Hi, I am Liz – a parent, grandparent and step parent. I have been fascinated by and involved in the Parenting Support Movement for almost three decades.
I first realised I wasn’t alone in my struggles as a parent, over 27 years ago, when I attended a parenting group, having been coerced to show up. I felt quite uncomfortable about the idea. Surely I am going to be shown up to be the inadequate, overwhelmed and under skilled parent that I felt myself to be.
To my great relief I found a wide range of parents who felt the same, struggled the same and couldn’t figure it out, just the same as me. I was a lone parent who thought I was an isolated island, where there were no other people, life rafts, jackets or flare guns in sight.
When you look around, it does appear, that everyone else’s family seems to have been given the magic formula that brings smiles to faces and warmth to embraces. It makes you wonder where you were when the formula fairy was liberally shedding this wisdom? On a loo break? Out buying some hobnobs?
A reality check
Looking back, I see how ill equipped I was. I had imagined a deck of ‘Happy Families’ where we all just got on and didn’t argue, and the kids were just playing, well mostly outside, in the Dingly Dell. It was a reality shock, for sure, and there were added unforeseen challenges that I hadn’t bargained for.
I needed help and support, but I didn’t know it.
I loved my kids and I hoped that was enough.
It wasn’t. We struggled, and I felt lost and alone.
My biggest regret is not seeking support sooner, and finding out that there were so many others who felt just as I did. That in fact, most parents feel that they are the only ones, struggling to juggle the herculean task of raising small humans into big responsible, loving, caring adults. Who wouldn’t buckle really?
The expectations on the shoulders of parents, at emotional moments particularly, is enormous.
Make your child happy. Solve the problem.
If you can’t solve the problem, make him stop so that others aren’t bothered or inconvenienced.
Be a strong parent. Discipline him. Prove to everyone that you are in charge.
So I tried to do just that and as with all of us, it was the best I could do and be, at the time.
To quote Maya Angelou ‘Do your best until you know better and when you know better, do better.’
Discovering a new way
I have come a long way from those far off days. Not only just in time, but in myself. Especially since I discovered, just this year, a revolution in parenting.
I have worked with hundreds of families with great success over the years and somehow there was a niggle that my understanding and skill base had a little hole, a missing piece. And lo and behold I uncovered that missing piece, this year when I found Hand in Hand Parenting and undertook a professional intensive training with them.
Some of those insights are laid here on this site and most significantly I see the benefits, not only with the families I work with now, but with my own grandchildren.
It was good before. And now it is just great. I can meet them in their emotional displays and understand and listen and set limits and everyone wins.
There is very rarely any bad feeling as needs are being met and emotions are being allowed to dissipate. We have the most ridiculous fun (I know it is easier as a grandparent) and I also know this is possible for parents too.
They become responsive, and good natured naturally, as their brain offloads the strong feelings, that can be current, recent or historic. We don’t need to know the details, just listen and be present and there are five wonderful tools to do that in a variety of ways.
I feel such an ease and comfort knowing I don’t have to fix them, sort them out or be any particular way other than their ally and guide. The love becomes palpable and I have heard this same message from the parents I have worked with.
How can I help your family?
Get in touch to book a free call so we can discuss your situation. Click the button below to send me an email or call me on 07966 579 924. I look forward to connecting with you!
To summarise – Liz has changed our lives! We approached Liz for help dealing with certain behaviours of our two young boys and it was one of the best decisions we have ever made.
Liz’s warm and friendly personality put us at ease and gently led us through some techniques to put into practise as our ‘home work’.
The changes were subtle, but the impact was huge. A noticeable difference even after the first week. We are like a different family now and I can hardly remember how it was before.
The children behave better, they play nicer, we are all calmer- I have stopped being ‘the shouty mum’ and have become a parent that understands my children’s individual and unique feelings, needs and emotions.
We’re not perfect, but we’re happy! I couldn’t recommend Liz highly enough- or thank her enough either!Zoe
When I was certain I had a behaviour problem with my 4 year old son, Liz showed me a different way. She helped me understand I had to rebuild my own inner strength, which had grown pretty thin. Liz gave me tools to grow as a mother. She helped me realise that nothing was wrong with me or my son. I learned to trust myself and instead of nervously checking every change in his mood, I became a rock. I was steady, and did not follow every impulse to “fix” everything. I observed, I was there. I became more relaxed. It was all that was needed at the time. It made such a difference! Today he is 17, and we have such a loving relationship!Kristina
A bit of background info…
After attending my first parenting group as a participant in the early eighties, I enjoyed and benefitted from it so much, I went on to train as a facilitator for Parent Link.
I then ran communication skills courses for the next ten years. I remember my daughter telling me one particularly challenging evening, that I should give my certificate back as I didn’t deserve to have it! Yep, there were ironies!
This work had become a passion and I knew I needed to keep learning and growing and I also wanted to do something that gave me a qualification. At around the age of 50 (always a late starter) I studied and got a Family Therapy Diploma and went on to further study and receive 30 credits at degree level in Narrative Family Therapy.
And then I got a proper job, in the system, bona fide. I lived in Cornwall at the time and the government had decided that parenting needed support and they gave out money, and a lot of it. I worked firstly for Cornwall Childrens Fund and then Barnados and finally Action For Children. By which time the government had mostly stopped giving money to support parents and we were all made redundant.
But in the 12 years this money was flowing I trained and qualified in over 30 different Parenting Programmes. Some of them accredited and some not. Needless to say it was a wealth of experience and all the while I was seeing parents one to one in their homes, running group work courses and training some professionals and volunteers.
It is more than a job and now in my sixties I feel like I am just getting revved up. My passion is to bring what I have learnt and understood and help other parents find an ease, joy and comfort with all the ups and downs and twists and turns of family life.
We all deserve to make the most of our lives. Families are at the core of how society functions and if that can be transformed one wonderful family at a time. Who knows the impact for the future.
Positive Parenting Facilitator
License No: 7044630