Health

When mental health issues in children are left unaddressed, it can resurface in other forms, such as appearing as a “difficult child.” Some children may turn their frustrations onto anger, aggression, and violence. 

For example, a child who experienced bullying can also be a bully and pass on the aggressiveness to others. It can mean revenge for what others did to them or simply because they think it is the “cool” thing to do.

Meanwhile, a neglected child or a child who experienced a lot of pressure may turn to desperate ways to get what they want. They might fear their parents’ disapproval more rather than the implications of their means.  

Therefore, a problematic child may or may not be because he is hard to deal with, but maybe because there are underlying reasons or events in the past that influenced his/her behaviors. The earlier the intervention, the better. 

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What Can You Do?  

Children may be younger than us, but we must treat them with equal respect by considering their feelings and gently talking to them with utmost love and understanding. Be a wise friend to them, not a dictator ruler; be reasonable and explain to them why there are rules, and ask their opinions about them. 

Remember, being a strict parent does not always mean fitting for your child. Your child will grow a better person in a loving and healthy environment. 

However, if you are having trouble with parenting, seek professional help as early as you can. A child psychologist or a guidance counselor will help you arrange a plan to assess what are the reasons behind your child’s behavior and what are the suitable therapy plans. 

 

The Role Of The Family In Helping Teens Recover From Substance Abuse

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Teenage years play a crucial role in a person’s overall development. It is the period when a child starts to explore and act on their curiosities in a manner that may be adverse. For some, it results in exploring substance use and other troubling behavior that may affect their growth. If it all gets worse — it can lead to addiction.

Early Warning Signs

For parents and family, this rapid change in the behavior of a teen can be challenging to address. It’s not easy to supervise a teenager’s activity, especially if both parents are working. As such, they can put up barriers when it comes to communicating their worries and needs.

Here are the warning signs that you must watch out for when it comes to teen addiction:

  •     Sudden change in behavior and in the way they talk
  •     They often appear dazed and are hard to talk to
  •     Hiding drugs or drug paraphernalia and alcohol in their room
  •     Bloodshot eyes and smelling
  •     They no longer take part in hobbies that they used to enjoy
  •     They are not introducing their new friends to you
  •     A sudden drop in their school grades

If the family fails to address these warning signs, it can result in worse outcomes, such as becoming an offender. As a teenager, becoming an offender may often lead to repeating the offense as an adult if not given the proper intervention.

Addressing The Warning Signs Of Teen Substance Abuse

If you observe the warning signs on your teen, it is possible that they may be under the influence of addiction. As parents, you need to them cease using it.

It is essential to talk calmly. Show that you are present and willing to listen to what they have to say. Then, you have to set a clear and safe boundary for them to follow. 

It is also essential to get involved and start knowing your teen’s peers. In most cases, peer pressure may trigger the cause of substance addiction. After reaching a rapport with your teen, only then can you start a specific treatment and recovery path.

Treatment And Recovery Options For Teen Substance Abuse

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There are several available treatments for substance abuse. Often, the effective interventions involve the guidance of a counselor or a therapist for an objective view of the situation. They can help you come up with recovery plans that usually happen in sessions.

 

1. Group Therapy

 

Occasionally, teens who get into substance use can successfully recover by taking part in group therapies. Learning the adverse effects of addiction from teenagers who got cured or listening to an impactful speaker can encourage them to stay clean.

Moving, educational, inspirational stories can raise understanding and knowledge on substance abuse that can reach your teen in ways you simply cannot.

 

2. Individual Counseling

 

Teens often become dependent on substances because of stress from family, job, academics, or the environment. Individual counseling is a positive step towards analyzing and diagnosing the root of the problems. By knowing the source of the problem, the counselor can offer effective treatment alternatives.

 

3. Family Therapy

 

Fundamentally, the point of therapy is to develop deep family ties and a healthy home environment. Working with specialists that help families support their teen’s recovery has many advantages. It includes:

  •     Improving communication skills
  •     Restoring trust between family members
  •     Strengthening personal boundaries
  •     Coming up with clear life goals and expectations
  •     Preventing recurrence and maintaining self-discipline

 

 

4. Peer Group Activities

Teenagers are extremely emotionally sensitive from their peers’ opinions, especially in middle school and high school.  Peer group activities can build their bond with other teens in recovery while sharing their strengths and coping skills.

 

5. Recreational And Experiential Therapies

 

Most teenagers that undergo recovery may benefit from regular physical activity and creative self-expression. It allows them to divert their energies against substance use and their other problems.  It can be significant support for young clients in enduring the emotional challenges of therapy.

Programs such as art therapy, music therapy, wilderness activities, and equine-assisted therapy can provide emotional stability while teaching them essential coping strategies and social skills.

BetterHelp is the easiest way to get therapy while staying at home

Relapse Prevention

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The road to recovery does not end after the treatment period. More often than not, aftercare is a crucial element in a successful recovery. This part of recovery needs the help and support of the whole family. Without carefully planning how they will go on after treatment, it can lead to a relapse.

A relapse may occur because addiction is a chronic condition requiring lifelong support and management with its symptoms. As a whole family, here are the things you can do to prevent relapse:

 

  • Your Teen Might Seem Different 

 

Expect that your teen before and after treatment may be a different person. During and after therapy, act normally when you’re around them as much as possible. By doing so, they will slowly get to adjust and be comfortable while at home.

 

  • Steer Clear Of Enabling Behaviors

 

Learn and understand how you can avoid enabling behaviors. Even if you have good intentions, it can cause a trigger for teens during their early recovery.

  • Monitor Constantly

Keep track of their activities and who they’re with when going out. As parents and caregivers, you are expected to keep close supervision with teens who are recovering from addiction.

  •     Spend Time 

Regularly schedule bonding time with them. Plan something that the whole family enjoys. Also, encourage and join them in pursuing their hobbies.

Conclusion

Dealing with substance abuse of teens can be a challenging time for the whole family. With the proper intervention and support, you can make a tremendous difference in your teen’s life.

Keep in mind not to blame your child for what they have done. Instead, focus on what you can do to correct it for good — for your teen and for your whole family.

 

Soothing Thoughts During Quarantine For Teens Stigmatized By Past Wrongdoings

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Everyone has life stories that they are most embarrassed about during their teenage years. For instance, a friend once told us secretly (Sorry, James!) that he soiled his pants on the bus in high school and acted like it did not happen. A colleague mentioned that her former classmate became a laughingstock for an entire year because she showed up at a school fair wearing a sun costume.

However, how would you feel if you found out that a teenager wanted to alter their life, but their previous wrongdoings often stigmatized them?

I do not need to be acquainted with a once-troubled teen to understand what they go through while trying to repent. If you think the world is already harsh to nerds, geeks, and poor folks, it is more jarring for those youngsters with criminal records. When the truth comes out, they get stigmatized because of that, and no one seems to want to give them another chance.

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If that is what you are experiencing now even during quarantine, I am sorry. Some individuals are merely narrow-minded; they do not understand what repenting means. It will be best to stop paying attention to them and remembering the following instead:

You Can Change

The first thing you should ingrain in your head is that you can change. Improving yourself is not impossible, though it may require a lot of effort from you. If you wish to be a better person, you can do it.

Try not to listen to those individuals who say, “Once a wrongdoer, always a wrongdoer.” They can talk smack until their mouths bubble, but it does not mean they are correct about you. Only you can tell if you can genuinely change your life.

A Sketchy Past Can Be Used For A Good Cause

I have gone to various seminars over the years in which the guest speakers are former delinquents. Some of them sold or used drugs as teens; others got caught stealing stuff or bullying people. However, they managed to see the fault in their actions and started living lawfully.

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My point is that you should not be too ashamed of your sketchy past too much. Instead of hiding it from everyone, you can talk openly about it and discuss how you have survived that aspect of your life. This way, you may help current delinquents think of leaving their old habits and becoming better versions of themselves.

Your Dreams Can Come True

Hearing folks say that you will amount to nothing because of your past wrongdoings can be very discouraging. That is especially true for teenagers who are only beginning to dream. 

If that is the case for you, I strongly advise you to stop listening to insensitive comments. They are no different from evil spirits that will do everything to see you fail because that’s what makes them happy. 

News flash: It is not your job to make others happy at your expense. You should live your life and work hard so that your dreams can come true.

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Final Thoughts

It is always heartwarming to know that some rebellious teenagers want to turn their lives around without prompting from anyone else. That is enough proof to show how serious you are about changing for the better.

Now, I get how painful it is to hear others mention your previous wrongdoings, especially when you are trying to straighten up your act. But if you genuinely wish to change, you should never let them who you are and can be. You are still young; you can do so many incredible things if that’s what you want.

Good luck!

Why Quarantine Is Good For Rebellious Teens

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I can say that I have been blessed with the most responsible teenager in the entire world. She always comes home one time and enjoys school work. She has a lot of friends, but she has never felt the urge to sneak behind our backs. Of course, there are some crushes and admirers now, but my daughter told me that her focus is on going to college. My husband and I cannot be prouder of her because of that.

I am aware that not every parent is as lucky as we are. In our neighborhood alone, I have a few friends who often complain about their teenage sons and daughters. They always catch them sneaking out in the middle of the night or bringing friends over without permission. Some have also flunked their classes because they prioritize other activities than academics.

Whenever those parents ask me how my daughter seems to be unaffected by the puberty stage when it’s forgivable to be rebellious, I have no idea what to reply. I still don’t, frankly speaking. My daughter has always shown that responsible side of her, and it’s what’s normal for us.

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Luckily, though, my supposed “parenting luck” may be rubbing off on my friends, given that they no longer complain about their kids these days. Here are a few positive things that have happened to the rebellious teens during the quarantine.

Enjoy Family Nights

Since the entire state is under quarantine, the schools have been closed. The kids need to attend classes online during the day, but the teachers no longer give tons of assignments. This change has allowed a lot of parents to coax their teenagers to come out of their room and attend family nights.

A friend, in particular, said that a lot of excuses were thrown in the air at first in their house. Her son went out of his room but was still hesitant at first. But the more games they played, the more he showed real enthusiasm for family nights.

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Talk To The Parents For Real

A lot of parents agree that some kids turn into ogres when they become teenagers. I don’t mean to say that they look like those beasts, but they seem to forget how to use words when answering parents’ questions. You tend to hear grunts and sighs as if they can’t be bothered to put intelligible words together.

But since the entire family is quarantined under one roof, these grunting teens warm up to their mom and dad again. They talk more and even stay in a conversation without looking at their phones. Perhaps they realize that it’s cool to open up to their parents as much as they do to their friends.

Control Emotions At Your Own Pace

Teenagers typically rebel against their moms and dads because they feel like the latter won’t understand whatever they’re going through. After all, the raging hormones can make them moody and prevent them from seeing reason. It doesn’t help that they need to deal with it while being expected to excel at school and extracurricular activities as well.

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Now that the teens are at home 24/7, though, they may be able to control their emotions. There are no more friends to please or classmates to beat; they can finally focus on themselves. Thus, these teenagers may realize soon enough that they should stop rebelling ASAP.

Final Thoughts

The rebellious stage that your teenage children may be dealing with will eventually pass. It is a side effect of hitting puberty; not everyone can dodge it.

You’re lucky if being in quarantine has helped curb your kid’s rebelliousness. But if it hasn’t, breathe and think of how you can discipline them more efficiently.

Good luck!

How to Discipline Bad Behaviors of Your Teen

Lucky catch! You stumbled upon this article to help you in putting reigns to your teens after developing bad behaviors. Learning bad behaviors is normal for a developing teenager. But, it does not mean that you have to tolerate these bad behaviors. As their parent, you still have to make sure that your once angelic baby will grow up into a responsible adult. To help you stay sane in managing your troubled teen, here are some easy tricks that you can use:

Set Clear Rules

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Teenagers usually push the boundaries of their parents. That’s why it is important to set clear rules among your teens. If you tell them to be home before midnight, they might have the tendency to push the boundaries by being home at 11:59. If you warn them not to drink at bars and clubs, they might just go to their friend’s house and get drunk there. Setting clear rules will establish understanding between you and your teen as to what are the rules to be followed and why they are being disciplined after breaking them.

Use Consequences

Discipline doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to punish your teens. However, you still have to do something that will allow your teen to learn a lesson after breaking rules. You can use consequences depending on the gravity of the behavior. You have to make sure that these consequences would be fair for your teens. If your teen failed to do his/her homework, you can take away his/her privilege of hanging out with friends in the weekend.

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Moreover, try to give appropriate consequences with bad behaviors. Let your teens know that they would receive these consequences if they break these specific rules. They are more likely to abide by the rules if they understand why they have to follow them and why they will receive such consequences if they fail to follow.

Be Firm and Consistent

Being firm and consistent is very important to teach your teens responsibility. If you set clear rules and established consequences when those rules are not being met, then you have to responsible in implementing them. Bad behaviors in teens will flourish if they know that you are very lenient in your rules. Your teens may think that following those rules is not really that important because you don’t give your full commitment on them — so why should they bother as well.

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We all know that being parents is really a tough job especially if your teens are constantly developing bad behaviors. That is why it is important for you to be responsible in your own way and be a good role model for your teens. If your teens are surrounded and influenced with responsible individuals like their parents, then most likely they would eventually be responsible teens.

 

What You Need To Know About Identity Theft

We know how to secure our physical valuables, such as our money and gadgets. However, many of us don’t know how to protect something more important: our identity. In the US alone, identity theft affected more than 16 million people in 2017. These people collectively lost more than 16 million dollars, and that doesn’t include intangible costs, such as damaged reputations and lost time. Indeed, identity theft can sometimes be worse than physical robbery, so you need to make adequate preparations for it.

Identity theft can be a confusing matter to understand. Why would someone claim to be you, and how do criminals do it? Learning more about this brand of crime will help you prevent yourself from being an easy target by these criminals. As long as you follow the best practices for avoiding this type of theft, you can rest assured that your identity will remain secure for years to come.

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Stealing Someone’s Identity

You might be wondering: why would someone impersonate you? As a productive citizen, you already have precious assets such as social security benefits or the salary from your employer. You have access to one or more bank accounts, many of which hold substantial amounts of money. You also have friends and acquaintances that have their valuable assets. Someone who pretends to be you can seize all of these.

Impersonation can take one of many forms. For instance, thieves can intercept your connection when you access the Internet through an unsecured connection, such as public Wi-Fi spots. When you try to access banking sites or log into social media accounts, they can retrieve your credentials and use them to access your accounts. They can withdraw your money, lock you out of your accounts, and use your online persona to trick more people.

Another common technique used by identity criminals is phishing. They can create websites that look like login pages for legitimate sites. When you enter your credentials, you’re left with a useless site while they get to steal your data. Other digital forms of theft include sending you emails laden with malware, which scours your device for passwords and other private data. 

Less sophisticated approaches also exist. Some criminals will sift through your garbage for documents from which they can glean information, such as credit card billings or tax forms. Sometimes, they can use public data about yourself, such as your home address or phone number, to gain access to your other accounts. This method is possible because many security questions ask for personal information that they can obtain, such as your mother’s name.

Identity theft can cost you a fortune, damage your credit score, and ruin relationships. Even when reported, it can take years to reverse the worst effects. Hence, prevention is of utmost importance.

Protecting Your Identity

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One quick way to prevent identity theft is to limit the amount of personal information that you share online. When creating new accounts, use the least amount of information you can. Don’t share sensitive information such as your birthdate, complete home address, or phone numbers.

You should also secure the login credentials you use. Activate two-factor authentication whenever you can to make it harder to access your accounts. Use a secure network for your connections. Use long, alphanumeric passwords, and use a password manager to keep them safe. Finally, shred any physical documents before disposing of them.

Always remember that your identity is one of your most precious belonging. Protect it at all costs.

Ways To Discipline Your Child When Caught Cheating In School

No parent desires to be called by the principal due to cheating. However, this is common in the school setting. While your kid’s offense may upset you, you still have to think of strategies on how to discipline your child to avoid problems like this in the future. Hence, here are some ways for parents to remedy the situation.

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Listen To All Sides

As a parent, you might have the instinct to defend your child from the student or teacher who accused your child of cheating. However, this should not be the case. You should be neutral in these cases and seek the stories of all those who are involved.

The best way to start this is to set a meeting with the educators alongside your child. Ask for their version of the story. How did the teacher know of the cheating? What’s the story behind the classmate’s accusation? If you cannot understand what they are saying, calmly ask for clarification and patiently listen.

You also have to understand that cheating nowadays goes beyond looking at someone’s paper or copying their classmate’s homework. The rise of the digital age also gave way to more sophisticated means of doing this act. Some examples of this include wearing smartwatches with answers on them or hacking the principal’s computer to have access to the tests. With this in mind, you should always be open when listening to all of their accounts.

Give Out Punishments

Once you have verified that they indeed cheated, you have to hold them accountable for it and punish them for their wrongdoing. However, it is essential to tailor the consequences depending on the gravity of their situation. For example, his or her punishment for copying homework must be lesser than for cheating on an exam.

Some disciplinary actions include the following:

  • Welcome school consequences. If the teacher decides to give him detention or a zero on his paper, let them be. Do not stick up for your child since this might only give him the idea that cheating is acceptable for you.
  • Encourage him to apologize. He should make amends to those people involved. It may be with his classmate he copied his answers from or to the teacher whom he tricked.
  • Create a schoolwork plan. As a parent, you should also help your child cope with the stresses of school. To avoid copying and cheating, you can create a plan for schoolwork. It ensures that he does his homework or reads his assigned readings. The program can include establishing a fixed study time in the house, reading several pages of a book every day, or assigning a tutor for your child.

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Find The Reason For Cheating

There is most likely a reason why your child resorted to cheating. It can be because he or she sees older people cheat, there’s too much academic pressure, or his friends force him or her to commit the offense. Whatever it is, you have to pinpoint the exact reason why to be able to address the root of his or her dishonesty.

Always remember that you should send the message that cheating is unacceptable. Do not focus on what punishments to give to your child. If they don’t fully grasp the importance of honesty, they will most likely repeat this act in the future.

Top Alternatives To School Detention

Most educators see school detention as ineffective and a waste of time. Admit it: this punishment does not instantly fix a student’s attitude. It then leads them to become repeat offenders in the following weeks. Reading boring books and staring at walls might not do the job, but there are other alternatives to the traditional school detention. Let us explore them one by one.

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Lunch Workshop

Administrators can hire a counselor and meet these challenging students once a week for their lunch workshop. They are required to report to the counselor’s office without having to worry about their lunch. The office serves lunch so students won’t use the long lines in the cafeteria as an excuse to skip the sessions.

The counselor will then run a series of workshops tackling various character development issues. These include developing a positive vibe, having a growth mindset, attending support groups, or overcoming school stressors. The students should be able to connect to the chosen topics, and the one leading the discussion should be genuine to make the sessions as productive as possible.

After the mini-workshops, the counselor gives the floor to the student. It can be a safe space for him or her to share some of the struggles he or she faces. This practice will help build trust and connection with one another.

Mindful Moment Room

Instead of sending the naughty kids to a bland classroom, why not cure their disruptive behavior in a room with pillows, blankets, lamps, and decorations called the Mindful Moment Room. This place can be a space for the students to go through various types of meditation to calm them down.

Research shows that meditation positively affects both the body and mind. It enhances an individual’s patience, focus, attention span, and attitude.

Robert Coleman Elementary already practices this after-school program, and they were able to reap its benefits in just a short amount of time. According to the school administrators, the suspension rates dropped, class attendance increased, and test scores were at its highest in the past year.

Reflection Papers

If a student has a record of misbehaving all the time, the teacher may opt to place them in a quiet room and have them write a reflection paper. You can assign topics that you think they can relate to. After they write it, make sure to talk to them about their piece and engage a conversation with them.

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This approach can also be the best strategy for you to know why a student is acting up. Once you know his or her struggles, it will be easier for you to create a tailored action plan.

Community Service

Rather than cooping the student in a hole, why not let him or her engage in community service? Your school can partner with several non-governmental organizations (NGOs) where they can lend their time. These include nursing homes, orphanage, environmental groups, and many more. Exposing these individuals to good deeds might help them reassess their lives and change for the better.

Do not expect students to change their troubling behaviors by placing them in a small classroom. The goal of detention is to let the students be accountable for their mistakes, reflect on these shortcomings, and improve their behavior. The four alternatives mentioned above could be the way to attain these.

Self-Help Strategies To Overcome Kleptomania

Every time we encounter someone who steals from us, we always associate them with the idea of a criminal. We do not feel sorry for these individuals since we think that they do it on purpose. However, some people are only victims of a mental health disorder called kleptomania.

Kleptomania is the inability to prevent oneself from stealing from other people and feeling guilty and ashamed after. Take note that this is different from those who steal just because they’re bored, they want a thrill, or they only wish to. Kleptomaniacs feel uncontrollable urges to do this act, even if they don’t desire to. If you are experiencing these impulses, you might want to try these self-help strategies to overcome the disorder.

Source: commons.wikimedia.org

Accept Your Situation

It is essential to recognize that you are experiencing kleptomania and understand that you need help. Some people fail to address this because of their inability to accept their situation. If you keep on putting aside this problem, your disorder might escalate more in the future.

Contemplate

You should start contemplating and reflecting to understand your condition completely. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • When do you usually steal?
  • How often do you do it?
  • How does it make you feel?
  • What do you think are your triggers?
  • What do you think are its consequences?
  • Who benefits from this?

You can grasp your stealing behaviors with the answers to these questions. Do you engage in this act to escape from reality or do you steal to experience emotional high? Are you more likely to do it when you’re stressed or when you’re relaxed? There are endless answers that you can obtain from these myriads of questions. You only have to analyze your responses to see the whole picture of your situation.

Create A Prevention Plan

Drafting a prevention plan can help you take control of your desire to steal. Start by identifying your stealing history. Then, determine your triggers from stealing and come up with specific steps to avoid waking up these urges. Here are some strategies for your prevention plan:

  • Observe. If you feel the urge beginning, stop what you are doing and stand still. Observe your environment, the people around you, and yourself. This action will help you calm your mind.
  • Talk to yourself. When you’re on the verge of succumbing to pressure, try talking to yourself. Remind yourself of your values, how good you are as a person, and how much you love yourself.
  • Exercise relaxation techniques. You can use relaxation techniques such as yoga or repeated breathing to calm yourself.
  • Distract yourself. Do something that you are passionate about, be it playing sports, painting, writing, or watching a movie. You should find a positive alternative to stealing.

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Aside from these self-help strategies, it might also be helpful for you to seek the help of a therapist.

BetterHelp is an online platform geared towards giving its users access to affordable therapy and counseling at the tip of their fingers.

Remember, you don’t have to endure your problem alone. You’ll get back on track faster with the help of your family, friends, and some professionals.

How To Deal With Your Parents White Lies According To Therapists

There have been many talks, studies, and writeups by therapists about children lying to their parents. On the other hand, discussions about parents lying to their children are rare. Telling white lies to a toddler-aged kid has been normalized by many when it comes to parenting. Once you get to your teenage years or young adulthood, and your parents still do this act, conflicts tend to arise, and the gap tends to increase.

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Research suggests most people consider it socially and culturally acceptable for parents to use white lies with their children. Psychologists and therapists identify some common reasons for parents’ white lies, including the protection of their children and their interests.

Parents also cover up the truth to shape their children’s behavior and feelings. Research from two related studies on parental lying and deception in the United States found parents also use white lies as a strategy to make their children happy. 

Impact Of Parental Lying On A Parent-Child Relationship

Source: flickr.com

It has been proven parental lying damages your relationship with your parents and diminishes intrinsic motivation. As a result, you will not learn the appropriate behavior you need to demonstrate if you always cooperate when they tell you white lies. Lying also tends to exhaust parents mentally as they must always remember the story they created to look and sound consistent.

Parents are hurting their children when they lie to them. As you grow old while you get used to your parents contradicting the truth you have come to know, you end up doubting yourself. At a young age, you should already have your inner sense of right and wrong through your parents’ encouragement. You may be denied a healthy personality once you are unable to trust yourself because of your parents.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers have found children can sense when their parents are lying to them. It can lead them to distrust their parents, the very people who should teach them ethical values. Children, especially those who are beyond the age of curiosity, are not gullible and know when their parents are withholding information.

A New York Times article also pointed out that psychiatrists have been seeking to determine when white lies become destructive. Moreover, they have also been studying which kinds of mental health problems can be derived consequently. Therefore, parental lying may not only negatively impact a parent-child relationship but also cause serious health and well-being issues within the family.

Source: maxpixel.net

Tips On Dealing With Your Parents’ White Lies

  • Always ask your parents genuine questions. Every time you ask your parents about something you would like to know, measure their truth’s consistency. Show them you are eager to know the ‘real truth’ and how it will effectively and positively affect you as their child and as an individual.
  • Sympathize with your parents. It is crucial that at a young age, you already learn how to let your parents know you understand them and their struggles. Show your parents how open-minded and understanding you have become. As a result, they will no longer deny you the truth you seek to know even if it might hurt your feelings. Make them feel you are on the same page.
  • Avoid being overpowered by disappointment. As previously mentioned, parents often lie to protect their children’s emotions. It does not mean they are already removing parental support and guidance. As their child, you might face disappointments from your parents’ white lies and suspicious actions. You must know how not to overthink everything. Find a solution alongside your parents rather than on your own.
  • Distinguish the difference between acceptable and forbidden lies. Learning about the boundaries between truth and consequences at a young age are likely to stay with us as we grow up and old. You must not be oversensitive about everything and realize the white lies created by your parents are not always about or because of you.
  • Let them know what you value as a person. It is okay to be vocal as a child, especially when you demonstrate and maintain a respectful behavior. Open communication has been a vital, fundamental key to keeping a harmonious relationship within every group or network such as your family. Tell them directly how you feel about things and what you would like to know to improve yourself and manage growth.

Therapists have been giving expert advice to parents who still use lying as a parenting strategy. Now it is time you do your part as a growing child to understand your parents’ white lies and let them know you deserve to know the truth.

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