Hello, I'm Nicola Reekie.
My mission is to spread awareness of PDA. This is through workshops, webinars individual coaching for parents, and therapeutic groups. Alongside my main event – The annual summit!
My Family Story
After spending years seeking a diagnosis for our child and not getting anywhere, as parents we didn’t know where to go next. I was exhausted. I'd been on the edge of burn out for so long. Luckily, a chance conversation led to a correct diagnosis of PDA and thankfully I learned how to manage my own self-care and avoid a full break down. It wasn’t easy...
When my son was young getting him to do anything was a struggle.
My husband and I were met with constant meltdowns and upsets. Something as simple as getting him dressed and taking him to nursery on time was impossible. Everyone told me it was just toddler tantrums and he would soon grow out of it.
But he didn’t.
In fact, things only got worse.
He became extremely fussy about food. If two different items on his plate touched one another he wouldn’t eat them. He left anything that was the slightest bit burnt and he’d even refuse a chocolate bar if a piece of it was broken.
Other children told me my son was very controlling when they played with him. He was very set in his ways and would only play with certain toys in a regimented way. On top of all this, he barely slept. My husband and I were permanently exhausted. We looked like the walking dead!
Going from this.....
Is possible, I promise.....
We can’t change the past but we can change the future.
The changes we have put in to place as a family have been learning all about PDA. How to reduce demands and to become a low demand household.
One day I recorded everything I asked my son to do in the morning from the moment he got up; get dressed, eat breakfast, brush teeth, put shoes on and be out by a certain time. I realised that if you asked me to do those things I would find it overwhelming.
By changing our language using nondirective language and offering choices when he was younger for example which pair of shoes would you like to put on, when do you think you'll come and have your food, are you having a shower or a bath. Slightly changing the way we ask him things has made a huge difference. I remember when I used to sit quietly thinking of how to rephrase questions I asked him in different situations.
We still make mistakes at times as life constantly changes. It took months of applying these new strategies to create the changes.
Today things are different and he will do things without being asked. The biggest change was our thoughts and beliefs as parents of how we ought to parent a child. Very simple changes like letting go of the view that we all had to sit at the table together. Changing our language, reducing demands, looking after our wellbeing and understanding PDA have made a massive difference to our lives. Contributing to a calmer and more peaceful environment for us all.
Life still has its challenges. But now we know what we’re dealing with. We know what life is like for our son and we understand why we’re seeing certain behaviours. By learning about PDA we’ve been able to implement strategies and alter the way we communicate and it’s made our family life a great deal easier.
The more I talked about PDA, the more I realised there were many other parents in the same situation.
Qualifying in hypnotherapy, NLP and Reiki helped me, and I knew I had to help other parents too. I developed the PDA Parenting Space, a community for parents, carers, and professionals to share their experiences, strategies, and information on Pathological Demand Avoidance. This includes supporting families with improving their understanding of children and adults with PDA as well as raising awareness between health professionals to enable speedier diagnosis.
I am so proud of how the community has come together for the Summit...
...and embraced the opportunity to expand our knowledge and share and learn how to access resources available to parents and families for living day to day and improve our mental health and well-being.
Using simple techniques, I’ve experienced a significant difference in my own home and relationship with my child. The families I’ve worked with have also had similar experiences as we remove some of the ‘emotional blocks’ with our parenting and build emotional resilience. I look forward to connecting with you.
Here are my top 7 tips for a good week...
I also recommend taking it one step at a time and not trying to change too much at once.
Fill out the form below, and I'll send you the exact tips that worked for me you can put into place RIGHT NOW over the next 7 days.