Are you an adoptive or foster parent
Are your kiddos in survival mode?
Do you feel stuck in reactionary mode instead of proactively parenting?
Or maybe someone in your family has had some trauma in their past?
Do you feel as if your home is constantly in chaos? Then this is for you…
I can’t promise you that you will have perfect peace in your home. I can promise you that if you invest the time, you will have more peace and less chaos.
I’m a parent, just like you. I am the mother of seven, four through adoption. When I adopted, I had no clue how to parent my newbies. Traditional parenting had worked with my three bios. It didn’t work with my newbies. Everything I tried seemed to backfire. I needed answers and fast!
I naively thought that because I had early childhood trauma, I was equipped to handle kiddos who had experienced the same.
When my husband and I adopted a sibling group of four from Poland, all of them came with open emotional wounds. I can’t share their story. Their story belongs to them. Suffice it to say, their triggers and my triggers met head-on and resulted in chaos.
I did the logical thing. I bought books. I researched. I read books to my husband at night when he was trying to fall asleep, “Listen to this,” I would say. “This is why he is doing this.”
It’s Not all about the behavior
I thought it was all about the behavior. Maybe you think that too. Maybe you, like me, think that if you learn the science, you can figure out the why behind the behavior. I thought I could fix the behaviors and the chaos would be gone.
In the next two images, I share my roadmap for what I thought works and what actually does work. If you are really struggling like I was, maybe this applies to you too.
- Learn the Science
- Apply the Science
- Change the Behavior
It didn’t work. I was so busy trying to fix my kids that I didn’t realize the biggest part of the chaos was me. It’s not that my kids were acting or reacting properly. They struggled with regulation because of their past experience.
Take a minute right now and think about the last chaotic interaction with your child. Did you see your child as rebellious, contentious, and constantly pushing your buttons on purpose? Are you looking through the lens of your past? Does each interaction take you back to your childhood and the way Mom or Dad responded to you, or are you looking through the lens of the child’s past? Are you seeing how their former caregivers/bio parents responded to them (not to judge them or their past but to better understand them)?
Instead of starting with the science and trying to change our kids’ behaviors. We must start with our beliefs. They will take some reframing. We can work through the myths and misconceptions of adoption our culture is saturated in. We must do the hard work of making sense of and peace with our past. After we begin to make sense of our past, we can then learn and apply the science. Behaviors will change and we will have more peace!
Want to have more peace in your home?
Join me (Kathleen Guire) for a webinar!
When: Thursday, May 28 at 7:00pm EST
Sign up below! Only ten people will be accepted. First come first serve. I like to keep my webinars small so I can talk to everyone! Once you are signed up, I’ll send you a Pdf explaining what to expect!