A Californian father credits Triple P for giving him and his ex-wife the confidence to take their son to Disneyland together – without fights, stress or behaviour issues.
Ray said his son Ryan had always been a defiant child, and could become aggressive when he was overtired.
So, the idea of a trip to ‘the happiest place on earth’ was something that concerned Ray – even though it was 8-year-old Ryan’s dream.
But after Ray’s ex-wife had finished doing the Triple P – Positive Parenting Program, she was so happy with the improvements in her household she suggested Ray do the program too – and Disneyland soon became a possibility.
“She was noticing that I was having a lot of difficulty with him, getting him to do what I wanted him to do, and listen to me,” Ray said.
“She kept raving on about Karen, the parent aid that she was working with. I was hesitant for a long time, I kept putting it off, but finally I said ‘OK, I’ll give it a shot.’”
Ray did an intensive Triple P course, working one-on-one with the provider Karen, to learn as much as he could about the Triple P strategies to guide behaviour, prevent misbehaviour, and to help his child learn to regulate his own emotions.
“I did all the exercises, used the behavioural charts and I’ve watched the DVD a few times,” he said.
“There are a lot of different strategies [such as] planned ignoring, spending quality time, incidental teaching, creating a learning environment, quiet time and of course the last resort would be time-out which I’m yet to utilise.
“I had a lot of fear about time-out, and I told Karen that, but she said if you use all these strategies then time-out isn’t going to be necessary, and I found that. I didn’t need to use it.”
With both parents confident they could plan a trip to Disneyland they were thrilled to be given a trip by two of Ray’s siblings.
“We walked from one attraction to another. The whole thing was about 4-6 hours we were there,” Ray said.
“Ryan had a great time and I didn’t really have to use any of the (behaviour management) strategies once.”
And while he admits parenting as a single dad can still be challenging, Ray recognises the difference Triple P made to his life with Ryan.
“From chaos to peace,” he says. “It was a lot of chaos prior to Triple P to peace and love after. I would definitely recommend Triple P.”
PHOTO: Ray and his son Ryan at Disneyland.