Tips to co-construct antidote (3) Via thickening preferences.

Aim or sub-task           Guiding questions
Identify a relational preference (preferred relational understanding such as preferred emotions, capacities, behaviours, attitudes, intentions, identities, ways of relating). You said your child was very upset, and I thought you wanted to say that wasn’t right for you, is that a fair statement? According to you, the bad thing about it is getting upset, losing control, or something else? (To ‘bearer’ of problem) what is it that you value about being upset? Does it give you strength? Does it help you express something you are unable to express with words sometimes? Does it help you to express something you find unfair? When would you say the ‘upset’ helps you, and when does it turn into a “bad thing”, because makes you do things you do not feel proud of doing?   Some parents sometimes want to help their children to learn self-control… is that important to you? Some parents want to help their children to make good decisions for their lives…is that important to you? Did you ever noticed something that would get close to such ability/learning?  
Characterize the preference How would you call this? (e.g., “self-control”; “inner control”; “assertiveness”; “promoting autonomy”; “respecting others’ rights”). Does your child know that you are interested in promoting her…. (e.g., autonomy)? When have you seen her exercising autonomy (or “inner control”) to some degree? How would you know that she is getting more autonomy? Have you met people who make good, autonomous decisions, commit and take responsibility for their decisions, etc? Who is better at home at exercising inner control? Second best? Third?  
Bring forth powerful inspirations (e.g., utility, goodness, beauty, or other “good reasons”). Would you say there’s something ‘ugly’ about “lack of self-control”? if so, can you tell me more about that? Why would you say autonomy is somewhat desirable? Admirable perhaps? Why is it useful? What has life taught you about the importance of “self-control”? Where did you learn that from? What would happen immediately in your relationship with your child if they decided appreciating and welcoming your willingness for her to gain more autonomy? What would happen after a year? After 10 years?  
Track ongoing changes in relation to preference Who has gotten better at (supporting) self-control at home? Who has noticed some difference in your child’s “inner control” in the last year? In the last month? How have you noticed that?   How long are these ‘meltdown episodes’ now? From 1 to 10, how intense are they now? How frequent? What does ‘patience’ do to “outer control”? (When unhelpful interaction is being enacted in session: does nagging help you? What else helps you?)  
Plan, do, and consolidate   What else are you going to do to Support/exercise inner control? Do you have a plan? How would you practice your “autonomy muscles”? Who may have some other ideas? What do these changes tell about what the relationship between you is becoming? What are you becoming into?

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