Alley Dezenhouse Kelner
Co-Regulation...it's not just for kids.
Co-regulation is how we all start to take ownership of our emotions; how we all start to develop the coping skills we need to carry us through the stormy weather as we grow. At its core, co-regulation is using your own
presence (and energy) to foster regulation in another person; we help someone else ground, and reset (often times, our kids or the clients in our care).
When we never move to independent regulation (self-regulation) we get stuck in a pattern of needing another person (parent, friend, therapist or otherwise) to help us regulate our emotions and sometimes even our thoughts (particularly when they are emotionally charged). While a solid support system is important for all people, the ability to self-manage is also important.
One of the best things we can do for our kiddos is to support them in moving from co-regulation to self-regulation on a timeline that aligns with their developmental need, and in a way that is compassionate, nurturing, empowering, warm and purposeful.