Parenting - TV Show Blog

Television and movies are the extent of my knowledge about autism and Asperger's Syndrome. I've been led to believe that people with autism are either like Rain Man (an autistic savant) or less gifted, empathy-denied individuals loved by their parents who understand their child cannot love them back. Boy, have I been misled.
My son struggles with moderate anxiety from time to time. In turn, I struggle with knowing how best to help him. After speaking with Susan Resko, former Executive Director of The Balanced Mind Foundation, I feel renewed gratitude for my comparatively much smaller-scale parenting struggles. Families raising children with mood disorders have a daunting task, but there is help available.
It's becoming more and more common for children to be diagnosed with mental health issues. We see labeling and medications dispensed now more than ever before for children who may not have been considered anything other than "unique" or "challenging"  in years past. There's no doubt about it, children suffer, too. But our guest, Dr. Marilyn Wedge, says that she has never, in 20 years of practice, seen a case that could not be resolved by family therapy.
If I'd had to win the job of mother to my son on a Survivor-style reality game show, I would have been voted off within the first 6 months. As it is, I've lasted almost 13 years and done okay for the most part. But much of that success has to do with the fact that my child is physically and mentally healthy. In other words, he's not that difficult to parent. Children with autism have special limitations and needs that are bound to make parenting an autistic child an exponentially greater challenge than parenting already is.
My son is 12 and will officially enter the realm of adolescence in a matter of months. I can't tell you how many times I've heard dire warnings and grave well wishes from parents who have been there and know firsthand the unique challenges that go along with parenting teenagers. I've assumed for some time that parents-in-the-know exaggerate the difficulties facing parents of teenagers for comic effect.
Like most parents, Laurie Oulette wants her son to be healthy and happy. When he's sick, struggling, or in trouble she wants to help him get well. But since his father's suicide last December, Laurie's 14-year-old son has become immersed in a video game addiction.
Eating With Your Anorexic author and HealthyPlace blogger, Laura Collins, has a bold message for parents of children and teens with eating disorders - "It's not your fault!" A lot of the information on the causes of eating disorders points the finger at parents.  Parents, says Collins, are blamed by many researchers and treatment professionals as playing some role in the causes of eating disorders in their children. She wants more evidence-based research into the causes of eating disorders as well as eating disorders treatment recommendations.
Raising a child is hard enough. Having a child with an addiction can be a living hell; a nightmare of constant heartache and worry. This week, on the HealthyPlace Mental Health TV Show, we're focusing on parents of addicts - what they do right, wrong, and how to draw the line in helping an addicted child (teen or adult).
A common problem every parent faces is how to assess and deal with behavior problems in children.  Unfortunately, kids don't come with a manual and most of us learn parenting skills from our own parents and how they raised us.  Sometimes, that's not enough when you're dealing with a child who presents special parenting challenges.
Having a baby is a thought to be a miracle. The baby is born and although mom may be extremely tired, in the days that follow, there's also joy and happiness that surrounds the event. For some women, though, it's a very trying time. Mood swings, insomnia and fatigue set in and get in the way of the mother caring for her newborn baby. On the extreme end, some mothers with postpartum depression end up committing suicide or even killing their own child or children.