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SPACE: Supportive Parenting for Anxious Childhood Emotions

What is SPACE Supportive Parenting?

SPACE stands for "Supportive Parenting for Anxious Childhood Emotions." The treatment was developed at the Yale Child Study Center by Dr. Eli Lebowitz. SPACE is a compassionate and evidence-based approach designed to help parents provide unwavering support to their child while they navigate the complex landscape of anxiety. It's an approach rooted in understanding, empathy, and practical strategies that aim to empower both you and your child to cope effectively with anxious thoughts and feelings. SPACE equips parents with the tools they need to foster resilience and emotional well-being in their children. Parents participate in treatment without their child or adolescent present for the majority or all of sessions.  Through a structure approach, SPACE teaches parents how to change their own behavior so that they can best support and respond to their child’s anxiety. By reducing an ‘accommodating’ approach to a child’s anxiety, parents are able to engage in a manner that ultimately enhances the child’s ability to cope with anxious thoughts and feelings.

The Treatment:

  1. Understanding Anxiety: SPACE begins with a deep exploration of anxiety itself. You'll gain insights into what anxiety is, how it manifests in children, and why it's a normal response to life's challenges.

  2. Emotional Validation: SPACE emphasizes the importance of validating your child's feelings. By acknowledging their anxiety without judgment, you create a safe space for them to express their emotions.

  3. Resilience Building: Through SPACE, you'll learn how to help your child build resilience by offering support and reducing accommodations. Accommodations are often used with the best intentions as a way to reduce anxious feelings in the short term. Reducing accommodations encourages children to learn they can handle their uncomfortable feelings and build the tools they need to manage those feelings.

  4. Gradual Exposure: SPACE gently introduces your child to anxiety-provoking situations in a gradual and supportive manner, allowing them to develop confidence and reduce their anxiety over time.

Why Choose SPACE Supportive Parenting?

  • Empathy and Connection: SPACE promotes a deep and empathetic connection between you and your child, strengthening your relationship.

  • Confidence and Independence: SPACE encourages your child to become more confident in facing anxiety-inducing situations, fostering a sense of independence and self-assuredness.


Is SPACE Right for You and Your Child?

SPACE Supportive Parenting is suitable for parents of children dealing with various levels of anxiety. It can be particularly beneficial for children who struggle with generalized anxiety, social anxiety, specific phobias, OCD or separation anxiety.

To begin SPACE treatment with Jessica, click here

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