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High school and my older adopted child

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Gayla was adopted from Russia at age 11. Here, Gayla's mom describes how the family navigated teh academic challenges of high school.

Galya spent three solid years at elementary school and, though she was older than her friends and classmates, she neither felt nor behaved out of place. How would the move to high school go?

You know your child. Be an advocate.

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Galya was adopted from Russia at age 11. Her new parents quickly learned ways to help their child with this momentous transition. They also fought the school system, which so often fails to acknowledge the challenges faced by an internationally adopted child.

Galya was almost 12 years old when we brought her home from Novosibirsk. It was just three weeks before a new school year began.

Retraining the traumatized brain

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Neurofeedback is a safe and non-invasive alternative treatment for issues such as trauma, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, depression, and anxiety. Here Brenda McCreight, adoptive parent, therapist, and author, describes how it works.

Our understanding of the way the brain develops and functions has grown phenomenally in the last five years. The capacity of the brain to change in function and in structure as it adapts to new information has proven to be astounding.

Finding families closer to home

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Two innovative AFABC programs prove that, in many cases, there are people in a child’s existing network who are willing to adopt the child. Social worker Anne Melcombe, of Wendy’s Wonderful Kids, and Kirsty Stormer of Fraser Kids, explain how their programs work.

“You mean I have 50 people who are actually related to me! All these people are my family!” -- Eight-year-old foster child who is shown his family tree after extensive research was done to uncover it.

Better adoption transitions

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

We must never forget that moving a child into a new family is a life-altering event for the child. Focus on Adoption magazine asked social worker Judy Archer for her top three recommendations for transitioning children into a new family.

It is almost impossible to narrow down my recommendations to just three.

Diary of an Adoptive Mom #26

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

In the 26th of our series, our mom of three kids--Emily, Grant, and Lynn--prepares for Halloween. It's an event that, and she’s not sure why, triggers difficult behaviour from Lynn. As Lynn’s behaviour escalates, Mom makes a discovery that results in Lynn learning a hard Halloween lesson.

I feel like the meanest mom in the world. Why does being a “good” mom have to feel so bad sometimes?

In my opinion: Mentally ill youth left behind

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Adoptive mom says there's nowhere to turn for adoptive families with mentally ill youth. She also describes the services she'd like to see.

It’s estimated that 10 to 20% of Canadian youth have a mental illness or severe behaviour disorder.

You can bet that these youth are highly represented in the adoption population where mental health concerns are often combined with FASD, ADHD, and the brain damage caused by early abuse and neglect.

Openness, family, and heritage

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

From their own experiences, Sandee and Aaron Mitchell knew that openness was vitally important for all their family, especially their son.

Being an adoptive mom isn’t the only adoption connection in Sandee Mitchell’s life. In fact, adoption weaves itself right through her past and present.

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