If you've found your way to this blog page, you probably know at least a little about my new book, Parenting Through the Storm: How to Handle the Highs, the Lows, and Everything in Between, which is being published by HarperCollins Canada in January.
It's a guide to parenting a child with a mental health, neurodevelopmental, or behavioural challenge*.
My reason for writing this book is pretty simple. I've walked this path (four times, actually: each of my four children has been diagnosed with one or more mental health, neurodevelopmental, and/or behavioural disorders*) and I know how it feels when your child is struggling. I set out to write a book that would
- let other parents know that they're not alone on this journey and that it's normal to be feeling what they're feeling;
- offer practical advice on parenting techniques and self-care strategies for parents and siblings;
- provide guidance on becoming an effective advocate for your child and helping your child to develop self-advocacy skills;
- encourage all members of our communities to speak frankly and think creatively about mental health and mental illness.
I will be embarking on a cross-Canada speaking tour in support of this book, starting in January 2015. I am hoping to encourage conversations (both online and face-to-face) about the issues raised in this book and to offer support and encouragement to families who are grappling with these issues. Please get in touch if you would like me to come to your community to speak to your group. (I would love to find a way to make that happen. Let's brainstorm the possibilities.)
* You'll notice that I prefer the term "challenge" to the term "disorder." That's because "challenge" leaves the door open to the possibility of change and growth, while disorder tends to be a lot more limiting. I have a lot more to say about this issue in the book, as you can imagine.
Ann Douglas is the author of Parenting Through the Storm: How to Handle the Highs, the Lows, and Everything in Between (a guide to parenting a child with a mental health, neurodevelopmental, or behavioural challenge). She is also an engaging and inspiring speaker who sparks important conversations about parenting and mental health.