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My 14-y-o has learning and behavioural problems

Published:Monday | March 1, 2010 | 12:00 AM

Q My daughter, aged 14, has a behavioural and learning problem, how do I help her?

Raising adolescents can be a challenging task for parents and caregivers. Teenagers are different from their parents. Although their behaviour is sometimes difficult to understand, it is important that adults who are responsible for adolescents identify and get help for problems that they see, as early as possible, so that the problems will not get worse before parents realise what is going on. Also, remember the child with a learning disability, who is not receiving the academic help needed, usually will present with behaviour problems.

Q I have a chemical engineering degree and worked at a consulting firm for the past three years. So far, it has not been as rewarding as it should with the type of qualification I have and the salary that I should be paid. I somewhat believe that the opportunities here for persons with that type of degree is limited but still has the potential to move on to other, more rewarding, areas. I would like to be advised on how I can maximise my skills and interests, and take advantage of whatever opportunities that may be available for persons with my background; or make reference to a psychologist who I can speak to on this matter.

The JobBank located in Kingston, Jamaica, which is run by Dr Leachim Semaj, is the best place for you to visit to learn how to maximise your skills and interests. They offer testing and assessment services, and seminars that will guide you towards your optimal development.You can call them at 960-5627.

Q I got a scholarship to do my master's in communications and I am excited about going away to study. My friends tell me that I will have to adjust a lot as the country I am going to is different in terms of the weather and culture. They have me concerned.

As soon as you have the time, read as much as you can about the culture of the country you will be going to. If there is an embassy here in Jamaica, go visit and learn more about the country from the cultural affairs officer. Remember to take warm clothing and, when you get there, to buy good quality winter clothes that will last you for the period of time that you are studying. Enjoy planning to go and enjoy your studies while there.

Orlean Brown Earle, PhD, is a child psychologist and family therapist. Dr Brown Earle works with children with learning and behaviour problems throughout the island and in the Caribbean. Email questions to helpline@gleanerjm.com or send to Ask the Doc, c/o The Gleaner Company, 7 North Street, Kingston.