Welcome to Ann Herreboudtís website

A short introduction from Ann

Transitions in life are never easy. One of the most complex is that into parenthood. Children donít come with a handbook, which means you have to work things out as you go along. It is difficult to understand the needs of a new baby when you cannot read the physical and emotional signs of the newborn. Whatís more, there is so much information out there to cope with, it can seem like the world and its aunt are giving advice to new parents. My passion is helping parents understand the needs of their babies Ė to sort through the plethora of mixed feelings they have when it comes to their parenting abilities, all of which they experience while recovering from pregnancy, birth, and breast or bottle-feeding, a time of sheer exhaustion.

Transitions, however, go far beyond the baby stage, bringing new challenges with each developmental phase. The key to happy parenting, I believe, is in parents learning to read and understand their childís clues. Babies are born to communicate. However, they communicate as babies from their baby brain, which is difficult for our adult brain to interpret. Over time, children become more vocal as they develop and often become oppositional to parentsí views, which opens up a whole new world of negotiation. My role is to help parents unlock the mystery of this child world, assist them in understanding the normal and to settle the small areas that can be confusing. This process reduces mumís anxiety, allowing her to enjoy the wonderful moments of mothering.

Later on, all children develop at different paces. Some become stuck in certain developmental social and behavioural areas, commonly manifesting itself in problems at school, or more generally finding ordinary day to day events stressful. Helping mother and child to find a way through this gives me great pleasure. Often, this transition happens very easily, allowing the natural rhythm of development to continue.

The school years can provide children, young people and their families with an enormous amount of challenges. I support children through transitions to new schools, social anxieties, learning difficulties, as well as advising them on how to cope with exam pressure.

I am also passionate about helping people understand their feelings, fears and disappointments when pregnancy does not happen when expected. Understanding all the complicated medical terms and procedures can be difficult. Having someone to talk to, who understands both the emotional and medical sides, can make treatment and investigations bearable.

Finally, I counsel people when relationships hit difficult times. During these times, parents find themselves not just dealing with their own upset and grief but having to support the children through a life-changing event. Amid the turmoil, it is crucial that they develop a good parenting structure. Although, during a divorce, the parents will have family, friends and legal advisors around them, they are more likely to struggle with trying to decide about what is best for the children and keeping their lives as normal as possible. Children respond in a variety of ways to relationship upsets; some quite acutely with anger; some taking sides; and others may even become withdrawn. I help parents to cope with their own pain and confusion, while also coping with the turmoil created within the child or children with their decision to separate.

Read more about Ann here