Q. I need counselling for my mother. She has been showing signs of irritability, anger and anxiety. This is my understanding as a daughter, although I am not a psychologist, but I have consulted my friends in India. I stay abroad and keep worrying for her, I want to take her with me and I will be happy to do so but she does not agree. Her family is here but she does not share anything with anyone. She is a quiet and introverted person. My father passed away a few years ago due to an accident and since then she is upset I feel. She does not agree to that but there is a trauma somewhere. She will not visit you but I can arrange for an online chat along with me. She might agree for one -time chat and then we will see how to follow up. Kindly give me the details of your contact. Please help and guide us madam.
Ans. To have a one –time chat on zoom with you and her together is a good idea. If she feels comfortable with me she would like to continue online or even physically since she lives in Nagpur. You may be right in your assessment about her behaviour signs and symptoms as well as the trauma following the sudden passing away of your father after an accident. Being introverted has disadvantages of not sharing her grief with family and friends, and not bringing it up. She might have suppressed it all inside and the bottling up of emotions causes emotional disturbances. We might have to investigate into the trauma if she opens up gradually which sometimes takes some time running into many sessions. But we should begin somewhere. You can write to me at the same email address and I will send the details for the session. Write to, firstname.lastname@example.org
Q. My son constantly has problems with his behaviour and also learning. Now that schools are re-opening he says he does not want to and doesn’t want to study at all. He has somehow reached middle school with great difficulty and scolding from us parents and specially his father. He doesn’t like to read and nor likes to do maths. He likes to play and do it full day if we don’t stop him. Now he has started fighting with his friends and beats them up too. His friends don’t want him anymore and when they see him, go away or turn him away. He has started using bad words and we don’t know where he has picked them up. We are all educated and no one uses bad words. We have a joint family and his grandfather scolds him a lot. Everyone is worried about his future and his growing bad habits. We are not into business and he needs to seek good education. We live outside Nagpur but I can bring him whenever you give us time. Please let us know how many times we have to bring him and how long it will take? Please help us madam.
Ans. Your son most probably has specific learning difficulties, due to which he has developed various bad habits and behaviour. The primary cause seems to problems in learning and education and due to his inability to perform tasks of his class he suffers a sense of inferiority, a sense of frustration and failure and vents it out with his aggressive behaviour. Many children externalise their internal problems and damage relationships, friendships, their own social image. We need to handle him with empathy and understanding and not scolding and beating. This will only escalate anger and aggression and further bad behaviour. The first thing to do is to bring him for counselling and then we would need to conduct a battery of tests on him to assess his nature and degree of learning difficulties. After assessment he would a special remedial tutor on a long term basis to help him cope with his backlog in studies. Once his confidence grows and his learning capacities increase, his behaviour will begin to show changes. A gentle kind and empathetic parent and teacher can change the course of his life and help him overcome the obstacles. From destructive behaviour he can become a constructive person. In the mean-while admit him in a game or sport of his choice under a coach and let him play the game in a serious and disciplined manner. That will release his energies and make him happy. Do write to me again for an appointment.