Helping family and close friendships understand you and how you parent can be tricky. They mean well, but may not fully understand how to support you. But there are ways you can encourage them and help them gain a healthy understanding.
Once we know the importance attachment and bonding play in a healthy upbringing, we tend to parent differently. Children from traumatic pasts have had their initial attachment disrupted, so we must parent intentionally to teach our children healthy skills to build trust. We can’t stay isolated, and neither can our children, so we must form a sturdy support system around our them. Most people will get on board with our parenting style, but sometimes even our close family and friends don’t understand why do what we do. Some will intentionally sabotage our efforts; others will unintentionally disrupt the bond we are building with our child. Whatever the motivation behind the behavior of the adults surrounding our family, we must remain firm.
It can be a challenge to understand what children with a trauma history need the most. Especially since trauma often leaves a child unable to express this in a healthy way. Out of this, there are some crucial needs that we as caregivers must be aware of.
“If you don’t stop holding that baby, she’s never going to learn to walk,” a nosey middle-aged man exclaimed in the church lobby for all to hear. My ten-month-old daughter, already an introvert by nature, was wrapped around my body like a koala. For her, the church lobby was a place to be endured. She hated the bustle, the noise, and the constant attention. As a pastor’s family and a transracial adoptive family, we were often the center of attention.
Can birth parents and adoptive parents really enter into a supportive relationship with one another, and put the needs of the child before anything else? Yes! We believe they can. And in today’s episode, you’ll find out why…
If you haven’t met Ashley Mitchell yet, you need to. At age 26 Ashley placed her son for adoption. It was a dark time in her life. She felt a deep sense of loss as she returned home from the hospital without her baby. Would she ever find hope? The answer was yes. But it would be quite the journey. Today, 14 years later, she has become a powerful voice for birth parents, and an advocate for ethical adoptions. You will love her heart and perspective. Listen to the episode…
We are living in unprecedented times right now. Some of us parents are being tested to the limits of what we thought was possible. And yet, we are surviving. Step by step, day by day. There’s a reason why…
The first couple days for me were the typical shock factor. Then the shock wore off and I had a moment of peace. I realized…I’ve been here before. Not exactly in the same circumstances. But similar enough.
We are in unprecedented and uncharted territory with the Coronavirus outbreak. In fact, the landscape of life is changing quickly because of it. How do we help our children navigate the anxiety, stress, and added trauma of all of this?
If you’re anything like us, it’s been a week. We’ve all mostly stayed at home, helplessly standing by while school gets cancelled, spring sports get postponed, church services cease, and life as we know it changes day by day. And, it may be far from over. In the middle of this added stress, is the added fear and anxiety that children, who have a trauma history, are experiencing. How do we help them navigate through this? How do we, as caregivers cope? In this special episode, Mike offers some advice. Listen now…
Perhaps this post is timely given the current, and rapid moving, changes our children are navigating through right now. The fact is, our children carry a lot of loss with them. How do we empower them to grieve this?
Our children often hesitate to show and share emotion because they have not had a safe place to do that in the past. They may keep hard parts of their story from us because they are afraid we will think less of them, that we will think less of their first family, or that we will not be able to handle the knowledge of the sad things.
The words ‘vulnerable’ and ‘men’ are usually not mentioned in the same sentence with one another, let alone associated with each other. Yet every fall, in the mountains of Colorado, the two words connect and form a transformational experience for foster and adoptive dads.
In 2016, sensing an urgency to create safe space where foster and adoptive dads could connect with one another, Mike Berry, Andrew Schneidler and Jason Morriss, created Road Trip: A Mountaintop Experience for Foster and Adoptive Dads. They had one goal: create safe space where men could be open, honest, and vulnerable in without fear of judgement or criticism. To date, more than 400 men have journeyed up the mountain. In this latest episode, they share openly what Road Trip is, and why it’s so transformational in men’s lives. Listen to the episode…
Lying. It’s so frustrating to deal with as a parent. We want to engage, and battle until we can squeak the truth out of our children. But it’s often futile. How do we respond, and what can we do, when our children constantly lie?
“Did you take the cookie?” – Child shakes his head no, while holding the cookie.
“Did you text that boy from school, that dad and I asked you not to text?” – Teenager’s eyes go wide as she swears on her life she didn’t.