Katie Peterson | Staff Writer
Family wellness was the focus of the latest Marriage Resilience class offered by the Fort Leavenworth Chapels Family Life Center Feb. 19 at Pioneer Chapel.
The event was broadcast live on the Fort Leavenworth Multicultural Gospel Service Facebook page. Chaplain (Maj.) Anselmo Brillon, Family Life chaplain, led the discussion.
The first session of the two-part discussion focused on parents as leaders and models.
“In the military setting, sometimes there are stressors with constant moving and (permanent-change-of-station) life, deployments and so oftentimes what we’ve been taught is forgotten or what’s been modeled in our home is not something that’s working right now in your home and your family as society changes,” Brillon said. “Sometimes we have to learn new rules and new skills to adapt and move forward in the home thus causing peace in the home.”
Brillon said some skills parents can use to obtain the peaceful, happy dynamic within the family include establishing clear, specific rules within the home, and choosing rewards and consequences parents are willing to enforce when a child obeys or disobeys the rules.
The second session focused on children in healthy families.
“It’s about your ongoing investment in quality time with your children,” Brillon said.
This includes praising success, acknowledging a child’s point of view, listening to children and being specific when thanking children for something good they do.
“It lets your children know you’re invested in them, you appreciate them and the more they feel that way, the more they’re willing to be part of the team and put their best foot forward,” he said.
Two-way communication is important, too, Brillon said. For example, when asking about a child’s day, ask a child to specifically tell you one thing that made his or her day good and why. Then, listen and repeat it back.
“Encourage your children to talk to you and tell you what’s on their mind,” he said.
Family wellness was the second of three total discussions on marriage resilience. The first session on Jan. 22 focused on marriage and the home. During that class, Brillon talked about the importance of communication, commitment, friendship and quality time within a marriage relationship. The third and final session, which will focus on marital resiliency, is 6-8 p.m. March 19.
“The reason and intent (of these classes) was to impact the marriage and family dynamics in the Fort Leavenworth community,” Brillon said. “COVID-19 has had a toll on the marriage and family systems.
“Marriage resilience is important to build on in our ever changing environment,” he said. “Life transitions and stages can cause stress on the family system. It’s time to build relationships by learning skills to enhance relationships.
“My overall goal is that marriages and families prosper, grow and learn skills that can benefit and increase the capability of staying together while thriving.”
To view the full January and February sessions, visit the Fort Leavenworth Multicultural Gospel Service Facebook page.
To sign up to attend the March 19 session in person, call (913) 680-7336.