Because many of our children have suffered early trauma and neglect, they have often missed out on key developmental building blocks and can present as emotionally immature, challenging, aggressive, needy.
Many families quickly discover that standard parenting techniques are ineffective – even counterproductive – and a downward spiral of behaviour, attachments and negativity can begin.
Therapeutic parenting seeks to repair the brain’s pathways, replace the missing building blocks and, over time, improve outcomes for families and young people.
The National Association Of Therapeutic Parents was set up by Sarah Naish, an adoptive mum of five siblings, who had herself undertaken the journey from standard to therapeutic parenting. On their website is a clear definition for the purpose and services offered by the NATP.
The NATP exists to-
Provide support, education and resources for Therapeutic Parents and supporting professionals relating to therapeutic parenting, effective interventions, compassion fatigue and the effects of early life trauma.
To promote better outcomes for children who have suffered early life trauma, by significantly improving the consistency and quality of support available to Therapeutic Parents in the UK and Worldwide, regardless of whether they are Foster Carers, Adopters, Kinship Carers, Special Guardians, Step Parents, or Birth parents.
According to the Attachment and Trauma Network, therapeutic parenting is the term used to describe the type of high structure/high nurture intentional parenting that fosters the feelings of safety and connectedness so that a traumatised child can begin to heal and attach.
Sarah Naish explains it in this video.
So how might the NATP help you?
- Provides research on and strategies to combat compassion fatigue
- Monthly listening circles – an opportunity to meet other people with the same challenges and exchange ideas and resources. Amazingly supportive
- Training ( online and face to face)
- Facebook support for members on dedicated member’s page.
- Books – for children, parents and professionals (see our books page for details). The A-Z of Therapeutic Parenting is a key life-saver book!
There is a small monthly charge for membership.
Other Therapeutic Parenting Models
There are many other therapeutic parenting models, Dan Hughes PACE model being one of the best recognised. A summary of the model can be found here:
More comprehensive information is available on Dan Hughes’ website
See our Books page for a range of texts on Therapeutic Parenting.