To parent child with RAD, begin by watching the Effective Communication behavior skills lessons. Learn the steps and practice the steps with everyone until they become second nature to you.
Once comfortable with the skill, have your child watch the lesson video and learn the steps. It may be helpful to print out the steps of the skills. You can find a free download on the Smarter Parenting website.
While you should use the steps as part of everyday communication, it’s essential to set aside a few minutes every day for formal practice. During that practice, focus on the areas of repeating what is being said and clarifying to increase positive communication. This allows your child to learn how to put into words what they mean.
Word of caution. During your practices refrain from sharing your perspective or giving counsel. This is a time for your child to express them fully without judgment or comment. That will allow their trust for you to grow.
If you need to address an issue, do so at a later date using the steps of the skill as a template. Use this time to allow your child to explore and understand your perspective using the reflecting listening, repeating back what was heard, and clarifying.
We can’t stress enough the importance of giving your RAD child the tools to communicate. By creating a safe environment where communication can happen will build trust, and that allows you and your child to prepare for the future and start the healing process.