The Kids who Need the Most Love Will Ask for it in the Most Unloving Ways by Katie Malinski

Source: http://katiemalinski.com

By Katie Malinski

kids-who-need-love-quote I snapped a picture of this quote on the wall at the Magellan International School the other day, and posted it on Facebook.  A week or so later, it had been shared by 68 people, and viewed by nearly 7000.  Obviously, this quote resonates for many of us.

One of the first things I tell most parents that I work with is that behavior is a communication, and that understanding the message in a child’s behavior is incredibly helpful for changing those behaviors.  To put it another way, something is behind or underneath unwanted behavior; triggering or motivating or strengthening it.  Those hidden drivers are usually unmet needs of some variety.  When parents can identify what those unmet needs are, they typically find that those underlying needs are needs they want to support.  In other words: the behaviors are unwanted, but the needs driving those behaviors are understandable!

Continue reading.

Breaking News for Babies: Congress Passes Mental Health Reform

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Congress Passes Mental Health Reform
Legislation Includes Grants for Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health

Huge news for infant and toddler advocates! Today, Congress passed broad mental health reform legislation, including new grants to promote infant and early childhood mental health! Rolled into the larger 21st Century Cures Act, the legislation was passed along bipartisan lines.

Spearheaded by ZERO TO THREE and advocates across the country, the inclusion of the infant and early childhood mental health grants signals that Congress has now recognized the need to begin comprehensive mental health reform where the foundations of strong mental health are laid – with young children, starting from birth. Specifically, the provision:

  • Authorizes $20 million for grants to develop, maintain or enhance infant and early childhood mental health promotion, intervention, and treatment programs.
  • Ensures that funded programs are grounded in evidence and are culturally and linguistically appropriate.
  • Allows funds to support:
    • age-appropriate promotion, early intervention, and treatment services;
    • training mental health clinicians in infant and early childhood mental health;
    • training for infant and early childhood mental health clinicians to integrate with other providers who work with young children and families; and
    • mental health consultation in early care and education programs. 

“This is an important victory toward improved infant mental health prevention, identification and treatment – and the first time the needs of very young children have been recognized by Congress,” said Matthew Melmed, Executive Director of ZERO TO THREE. “We are extremely grateful to the Congressional champions on this issue, including Senators Bill Cassidy and Chris Murphy, Chairman Lamar Alexander and Ranking Member Patty Murray, and Chairman Fred Upton and Ranking Member Frank Pallone for recognizing that babies’ mental health matters and fighting for them throughout this process.” Click here to read ZERO TO THREE’s full statement.

President Obama is expected to sign the bill into law soon.

New Webcast: Adoption & Identity

Thursday, July 28 | 8 PM Central | Adoption & Identity

REGISTER NOW

As a child grows, their understanding of adoption becomes more nuanced and complex. Unresolved (and often unasked) questions surrounding birth family, the decision to place them for adoption, or how much of who they are is related to their DNA vs. their upbringing often weighs more heavily on them. These feelings and questions may be difficult to wrestle with, and are essential to identity formation.

Join us as Michelle Madrid-Branch, an internationally placed adopted person, author and renowned speaker on the topic of adoption, shares her personal journey to self. Her insights are sharp and candid as she relays coming to terms with various aspects of her story and piecing together for herself the things that mattered going forward.

Building from Michelle’s story, Carmen Knight, an experienced adoption therapist and transracially placed adopted person herself, will expand upon the lessons from Michelle’s story and thereby help all parents learn how to:

  • Identify opportunities to help your child process various pieces of their story
  • Empathize with their conflicting feelings of loss and stay part of the conversation
  • Recognize how common life events can serve as emotional triggers for adopted people

Click here to learn more and register

Sharing Stories, Symptoms…Persons with Developmental Disabilities – Register now!

NC families can share this with their professional medical and clinical supports to be sure they are aware of this great opportunity.  The more they know, the more they can support your child and family’s needs.

Register early and save $20!
Click
here to register.

mkt-sharing.jpg

For more information and to register for other Mental Health continuing education, click here.

Sharing Stories, Symptoms…Persons with Developmental Disabilities – Register now!

NC families can share this with their professional medical and clinical supports to be sure they are aware of this great opportunity.  The more they know, the more they can support your child and family’s needs.

Register early and save $20!
Click
here to register.

mkt-sharing.jpg

For more information and to register for other Mental Health continuing education, click here.

Announcing NCFA’s April Webinar- It’s Okay to Think About Yourself

"It’s Okay to Think About Yourself: An Honest Conversation About Self-Care"

Working in the adoption field is more than just a job. For many of us, it is a calling, a vocation, our life’s work. As a result, we give of ourselves in a way that can leave us feeling tired both physically and emotionally. During this webinar, Kimberly Harrell will share practical ways to take care of yourself so you can continue refreshed and renewed in this important work allowing you to do your very best work on behalf of children and familiesty.

Join us on Thursday, April 28th, at 2pm EST for NCFA’s Newest Webinar.

CEU: 1.5 hours credit*, 1 hour ethics credit**

Deadline to register: Wednesday, April 17th at noon EST

About the Presenter: Kimberly Harrell, M.Ed., LPC, NCC is the program director at the Center for Adoption and Pregnancy Services, Catholic Charities, Diocese of Arlington. She has over 20 years of experience working with those whose lives have been touched by adoption, including birth parents, adoptees, adoptive parents and adoptive families. Kimberly is also in private practice in Centreville, VA where she works with individuals, families, and adolescents. Her passion for working on adoption-related issues continues in her practice.  Kimberly has written a number of articles on the importance of support for birth parents, including Meeting Birth Parent Needs for a Successful Adoption.  She also speaks to groups of mental health professionals to educate them on the adoption-related issues they may encounter in their practices.  She holds a Masters in Education from Virginia Tech University.

COSTS: $25 for NCFA Members and $30 for the Public, CEU $15

Register Here

Post-Adoption Services: Acknowledging and Dealing with Loss by Nancy Randall, Psy.D. and Kim Shepardson Watson, LCSW

Source: http://www.adoptioncouncil.org

teen%20girl%20lonely%20forest%202016 “Some imagine that life for the newly adopted child will now unfold in typical “fairy tale” fashion, since the happy ending – a loving family – has been found. But what about the other side of adoption – the side that can often involve complicated feelings of loss and grief and, sometimes, lifelong unanswered questions? Losses are inherent in adoption….”

Read more.

Parenting After Trauma: Understanding Your Child’s Needs by the American Academy of Pediatricians

This guide for families explains how trauma can impact a child and provides tips for making them feel safe in their new home. Pediatricians can reproduce and provide this handout to foster and adoptive parents.

Download Guide (PDF)

Coding Tips for Your Pediatrician by the American Academy of Pediatricians

Coding tips for evaluations involving screening and anticipatory guidance related to trauma and other mental health/developmental concerns.

Download Guide (PDF)

Helping Foster and Adoptive Families Cope With Trauma: A Guide for Pediatricians by the American Academy of Pediatricians

The purpose of this guide is to support adoptive and foster families by strengthening the abilities of pediatricians to:

  • identify traumatized children, educate families about toxic stress and the possible biological, behavioral, and social manifestations of early childhood trauma, and
  • empower families to respond to their child’s behavior in a manner that acknowledges past trauma but promotes the learning of new, more adaptive reactions to stress.

Download Guide (PDF)

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