“You can’t make your kids do anything. All you can do is make them wish they had.  And then, they will make you wish you hadn’t made them wish they had.”

Marshall B. Rosenberg


 Be the Parent you long to be…

For most of us, the only model of parenting we have is how we were parented. Often this didn’t include us being heard, understood and encouraged as much as we would have liked. We may want to do it differently with our own children, but only ‘know what we know’, and each book we read seems to contradict the other.

Sometimes there’s a fear that if we don’t show our children who is ‘boss’, we’ll fall into a permissive style of parenting and raise little tyrants who don’t respect others.

An NVC approach to parenting is neither authoritarian nor permissive. Neither does it instruct you ‘how’ to parent. Rather, it helps parents to identify and live by their own highest values, and parent from this wisdom.

NVC demonstrates how we can transform ‘power over’ to ‘power with’, and create relationships where everyone’s needs are valued equally, rather than relationships where the person who has most power gets their own way at the expense of others.

“What we are teaches the child far more than what we say, so we must be what we want our children to become.”

Joseph Chilton Pearce

Whether you’re a new parent or your kids are already teenagers, NVC offers powerful, immediately applicable tools to begin creating a relationship with them based on trust, mutual respect, connection, harmony and fun.

Communication for Life offers courses in parenting with nonviolence. For further information about Nonviolent Communication, go here. For upcoming courses, go here.

Jocelyn also offers mediation for families and coaching for parents. It is strongly recommended to attend an NVC course before private coaching or mediation, as it will help you get the most out of the experience.

parenting teenagers

I recently attended a Nonviolent Communication course run by Jocelyn Kennedy and have found the learning to help me really think about what I want to say and how to say it. This type of communication is appropriate for any relationship or communication between people, including myself! Amazing how the heat of conflict can be minimized, simply by using different words and acknowledging how the other person feels and their point of view.
With a four year old daughter, one of the best gifts we can give her is effective communication. I now notice her using feeling words a lot more which as a parent makes it much easier to solve any issues. It also helps her to deal with frustration and anger more effectively by knowing what it is and acknowledging it. Like me she doesn’t always get what she wants, but the end result is so much more validating.

Sharon Jenkinson

Foundation Course Participant, Hastings

It was helpful for me to see there’s another way to approach challenging behaviours (with curiosity) and to communicate directly with children over issues, following the four steps. It was also helpful to be given an effective tool for affirming positive behaviour too.
Using NVC with the children, I feel as if there’s been a marked increase in their cooperation and my understanding, and our house is a more harmonious place as a result.
I am definitely recommending this course to my friends!


Parenting Course Participant, Far North
Marshall Rosenberg’s nonviolent communication (NVC) offers us ways to reconnect the most difficult disconnections – the disconnections that rupture relationships, the hurt that tears families apart, and the ‘disconnects’ that wreak havoc in workplaces. NVC skills equip us to bring joy and harmony back into our homes, our workplaces and into our community organisations. NVC teaches us how to connect and how to reconnect. 
Personally, I think the work Jocelyn is offering in her community should be a basic part of our education. We all know far more people who can read and write than can get along with people when there is conflict. 

Pennie Brownlee

Author, Facilitator, Advocate for Parents and Children
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