What’s Up Doc? The Mommy Monster

April 26, 2012 at 6:25 pm Leave a comment

This Month’s”What’s Up Doc” comes to us from Ann Puccetti, LCSW  – Program Director and Jill Fazio, LCSW – Family Support Specialist at Parenthesis Family Center.

Ann received her BA from Stonehill College in Massachusetts and her MA in Social Work from the University of Chicago. Most of Ann’s career has been in providing family support services to families in need, starting at Abraham Lincoln Center on Chicago’s south side. Ann has also worked at Catholic Charities, as director of their Basic Human Needs program, and later as a social worker in the Arts of Living program for teen parents. Ann joined the Parenthesis staff in 2004 as a Family Wrap specialist, and now serves as program director. Ann considers it a privilege to assist families in reaching their parenting goals. Ann is married with four children.

Jill received her BA from Illinois Wesleyan University and her MA in Social Work from the University of Chicago. She holds an LCSW. Jill has served as a Peace Corps volunteer, working in the South American school systems as a family social worker and assisted on a parent empowerment project with UNICEF. In addition, she has worked with the New York City GEAR UP program to counsel youth and their families, and has served as Director of Social Services for the Ida B. Wells Program for Pregnant and Parenting Students also in New York City. Jill became a part of Parenthesis Family Center in May 2010 as a Family Support Specialist. Jill works with the Mothering On Our Own Program as well as with the Family Wrap Program. Jill enjoys working with families in the community to teach and learn about the daily celebrations and struggles of parenting.

Many moms feel it, but most moms don’t like to talk about it.  How is it we love our kids so much, yet they bring out the worst in us sometimes?  Discussions about maternal anger do not come easily because no one wants to admit those feelings. When moms get mad, they often feel guilty or like something is wrong with them – no one else could possibly be feeling that way!   At Parenthesis Family Center, we encourage our families to explore all the feelings of motherhood, and to get them out in the open.  It is so important to understand angry feelings, strategize how to cope with them, and know when to seek additional help if those feelings get out of control.

Children really know how to push our buttons and it is important for us to be able to recognize the triggers and identify strategies to help us from taking our feelings out on our kids.

Below are some common strategies to help you curb your anger:

  1. Count to ten– Sounds too simple and mundane, but the counting method may very well prevent you from flipping out on your kid!  By taking a deep breath and counting you can calm down so you may deal with the situation effectively.
  2. Tell your children when you are getting angry- Let your children know you are getting frustrated and which behavior is causing this.
  3. Walk Away- Simply put, give yourself a time-out.  (Make sure your child is safe when leaving the area)
  4. Pretend Someone Else is There – Many mothers speak to their child in a way they would never speak to someone else. If it helps, pretend someone you admire is in the room with you, watching you blow up at your children.
  5. When and if you lose it, apologize- Despite all of your efforts to curb your anger, if you do lose it, let your child know that you made a mistake, do not condone the behavior, but remind the child that this was not the way to handle your anger
  6. Look at it from a child’s point of view- Put yourself in your child’s shoes.  Having someone standing above you, looking down and yelling and blaming can be pretty scary…and depending on the child’s age, she may have no idea why you are even angry.

Despite our every effort to be the perfect parent, we are going to have times when we unfairly lose it with our children.  The most important thing to remember is to acknowledge those feelings, take responsibility, and help teach our children how to appropriately deal with anger.

Ann Puccetti, LCSW                                                                        Jill Fazio, LCSW

Program Director                                                                        Family Support Specialist

http://www.parenthesis-info.org/

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Tuesday Blog: 10 ways to boost fertility naturally Taking “Thyme” to Explore Sunset Foods & Lake Forest

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