WOUNDED CHILDREN HEALING HOMES
by Jayne E. Schooler, Betsy Keefer Smalley, and Timothy J. Callahan
Here's some of the things that stood out to me!
Children who have had early and chronic maltreatment need to be seen as survivors who resiliently adapt to an unresponsive, threatening, unpredictable world! This trauma can affect them neurologically, physically, emotionally, behaviorally, socially, and cognitively for years. It may be the root of problems in school. Determining the specific need or delay is the key to intervention.
Kids can't learn until these basic skills are learned: tolerating distress, controlling their own attention span and understanding how they impact others.
Celebrate small gains and reframe your definition of success!
Remember, you are not the source of your kids problems.
Parents can prevent or elleviate adoption-related crisis through open communication, avoiding triggers (pay attention to recurring issues to determine what the triggers are), help the child understand that they are now safe and protected, express empathy and support as the child moves through their own grief process. Pick your battles.
Find outlets for your own emotional, spiritual and physical needs and design opportunities to enjoy those.
Stop, Drop and Roll: Stop talking, Drop into your breathing, and Roll back into your relationship with your child!
Parents must take care of themselves emotionally by seeking support and keeping their humor and perspective!
Check to see if one parent is carrying most of the load. "Tag, you're it" Take a break with formal or informal respite care. Be creative!
Identify who owns the problem, so they can solve it. (Are your rights being disrespected, could anyone get hurt, are someone's belongings threatened, is the kid too young to be responsible for this problem?) If any of these answers are yes, it's the adults problem. If all no, it is the kids problem and they might need a little coaching to solve it!
Use family meetings creatively! Find ways to have fun with your child - increase your positive interactions.
Create a home that allows everyone to express the joys, as well as the trials and frustrations.