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How to Raise Emotionally Healthy Kids (and Stop Fixing your Kids’ Feelings) with Hilary Mandzik, Psy.D. [Podcast Episode]

By January 5, 2023No Comments

If you’re anything like me, when your kid starts showing anger, sadness, fear, or any other emotion in big form, you want to either fix the problem for them or send them away to deal with it on their own. But to raise emotionally healthy kids, we need to take a different approach. Together with today’s guest on our Active & Connected Families podcast, I discuss all the ins and outs of how and why we as parents need to stop fixing our kids’ feelings and start sitting with them when they’re experiencing all the feels.

Hilary Mandzik, Psy.D., is a true guru for all things young kids to tweens and helps us understand why just being with our kids when they’re experiencing all the highs and lows is going to lead to happier and emotionally healthier kids in the long run. Hilary shares new, updated tools to help our kids learn about emotions and help us learn how to recognize and manage our own voices so we can just be with our kids when they’re feeling all the feels. 

“We have to look at these feelings not as failings on our kid’s part or on our part
but actually just as part of the normal ebb and flow of life”
– Hilary Mandzik

Of course, we both bring in lots of examples from our own lives and Hilary helps me reflect on my own parenting style to raise emotionally healthy kids. You can find our podcast Active and Connected Families wherever you listen to your podcasts, or easily click the links below to listen:

Click here to listen on Spotify!

Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts!

Click here to listen on Google Podcasts!

Click here to listen on Stitcher!

In this episode on raising emotionally healthy kids, we discuss:

  • How we can teach our kids to regulate their feelings, so they aren’t expressed with violence, unkind words or improper behavior;
  • How generational trauma influences how we deal with our kids’ feelings;
  • Acknowledging and dealing with our children’s feelings while regulating our own;
  • How to de-shame a moment with your child;
  • Creating a safe space where kids can come to you with their problems;
  • The influence of our education system on how kids deal with their emotions;
  • Staying curious about your kid’s feelings;
  • How tools and talking about feelings can set up a better foundation for regulating them;
  • And much more!

More about Virginia Family Therapy

Virginia Family Therapy is a mental health practice serving individuals, families, and our community. VFT is designed to help people at all stages and from all walks of life by offering therapists and physicians with diverse backgrounds and specialties via face-to-face, walk-and-talk, and telemedicine appointments. Throughout, we are committed to developing strengths-based, authentic, and long-lasting relationships with you and your children. We hope to provide you with the support and insight you need to help your family navigate life’s hard times and joys.

Are you or your child struggling with mental health? We have a team of psychologists and psychiatrists who can help you out. You can learn more about our practice or contact us here.

More about Hilary Mandzik, Psy.D.

Hilary helps overwhelmed, exhausted parents go from barely surviving to feeling good about parenting – even on the hard days. She’s a mom of three young kids and has 15 years of experience as a child therapist meaning she sure knows her stuff when it comes to child development and mental health. In her current therapy practice, she specializes in mental health for parents, caring deeply about both your child’s well-being and your own!

When she’s not seeing therapy clients, recording podcast episodes, or creating awesome content to support parents, you can find her hanging with her family, practicing yoga, lifting weights, spending time in nature, or relaxing with Netflix or a good book.

You can learn more about Hilary here.

Resources and links mentioned in this episode

Disclaimer: Please remember we are real live therapists, however this is a podcast and is not considered a therapy session. Not only because there is no co-pay but also because we can’t speak to your individual experiences. We are here to help you keep raising healthy kids. And remember, if you are an imperfect parent, we are right there with you. If you or someone you love is in immediate danger, please call your local crisis hotline or go to your nearest emergency room.