Mangaluru, Aug 2: Parents play an essential role in influencing how adolescents interact with the complex factors that shape their development. As children mature into adolescence, the parenting relationship evolves, and parents require new developmentally-appropriate skills and strategies to meet their children’s needs.
Building on parents’ existing strengths and equipping them to provide support to their adolescent children through parenting programmes has the potential to have a profound positive influence on adolescent development. With this in view St Aloysius PU held seminars for parents on the topic ‘Teen Parenting: Positive Strategies’.
Parents were invited in small groups to the college in for the sessions to be interactive and more effective. The sessions were taken by eminent psychiatrists and mental health professionals such as Dr Rameela Shekar, Dr Supriya Hegde Aroor, Deepa Kotari and Dr Caroline P D’Souza.
Rameela Shekar, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Professional, Mannshanthi Clinic, urged the parents to respect their childrens rights to independence and to find a balance between controlling and giving freedom while still appreciating the importance of the parent-child bond. She also encouraged them to make time for interaction with their children and be more involved in their activities.
Dr Supriya Hegde Aroor, Professor and Head of Department of Psychiatry, Fr. Muller Medical College, and Consultant Psychiatrist, Arogya Clinic, discussed different parenting styles and how parents must take on different roles in understanding the needs of teenagers, such as basic biological needs provider, nurturing environment provider, protector, opportunity provider, counselor, friend, and teacher.
Deepa Kotari, assistant professor in the Department of Clinical Psychology at St Agnes Centre for Post Graduate Studies, advised the parents to give information rather than instructions, make things simple, explain the sentiments involved, supply information, choose options rather than ultimatums, and refrain from nagging. She encouraged the parents to accept themselves and their children as they are.
Dr Caroline P. D’Souza, Consultant Neuro-Psychiatrist, Falnir Health Centre, spoke on topics such as peer pressure, self-consciousness, and teen expectations. She encouraged the parents to practice parenting the right way with the following strategies: communicating in the right way, allowing them to face challenges, making space rather than ruling, being a part of their world and boosting their self-esteem.
Vice principals Muralikrishna G M and Charlotte D’Souza, briefed on the various activities of the college, and the events in the academic year ahead.
The Department of Counseling, SAPUC planned and meticulously organized these talks. The counselors Sangeeta Sequeira, Bakyalakshmi, and Sarah Crasta, moderated the sessions and also spoke on the initiatives of the counseling department and their role in the institution. The parents shared their appreciation for the efforts taken by the institution in organizing these fruitful sessions.