Helping Parents Reassert Control over Misbehaving Children

A respected author and clinical child psychologist, Dr. Beth Grosshans has gained a reputation for engaging with “out of control” children and helping parents deal with their misbehavior. Dr. Beth Grosshans’ book, Beyond Time Out: From Chaos to Calm, provides an achievable pathway for families experiencing “mayhem and madness” to recover their balance. This situation arises when children are allowed to take control of the family power dynamic and is the result of four decades of poor U.S. parenting advice, in which the child’s self-esteem and feelings are considered paramount.

Taken to an extreme, this parenting advice can upset the natural hierarchy of power in families and sow chaos. Dr. Grosshans recommends a five step discipline strategy called “The Ladder” as a means to restore cooperation and self-control. Her practical advice warns against heavy handed control and harsh discipline such as parental bullying and spanking. Instead, she emphasizes a level-headed, five-step approach toward gradually asserting control in areas such as eating, sleeping, and toileting. The aim is not to punish but to work with children in creating a family dynamic that has appropriate levels of order, control, and peace, where parents are in the lead.


Beyond Time Out – A Guide to Family Power Dynamics

An experienced child and family psychologist, Dr. Beth Grosshans has treated patients of all ages. Dr. Beth Grosshans, author of Beyond Time Out, currently consults with schools and families to develop power dynamics that are healthy for children’s development.

First published in 2008, Beyond Time Out serves as a response to the current prevalence of uncontrolled children and chaotic families. The book describes these trends as a result of parents feeling that they lack control over their children. Beyond Time Out explains that children know when adults no longer have control, and that this awareness causes them to feel anxious and insecure. Not having the skills to cope with this insecurity, they act out.

Beyond Time Out attributes this power imbalance to contemporary parenting styles The book explains that the past half century has taught parents how to nurture and support their children but has neglected to teach them to lead. The book instructs parents on how to communicate clearly and presents an actionable five-step strategy known as the Ladder, which can help parents regain control and reestablish a family power dynamic that makes children feel safe.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder in Children

During her years in private clinical practice, author Dr. Beth Grosshans worked closely with children and their families to help them overcome a variety of issues. Among Dr. Beth Grosshans’ areas of expertise was helping children deal with various forms of anxiety, including generalized anxiety disorder.

Generalized anxiety is a type of anxiety leads to constant feelings of worry and unease. A person experiencing generalized anxiety typically anticipates and worries about bad things happening, even if those things are highly unlikely to actually occur. In addition to reducing productivity, these feelings place a person under constant mental strain and make living a normal life more difficult. While some people develop generalized anxiety disorder during adulthood, it often begins during childhood.

A child with generalized anxiety disorder will often show perfectionist tendencies. He or she wants to do well at all his or her activities and feels a great deal of anxiety if his or her performance fails to meet expectations. The child also typically needs a great deal of approval from others, such as parents, teachers, and peers. He or she might feel high levels of anxiety about such things as grades in school or performance in extracurricular activities, such as sports.

A child who has generalized anxiety disorder may benefit greatly from working with a therapist. In addition to working with the child, a therapist can work with family members to guide them on how best to help the child overcome his or her anxieties.