SUPPORT NEEDED: Youth mental health expert Garry King says parents need to help children through difficult times. Photo: Contributed
SUPPORT NEEDED: Youth mental health expert Garry King says parents need to help children through difficult times. Photo: Contributed

We need to support our kids: Garry King

LEADING Australian expert on children's mental health issues Garry King was in the Clarence Valley as part of the Toolbox Parenting Festival hosted by the Clarence Valley Council to share a simple message with parents and teachers.

"We need to look after our kids," he said. "We are one big community and we need to be able to reach out if we can see a problem."

Mr King said that resilience in youth was the key when looking at mental health troubles.

"It is quite simple, the higher the resilience in young people, the less instances of self-harm," Mr King said.

"In this instantaneous world that we live in where people expect things, I think a lot of us have forgotten that sometimes it is not that way."

"A lot of kids will fail at something and instantly think it is the end of the world, but we need to be able to show them that it is not the case.

"Sometimes things do not work the first time but that is not cause to give up."

According to Mr King, caregivers have a tendency to avoid sad situations and make out that feeling sad is undesirable, but that is not what they should be doing.

"Our job as caregivers is to support our kids through those difficult times," he said. "Not just change the subject.

"It is okay for them to hit that bottom, they need to feel those lows.

"Resiliency is built by young people working their way through tough times."



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