I was surprised at how much the programme helped me and how fun it was. I enjoyed hearing about other people’s experiences as parents – where they’re struggling, what they’re doing well and then sharing ideas and learning coping mechanisms that others have mastered. The cake was also good!
I found it easy to share as part of the group (actually, I had to stop myself from talking too much) and the way the group is set out encourages people to be open and ensures that there’s no judgement.
I really liked the love languages session – I took it home and did the questionnaire with every person in my household. It was insightful because it meant that I could match the result with problem behaviour and see whether my children were acting out because they needed something that I wasn’t giving them; then I could meet the need to help change the behaviour.
Group discussions also helped me see that I need to limit screen time – for myself and my children. I found the booklet quite good in this regard; it includes things you think you already know but by highlighting them you have to confront them, which was good. One parent was incredibly good at limiting screen time and I took some tips from him; like keeping your phone in a drawer and if you need to use it for work, set time aside to do that rather than keep it in your hand.
Before, I’d use a screen to occupy my children so that I could do housework and work (and things) but a better idea is to include the children in what I am doing – cooking, for example. This is a good opportunity to get them off their screens and to teach them life skills. Since doing the programme, my children have noticed that I’m stricter with screen time; they’re not that keen on this but they’ll get used to it eventually. I still need to cook with them but juggling time is something I’m working on and hope to improve.
What the programme has shown me is that whether somebody’s struggling or feeling quite settled and fine, the group will open your eyes to things that you could do better or may have even overlooked. There’s always room for improvement and it’s good to be more insightful.
*Names have been changed to protect the identity of the individuals concerned.
The attached picture is not a representation of the individual concerned.