The Stuff I Learned From My Time As A Case Manager.

Season 6, Episode 51- The Honestly Speaking Podcast

Have you ever found yourself frustrated with your child’s case-manager?  Sometimes it can seem like we are on totally different planets from case-managers when it comes to the many decisions being made about children in our care.  What are they thinking?  Where are they coming from?
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This week, we welcome our good friend, Megan Stroup, Founder and Director of Helen’s House in Marian, Indiana, which specializes in supervised visitations and case management.  Before founding Helen’s House, Megan worked in the Department of Child Services for 11 years.  Megan is also an adoptee and mom of three. Megan shares with us today about her own experiences as a case manager.*  In listening to and understanding another’s perspective, we can all learn to build more positive, healthy relationships with those involved in our children’s lives.

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The Stuff I’ve Learned From Raising Children With HIV.

Season 6, Episode 50- The Honestly Speaking Podcast

Let’s uncover some untrue and unfair stigmas about adopting and parenting children with HIV.  Many people are still terrified of this disease but at the same time remain uneducated. Even if you think this disease does not affect you, chances are, both you and your children interact daily with other children or adults with HIV who are dealing with feelings of isolation or depression that come from living with the stigmas of this disease. This is something we all need to think about.

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Listen in as Mike interviews Michelle McKinney: blogger, wife, adoptive mom of 4, and one of our amazing Care Team Members from Oasis Community. Michelle shares what she has learned about HIV as she and her husband, Mark, have moved through their adoption and parenting journey.  

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“The Stuff I Learned About Loss And New Beginnings.”

Season 6, Episode 49- The Honestly Speaking Podcast

So much of the adoption journey is surrounded by trauma, loss, and grief.  Many times friends, family, or church members will say things that seem to make it even worse.  Is loss and trauma really “just a part of God’s plan?”  Is getting over grief simply a matter of “trusting God more?”

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Listen in to Natalie’s encouraging story as she and her husband listened and learned about finding wholeness and joy through some hard years of infertility, miscarriage, loss, and grief, as well as adoption, virtual twining, and special needs parenting.

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How To Navigate Summer Vacation With Children Who Need Structure.

Season 5, Episode 48- The Honestly Speaking Podcast

For millions of families, summer break is all about staying up late, sleeping in, and hanging out by the pool, when they want, for as long as they want to. But for those of us parenting children with special needs, summer break can spell disaster due to lack of structure. How do you successfully navigate this season with children who thrive in structure and routine?

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We would have drained our bank account to register our kids for every summer camp on the planet last year. We nearly did. Parents of normal functioning children may raise an eyebrow, or two, at that statement; even call us bad parents. But, unless you are in the trenches of parenting children from trauma, with attachment issues, or disorders like FASD, you don’t understand the enormous need for structure and routine.

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How To Form Healthy Partnerships With Your Child’s School.

Season 5, Episode 47- The Honestly Speaking Podcast

One of the biggest struggles foster and adoptive parents have, is formulating a healthy partnership with their child’s school. Usually this has to do with IEP meetings. In this episode, however, we are looking at a different angle.

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In the past we’ve discussed, in-depth, IEP meetings, how to advocate for your child, what to say and not say, do and not do, and which important details you need to disclose to better advocate for your child, and his or her special need. But what about your child who doesn’t have an IEP, or need one? Educationally, they are on track, but they’ve still come from a place of trauma. How do you effectively communicate these details to better equip the school, and ensure the best possible school year for teacher and student alike? Today, we share valuable keys you can utilize as you and your child’s school prepare for the upcoming school year…

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How To Raise A Multi-Racial Family In A Not-So-Multi-Racial World.

Season 5, Episode 46- The Honestly Speaking Podcast

A vast majority of foster and adoptive families are multi-racial. But, in this day and age, our culture still has many divides when it comes to race. How do you raise a multi-racial family in the middle of it?

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In 2002 we were thrust into parenthood, seemingly overnight. We knew our daughter was on the way, we just didn’t know when. Then suddenly, poof…she was here. While we didn’t receive massively offensive comments for being two white people, in white suburbia, with a black daughter, we did have well-meaning people say things that were not-so-well-meaning (at least it seemed this way). We feared the future. We questioned, “How can we raise our baby in a world that is so misunderstanding and divided?”

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How Do I Maintain Respect For A Birthparent When Their Choices Are So Bad?

Season 5, Episode 45- The Honestly Speaking Parenting Podcast

On this episode of Honestly Speaking, Matt, Mike, Nicole and Kristin discuss one of the biggest questions foster and adoptive parents have when it comes to birth parents: How can I respect a person who’s made so many bad choices?

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We’ve spoken at conferences where people have nearly come out of their seats they were so angry when we talk about the importance of respecting birth parents. I’m not kidding. Birth parent relationships are an extremely sensitive topic among foster and adoptive parents. Some prefer to keep them at a distance while others genuinely want to know how to maintain a healthy, respectful relationship with them. Today’s episode provides some practical advice.

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4 Practical Tips For Re-Entering The Foster Care System.

Season 5, Episode 44- The Honestly Speaking Parenting Podcast

Through this blog, and on our podcast, we have given hundreds, if not thousands, of tips on entering the foster care system for the first time. But what about when you are planning to re-enter after being away for a while?

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Re-entry is rarely something folks consider when they’re on the foster care journey. Mostly because, the statistics of families who stop fostering, or suspend their license, and never return are greater than those who take a break and then jump back in later on. But how do you successfully re-enter the system when you’ve been away from it for a while? That’s what we’re covering on today’s episode of the podcast.

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