Rock Solid Families
Family relationships are crucial resources for Warfighter. There are many ways you can strengthen your family relationships—HPRC highlights some resources below.
HPRC thanks the Families Overcoming Under Stress Program (FOCUS) for allowing us to post many of their resources.
- Families & Friendships
- Afterdeployment.org created this guidebook with tips on how to talk to your family. They describe “I” statements, how to handle conflict, improving your relationships, and ideas for how to talk to each other after deployments.
- Building Resilience in Children and Teens [PDF]
- This handout from afterdeployment.org offers ten tips to help build resilience in children and teens. They highlight ideas such as sticking to a daily routine, teaching children self-care, practicing acceptance, and keeping things in perspective.
- FOCUS: Family Resilience Training for Military Families
- FOCUS (Families OverComing Under Stress) provides in-person resiliency training to military children and families affected by deployment. Parents and children learn to use tools and techniques to better prepare themselves for future deployments, how to understand their emotions better, and methods to optimize how they communicate with one another.
- Talk, Listen, Connect: Deployments, Homecomings, Changes
- The second phase of a military outreach project created in 2008 by Sesame Street offers resources for military families with young children. The project helps children cope with the effects of deployment, multiple deployments, and reintegration with a parent. Specifically, Sesame Street’s Talk, Listen, Connect helps: • Maintain feelings of togetherness for children and reassure them they are loved and secure. • Assist parents in coping with multiple deployments. • Relate to children through age-appropriate methods of coping with and understanding possible deployment-related events (including grief).
- When to Seek Help for a Child [PDF]
- This afterdeployment.org handout focuses on when to seek help for a child you may be concerned about, including behaviors by age group that may indicate a child may need professional support. The message stresses that there is nothing wrong with getting help.
- FOCUS Family Calendar [PDF]
- A great way to document family milestones as well as everyday family events is a family calendar, which helps you stay connected and all be on the same page. The FOCUS (Families Overcoming Under Stress) program created this worksheet to help you create your own family calendar. And once you have created it, you can hang it on a central spot in your house so everyone can see it and stay informed.
- FOCUS Family Collage [PDF]
- Creating a collage together as a family can be a fun bonding activity. You can make one to represent your family, family values, or a specific topic, such as portraying an event for a deployed loved one who was not home for. FOCUS created this helpful worksheet on how to make your own family collage.
- FOCUS Family Statements [PDF]
- The FOCUS (Families Overcoming Under Stress) program has found that it can be helpful for families to articulate their strengths and family values in a “family mission statement.” For help on how to create one for your own family, check out this handout that describes family statements, gives you some starter questions, a space to write out your own family’s statement, and a thought-provoking activity on what you can’t live without.
- Parenting For Service Members and Veterans
- The Department of Defense and Veterans Affairs created a website solely dedicated to parenting for Service Members and Veterans. You can take courses, view modules, and tip sheets on a variety of topics like parent-child communication, emotions, discipline, stress management for parents, and parenting with emotional and physical challenges.