I would like to honor by acknowledgment all the foster, adoptive and other families working hard everyday to make a difference in the lives of their children who come from hard places. You are the light that gives hope and leads to change for your precious ones. Be fearless in offering nearness when you really want to retreat, respond in those times you would rather react, be the safe harbor so your children will know they are secure, for it is in those sacred moments, you can replace rejection with connection. Stay strong and love on! – Dr. Laura Langston
When you connect to the heart of a child, everything is possible ~ Dr. Karyn Purvis
Raising a foster or adopted child can be both incredibly rewarding and sometimes a deeply frustrating experience. Our children come to us from varied backgrounds and we chose this path of parenting because we wanted to give a child a family – however, sometimes they behave in ways that are intensely rejecting and we may find ourselves also feeling reactive. Whether your relationship with your child is temporary or permanent, you can make a difference that makes a difference.
A trusting sense of belonging can be missing for your adopted and foster child and without it they have no way of learning empathy, trusting or accepting human caring. One way you can begin to help heal your child’s attachment wound is by understanding that the behavior is not the problem. What’s happening behind the behavior is what fuels the behavior and our work together is to change that. How can they receive your offerings of care if they don’t know how to or if their perception of self is unworthy of love? With time, you can slowly and carefully support them as they begin to trust enough to open up about the pain they feel in the center of their being. This is getting to the heart of the matter. Together we can help your child move past shame so they can begin to build a worthy sense of self.
Attachment and trauma work takes time and most of the work is done with you. As the parent and attachment figure in your child’s life, they need to attach to you while you bond with them, so your involvement is crucial to their healing. Managing self-regulation is one of our goals and we get there by learning to key into the cues that your child is sending. This probably manifests in their struggles to communicate their needs and then you step in to help them with it.
I will work with you and your family to offer you new ways of interacting with your child. You’ll also learn additional tools in how to communicate with your child to lessen their need for control. You can bring more humor and less anger into your daily lives…yes, humor! We will play together, dance together, laugh together and sometimes cry together, but the most important thing is that you don’t have to do this alone anymore.