Reflecting (verb) 1. to case back (light, heat, sound, etc.) from a surface. 2. to give back or show an image of; mirror.
Relationship (noun) 1. a connection, association, or involvement. 2. connection between persons by blood or marriage. 3. an emotional or other connection between people.
Within the field of infant mental health, it is generally acknowledged that all learning and development occurs within the context of an infant’s relationships with their caregivers. Within the broader context of life, it can be acknowledged that most of our experiences are shaped and influenced by the important relationships we have with others in our lives. The context of social-emotional development in infancy and early childhood sets the stage for all relationships that follow. It is critical, then that we, as individuals and collectively on a societal level, acknowledge the importance of healthy relationship development from the earliest stages of infancy.
For professional who work with families with young children, it is essential to have the reflective capacity to mirror back to the caregiver aspects of the relationship with the child. This skill on the part of the professional can help families learn how to better meet their child’s unique social-emotional needs. For families, it is important to develop reflective capacity to continuously reflect upon and make changes to the parent/child relationship. In order to do this successfully, parents must have an understanding of their own subconscious ideas about relationships.
The primary goal of this site will be to explore issues related to infant and childhood mental health and social-emotional development. I will address these issues in the context of the caregiver-child relationship, acknowledging that each party in any relationship is a unique individual who brings unique characteristics to each interaction. At Reflecting Relationships, our mission is to ensure that all infants and toddlers have the opportunity to build a healthy foundation in life. This is accomplished by providing high-quality consultation and training to professionals, parents, and policymakers whose decisions directly affect our youngest citizens.