Some ways for parents to take care of their mental health before addressing their child’s concerns

After many tragedies close to home, parents are wondering how they can help their child understand the world around them. So what can parents do to better prepare for these hard discussions?

KSAT12 spoke to a mental health expert about the mental health of the parents, which is just as important as the child’s.

“You know how right before you take off on a plane, the flight attendants say in case of an emergency parents put their oxygen masks on first? It’s the same thing when its comes to your mental health,” Talli Dodge, the CEO of the Mobile Mental Wellness Collaborative said.

Dodge said the parent’s mental health needs to be stable before they can truly help their child.

“You have to be taking care of yourself first in order to be taking care of your children. So this means self-care. This means getting help yourself, talking to a therapist, going and talking to friends, exercising, doing what’s important right now to take care of yourself in order to be there for your kids,” Dodge said. “You will never be able to be there for somebody else fully, unless you’re able to take care of yourself.”

And while difficult things can happen on a daily basis, using self-care can create a safe and open space for you and your child to make sense of things together.

An extensive list of mental health tools can be found by clicking here.

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