Context: This exercise provides men with a generative toolbox of key responses they give their children during a time of crisis (i.e. family separation).
When to use: Sufficient engagement, trust and respect exist in the relationship.
Conducting the exercise: Discuss the current situation and challenges experienced by the father and his children. In the discussion build the man’s ability to tune into generative care by encouraging him to do these actions over the following week:
Reassure the children they are loved by all the family
Let the children know you are there for them but don’t NEED them all the time
Let the children know they are okay and will be okay
Show the children you are okay
Provide the tools of life
Be mindful of the present (current childhood and developmental needs)
Invest in the future (who they will become)
How do you show your kids that you are okay so they do not need to worry about you?
What do your kids need from you right now?
What tools for life have your kids learnt from you? What tools do you want them to remember that they learnt them from you?
What are the important developmental needs of your children (age specific)?
Describe your child at a future age (name the age). What do you imagine they will be like? What do they need to learn from you today to move them towards achieving this future? (Most parents hope that their child’s life is better than their own).