Why I Support My Child Pursuing A Career In The Performing Arts

Larissa Dann

'Mum. I really want to study music when I go to University next year.'

I gaze at this young man, my son, so hopeful, so intense. The rational mother wants to say,

'How can you make a living from music? Why not aim for science, or law?'

The emotive, empathic mother wants to listen,

'You love music, and want to see where it takes you'.

What do I say? What do I do?

Forgiving Ourselves After Those 'Bad' Parenting Moments

Larissa Dann

Imagine this. Your child begins to cry, or leaves their toys on the floor. You've been reading those parenting blogs that seem to have all the answers. On paper. However, when it comes to the crunch and it's real life . . . Instead of calmly problem solving, you yell, and suddenly, you're in a power struggle.

I think defaulting into automatic reactions can be one of the hardest parts of trying to change as a parent. Wanting to do the best by your children (and you), and then not using the skill you intended and knew would be most appropriate for that situation.

Here are some ideas on helping you cope with those feelings of guilt and annoyance when you fall back to old habits, rather than implement your parenting knowledge.

New Tips For Dealing With Children's Anger (with a Real Life Example!)

Larissa Dann

‘How do I deal with my kids when they get angry and lash out?’ ‘What do I do when they just won’t listen to reason, and they blame me for everything?’

As a parent or carer, my guess is that at times we all deal with testing situations involving our child. Sometimes, our children might even get physical, hitting and kicking us.

What can we do?

Honestly . . . I don’t know that there is a magic answer that will help in every instance.

However, having an idea, a guide, on how to approach those heightened times of our child’s emotions, especially when those emotions seem directed at us, can be helpful.

Here is a process that helps me in these situations, illustrated by an example.

Parent Effectiveness Training: How the Evidence of Today Supports The Wisdom of Yesterday

Larissa Dann.

More and more parents are educating themselves on the best way to bring up their children. We search the Internet, we read books, and we attend parenting classes. We all want to do the best by our children, to raise children that are loved and loving, confident, compassionate, considerate, and with a good sense of self-worth. In this quest for information, many parents look for evidence of effectiveness.

My experience, over 20 years of parenting using P.E.T. skills (and as a parent educator), is that the principles of Parent Effectiveness Training work. The longevity of Dr Gordon’s book and course, and its continued uptake by parents around the world, attribute to the positive outcomes of P.E.T. on family relationships. In my view, P.E.T. provided the template for what is now variously known as gentle, peaceful or respectful parenting.

The question I sought to answer in this article was: Why? What is it about the P.E.T. skills that lead to favourable life results for children and parents? The P.E.T. course has been taught since 1962. How does current evidence support P.E.T. in terms of good parenting practice? There is a now a plethora of research that unpacks various traits and conditions necessary for good outcomes for our children. How does P.E.T. fit into this evidence landscape?

Remaining Connected After Your Child Leaves Home.

Larissa Dann

My son has lived away from home for a number of years as he studied for his degree. Soon, he will further his study in a different country. Our life as a family is changing, maturing. Much as our relationship must change and mature.

How have I kept, and how do I keep, connected with this delightful, caring, and talented young man? Read on for the full article: Childhood 101.

Podcast: When My Baby Sprouts a Beard: Larissa Dann and P.E.T.


I was fortunate to be interviewed by Hunter Clarke-Fields on bringing up children using gentle, mindful parenting from Parent Effectivness Training. Here is her introduction:

"Have you ever wondered what it would be like if you could look into the future and see the results of mindful parenting?

Calming Myself When My Child Is Angry With Me, And I’m Angry With My Child

Larissa Dann

Parent anger. I teach parenting to groups of parents, I’ve listened to parents’ stories on helplines, I’ve read parents’ pleas for ideas on Facebook pages. A common thread of discussion is ‘How do I deal with my anger? How do I stop the yelling?’

I am passionate about a particular peaceful approach to being a parent, because I have a structure that helps me be a better parent. Over and over again, I hear from parents who say they yell less and have a calmer household, after implementing the skills of peaceful parenting (via Parent Effectiveness Training, PET).

When My Baby Sprouts A Beard. The Bitter-Sweet Of Waving ‘Good Luck’ To My Child Moving Overseas.

Larissa Dann

I gaze at my son across the table. His lean face concentrates on the screen in front of him, the lower half of his face covered carefully in just-the-right-length male fuzz. He looks up and his blue eyes pierce mine, trusting and innocent in their expectations of our relationship. His tenor voice fills me in on the current difficulty he is having booking a flight.

My child. My boy. My young man. My son.

I am as awed now as when I first met this person newly emerged from my body.

The Hardest Lesson: Helping Our Young Ones Learn From Their Mistakes

Larissa Dann 28 May 2017

How often have we found ourselves gritting our teeth when our child says:

‘It wasn’t my fault’?

‘It wasn’t my fault that the last piece of chocolate smeared itself all over my face.’

‘It wasn’t my fault that those pretty pictures suddenly appeared on the lounge chair’

'It wasn't my fault that the dishes piled up in my room - you just expect me to do everything!'

Frustrating, huh?

Parenting Without Rewards or Punishment. Podcast with Larissa Dann.

Wondering whether it really is possible to bring up responsible, caring children without using rewards and punishment?  Or what you can do to help you and your children have a mutually respectful, peaceful relationship? Listen to this podcast by Casey O'Roarty of Joyful Courage, where Casey and I discuss practical parenting skills and examples, and why avoiding punishment and rewards is beneficial in the long term.

In this podcast, I share my experience of raising my children with the skills and principles of Parent Effectiveness Training (PET), supplemented by feedback from parents who have attended my PET classes.


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