In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, BStrong Together was honored to partner with the Barrington Area Library for a new parenting series to help parents navigate the challenges of our new world.
We know that during this unusual time, we are all doing the best we can. But, sometimes we could use some help. BStrong Together and the Barrington Area Library created Best We Can Parenting - a seven week series to provide tips, tools, and the chance to ask questions of local experts during the pandemic. You can find more information and links to the videos and resources from each session below.
For additional COVID-19 resources, click here.
Session 1: You Know Your Family with Dr. Chris Bibby (April 16, 2020)
Dr. Chris Bibby helps us learn how to filter through all the prescriptions and advice for managing family life during the COVID-19 outbreak to help you find what works best for you and your family. Topics covered include managing e-learning while balancing other responsibilities, how to recognize the signs of depression in teens, modeling resiliency, the importance of daily check-ins, and more.
Session 2: Leading the Littles - Quarantining with Young Children (April 23, 2020)
Therapist Alex Goreham from Stenzel Clinical Services discusses how to support our younger children during these difficult times as well as shares tips and his BE SMART model for parents of all ages. Alex reminds us that it's okay to not be okay and to give ourselves the space to know that we don't have to be perfect parents. What is important is our outlook, staying present in the moment, modeling positive coping strategies, and just being there to support our children during this unusual time.
Session 3: Checking In Without Checking Up (April 30, 2020)
Naturally, in the midst of a pandemic, we are all concerned about our kids. Are they safe? Are they learning? Will they be ok? In Best We Can Parenting Session 3, Dr. Cheryl Peterson - an educator, gifted specialist, and parent of dyslexic kids - shared insights into learning during this challenging time of COVID-19 and some tips for checking in with your kids to help support them as they navigate their new learning environment.
Session 4: Everybody's Got Something (May 7, 2020)
We know that managing life at home is hard right now as we try to meet everyone's needs and manage lots of emotions. We are all just doing the best we can. During this session, we will welcome Dr. Melissa Katz, Clinical Director of the Samaritan Counseling Center of the Northwest Suburbs, to talk about strategies for helping parents and kids learn how to use "detective thinking" to identify and reframe their negative thoughts during these difficult times.
Session 5: Coming of Age During Coronavirus - Supporting Your Senior (High School & College) (May 14, 2020)
The COVID-19 outbreak has had a significant impact on our high school and college seniors. The loss of graduations, final sports seasons or fine arts performances, the opportunity to celebrate and say goodbye to friends, classmates and teachers - combined with the uncertainty of future college or work plans - has created many complex and difficult feelings. We will be joined by therapists Lisa Schultz and Allison Hanley from Barrington Youth and Family Services to talk about how you can support your high school or college senior to manage the difficult emotions surrounding their disappointment, grief, loss, and uncertainty.
Session 6: When the Doors Open (May 21, 2020)
As the stay-at-home order begins to be lifted and the doors begin to open, we will start the work of creating a "new normal." Rita Rippentrop, LCPC, Clinical Director at Stenzel Clinical Services, and BStrong Together Board President, will join us to talk about how to begin to define our new normal, establish and implement new rules or expectations that best meet the needs of our individual family, and manage our own feelings and those of our children as we go back out into the world.
Session 7: Now What? (May 28, 2020)
After more than two months living in quarantine and adjusting to a very different life, it's time to reflect on what we might have learned, what we might have gained, and how our reflections on lessons learned may impact our lives going forward. Therapists Kim Rapach from Bending Birch Counseling and Josette Day from Be Well Counseling & Wellness will join us as we look for ways to use this experience to bring about positive change in our lives and in our families.
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