I Matter Self Help Guidance for Parents-Carers

Starter advice for the way fowrard





The I Matter Framework clearly sets out what the research evidence is really telling us about what children need to thrive.

The conclusions are not rocket science but key elements are often overlooked.    

In our courses we teach the I Matter Framework in a fun way that makes the ideas easier to remember.

We also provide tools to help adults understand what issues to prioritise to best help children who are struggling


Here though is a quick summary of the key conclusions of the research on what produces best outcomes for children: 

They are relevant for children and young people - with or without a diagnosable condition - and for all adults who have relationships with children

Relationships matter. 

Young People AND Adults are developing:

Children and adults all need:a patient and non-judgemental approach - one that believes in the potential that all children have, but understands that different children will develop various life skills at varying speeds.

Remember that stress stops clear thinking and makes it more difficult for children and adults to control their behaviour.

Adverse Childhood Experiences and Trauma have real long term impacts on children and adults and need key understandings.

Relationship skills emerge gradually and need specific supports - especially for the most vulnerable

Children and adults all need help with managing demands and resources so that clear thinking and self- control are possible. Therefore the basics matter - particularly for the most vulnerable - eg healthy routines of good diet, plenty of exercise, sufficient sleep and relaxation.  These all support good relationships

Confidence building matters - positive messages support children and adults to improve their social skills and resilience.

Children grow in confidence when offered High Nurture High structure developmentally sensitive parenting and caring.  That means lots of love and kindness but also firm boundaries and routines from adults who are clearly in charge and helping them to be safe.

Your beliefs and attitudes have a powerful impact on your child and on yourself.  What you say to yourself and your child can actively change what happens next

It's never too late for positive changes.  

You the adult has a lead role to play


To build your child's confidence when they are struggling, make sure to prioritise

Looking after yourself physically and mentally so that you can look after your children - 

Get support for yourself so that you can be calm around your children and provide the above.

Build in quality time with your child which builds relationships. Less is often more.  The small things matter.  eg. walks, bike rides, sports, board games, baking,making things, jig-saws, caring for pets, visiting extended family.

Help your child feel special and noticed by you

Look together at emotional support resources together via books, films, online resources.  Show that we are all learning.

If your child is struggling, care for yourself and draw them in closer - don't push them away.


Parents, carers and other trusted adults are VITAL for the emotional well-being of children and young people. They are the role models and attachment figures. This is particularly important for teens who have other strong influences such as peers, social media and potentially drugs and alcohol.


The best outcomes for children with difficulties therefore come from a partnership approach between home and school which takes the child’s developmental needs into account.   

Schools can make a very big difference in the family lives of the children they teach by creating communities that are knowledgeable about trauma and social emotional development.  

It takes a village to raise a child. 

Isolated stressed parents struggle to help children to thrive so a welcoming approach and support matters.

Conversations and a long view are key.

Healthy communities come through intention and active attention to details.

You can make a difference in your role.


If your school or community is not involved with the I Matter Project, why not speak to them to see if someone would like to take part in our training?


©CBetoin    www.imattertraining.com      Dr Amy Lee GP and Dr Cathy Betoin, Clinical Psychologist

Kendal Integrated Care Community, Morecambe Bay, Better Care Together