If you ask any parent, their job as a parent is the hardest and most rewarding job that they have ever done. There is a lot of things to worry about when it comes to raising a child and making sure they give them everything that they need to be successful in life. Parenting can pose it’s challenges on a daily basis, especially when you are a parent to a child with developmental issues. One family in Wales experienced this is a major way.
Adrian and Emma, a married couple from Barry Island, South Wales are the parents of two children. Their daughter is 11 and their son, Ioan, is 8 years old. Ioan has developmental and behavioral issues that require constant care and attention. It also added to the couple’s choice to appear on the television show “Violent Child, Desperate Parents.” This show brings a childhood psychologist into homes in order to help the parents with difficult children.
This couple was faced with serious issues, such as the possibility of divorce, within their lives that are based on the behavior of their child. Their son was having serious violent outbursts, very serious. Their son, although 8 years old, had the developmental age of a 3-year-old. This was causing the child to act out violently with kicking, putting holes in doors and walls, and biting fits when he was asked to do something as simple as going to bed or turning down the television.
Through the television series, child psychologist Laverne Antrobus is brought in to help the family try to achieve some sort of normalcy in their lives. Antrobus came into the home and witnessed the outbursts and witnessed mom resorting to physical restraining in order to try and calm the child during one of these violent rages. This is when she realized something had to be done immediately because this was not the answer.
Antrobus was able to pinpoint the issues through the child’s drawings of the family. He would draw the family with him in between mom and dad. Mom was drawn to be much bigger than dad and dad was even drawn at a distance from the rest of the family. The child was demonstrating the idea that mom was his and that he had nothing really to do with dad. Therein lied the problem.
The psychologist told the parents that they needed to parent the young boy as a team and not mom by herself. He needed to know that there were two parents and that they both were a team and were both there for him. He also needed to establish a real bond a relationship with his father in order to reshape the way he views him.
Once the family changed the way they handled these issues, great improvements began to take shape. His behavior changed and dad and son gained a real close bond. Ioan also began to improve his behavior and the violence slowly receded into the past. The improvements were so major that mom and dad were able to drop the kids at grandma and grandpas house so the parents could go out on date night.
Now the child’s drawings look different.
It saved their marriage and it kept the family together as a stronger, more bonded unit.