“Parental Self-Care: How Taking Care of Yourself Benefits Your Family” was the topic discussed at a recent parenting conference sponsored by the East Meets West Parent Education Club at Crowell Library. The featured speaker was Professor Marla Brassard, who is director of the School of Psychology at Columbia University. Brassard presented the results of ongoing research into the ability of parents to promote their own strength and well-being in order to be able to continue their job of positive parenting.
Brassard noted that if there is a hostile, conflictual relationship between the parents, the child may have trouble self-soothing, emotionally regulating, have immunological suppression, increased risk of colds, etc., and the same is true for parents. Also, if a parent is stressed or depressed, it impairs the mood of everyone else in the family.
A checklist of seven important areas of parent self-care was presented and discussed. This includes sleep, exercise, healthy diet, enjoyable time away from being a parent, time with spouse, mood, spirituality and social support. Brassard addressed the findings of her research and distributed her questionnaire for attendees to identify the changes they need to make.
EMWPEC members and guests are invited to join Zumba dance classes at the South Pasadena/San Marino YMCA and nature hikes led by Carolyn Broderick. The next club hike will be on Friday morning, April 7. For more details on EMWPEC’s activities, visit emwpec.org or call (626) 570-1309.