Today, Halloween, our speech language pathologists completed an eight-week series on Reflective Practices, presented by Chad Kordt-Thomas, LCSW. This was a powerful and incredible series that left us feeling empowered.
Working closely with children and their families brings professionals into intimate relationships. As pediatric speech therapists we must possess a wide range of skills to make enduring positive change. Working with children almost always includes working with parents, whether that is our focus or not. However, supporting families through the child-parent relationship helps us get the most out of our interventions.
This series gave us an opportunity to step back from the day-to-day work with families and reflect on our interactions. Reflection and discussion often leads to more clarity about the reasons we interact with families in particular ways and the ways families interact with us. Moreover, attention to the child-parent relationship can make our interventions more powerful and effective. We will also looked at some of the challenges that come up in doing relationship-based work with families, such as:
- When parents’ desires seems at odds with what we think the child needs
- Helping parents balance worry with hope
- Parents’ frustration at child and/or at us
- When parents bring up dilemmas outside our professional scope of work
- The pressures that arise when paying attention to multiple perspectives