Being a parent might be one of the biggest learning grounds there is. Kelly’s parenting tips, tricks and aha moments from this journey, both professionally and personally, are found here.
Kelly Bos, a psychotherapist based in Orillia, agrees. “Although parents try to focus on the kids, the adult issues are usually the driving force in a divorce, and sometimes it can be hard to see what your child’s specific mental health needs might be when dealing with so much personal stress.”
"It's so important to find a support network that gives stepmothers a healthy place to talk about their experiences with people they can trust, who will share their own experiences and who also offer alternate perspectives."
It is important to be present for your teen so that they know you are available for them and find that balance between checking in with them directly and giving them space to come to you. Using feeling language yourself, with a range of emotions expressed, also helps create a safe space to talk about how we are doing by modelling that for your teen. This can also be done by talking about how the characters are feeling in a movie you are watching together or discussing and dissecting the different ways people might be feeling in a situation in outside relationships your teen is familiar with.
"We need to reframe the concept for them so that when our kids say they are bored, we can show them that this opens up possibilities to make changes to this state all within their control," says psychotherapist Kelly Bos, who lives in the Caribbean and writes on this and other topics.