How Do You Know When It’s Time For Residential Treatment?

3 Key Questions To Ask Yourself Before Taking This Step.

It’s a question our team receives quite often from parents all over the world: “How do I know when it’s time to consider residential treatment for my child?” Our answer has changed over the years…

I’ll admit it openly. If you would have asked me this question just 6 or 7 years ago I would have told you a very different answer than I would today. No doubt would I have said something to the effect of, “You’re exhausted, you shouldn’t have to keep dealing with the mind games, the manipulation, the stress of parenting this child. If you’ve tried everything to get them to stop, but to no avail, then it’s time to consider treatment outside of the home.” Maybe not verbatim, but this is what I used to believe.

Her Behavior Isn’t Manipulation, It’s Survival!

It’s easy to view your child’s behavior, especially manipulation, as that of a rotten child. But there’s something deeper going on that is hard to see on the surface…

I press my fingers into the temples of my head because I’m so…unbelievably…done! (I just inserted the word “unbelievably” instead of the word floating around in my head in order to keep this post family friendly). I can’t take one more second of the manipulation…the lies…the conniving…the sneakiness!

How To Create Structure During The Chaos Of The Holidays

The Honestly Adoption Podcast- Encore Episode- Season 11, Episode 98

The holiday season, specifically Christmas break, is often a dreaded time for foster and adoptive parents because it means a lack of normal structure for their kiddos. How do you navigate through this time successfully?

In this special Encore episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, Mike and Kristin discuss tips and tricks for maintaining a level of regulation during the chaos of the Holiday season with Licensed Mental Health Counselor and therapist, Ruth Graham. This was part of our 2017 special Holiday Podcast Series called “Holiday Survival Tips and Tricks.” Listen now…

At The End Of The Day, It’s All About Relationship.

This is a guest post by author and therapist Ron Nydam (PhD). Ron specializes in helping adoptive family’s develop and connect in a healthy, positive way. His latest book, Wise Adoptive Parenting, helps families better connect to their children, and adoptees feel heard and understood. You can pick up your very own copy by clicking here.

Through all of the trauma education, and attachment strategies we can learn (and certainly benefit from), our connection with our children still comes down to one factor: relationship!

Many parents who are new to the adoption journey wonder what it takes to make good things happen in the development of their children. They may wonder day after day how to find a way to be effective with their children who frustrate their first attempts at helping them manage his or her behavior. Parenting quickly becomes a guessing game as to what might work and might not work when a child’s behavior is out of control, or over the rails in terms of everyday family life. 

What Do You Do With A Child Who Doesn’t Care?

The Honestly Adoption Podcast- Season 10, Episode 90

It’s a big question that many foster and adoptive parents have when it comes to their children- “What do I do with a child who just doesn’t seem to care about anything, or anyone?” On today’s episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, Mike and Kristin bring insight to this lingering question.

You’ve probably experienced something similar to this… it’s Christmas morning and the entire family is gathered around the tree to open presents with joy. Except for one child, who has plopped down on the sofa in the other room with her phone, earbuds in, ignoring everyone. She doesn’t care that it’s Christmas (or at least it appears this way). How do you handle this? Listen in as Mike and Kristin give some practical, yet valuable advice…

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3 Key Questions To Ask When Your Child Is Acting Out

Often times, when our children are acting out, misbehaving, or out of control, we can fall into the mode of thinking they are just being bad. But there’s way more happening with them than we often understand. How do you gain the right perspective in those heated moments?

I know how this goes for most of you. You’re parenting a child who routinely acts out and sometimes there’s no rhyme or reason (or so it seems). They act like they have no control of their little bodies in public places. They’re aggressive toward other siblings (and it’s usually when you’re driving 75 miles an hour down an expressway). They meltdown over, what seems to be, meaningless things. They pester others in your household until everyone is out of control and severely dis-regulated. You name it!

How To Comfort A Child Who Doesn’t Want Connection

Our parenting instinct is to comfort, console, and care for our children when they are hurt, or feeling sad. But what do you do when your child pushes you away instead of letting you connect? It’s tricky, but here’s our advice…

I had just finished a stack of paperwork for my sons’ new school. Feeling relieved and a little bit cramped from signing my name a thousand times, I walked the envelopes to the end of our long driveway. (Yes, my kids’ school still uses paper and snail mail…rural living.) My son was pushing himself in the wagon toward the street. I turned just in time to see him veer toward the ledge separating the driveway from the grass. He swerved to the right, tipping himself out of the wagon and onto the hot asphalt. My instinct was to run to him. I spotted Mike at the back porch and could see him jump as fast as I did. We met our son just as he crawled out of the grass. Both of us walked toward him with arms outstretched. Mike said, “Oh no, let me see your arm.” I exclaimed, “You’re bleeding, is anything else hurt?” Our son turned away from us in anger, pushing us aside with his good arm and stomped toward the house. Still worried, we followed trying to offer the help of bandaids and ice packs. That’s when we realized, we were offering a consolation that he was not able to receive. 

Understanding The Invisible Special Needs Of Adoption

The Honestly Adoption Podcast - Season 9, Episode 84

Maybe your child(ren) don’t have a noticeable special need or an official diagnosis and you’ve been wondering if you are just crazy, or if anyone else understands.  When it looks “normal” to everyone outside of the home, the day to day frustrations of dealing with invisible special needs can make foster and adoptive parents feel isolated and judged by those who just don’t get it.

This month, Mike is interviewing Jamie Worley, adoption blogger at seejamieblog.com, which was one of Healthline.com’s 2018 Best Adoption Blogs. Jamie is passionate about encouraging other adoptive families and helping to educate those considering foster care and adoption.  Don’t miss this opportunity to be encouraged with some practical steps and words of hope in understanding and dealing with the invisible special needs of adoption.

Listen Now: