The Past Is Present: The Impact of Your Childhood Experiences on How You Parent Today

Source: www.zerotothree.org

By Claire Lerner

Feb 29, 2016

This article encourages parents to reflect on experiences they had growing up in order to make conscious decisions about what practices they want to repeat, and not repeat, with their own children.

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1f8889c2-74a5-42b1-9bdf-b7bba002388e-smallHow many times have you opened your mouth to say something and heard your parents’ words come out? You’re not alone. Most parents have had this experience. It helps you see how deeply you are influenced by your childhood experiences and why it’s so important to become aware of how they shape your approach to parenting today.

Just as you are your child’s first teacher, your parents were yours. Things they said and did, their way of being and relating to you and others, laid the foundation for many of your beliefs, values, attitudes, and parenting practices. Few parents, if any, had a lesson plan in mind. The transfer of information mostly took place through everyday interactions. You tuned in to the subtle and not-so-subtle messages they sent, which influenced how you thought about yourself and the world around you.

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Decoding Your Child’s Behavior

decoding-2At some point all parents face behavioral challenges with their children. Adopted children have often had unfortunate experiences that may increase misbehavior and make traditional discipline techniques ineffective. Join Phyllis Booth, Founder of Theraplay®, and Mandy Jones, LCSW, JD, certified Theraplay® therapist at the Center for Lifelong Adoption Support, as they provide an empathetic understanding of why negative behaviors occur and discuss tools, techniques and activities that parents can use to tame temper tantrums and create positive relationships.

Topics will include:

  • Differences adopted children face in childhood and how that affects behavior
  • Behavioral and self-regulation issues both at home and in school
  • What parents can do to curb negative behaviors
  • How parents can create happy, connected family relationships

Continue reading.

Upcoming NC Trauma Workshop with Kids Group in April!

a325e9cb065710099d167501ddb471a6This group is open to children who are adopted and their caregivers.

Due to limited space, registration is required.

To register or for more information, please contact  Katie Linn at katie.linn@duke.edu or 919-385-0703.

Thursdays, starting April 27 – June 22, 2017 5:30pm-8:00pm

Dinner is provided and then the separate child and parent groups will begin.

Raleigh Vineyard Church
6894 Litchford Rd.
Raleigh, NC 27615

Workshop Sessions Description

What children will get:

This Interactive workshop for children ages 7-17 is part support, part education and designed for children who have been adopted. This workshop will allow children to:
· Connect with other children in adoptive families
· Learn skills and tools to cope with strong feelings
· Build comfort and confidence in talking about adoption both with their family members and others
· Have FUN!

What parents will get:

Parents will participate in the Caring for Children Who Have Experienced Trauma workshop. This workshop gives caregivers the opportunity to:
· Connect with other adoptive parents to share resources
· Learn how a child’s prior experiences can impact their behaviors
· Explore ways to enhance their strengths as a parent
· Share and learn new skills to influence their child’s behaviors and attitudes

Download the PDF flier.

Blaming The Parents Of Children With Special Needs

Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com

By Shawna Wingert, Contributor

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Since the day my first baby was born, I have felt responsible for my children’s differences.

Not responsible in the “I’m the momma so I need to help my child” kinda way (although I certainly feel that too).

Responsible in the “Why do you let him sleep with you instead of in the crib, eat the ice cream instead of the meat, allow him to make the mess, help him in the bathroom when he is almost ten” kinda way.

I have been blamed, at one point or another, for every single one of my boys’ differences. Moreover, as we have received diagnosis after diagnosis, I find the blame comes even more frequently now ― not less.

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Talking to Adopted Children About Birth Parents and Families of Origin: How to Answer the “Hard Questions” by Rhonda Jarema, MA

Source: http://www.adoptioncouncil.org/

By Rhonda Jarema

Introduction

7620090_orig_thumbOver the years, I’ve had a number of parents question me about what they should say to their child when that child asks about his or her biological parents. Adoptive families may have been provided with varying amounts of information, from an extensive background that includes APGAR scores to just a birthdate. Sometimes there is a vague family history, or the child might even have some memories of their birth family if placed as an older child. Most families have something in between: usually a very basic history of parental death, abandonment, voluntary placement, or removal from parental care. This leaves a hole that is often difficult for both child and parents, as they attempt to fill in the blanks from the past.

It is the responsibility of adoption professionals to try to guide the parents in this area. Adoptive parents often expect that professionals have some hidden store of information that was not provided with the referral, or that the information expanded while in the file and will provide the magical answers to their child’s questions. Sometimes parents become anxious when they receive questions from their child about their past prior to adoption. It is important for parents to give information appropriate to the child’s level of development; offering all the specifics at a young age may increase anxiety for all involved.

Just as it is important to share the information the parent has on the child’s family, so it is important not to fill in blanks when the answer really isn’t known. Sometimes the adoptive parent may not have any information, and the answer might be “I’m sorry, but I don’t know.” Another option would be to ask the child, “What do you think?” As a parent, these are not always easy discussions, but they are important to have.

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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!

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Heart of the Matters Website and Courses are Updated and Refreshed

October 2016

Course Spotlight: Because They Waited

 

 

  • Quality: 10 hours of Hague compatible education

  • Refreshed:  Renewed with updated resources

  • Convenient: Mobile access

The Because They Waited™ education system is online with modules covering topics pertinent to individuals adopting a baby or an older child, internationally or through foster care.  Modules present "The Science" in a user friendly format, followed by "The Parenting" which offers concrete parenting tools.   "Wrap Up and Resources" as well as study materials are also provided for each topic.
Topics covered include:
Promoting healthy brain development
Sensory processing and sensory integration
Parenting to a child’s "real age" vs. chronological age
Understanding the internal alarm
Building attachment
Race and Culture
 
Contact us at info@heartofthemattereducation.com for a copy of the table of contents for Because They Waited.
 
More quality adoption education

   

Heart of the Matter Education  816 246-1100
info@heartofthemattereducation.com
www.heartofthemattereducation.com

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

Watch Me Now: Determination, Grace, Unlimited Talent = Miss Lusie!

See video.

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I Love You More Than I Care If You "Like" Me

Apparently this mom has been eaves dropping in on my house – my kids have heard this exact same speech from the beginning of time. I love them more than to care if they ‘like’ me. This is great.

See video.

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