Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Helping Empathic Children Adjust in Families

by Caron Goode

Experts agree that happy children share characteristics like optimism and a sense of control. How can parents create a supportive family atmosphere to create successful intuitive children? This chapter starts with how to provide support for the emotional empath and help them develop calm and resilience.
  • Our support goal for an emotional empath is to strengthen emotional energy, especially of the heart.
  • Our second support goal is to empower resilience so they can interact with the environment, not withdraw from it.
  • A third support goal is to monitor and maintain an emotionally healthy atmosphere in your home.
An empath’s vulnerability can also be their challenge in an emotionally toxic home where they have to learn to cut off their feelings so they can survive.

The primary home environment provides the first stable space in which an empathic child learns to value personal feelings and how to interpret the emotional atmosphere of the home. Margaret’ story shows how a psychic, sensitive, or empathic child can interpret a parent’s emotions, and her decision as a child affected her relationship with her father significantly.

Margaret’s was empathic, and she came from a large Italian family of seven children. All were talkative and emotionally expressive. Her family had a celebration for Margaret’s First Communion day and invited relatives and members of the church community. It was normal to see the men in her family drinking beer and sometimes wine at these family celebrations.

In the late afternoon, Margaret’s observed her father’s emotional energy for the first time: “I kept staring at Dad because I had never seen like storm clouds around him before. Usually Dad was all sunshine and smiles. I was seeing my father’s aura. His alcoholic haze looked like dark clouds, and his mood was angry. Even though I was used to his booming Italian voice, when his emotional tone changed to anger, his voice matched the dark clouds seen by my young eyes. I was confused and that day was the start of my withdrawal from his energy. Being in touch with his dark stormy emotions made me feel sick to my stomach. My father’s alcoholism grew through the years, and our relationship withered.”

Rather than Margaret withdrawing from her father to feel safe, another option would be to create communication and understanding between them—a path of resilience for Margaret. Research from The International Resilience Project reviewed what we mentioned in chapter one: “A child's own genetic make-up and temperament are fundamental to whether he or she will be resilient. That is, a child's vulnerability to anxiety, challenges, stress or unfamiliarity determines his or her self-perception, how he or she interacts with others, and how he or she addresses adversities.”

An emotional empath like Margaret needs an adult in the family to model acceptance of other’s differences. A mentor, whether a parent, sibling, neighbor or schoolteacher can help sensitive children negotiate adversity by talking about it. For example an adult could help Margaret clarify that her dad only looked foggy when drinking alcohol. How did his energy appear at other times? Perhaps Margaret could have brought to his attention the fact that his children did not respond well to the anger and alcohol mix. Conversations have to happen!!

For further information, check out Raising Intuitive Children and also the book, by Goldberg, E. H. A Guide to Promoting Resilience in children: Strengthening the Human Spirit. The International Resilience Project, part of the Early Childhood Development: Practice & Reflection series. Bernard Van Leer Foundation.

Many parents, grandparents, and teachers are guardians of intuitive children. Since many of these adults did not have a spiritually-advanced role model when they were children, they are perplexed when trying to deal with the children of today, who openly exhibit spiritual gifts. The Sid Series is now part of the curriculum for “Fostering Empathic Values for Soulful Living.” There are 12 modules in this class—each one is less than ten minutes. Learn more or sign up at http://live-spirit.com/parenting-classes

© 2011 Dr. Goode is the founder of the Academy for Coaching Parents International, a global online school for training successful, wealthy parenting coaches in home-based businesses. She is the author of fifteen books, including the international best seller, Kids Who See Ghosts, the national award-winner Raising Intuitive Children. See and review all of Dr. Goode’s books here.

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