Catherine is the co-founder of the non-profit organization We Are Adopted/Adoptees Association. In this article she draws on her personal experience as an adoptee and an adoptive mother as well as her professional experience as a registered clinical counsellor to explain why shame and adoption are so intertwined.
There’s no better time than the present for adoptive families to get reacquainted with Mother Nature. Angela Krueger, an Ontario PRIDE trainer, parent facilitator, freeelance writer, and adoptive mom, explains how getting outside can facilitate attachment for adoptive families, and shares practical tips to help you make it happen.
Take a walk
“Again?” my preteen asks, rolling her eyes, when I say it’s time for a walk around the block.
Before you travel
- Know the country you would like to adopt a child from and read up on the potential medical issues your child may have.
- Before travelling, get your own vaccinations up-to-date by making a visit to your local travel clinic (if you don't know your local travel clinic, your local health unit should have a list).
- Make an appointment with your doctor to alert them to the fact that you will be bringing a child home and some of the medical issues the child may have.
- Buy plenty of medical supplies to take with you (see sidebar on right).
In the thirteenth of our series we present the secret thoughts of an adoptive mom of three kids. This time, our struggling mom feels better, and weathers Christmas.
Just this morning I was sitting in the van (as usual) waiting for the girls to finish preschool (as usual) when this bizarre and unfamiliar feeling came over me.
At first I didn't know what it was, and then it hit me. I was actually feeling happy! And then I started laughing at myself. It had been so long since I've felt happy that I hadn't even noticed!
I have a right to feel confused.
Who wouldn’t? After all, I have two sets of parents, one of which was shrouded in mystery.
I have a right to fear abandonment and rejection.
After all I was abandoned by the one I was most intimate with.
I have the right to acknowledge pain.
After all, I lost my closest relative at the youngest age possible.
I have the right to grieve.
After all, everyone else in society acknowledges strong emotions.
I have a right to express my emotions.
After all, they have been shut down since adoption day.
What is occupational therapy and what qualifications do OTs need?
Occupational Therapy (OT) is the art and science of enabling individuals to participate in meaningful activities or occupations by using evidence-based practice and clinical reasoning. Occupations vary: a child’s occupation may include playing on the playground, a young adult’s occupation may include attending school or working, a mother’s occupation may include looking after the household and her children, and a retiree’s occupation may be that of a golfer or grandparent.
New brain science
Neurotherapy, commonly called brain training, is a therapeutic technique which strengthens and balances the brain. Tiny, non-invasive, EEG skin sensors create a map of brain functioning. Then, with a neurotherapist’s guidance, clients play video games and movies that exercise specific brainwaves. It’s easy and fun.
I’ve certainly benefitted from the care of some very supportive foster parents over the years since my placement in goverment care at the age of 15. My need for care was determined by the presence of serious mental illness in the family. My beautiful and brilliant mother was a professor of linguistics at the University of Victoria when she experienced the onset of schizophrenia. It certainly doesn’t discriminate. All of the degrees, merits and accomplishments did not matter in the slow decline of her beautiful mind.
What is parent coaching?
Parent coaching is a process wherein parents or caregivers can learn, make changes, and get resources and support within a non-judgmental, safe, and professional relationship. Parent coaching can be helpful for a family who wishes for a more peaceful home with clearer communication, who are struggling with a major change, who feel overwhelmed, frustrated, helpless, or who are learning how to parent children with a variety of diagnoses.
Most folks who work with kids and food begin with a question: “What to feed?”
There are countless articles and books about how to disguise veggies or sneak in more protein. But without steps one and two in place (the “how” of feeding, or the “feeding relationship”–see “Love Me, Feed Me” part one), step three is even more of a struggle. The key to improving what kids eat boils down to how they are being fed.