Tips for Parents: Working With Professionals

Reviewed Oct 18, 2018

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Summary

  • Be positive and hopeful.
  • Be very up-front and give providers the facts about your child's needs.
  • Maintain a "we" attitude. 

You may not be sure about how to talk with teachers and other professionals. If that is the case, ask for the help of an advocate. If you’ve been invited to a meeting, you can bring someone with you for moral support. You can bring your spouse, a friend, or another parent. Contact the client advocate at your community mental health center.

Working with the school or with another agency can be very emotional. This is your child. It's easy to feel defensive or angry. Instead of lashing out in anger, try to describe your needs in terms of what will help your child. Focus on your child, not how you feel.

  • Be aware of any personal habits or attitudes that get in the way of talking calmly with people. Avoid behavior that keeps you from being taken seriously.
  • You may be upset about a decision that was made about your child. If you are, call or send a note as soon as possible. When you face problems early, you may be able to keep them from turning into a crisis.
  • Tell teachers or mental health professionals right away if there are any unusual situations at home. Stress at home—even if it’s good stress like a new baby or move—can affect your child’s actions outside the home.
  • Be positive and hopeful. This can help you get your point across or convince people to try something new.
  • Be very up-front and give providers the facts about your child's needs. Tell them the reasons why you want something done, and then suggest ways to do it.
  • Stay well informed so providers will listen to you and respect your opinion. Make sure you have all the facts before getting into an argument. Do research. Know your rights.
  • If you feel that decisions are being made without you, call and ask to be included. This is your right.
  • Make a list of things you want to say before you go to a meeting. Then, take the list with you. Many parents feel confident before the meeting. Then, once they go into the meeting, they get nervous and forget what they wanted to say.
  • Make sure you have enough time to talk about vital issues. Try to get placed on the agenda early in the meeting. This will ensure the meeting doesn’t end before you’ve had your say.
  • Write letters or make calls to say "thank you" when things are going well.
  • Maintain a "we" attitude. Ask how "we" can work together to solve a problem.

Support the people who work with your child. You should do this even when things aren't going well. Encourage them to keep trying. Let them know how much you appreciate their efforts on your child's behalf.

Remember, parents have a lot of power. Don't wait two months to check on results. If a problem is not solved quickly, work on it. You may be able to help your child's teacher resolve something much faster. Work as a team.

By Haline Grublak, Vice President of Member and Family Affairs, Beacon Health Options
Reviewed by Trenda Hedges, C.R.S.S., C.P.R.S., Wellness & Recovery Program Manager, Beacon Health Options

Summary

  • Be positive and hopeful.
  • Be very up-front and give providers the facts about your child's needs.
  • Maintain a "we" attitude. 

You may not be sure about how to talk with teachers and other professionals. If that is the case, ask for the help of an advocate. If you’ve been invited to a meeting, you can bring someone with you for moral support. You can bring your spouse, a friend, or another parent. Contact the client advocate at your community mental health center.

Working with the school or with another agency can be very emotional. This is your child. It's easy to feel defensive or angry. Instead of lashing out in anger, try to describe your needs in terms of what will help your child. Focus on your child, not how you feel.

  • Be aware of any personal habits or attitudes that get in the way of talking calmly with people. Avoid behavior that keeps you from being taken seriously.
  • You may be upset about a decision that was made about your child. If you are, call or send a note as soon as possible. When you face problems early, you may be able to keep them from turning into a crisis.
  • Tell teachers or mental health professionals right away if there are any unusual situations at home. Stress at home—even if it’s good stress like a new baby or move—can affect your child’s actions outside the home.
  • Be positive and hopeful. This can help you get your point across or convince people to try something new.
  • Be very up-front and give providers the facts about your child's needs. Tell them the reasons why you want something done, and then suggest ways to do it.
  • Stay well informed so providers will listen to you and respect your opinion. Make sure you have all the facts before getting into an argument. Do research. Know your rights.
  • If you feel that decisions are being made without you, call and ask to be included. This is your right.
  • Make a list of things you want to say before you go to a meeting. Then, take the list with you. Many parents feel confident before the meeting. Then, once they go into the meeting, they get nervous and forget what they wanted to say.
  • Make sure you have enough time to talk about vital issues. Try to get placed on the agenda early in the meeting. This will ensure the meeting doesn’t end before you’ve had your say.
  • Write letters or make calls to say "thank you" when things are going well.
  • Maintain a "we" attitude. Ask how "we" can work together to solve a problem.

Support the people who work with your child. You should do this even when things aren't going well. Encourage them to keep trying. Let them know how much you appreciate their efforts on your child's behalf.

Remember, parents have a lot of power. Don't wait two months to check on results. If a problem is not solved quickly, work on it. You may be able to help your child's teacher resolve something much faster. Work as a team.

By Haline Grublak, Vice President of Member and Family Affairs, Beacon Health Options
Reviewed by Trenda Hedges, C.R.S.S., C.P.R.S., Wellness & Recovery Program Manager, Beacon Health Options

Summary

  • Be positive and hopeful.
  • Be very up-front and give providers the facts about your child's needs.
  • Maintain a "we" attitude. 

You may not be sure about how to talk with teachers and other professionals. If that is the case, ask for the help of an advocate. If you’ve been invited to a meeting, you can bring someone with you for moral support. You can bring your spouse, a friend, or another parent. Contact the client advocate at your community mental health center.

Working with the school or with another agency can be very emotional. This is your child. It's easy to feel defensive or angry. Instead of lashing out in anger, try to describe your needs in terms of what will help your child. Focus on your child, not how you feel.

  • Be aware of any personal habits or attitudes that get in the way of talking calmly with people. Avoid behavior that keeps you from being taken seriously.
  • You may be upset about a decision that was made about your child. If you are, call or send a note as soon as possible. When you face problems early, you may be able to keep them from turning into a crisis.
  • Tell teachers or mental health professionals right away if there are any unusual situations at home. Stress at home—even if it’s good stress like a new baby or move—can affect your child’s actions outside the home.
  • Be positive and hopeful. This can help you get your point across or convince people to try something new.
  • Be very up-front and give providers the facts about your child's needs. Tell them the reasons why you want something done, and then suggest ways to do it.
  • Stay well informed so providers will listen to you and respect your opinion. Make sure you have all the facts before getting into an argument. Do research. Know your rights.
  • If you feel that decisions are being made without you, call and ask to be included. This is your right.
  • Make a list of things you want to say before you go to a meeting. Then, take the list with you. Many parents feel confident before the meeting. Then, once they go into the meeting, they get nervous and forget what they wanted to say.
  • Make sure you have enough time to talk about vital issues. Try to get placed on the agenda early in the meeting. This will ensure the meeting doesn’t end before you’ve had your say.
  • Write letters or make calls to say "thank you" when things are going well.
  • Maintain a "we" attitude. Ask how "we" can work together to solve a problem.

Support the people who work with your child. You should do this even when things aren't going well. Encourage them to keep trying. Let them know how much you appreciate their efforts on your child's behalf.

Remember, parents have a lot of power. Don't wait two months to check on results. If a problem is not solved quickly, work on it. You may be able to help your child's teacher resolve something much faster. Work as a team.

By Haline Grublak, Vice President of Member and Family Affairs, Beacon Health Options
Reviewed by Trenda Hedges, C.R.S.S., C.P.R.S., Wellness & Recovery Program Manager, Beacon Health Options

The information provided on the Achieve Solutions site, including, but not limited to, articles, assessments, and other general information, is for informational purposes only and should not be treated as medical, health care, psychiatric, psychological, or behavioral health care advice. Nothing contained on the Achieve Solutions site is intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment or as a substitute for consultation with a qualified health care professional. Please direct questions regarding the operation of the Achieve Solutions site to Web Feedback. If you have concerns about your health, please contact your health care provider.  ©Carelon Behavioral Health

 

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