How do we build resilient children who can handle life's challenges?
As parents today, we often feel that our role is to protect our children from the world: to cushion them when they fall, to lift them over obstacles, and to remove sharp rocks from their path. But controlling a child’s entire environment and keeping all pain at bay isn’t feasible—we can’t prepare the world for our children, so instead we should focus on preparing our children for the world. “The solution is not removing impediments from our children’s lives,” writes Krissy Pozatek, “it is compassionately encouraging them to be brave.” We need to show our kids how to navigate their own terrain.
If our kids face small hurdles, small pains, at a young age and learn to overcome these obstacles, they will be much better equipped to face larger trouble later in life. Early lessons in problem solving teach self-confidence and self-reliance—and show us that our kids are tougher than we think. Krissy draws her lessons from her experience guiding children in wilderness therapy and from her Buddhist practice—showing us that all life is as unpredictable as mountain weather, that impermanence is the only constant, and that the most loving act a parent can do is fearlessly ready their child to face the wilderness.
Krissy Pozatek has had fifteen years of experience in the wilderness therapy and adolescent treatment field and a graduate degree in clinical social work from both Smith College School for Social Work and at N.M. Highlands University. Her clinical experience includes the treatment of depression, anxiety, dual diagnosis, adoption issues, trauma, self-harming behavior, substance abuse, personality disorders, and family system problems. Krissy currently works as a parent coach with parents of struggling adolescents and young adults through her coaching practice, Parallel Process, established in 2006. She also conducts parent workshops, seminars, lectures, and most recently was a visiting professor at Middlebury College. Krissy is the author of The Parallel Process: Growing Alongside Your Adolescent or Young Adult Child in Treatment. She lives in East Montpelier, VT.
“Writing from her own extensive experience and psychological wisdom, Krissy Pozatek shows us how children can develop the resilience, confidence and creativity that enables them to find true joy in living.”
– Tara Brach, Ph.D., author of Radical Acceptance
“An exciting addition to my mindful parenting programs and therapy practice, Brave Parenting offers rich and concrete wisdom on how we can support our children to thrive in the face of all of life's challenges and joys.”
– Sara Marlowe, author of No Ordinary Apple
“In a readable, accessible style, Krissy Pozatek draws on her clinical experience, intimate knowledge of the outdoors, and Buddhist wisdom to help parents find their way back to one of the most challenging and important aspects of parenting: helping our children develop mastery and resilience by supporting rather than controlling or fixing them. A truly useful and relevant read for all parents.”
– Carla Naumberg, PhD, contributor at PsychCentral.com