In this second article taken from a recent interview with Kareen Hannon I am going to share with you some of the basics of coaching for parents of children with Asperger’s.
Coaching is used to help empower parents to find solutions for problems that they re experiencing with their child.
The emphasis is on the parent as the expert who already has a lot of the answers – but needs help (from the coach) to draw them out.
The key to coaching is the relationship between the parents and the coach.
Kareen herself will turn down coaching clients if she feels that the relationship/feeling between them is not one that is well matched.
The aim of coaching is to be a short term approach which quickly brings practical results to problems.
This is done by breaking problems down into small achievable steps.
For example she worked with parents who wanted their daughter with Asperger’s to learn to swim so they took it in stages:
Stage 1 Buying a bathing suit
Stage 2 Wearing the suit in the house
Stage 3 Discussing the color, feel, look etc. of the suit
Stage 4 Trying the bathing suit in the bath tub…
Until eventually getting to the stage of actually going to a pool with a swim suit.
And as you can see this was carefully broken down into small little stages rather than a rushed plan which may have overwhelmed the girl.
Coaching also offers a different approach to more typical therapies; which can have advantages for both parents.
It is much more based on practical problem-solving skills than talking about emotions and feelings which more typical therapy focuses on.
This can make it quite attractive to dads, as men traditionally are not as easy in talking about their feelings as women.
Likewise this practical approach can be helpful too for moms, as it means that they can engage more with dads on the subject.
And often the dad can help the mom to rationalize some of her thought/feelings and between them come out with a good practical plan or approach.
And the ultimate goal for coaching is to have the parents say “I think we’ll be alright now” and for the coaching to end.
So rather than years and years of endless therapy the idea is short term focused work which is easier for parents to sustain in terms of time, effort and money.
I hope this has been of interest
P.S. ** If you want to listen to my full hour long interview with Kareen and access over $170 worth of premium Asperger’s resources for just $1 please go to…