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How to Keep a Routine with a Child in Treatment

Written by: Mariah Dantzler, M.S.
How to Keep a Routine with a Child in Treatment

It is important to understand that it may be inconvenient or near impossible to keep a routine while a family member is undergoing treatment, but we know that rhythm and routine creates feelings of safety and security. With the following tips it may be easy to think of some things you can do with your family to create a routine within your family during this time.

  • Identify 3-5 lifelines – lifelines can be close friends, family, or members within your community that will rally around you and take on any task thrown their way. These are people that will help with transportation needs, laundry, lawn care etc
  • Create a family mission statement, crest, or logo – you can often refer to this with your family in times of stress or hurt to bond together
  • Try to keep siblings schedule the same as much as you can – keep them on their same teams for sports and activities, allow them to continue to have play dates – rely on your lifeliners to work out logistics
  • Dedicate a time each month to have uninterrupted family fun time
  • Keep bedtimes the same
  • Make a chart of what may change during this time but also what will still the same during this time so that children can anticipate change but feel confident that somethings will remain the same
  • Try to honor choices and healthy control for children in the family – examples are: allowing them to pick out what clothes they wear, what snack they will eat, what show to watch on TV etc.