Message from the Executive Director

Perspectivei41j "Enhancing Child-raising Abilities in The Home"

@In a family with a child whose development is slow, or has disabilities, there are many occasions in which the judgement and decision of a guardian is needed in accordance with this childfs growth. For example, accepting the childfs diagnosis and verdict; securing places for medical treatment, training or therapeutic care; choosing a future path for kindergarten, daycare center and elementary school; and solving various problems that occur in the community. Even though the core of child-raising is the mother, dealing with things alone canft lead to a positive outcome. She needs the understanding and cooperation of the family -the husband and grandparents, etc. However, there is inevitably a disconnect or some misunderstanding that arises in communication, because of the difference in position, personality, experience, and how things are perceived. How people can communicate with each other on a regular basis is vital.

@Therefore, letfs focus on communication methods between the father and mother, and think about how people can gain gchild-raising abilities in the homeh and the ability to face problems as a family.

@We asked various parents what they appreciate and need from their partner in order to find out their thoughts on child-raising. Here is a summary of the results from the questionnaires.

A motherfs feelings for her husband
When Ifm not feeling well or when itfs necessary, he takes care of our child and does the housework even though he is tired from work. He cares about me and allows me to have time for myself. He listens to me. I feel peace of mind that we can put our heads together when faced with a problem. I feel reassured when he accompanies us to the hospital. Ifm happy that our child has a good relationship with him as well.
Needs I want him to take care of our child more. I want him to do more housework. I want him to (just) listen to me. I want him to participate in the fatherfs meeting and family events proactively like the other fathers.

A fatherfs feelings for his wife
She takes care of our child when I come home late from work. Child-raising is very hard, but she deals with things well without complaining. I take my hat off to her. Every day I look forward to hearing about our child from her when I get home.
Needs Ifd like her not to be emotional and treat our child with ease. I get confused because she suddenly gets upset. I want her to tell me what she needs in concrete terms. I want her to discuss things with me too and take care of herself.

@The fathers and mothers divided into groups and had conversations based on these comments. Many of them said, gIt was nice to hear other parentsf thoughts.h And gI felt relieved that I am not the only one struggling." There were also opinions that they didnft realize their partner cared about and appreciated them, and also the realization that they didn't make opportunities to talk to their partners regularly. We found that they kept their feelings to themselves and didnft communicate them, even though they did appreciate things or need things from each other.

@It seems that even though they both wish for their childfs healthy growth and care about each other, they are not good at communicating this directly. As a result, when a mother faces a problem, she doesnft discuss it with her partner but troubles over it and deals with it by herself. On the other hand, the father doesnft realize her feelings and becomes frustrated that she decides things by herself without talking to him. Looking at the circumstances and problems and thinking of ways to improve them together, we heard some positive opinions such as, gI wonft push myself too hard and try to discuss things with my partner.h, and gIfll try to think of a way to communicate better.h

@cWe can find a way to solve problems if we put our heads together. Letfs foster our child-raising abilities in the home over time.

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