Are you feeling stressed, frustrated, or overwhelmed by your child’s behavior?
* Is your child strong-willed, oppositional or defiant? Is it “their way or no way” – or do they just ignore you when you ask them to do something? Do you find yourself fighting with or yelling at your child to get them to listen or do the things they’re supposed to do?
We can show you how to get your child to work with you instead of against you! And this means an END to the arguments, the power struggles, and the frustration and stress that come when there’s conflict. The strategies we’ll give you will meet your strong-willed child’s need for control, and they’ll also make you a strong parent leader your child will listen to!
* Does your child struggle with emotional regulation? Do their meltdowns or tantrums seem excessive? Does their anger lead to physical aggression?
We can teach you to teach your child to self-regulate. As it turns out, today’s most popular strategies just don’t work with the REALLY big feelings – but parents who use our strategies see their kids’ meltdowns decrease by over 90% in just 1-3 weeks, and we solve the aggression, too!
* Have you already “tried everything” – Positive Discipline, Connection and Empathy, Peaceful Parenting, psychotherapy – but these things haven’t worked, or if they did, the changes were short-lived?
There’s a reason today’s parenting wisdom hasn’t worked for your family – and it’s not your fault and it’s not your child’s fault! In fact, today’s wisdom is essentially a reaction to old-school, “because-I-said-so” parenting – which means it’s a one-size-fits-all approach. And we’ve developed OUR approach specifically to solve the problem behavior strong-willed, oppositional or defiant kids can bring. And the strategies we’ll show you work long-term, so you can put an end to that endless search for the next best parenting tip!
Here’s what our clients are saying!
My 9 year old daughter, with ADHD, refused to cooperate, do chores or listen to anything we said. My 4 year old was quickly following in her sister’s footsteps. Both kept having crying, screaming tantrums. Rebecah helped us with quick and easy parenting behaviors designed to improve our relationship with the girls and help us be better parents. Rebecah’s techniques have made a huge difference in our lives. (We’ve asked Rebecah to extend our coaching package as her help has been invaluable during these challenging times.)
Nikhila P San Francisco, CA
Rebecah really helped turn things around for our son, who started exhibiting tons of strong-willed kid challenges (like hitting at home and preschool), along with exasperating fixations on routines and lots of meltdowns. After just a few sessions with Rebecah, our kid started to markedly change, and those behaviors have now almost entirely disappeared. Rebecah gave us so many specific ideas and strategies to weave into the day to day and they REALLY worked. She is amazing at adapting what she knows to your kid and your family. We cannot recommend her highly enough!
Maggie PSan Francisco, CA
Our family benefited so much from our sessions with Rebecah. She listened carefully to every challenge we were facing, and provided practical advice to address difficult behaviors. Even more importantly, she helped us understand our child’s mindset and she taught us how to involve our child in the creation of rules, so we can collaborate rather than engage in constant power struggles. We didn’t anticipate such immediate results — and we also weren’t expecting that the sessions would do so much to help us get on the same page as parents! –Elyse M, New York City, NY
Elyse MNew York City, NY
We were literally at our wits’ end trying to parent a teen with ADHD and oppositional behaviors. Thankfully we found Rebecah Freeling and gave her program a shot. We couldn’t be more pleased with the progress after only a couple of months. Rebecah listens to your issues, dives in on the family circumstances, and provides practical, hands-on and simple advice to tackle the “tricky” and unwanted behaviors. The changes have been real and it’s put us in a place where we feel in control and more assured of how to respond (and whether to respond) when behaviors flare. Rebecah is terrific — always responsive to calls for help between sessions and each session ends with a short, practical list of steps to implement for next time. We couldn’t recommend her more highly.”
Karen RRipon, CA
Rebecah Freeling is a MIRACLE WORKER! Our child has been “intense” since day one, and working with Rebecah has been life-changing. Applying what we have learned has completely changed our home life and our parental relationships with our intense child. Rebecah’s services are worth every penny. My only regret is that we didn’t hire her years ago!
Hella SBrooklyn, NY
As a licensed therapist who works with children and families, I have high praise for Rebecah Freeling.
Gina Mendicino, LMFTSan Francisco, CA
Rebecah Freeling understands what makes “spirited” children tick and how they are different from the “easy” kids.
Helen F. Neville, BS RNauthor of Temperament Tools: Working With Your Child’s Inborn Traits
Rebecah has been life-saving for us…She really enjoys these challenging children and…gives you techniques to deal with every type of situation.
Andrea Durant, MD –
Here’s some of what you get when you work with us:
Tools and strategies that actually work with strong-willed, oppositional or defiant kids.
The Wits’ End parenting approach is a great fit for strong-willed, oppositional, or defiant kids – not only will it reinforce your parental role and position you as a leader in your family, it will also enhance your child’s sense of autonomy and control. And this gets their buy-in to the changes you want to see!
An end to the emotional dysregulation and physical aggression!
These are not your standard Positive Discipline tools! Parents who use our strategies see the meltdowns decrease by over 90% in just 1-3 weeks, and some of what you’ll learn may surprise you!
Strategies and scripts to resolve sibling fighting.
In a way that teaches the kids how to resolve conflict, all without putting you in the role of arbiter or judge.
Tools and strategies that are customized for your family and your situation.
And when we say we’ll tweak the tools to fit your situation, we mean it! As one of our clients puts it, “Wits’ End is amazing at adapting what she knows to your kid and your family.” This is one reason our programs are so effective.
Between-session email and text support,
so you don’t “get stuck” between sessions. Parents often reach out to us between sessions to ask a question about a strategy that was provided in session; to get help applying a strategy when their child’s behavior is particularly difficult; or to get help tweaking a strategy to fit a particular situation or challenge.
Notes from each session and written plans for each week
And best of all?
You get an effective, sustainable approach that will solve the problems that brought you to us.
Many of our clients tell us that we’ve been able to help when their doctors, therapists and psychiatrists could not. Our strategies work because they’re specifically designed for strong-willed kids and they’re adapted to work with your family.
Some Frequently-Asked Questions
How old are the kids you work with?
The families we work with include kids of all ages, from toddlers to teens. This is partly because the broader strategies that underlie our work are not age-dependent; they’re relevant to kids of any age. And we know how to apply these strategies regardless of age!
What’s the difference between parent coaching and psychotherapy?
In our experience (we do have a psychologist on our team :)), and based on what our clients tell us, some main differences between therapy and Wits’ End Parenting are…
1. A difference in focus and strategies. Many if not most therapists focus on feelings and the client’s management of feelings. We focus much more on the communication patterns between the parents on the kids — and we also focus much more on setting things up so that difficult feelings decrease, so there is less need to manage them. We also take a good hard look at practical, physical realities, for example, schedules or family routines. Our approach tends to be very concrete and practical, which makes the material much easier to implement.
2. A difference in the helping professional’s view of the client and the problem. Psychology and psychotherapy have deep roots in a view of the client as “troubled,” emotionally off-balance, or otherwise deficient. Although some therapists resist pathology-oriented interpretations, a pathology orientation is an integral aspect of most therapists’ training.
3. A difference in focus on the parents vs. the kids. When a child’s behavior is the problem, although many therapists do work with the parents, they tend to work as much or more with the child. In contrast, our focus is less on teaching the child and more on teaching you how to teach your child. We think this if much more efficient. It’s way more effective for you to manage a negative behavior when and where it happens than it is for you to rely on a third-party to attempt to resolve the problem by talking about it a day or a week later in therapy.
What about PCIT?
PCIT (Parent-Child Interaction Therapy) is intended to teach parents how to interact with their child in ways that both support the child and solve problem behavior. And this “education” is actually the goal of all parenting experts, because almost any solution to problematic or concerning behavior relies heavily on the right kinds of interactions with the kids. But PCIT is attractive because it’s so hands-on. No broad theories! Parents are shown EXACTLY what to do!
On the other hand – what, exactly, are parents being shown? In other words, hands-on, real-time content delivery feels great, but it’s the content itself that’s most important, right? And parents of strong-willed, oppositional and defiant kids tell us that PCIT hasn’t done so well at showing them the kinds of interactions that work with strong-willed kids. Here’s what our clients say about PCIT:
My issue with PCIT is that it was geared toward a certain type of kid, and they couldn’t adjust their recommendations to fit my kid. They wanted me to use Time Out, but he wouldn’t stay in Time Out. They wanted me to give rewards, but he didn’t care about those; he just wants to do what he wants to do. They kept telling me that Time Out and Rewards are evidence-based, but my evidence was that my kid still wouldn’t listen! And they never could give me any other strategy. –Wits’ End coaching client
PCIT advised us to put our daughter in Time Out, but she wouldn’t stay there – so they said to strap her into a booster seat so she couldn’t leave. She was supposed to stay there until she calmed down, but being strapped in made her hysterical, and it didn’t stop the hitting. –Wits’ End coaching client
I asked the psychologist who did the ADHD testing if I should go to PCIT. She said, “No, go to Wits’ End Parenting”! –Wits’ End coaching client.
Like the therapists that practice PCIT, at Wits’ End we also focus very heavily on your interactions with your child – and because the Wits’ End Approach was designed specifically to fit with and address the needs of the strong-willed child, the interactions and communication we’ll teach you will work with strong-willed kids! We’re very practical in our approach, which means we’ll show you just what to do, what to say, and how to say it – and depending on the coaching program you choose, we can observe and give feedback on problem behaviors as they happen in your child’s real-world environment.
I want to enroll, but my child doesn’t want to participate.
If your child does not want to participate in your coaching program, that’s OK. On the other hand, if your child is refusing to participate there’s a good chance they’re refusing to do other things, too! And did you know that these kind of compliance- and cooperation issues are actually best handled in conversations with just the parents? This is why we structure our programs so that our first coaching sessions take place without the kids. In fact, you can solve all of the problems that bring you to us whether or not your child comes to your sessions — simply because that’s what we do — we teach YOU to solve these problems.
Our approach doesn’t depend on our convincing your child to do things differently. When a child participates, yes, we do help change their perspective, and that’s great. But the main focus of our work is on teaching you to work with your child in ways that get you the changes you’re wanting.
This is a significant difference between our approach and psychotherapy. When a child’s behavior is the problem, although many therapists do work with the parents, they tend to work as much or more with the child. In contrast, our focus is less on teaching the child and more on teaching you how to teach your child. We think this if much more efficient. It’s way more effective for you to manage a negative behavior when and where it happens than it is for you to rely on a third-party to attempt to resolve the problem by talking about it a day or a week later in the office. Still worried that your program won’t be effective if your kid won’t participate? Check out the Yelp review from Pamela P!
Do you work with schools?
Yes, we do work with schools, and schools often ask us to provide both teacher training and parenting workshops for their parent community.
When parents ask us to help with the child’s behavior at school we start by reaching out to the school to see if they are open to working with us. Not all schools or teachers are open to receiving input from professionals outside the school setting. But when they are, we can help!
What if my child doesn’t respond to your methods?
We can honestly say that, when parents are committed to the process, we’ve never worked with a family whose child hasn’t responded favorably to our approach. And a big reason for this is that we apply proven principles in specific ways that fit with YOUR family’s situation and YOUR child’s unique temperament.
On the other hand, there is a learning curve! Most if not all of our clients experience at least a few instances where their child doesn’t respond as expected. This is absolutely normal – in fact, it’s inevitable. You and your child are in a process of new learning. But don’t worry — if you practice what we’ve shown you and your child doesn’t respond, we’ll show you how to tweak what you’re doing so that your child does respond. When kids don’t respond, it’s almost always a matter of adjusting the technique, or adjusting the way the parents are implementing it; it’s almost never a problem with the strategy per se. This is one reason we offer between-session support — so when things don’t go as planned, you can troubleshoot in the moment, and you don’t have to wait until your next session to fix it.