The Role of Parents in Early Childhood Social-Emotional Development: A Conversation with Paula Frisk from St. David’s Center for Child & Family Development

photo of ME early childhood social-emotional development guest, Paula FriskHave you ever heard someone say about a baby or toddler, “It’s a good thing that trauma happened before he was aware of it.” Unfortunately, that is a very misleading statement. Long before babies have words, they can experience stress and trauma and remember it in their bodies and brains, often with lasting negative effects on their social-emotional development. But the good news is that sensitive, responsive, predictable parenting can be a powerful buffer against trauma.


Paula Frisk, Senior Director of Birth to Age 5 Home Visiting at St. David’s Center for Child & Family Development, joins Marti for an important discussion of what parents can do to protect their children, what parents need for themselves and what therapeutic resources are available for parents and infants who need help with social-emotional development.


How does a secure parent-child attachment protect a young child when a very upsetting experience is unavoidable? What factors can make it hard for parents to provide that sensitive, responsive care? How has this played out in your own life, as a parent and as a former child?


To learn more about the Harman Center for Child & Family Wellbeing, click here.

For our Parent’s Role in Emotional Development sheet, click here.

For early childhood intervention services in Hennepin County, click here.

For our positive stress and toxic stress interview with Dr. Megan Gunnar, click here.

For our What is Toxic Stress? sheet, click here.

For our Understanding the Biology of Stress in Young Children sheet, click here.

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