Author Archive for Ce Eshelman

Free This Weekend Only: Better Sleep for Anxious Children

Dear Parents,

This weekend only Renee Jain, creator of GoZen (which I really enjoy, too), is giving a free gift  to anyone who wants to listen to 18 Sleep Experts share about improving sleep for children who have trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, waking in fear, and/or sleeping with you way past the toddler years.

Here is the link.  If your child has trouble sleeping, take the time to consume some help for it.

Listen to 18 Sleep Experts             https://talks.bettersleepforkids.com/encore

Enjoy.

Love matters,

Ce

 

Murphy’s Law: Heaters Bust at the Door to Winter

Dear Parents,

Why do heaters stop working the second the temperature outside drops below 50 degrees? Don’t answer that.

The Attach Place

The Attach Place
Center for Strengthening Relationships

I am thinking about love. Despite all of my references to love, I am not a particularly touchy-feely person.  I am more of a brutally honest, blunt pragmatist with a huge dose of life experience that led me down a twisty-turny path to a few solid beliefs.  Here they are:

  • Life is too long and too short to be “small-minded.”
  • Nothing but love really matters in the beginning, middle, or end.
  • Love is a commitment and an attitude of generous abundance and acceptance, not a feeling.
  • Giving away love doesn’t hurt one little bit or cost one little cent; it’s free and healing.

I discovered somewhere along the line that I can love anyone, even people I don’t particularly want to have even a cappuccino with.  Love is an attitude with an open heart.

How this relates to attachment challenged, traumatized children is simple. If love is an attitude, with or without feeling, then it is possible to give generous abundance and acceptance in the face of our children’s biggest and most painful shenanigans.

Love is about the lover, not about the perceived lovability or worthiness of the beloved.

Just a little something to chew on.

Love matters,

Ce

Love begets love eventually.

The Attach Place Upcoming Events Calendar

Trust-based Therapeutic Parenting Class for Parents of Children from Difficult Beginnings by Ce Eshelman, LMFT will be held on November 10, 2018 from 10 am to 4 pmChildcare provided for an additional fee. CALVCB will reimburse this training. Register here or on our website!

AUTISM Support Group:  Monthly Strictly Social Autism Spectrum Disorder Night for Tweens (11 yrs – 16 yrs) at The Attach Place. Open to the public. October 19th, 2018 from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm.  Gluten-free snacks provided. Please RSVP to Andrea@attachplace.com so we get enough snacks. This is a  monthly social group for the children; and caregivers will have an opportunity to connect, chat, and chill in a separate space. A donation of $0.00 to $5.00 will be accepted for food and supervision if you are able, but please don’t let that be an attendance barrier because the group is FREE.  ASD kids need a social life and this is a great way to make it happen.

UPCOMING ADOPTION SUPPORT GROUP facilitated by Ce Eshelman, LMFT:  Click Here to join our monthly  Adoptive/Foster Parent Support Group on October 10th, 2018! Open to all parents/caregivers at no cost. Support Group is every 2nd Wednesday of every month from 6 pm to 8 pm at 3336 Bradshaw Road, Ste 175, Sacramento, CA 95827.

GIVE MY BOOK FOR SUPPORT TO A FELLOW ADOPTION ADVENTURER: Drowning With My Hair On Fire: Insanity Relief For Adoptive Parents by Ce Eshelman, LMFT.  Daily inspirational reading for those who sometimes find it hard to keep hope alive. There is hope for healing.  At Amazon or get a discounted copy here.

 

 

Save Your Words of Wisdom Parents

Dear Parents,

Man alive, do we parents talk too much to teenagers–actually to all children.  Why do we do that when we know that even our kindest voice can feel like little pins pricking into their eyeballs? Too graphic? Sorry.

The Attach Place

The Attach Place
Center for Strengthening Relationships

Talk less–be slow to fault-find and fast to accept.

Back off a bit with parenting and go forward a bit with fun and novelty.  Watch movies together. Bake brownies. Find a “thing” you both like, and don’t let a week go by without doing it.

Work hard at soothing your own sense of helplessness, rejection, and inadequacy.  Your teenager feels that way but you don’t have to because you are not 15–thank the Universe for that small gift.

Love matters,

Ce

The Attach Place Upcoming Events Calendar

Trust-based Therapeutic Parenting Class for Parents of Children from Difficult Beginnings by Ce Eshelman, LMFT will be held on November 10, 2018 from 10 am to 4 pmChildcare provided for an additional fee. CALVCB will reimburse this training. Register here or on our website!

AUTISM Support Group:  Monthly Strictly Social Autism Spectrum Disorder Night for Tweens (11 yrs – 16 yrs) at The Attach Place. Open to the public. October 19th, 2018 from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm.  Gluten-free snacks provided. Please RSVP to Andrea@attachplace.com so we get enough snacks. This is a  monthly social group for the children; and caregivers will have an opportunity to connect, chat, and chill in a separate space. A donation of $0.00 to $5.00 will be accepted for food and supervision if you are able, but please don’t let that be an attendance barrier because the group is FREE.  ASD kids need a social life and this is a great way to make it happen.

UPCOMING ADOPTION SUPPORT GROUP facilitated by Ce Eshelman, LMFT:  Click Here to join our monthly  Adoptive/Foster Parent Support Group on October 10th, 2018! Open to all parents/caregivers at no cost. Support Group is every 2nd Wednesday of every month from 6 pm to 8 pm at 3336 Bradshaw Road, Ste 175, Sacramento, CA 95827.

GIVE MY BOOK FOR SUPPORT TO A FELLOW ADOPTION ADVENTURER: Drowning With My Hair On Fire: Insanity Relief For Adoptive Parents by Ce Eshelman, LMFT.  Daily inspirational reading for those who sometimes find it hard to keep hope alive. There is hope for healing.  At Amazon or get a discounted copy here.

 

 

 

Fight, Flight, Freeze, Appease, or Lie

Dear Parents,

The Attach Place

The Attach Place
Center for Strengthening Relationships

Is your child’s lying a sign of pathology or future doom? Is it disrespectful and an indicator that your child is morally bankrupt?  I know you have thoughts, at least, if not outright accusations leveled toward your child of his/her untrustworthiness.  I sure thought worse and said plenty to my children that I regret before I knew what was happening.

There is evolving research that there is a fifth neuro-biologically driven addition to the sympathetic nervous system’s response to perceived threat or danger.  Faced with extreme stress, human’s have four survival modes–fight, flight, freeze, or appease. It seems the new self-protective mechanism is lying–fib your way out.  Can’t run, can’t hit, staring like a deer in the headlights won’t work, better run then with a tall tale.  If it works for even a brief moment, the limbic part of the brain that has just shot into a neuro-cascade of stress hormones–adrenaline and cortisol–now gets a reward to the brain when the lie allows for a momentary reprieve from danger in the form of  a) parental disapproval, b) parental punishment, c) shame feelings, d) lowered self-esteem and self-efficacy.  In essence, lying works to help the child survive a little bit longer physically, emotionally, and socially.  While it is often short-lived and short-sighted, lying works in the moment to lift the threat.  Win/Win on the level of brain function.

What I’ve just described, happens every day in our homes with children from difficult beginnings because Developmental Trauma has impaired the development of the pre-frontal cortex where executive function with higher order thought resides.

There are three functions that lend your child’s brain to lying:

Weak Inhibition: Impulsivity and the inability to stop an action.  Under pressure to respond to a stressful parental question like “Did you do xyz?”,  verbal communication jumps out before logical thought has kicked in.

Poor Emotion Regulation: Extreme overwhelming fear response in the face of a stressful situation–parental punishment, disapproval, rejection, lowered value, shame, past abuse imprints.

Faulty Working Memory: Poor planning for getting “found out” in the heat of the current moment. Inability to apply prior teaching and coaching from the recent past to the present.

Early Imprint: If your child comes home to you after being harmed by any kind of abuse, including neglect, and by the nature of fostering/adoption there is also at least one–if not many–attachment breach, your child’s brain is pre-conditioned and hardwired to distrust parents, even in the absence of evidence that the current parent is untrustworthy.  Chronically projecting the past onto the present is a hallmark of Developmental Trauma.

What is the answer then for caregivers? 

Well, it is not as easy to extinguish lying as it is to understand the neuroscience of it.  Imagine that.

  1.  Use PACE in all your interactions with your child.  This is an attitude of playfulness, acceptance, curiosity, and empathy.  This is how we ought to treat all children regardless of their beginnings because it is loving and respectful to their budding humanness.
  2. Use soft, empathic questioning to help prepare your child to tell the truth. Are you worried about getting into big trouble or about my disappointment?  Sweetheart, I know it is hard for you to tell me the truth when you are afraid of getting into trouble and feeling bad.  I understand that and I don’t want you to be in trouble or to be afraid of bad feelings inside or outside.  I am only interested in you being able to tell the truth.  There will be no trouble.  I promise. Parents, be sure to keep that promise if you make it.
  3. Give space for the child to regulate and allow room for a thoughtful response, rather than an impulsive one. So, Let’s take a few minutes to think before we talk.  This is hard for parents to do.  We seem to be impulsive about lying, too.  Did you take that candy from your teacher?  Tell me right now.  Since you already know the answer, don’t bother to ask. Making a demand to tell the truth will definitely set the survival lower brain processes into action. It is a setup for lying.
  4. Regulate with your child.  Admit it, you get dysregulated, too, when your child lies. We parents often feel wildly disrespected by lying.  We also feel intense fear that our child is going to be unsuccessful in life if lying persists into adulthood.  When a child is 8, 9, 10 years old, you can be sure lying is not the precursor for a school to prison pipeline.
  5. Resist the urge to teach by punishing the crime that is being lied about.  Reward the truth with a reprieve from the negative consequences of your disappointment, anger, or loss of stature in your eyes. Withhold punishment of any kind to create felt safety.  Brainstorm a restorative justice response with your child once all the truth is out and the regulation is back to normal. Restorative justice is doing a kindness like a chore for someone wronged.  Or it might be writing a letter of apology.  It could be repairing something broken and paying for the supplies out of birthday money or allowance.

None of this will make lying go away.  It is the last survival behavior to go, so be prepared to regulated over the long haul.  As your child ages into adulthood, you will have instilled a habit of telling the truth.  Isn’t that the point after all?

Love matters,

Ce

The Attach Place Upcoming Events Calendar

Trust-based Therapeutic Parenting Class for Parents of Children from Difficult Beginnings by Ce Eshelman, LMFT will be held in November 10, 2018 from 10 am to 4 pmChildcare provided for an additional fee. CALVCB will reimburse this training. Register here or on our website!

AUTISM Support Group:  Monthly Strictly Social Autism Spectrum Disorder Night for Tweens (11 yrs – 16 yrs) at The Attach Place. Open to the public. October 19th, 2018 from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm.  Gluten-free snacks provided. Please RSVP to Andrea@attachplace.com so we get enough snacks. This is a  monthly social group for the children; and caregivers will have an opportunity to connect, chat, and chill in a separate space. A donation of $0.00 to $5.00 will be accepted for food and supervision if you are able, but please don’t let that be an attendance barrier because the group is FREE.  ASD kids need a social life and this is a great way to make it happen.

UPCOMING ADOPTION SUPPORT GROUP facilitated by Ce Eshelman, LMFT:  Click Here to join our monthly  Adoptive/Foster Parent Support Group on October 10th, 2018! Open to all parents/caregivers at no cost. Support Group is every 2nd Wednesday of every month from 6 pm to 8 pm at 3336 Bradshaw Road, Ste 175, Sacramento, CA 95827.

GIVE MY BOOK FOR SUPPORT TO A FELLOW ADOPTION ADVENTURER: Drowning With My Hair On Fire: Insanity Relief For Adoptive Parents by Ce Eshelman, LMFT.  Daily inspirational reading for those who sometimes find it hard to keep hope alive. There is hope for healing.  At Amazon or get a discounted copy here.

 

 

 

Parents Doing Their Own Emotional Work

The Attach Place

The Attach Place
Center for Strengthening Relationships

Dear Parents,

I don’t usually share other writers’ works because it is like cheating for me; however, this came to me from the “Mental Health on the Mighty” blog and it made me think that you, parents, might like a way to see if your own childhood experiences impact you in any of the ways it has impacted the people commenting below.  If you see yourself in some of these remarks, then you might need to do some work on yourself to keep from constant dysregulation with your children.

21 Things You Do As An Adult If You Grew Up With Low Self-Esteem

by Juliette Virzi

Growing up, most of us aren’t taught about feelings and mental health. So if you are a kid struggling with low self-esteem, it’s easy to think there’s just something wrong with you.

That’s why we want anyone who grew up with low self-esteem to know there’s absolutely nothing wrong with you, and you’re not alone.

Maybe you grew up in an abusive household, and you constantly battle feelings of unworthiness. Maybe you were bullied as a kid, and are still dealing with the fallout of the things that were said and done to you. Or maybe you grew up with a mental illness and it affected your self-image.

Whatever the situation was for you, you’re not alone in it — even when it feels like it. To find out what people do now as adults because of a childhood struggle with self-esteem, we turned to our Mighty community to share their experiences with us. 

If you grew up with low self-esteem, we are so grateful you’re here and in our community. If you’re struggling, we encourage you to post a Thought or Question about it on the site to get support from other people in our community who get it.

Here’s what our community told us:

  1. I automatically assume a compliment is either a lie or they need something from me so they’re building up to ask it.” — Brittany S.
  2. “As an adult, having low self-esteem means I have to ask people’s opinions on how to complete even the simplest of tasks as I don’t believe my own solution is good enough, or the correct way.” — Anna B.
  3. “Constantly looking for validation from others… and not knowing how to say ‘no.’” — Jenna E.
  4. “Anytime somebody makes a negative comment about me, I think about it for months.” — Janet B.
  5. “I am super insecure in relationships. I know I’m not good enough or they can do better so I’m constantly needing attention and validation.” — Danielle H.
  6. “With my low self-esteem I constantly wear long baggy clothes. I find no point in putting work into my makeup or hair since I feel that no one would notice/care even if I did.” — Cassandra P.
  7. “I won’t go into public very often, especially since gaining weight. Then when I walk past people I hold my breath and pray nobody starts laughing or whispering.” — Angie T.
  8. “I have to prove myself to everyone. My family, my friends, my co-workers, my job, my therapist, the lady checking out my groceries, my landlord, my gym trainer, my dog, the lady that watches my dog… you get it. It’s constant and exhausting.” — Holley L.
  9. “I have no idea how to take a compliment, and I’m way too embarrassed to talk in public.” — Justin L.
  10. “Eye contact scares me.” — Lucy G.
  11. “Sex! No confidence when it comes to my body or performance.” — Anastasia H.
  12. “I seek validation from other people on Facebook to the detriment of my mental well-being. So when my posts get ignored/no one ‘likes’ them, I assume I’m not liked/worthy.” — Faye E.
  13. “Job interviews are the worst. How do you explain what a great person you are when you don’t believe it?” — Kristi J.
  14. I’m so used to feeling less-than that I really have to psych myself up to do something minor like make a comment in a group, on or offline. Past criticism haunts me like I wish compliments would.” — Robin W.
  15. “My service in the military helped to pick my esteem back up. I was good at it. I enjoyed it. Now that I’m out I’m having a hard time being proud of anything I do. Feels like I lost direction. But it can only get better.” — John B.
  16. “Constantly changing my personality to those around me so I fit in and never stick out. I don’t know who I am.” — Nicole V.
  17. I constantly pick myself apart and notice all my flaws.” — Corinna H.
  18. “I rarely take pictures. I never believe any compliment. I think people feel sorry for me or want to use me. I have never looked at myself and felt attractive, I only see flaws.” — Charly B.
  19. “Dating has been horrible. I constantly second-guess and over-criticize myself. I’ve convinced myself a lot that I don’t deserve to be in a healthy, solid relationship, but I’ve finally started to let that go!” — Emily L.
  20. “I was told by a parent that I was worthless… and it has carried over into my adult life in the worst ways. I have a fear of being ignored by the people I love and have made myself into a doormat in so many ways just to make sure they never feel how I feel.” — Mikki I.
  21. “Not knowing who I am. I looked for affection and attention and validation for so long in everyone else that I’m not sure who I was. Or who I am. I’m spending my mid 30s getting back to who I am. And being confident that she’s an amazing person with all the love and kindness and her heart. And she’s smart too.” — Kristy G.

________________________________

When we feel/believe/experience things like these, we can find the slings and arrows of our children from difficult beginnings intolerable.  We can become reactive and hurtful right back. 

No shame.  Just get honest with yourself and get whatever help you need to heal from your own difficult beginnings.

Love matters,

Ce

Funding Survey For Adoptive Parents

Hello Parents,

The Attach Place

The Attach Place
Center for Strengthening Relationships

Here is a link to a survey for parents like you in California who are interested in having a voice in where some grant money gets directed for kids and families.  If you complete the survey and come into my office, I will give you a $5.00 gift card to Target (while they last).  If you don’t come into my office, you may benefit from the grant funding in the form of services.  Win/Win. Yay.  Please do it when you have a few minutes.

Even if you filled it out last year, you can do it again for this year.  Thank you.

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/CAFA-PC4W

Love matters,

Ce

Upcoming Sacramento Adoption Community Events

Working with Kids with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders And Other Neuro-Based Challenges: A training for caregivers, child welfare professionals, mental health providers, and school and community personnel

FASD is underdiagnosed and many adoptive parents have no idea their child may have it as other diagnoses have overlapping characteristics.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018
Registration 8:30
Training 9:00-12:00
Presented by Barb Clark, Master Trainer

Location: Sierra Forever Families
8928 Volunteer Lane, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95826
Phone: 916-368-5114
RSVP: Kim@capadoptfam.org

Hosted by Sacramento County Community Champions Network and the North American Council on Adoptable Children

Caring For A Child Who is Someone Else’s?

Are you informally caring for a child, an adoptive family, a foster/resource family, or a guardian? Looking for support or information? Need help finding services? Please join us for a community discussion! With the help of the Community Champions Network we may be able to create something helpful in our community. Can’t attend the meeting but still want to participate in the conversation? Email Kathryn at kemoryka@netscape.net

Meeting Details:

Tuesday September 25, 2018 6:30pm to 8:30pm

El Dorado County Office of Education

6767 Green  Valley Rd.

Placerville Building B, Room 2

NACAC shares current child welfare information and post-adoption best practices through publications, our website, social media, webinars, and educational events. Each year, NACAC hosts the most comprehensive adoption conference in North America.

We also provide information and training on adoption topics for parent group members, parents, young people who were adopted or in care, and child welfare professionals. As part of a federally funded collaboration called Critical Ongoing Resource Family Education or CORE, NACAC is currently working with Spaulding for Children and other partners to help improve the training offered to foster and adoptive parents of children who are older and have more needs.

Are You a Professional Who Works With Children?

We are hosting a discussion/focus group for professionals who work with children who are not being raised by their biological parents. Our community would like to assess the needs of professionals (agency workers, therapists, community providers) who serve our families. What do you need? What does the community need? A Community Champions Network may help us meet the needs and fill the gaps in our community. Can’t join us for the discussion but still want to join the conversation? Email Kathryn at kemoryka@netscape.net.

Meeting Details:

Tuesday, September 25, 2018 1pm to 3pm

Cameron Park Library

2500 Country Club Dr.

Cameron Park, Ca 95682

Working with Kids with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders And Other Neuro-Based Challenges: 

A training for caregivers, child welfare professionals, mental health providers, and school and community personnel

FASD is underdiagnosed and many adoptive parents have no idea their child may have it as other diagnoses have overlapping characteristics.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018
Registration 8:30
Training 9:00-12:00
Presented by Barb Clark, Master Trainer

Location: Sierra Forever Families
8928 Volunteer Lane, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95826
Phone: 916-368-5114
RSVP: Kim@capadoptfam.org

Hosted by Sacramento County Community Champions Network and the North American Council on Adoptable Children

The Attach Place Upcoming Events Calendar

Trust-based Therapeutic Parenting Class for Parents of Children from Difficult Beginnings by Ce Eshelman, LMFT will be held in November 10, 2018 from 10 am to 4 pmChildcare provided for an additional fee. CALVCB will reimburse this training. Register here or on our website!

AUTISM Support Group:  Monthly Strictly Social Autism Spectrum Disorder Night for Tweens (11 yrs – 16 yrs) at The Attach Place. Open to the public. October 19th, 2018 from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm.  Gluten-free snacks provided. Please RSVP to Andrea@attachplace.com so we get enough snacks. This is a  monthly social group for the children; and caregivers will have an opportunity to connect, chat, and chill in a separate space. A donation of $0.00 to $5.00 will be accepted for food and supervision if you are able, but please don’t let that be an attendance barrier because the group is FREE.  ASD kids need a social life and this is a great way to make it happen.

UPCOMING ADOPTION SUPPORT GROUP facilitated by Ce Eshelman, LMFT:  Click Here to join our monthly  Adoptive/Foster Parent Support Group on October 10th, 2018! Open to all parents/caregivers at no cost. Support Group is every 2nd Wednesday of every month from 6 pm to 8 pm at 3336 Bradshaw Road, Ste 175, Sacramento, CA 95827.

GIVE MY BOOK FOR SUPPORT TO A FELLOW ADOPTION ADVENTURER: Drowning With My Hair On Fire: Insanity Relief For Adoptive Parents by Ce Eshelman, LMFT.  Daily inspirational reading for those who sometimes find it hard to keep hope alive. There is hope for healing.  At Amazon or get a discounted copy here.

 

Caring For Your Life–The Great Parenting Challenge

The Attach Place

The Attach Place
Center for Strengthening Relationships

Dear Parents,

It has been a while since I stepped up on my soapbox about the importance of self-care for parents, and the last time I made my soapbox case a parent retorted, “And exactly how are we supposed to do that?”  Right.  I didn’t say it was easy to get all your ducks in a row to escape to adult time away from children. But, your hyper-aroused neuronet needs a break.  I just said it was imperative.  So, knowing the difficulty, I still challenge you to spend the next month saving your pocket change, searching actively for childcare, training those you find in therapeutic care strategies, and booking time alone with or without your spouse–even if it is just down the street at the Motel 6. Try to find one with a spa and order food via Grubhub or Doordash.

When I was raising young children, my later to be, husband, whisked me away nearly every month for a couple years for a brain break.  I was extremely fortunate, I know. So grateful today for him and his generosity–and the break.  I also know it saved my emotional life.  Raising my dysregulated children 24/7, 365 for 18 years was the hardest thing I ever did in my life–seemed a little like rock climbing the side of a cliff without ropes or a net. Or muscles.

It may not be that hard for you, but you have to admit it is still stressful and requires constant energy output.  Your neurochemical complex needs active recovery.  The Great Parenting Challenge is before you.  Will you accept the challenge?  I hope so.

Love matters,

Ce

P.S. I know the idea of taking our easily dysregulated kids to a toy store brings about hand-wringing and the gnashing of teeth, but there is a great toy store in the Folsom Outlets, Folsom, CA that caters to kids and is owned by a woman who actually came to my office to chat about what we do at The Attach Place, and to lend her support to our effort to heal the hearts of traumatized children.   Check out their website where you can become a VIP Club member and see events that happen every week.  They know you might be coming and are prepared for the shenanigans of children from difficult beginnings.  

Upcoming Sacramento Adoption Community Events

Working with Kids with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders And Other Neuro-Based Challenges: A training for caregivers, child welfare professionals, mental health providers, and school and community personnel

FASD is underdiagnosed and many adoptive parents have no idea their child may have it as other diagnoses have overlapping characteristics.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018
Registration 8:30
Training 9:00-12:00
Presented by Barb Clark, Master Trainer

Location: Sierra Forever Families
8928 Volunteer Lane, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95826
Phone: 916-368-5114
RSVP: Kim@capadoptfam.org

Hosted by Sacramento County Community Champions Network and the North American Council on Adoptable Children

Caring For A Child Who is Someone Else’s?

Are you informally caring for a child, an adoptive family, a foster/resource family, or a guardian? Looking for support or information? Need help finding services? Please join us for a community discussion! With the help of the Community Champions Network we may be able to create something helpful in our community. Can’t attend the meeting but still want to participate in the conversation? Email Kathryn at kemoryka@netscape.net

Meeting Details:

Tuesday September 25, 2018 6:30pm to 8:30pm

El Dorado County Office of Education

6767 Green  Valley Rd.

Placerville Building B, Room 2

NACAC shares current child welfare information and post-adoption best practices through publications, our website, social media, webinars, and educational events. Each year, NACAC hosts the most comprehensive adoption conference in North America.

We also provide information and training on adoption topics for parent group members, parents, young people who were adopted or in care, and child welfare professionals. As part of a federally funded collaboration called Critical Ongoing Resource Family Education or CORE, NACAC is currently working with Spaulding for Children and other partners to help improve the training offered to foster and adoptive parents of children who are older and have more needs.

Are You a Professional Who Works With Children?

We are hosting a discussion/focus group for professionals who work with children who are not being raised by their biological parents. Our community would like to assess the needs of professionals (agency workers, therapists, community providers) who serve our families. What do you need? What does the community need? A Community Champions Network may help us meet the needs and fill the gaps in our community. Can’t join us for the discussion but still want to join the conversation? Email Kathryn at kemoryka@netscape.net.

Meeting Details:

Tuesday, September 25, 2018 1pm to 3pm

Cameron Park Library

2500 Country Club Dr.

Cameron Park, Ca 95682

Working with Kids with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders And Other Neuro-Based Challenges: 

A training for caregivers, child welfare professionals, mental health providers, and school and community personnel

FASD is underdiagnosed and many adoptive parents have no idea their child may have it as other diagnoses have overlapping characteristics.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018
Registration 8:30
Training 9:00-12:00
Presented by Barb Clark, Master Trainer

Location: Sierra Forever Families
8928 Volunteer Lane, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95826
Phone: 916-368-5114
RSVP: Kim@capadoptfam.org

Hosted by Sacramento County Community Champions Network and the North American Council on Adoptable Children

The Attach Place Upcoming Events Calendar

Trust-based Therapeutic Parenting Class for Parents of Children from Difficult Beginnings by Ce Eshelman, LMFT will be held in November 2018 from 10 am to 4 pmChildcare provided for an additional fee. CALVCB will reimburse this training. Register here or on our website!

AUTISM Support Group:  Monthly Strictly Social Autism Spectrum Disorder Night for Tweens (11 yrs – 16 yrs) at The Attach Place. Open to the public. October 19th, 2018 from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm.  Gluten-free snacks provided. Please RSVP to Andrea@attachplace.com so we get enough snacks. This is a  monthly social group for the children; and caregivers will have an opportunity to connect, chat, and chill in a separate space. A donation of $0.00 to $5.00 will be accepted for food and supervision if you are able, but please don’t let that be an attendance barrier because the group is FREE.  ASD kids need a social life and this is a great way to make it happen.

UPCOMING ADOPTION SUPPORT GROUP facilitated by Ce Eshelman, LMFT:  Click Here to join our monthly  Adoptive/Foster Parent Support Group on October 10th, 2018! Open to all parents/caregivers at no cost. Support Group is every 2nd Wednesday of every month from 6 pm to 8 pm at 3336 Bradshaw Road, Ste 175, Sacramento, CA 95827.

GIVE MY BOOK FOR SUPPORT TO A FELLOW ADOPTION ADVENTURER: Drowning With My Hair On Fire: Insanity Relief For Adoptive Parents by Ce Eshelman, LMFT.  Daily inspirational reading for those who sometimes find it hard to keep hope alive. There is hope for healing.  At Amazon or get a discounted copy here.

 

Shine A Little Light

Dear Parents,

The Attach Place

The Attach Place
Center for Strengthening Relationships

We humans tend to like what we are good at.  Actually, we are more inclined to like things we excel at than we are to like things we simply enjoy.  When I was young, I was good at public speaking–go figure.  I spent a lot of time giving speeches about things I didn’t really care about because I was good at speechmaking.  As a young adult, I found myself in careers like teaching, lecturing, training.  I am generally considered a pretty good teacher and trainer.  It is my strength.

I’ve told this story before, but maybe it is worth repeating. About 10 years ago I had a minor epiphany.  I am shy (this is true, but hard to believe if you know me).  I don’t really enjoy public speaking. I am simply good at it.  Because I was channeled rather early to hone my speaking ability, I really didn’t do much of anything else for enjoyment.  I recall wanting to learn the piano, but I wasn’t good at it.  I wanted to try basketball, but I wasn’t athletic.  I wanted to train dogs, but I didn’t know how.  I was good at talking and everyone around me reflected this strength to me.  I thought it was all I was good at, so it was mostly all I did.  Imagine a child and, eventually, a  teenager who spends her free time writing, practicing, and engaging in competitive speechmaking. It’s a great skill I’m grateful teachers encourage, but not to the exclusion of developing curiosity and other delights. Really seems odd to me now.

Our traumatized children have trouble accepting that they are good at anything.  Some of them are quite good at many things, while others are quite poor at many things.  Once in awhile our children will grab ahold of a strength and become extremely boastful about proficiency. And sometimes they think all their skills are superior, in the absence of skill or talent. That is a desperate attempt to feel good inside.

Why am I saying all of this?  Because children need to have all their strengths and all their interests reflected back to them so much that they actually begin to see themselves as “good, talented, interesting, joyful, strong, fun-loving, and capable.”  Emphasize enjoyment, fun, playing, trying new things, taking a chance, and making an effort.  Exposure to diverse activities at a young age shapes the natural curiosity in children who might otherwise be content with iPad video games.

On top of this, our children are often embarrassment averse.  They are mortified by so many things, especially standing out in a negative (or even super positive) way.  If they try something and stand out, they may not try that again and maybe they will stop trying to avoid having that horrible feeling again.  A remedy: set the bar low and build on success to avoid internal shame triggers while your child is learning to be competent in the world.

Build your child in small ways by reflecting the small things specifically, rather than saying “good job” about everything, which becomes empty praise over time. This takes some practice. Here are a few ideas:

  • You set the table creatively tonight. How will you top this tomorrow?
  • You seem to enjoy singing. Is that right?
  • I saw you laughing your head off when you played in the pool today.
  • How did you like strumming Dad’s guitar?
  • Let’s share your cookies with the neighbors.  You are a yummy cookie maker.
  • You take a lot of pride in decorating your room. Which is your favorite wall?
  • Nice outfit you put together.  You have quite an eye for style.
  • I sent a picture of you playing baseball today to Grandpa.  He will like seeing how you enjoy playing his favorite sport.

Guess what, parents, I know you are putting a huge amount of effort in being a therapeutic parent. I think that makes you a person of awesome character.

Love matters,

Ce

Upcoming Sacramento Adoption Community Events

Working with Kids with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders And Other Neuro-Based Challenges: A training for caregivers, child welfare professionals, mental health providers, and school and community personnel

FASD is underdiagnosed and many adoptive parents have no idea their child may have it as other diagnoses have overlapping characteristics.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018
Registration 8:30
Training 9:00-12:00
Presented by Barb Clark, Master Trainer

Location: Sierra Forever Families
8928 Volunteer Lane, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95826
Phone: 916-368-5114
RSVP: Kim@capadoptfam.org

Hosted by Sacramento County Community Champions Network and the North American Council on Adoptable Children

Caring For A Child Who is Someone Else’s?

Are you informally caring for a child, an adoptive family, a foster/resource family, or a guardian? Looking for support or information? Need help finding services? Please join us for a community discussion! With the help of the Community Champions Network we may be able to create something helpful in our community. Can’t attend the meeting but still want to participate in the conversation? Email Kathryn at kemoryka@netscape.net

Meeting Details:

Tuesday September 25, 2018 6:30pm to 8:30pm

El Dorado County Office of Education

6767 Green  Valley Rd.

Placerville Building B, Room 2

NACAC shares current child welfare information and post-adoption best practices through publications, our website, social media, webinars, and educational events. Each year, NACAC hosts the most comprehensive adoption conference in North America.

We also provide information and training on adoption topics for parent group members, parents, young people who were adopted or in care, and child welfare professionals. As part of a federally funded collaboration called Critical Ongoing Resource Family Education or CORE, NACAC is currently working with Spaulding for Children and other partners to help improve the training offered to foster and adoptive parents of children who are older and have more needs.

Are You a Professional Who Works With Children?

We are hosting a discussion/focus group for professionals who work with children who are not being raised by their biological parents. Our community would like to assess the needs of professionals (agency workers, therapists, community providers) who serve our families. What do you need? What does the community need? A Community Champions Network may help us meet the needs and fill the gaps in our community. Can’t join us for the discussion but still want to join the conversation? Email Kathryn at kemoryka@netscape.net.

Meeting Details:

Tuesday, September 25, 2018 1pm to 3pm

Cameron Park Library

2500 Country Club Dr.

Cameron Park, Ca 95682

Working with Kids with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders And Other Neuro-Based Challenges: 

A training for caregivers, child welfare professionals, mental health providers, and school and community personnel

FASD is underdiagnosed and many adoptive parents have no idea their child may have it as other diagnoses have overlapping characteristics.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018
Registration 8:30
Training 9:00-12:00
Presented by Barb Clark, Master Trainer

Location: Sierra Forever Families
8928 Volunteer Lane, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95826
Phone: 916-368-5114
RSVP: Kim@capadoptfam.org

Hosted by Sacramento County Community Champions Network and the North American Council on Adoptable Children

The Attach Place Upcoming Events Calendar

Trust-based Therapeutic Parenting Class for Parents of Children from Difficult Beginnings by Ce Eshelman, LMFT will be held in November 2018 from 10 am to 4 pmChildcare provided for an additional fee. CALVCB will reimburse this training. Register here or on our website!

AUTISM Support Group:  Monthly Strictly Social Autism Spectrum Disorder Night for Tweens (11 yrs – 16 yrs) at The Attach Place. Open to the public. October 19th, 2018 from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm.  Gluten-free snacks provided. Please RSVP to Andrea@attachplace.com so we get enough snacks. This is a  monthly social group for the children; and caregivers will have an opportunity to connect, chat, and chill in a separate space. A donation of $0.00 to $5.00 will be accepted for food and supervision if you are able, but please don’t let that be an attendance barrier because the group is FREE.  ASD kids need a social life and this is a great way to make it happen.

UPCOMING ADOPTION SUPPORT GROUP facilitated by Ce Eshelman, LMFT:  Click Here to join our monthly  Adoptive/Foster Parent Support Group on October 10th, 2018! Open to all parents/caregivers at no cost. Support Group is every 2nd Wednesday of every month from 6 pm to 8 pm at 3336 Bradshaw Road, Ste 175, Sacramento, CA 95827.

GIVE MY BOOK FOR SUPPORT TO A FELLOW ADOPTION ADVENTURER: Drowning With My Hair On Fire: Insanity Relief For Adoptive Parents by Ce Eshelman, LMFT.  Daily inspirational reading for those who sometimes find it hard to keep hope alive. There is hope for healing.  At Amazon or get a discounted copy here.

Coping with All The Feels

The Attach Place

The Attach Place
Center for Strengthening Relationships

Dear Parents,

We have to help our attachment challenged children to understand how to think about all the feels.  First, they need help identifying that they are even having a feeling, and then what the name of the feeling is.  Emojis only go so far.

It helps to supply thoughts they could have about the feeling, such as “Everyone has the feels like this once in a while and sometimes a lot of the while.”  You might even go so far as to suggest that this is a righteous feeling they have every right to have in this situation, by golly!   Then explain what “by golly” means.

To be a super good helper, you could brainstorm with your child some things to do when an attack of the feels surfaces willy-nilly.  I know this sounds silly (oh, that rhymes with willy-nilly, silly), but practicing having a feeling and handling it in a few different, socially acceptable ways could be beneficial.  Practice is just like experience only you don’t have to actually give or get a black eye in the process.

Some kids could use a picture chart to show the ways to identify and cope with feelings. Many will think this is stupid but do it anyway. Here is a way of understanding emotions for older children:

Sharing power around picking solutions for how to cope with these feelings comes in handy for buy-in.  Some will do best by being shown a physical move or two–planks, jumping jacks, wall push-ups, clapping hard, etc.  If parents actually use some of these coping skills when having big feelings of their own, kids will take all this much more seriously.

Look for signs that your help is sinking in.  Throw out a compliment when you see some coping successes.  It’s amazing what catching kids doing something positive can do for their motivation and self-esteem.  I know they pretend it does nothing, but we parents know better, right?

Yep, that’s how you positively brain-wash a child to cope more effectively with life’s little (massive) feels.  I didn’t say it was easy.

Love matters,

Ce

Life is a lesson waiting to be learned.

Upcoming Sacramento Adoption Community Events

Working with Kids with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders And Other Neuro-Based Challenges: A training for caregivers, child welfare professionals, mental health providers, and school and community personnel

FASD is underdiagnosed and many adoptive parents have no idea their child may have it as other diagnoses have overlapping characteristics.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018
Registration 8:30
Training 9:00-12:00
Presented by Barb Clark, Master Trainer

Location: Sierra Forever Families
8928 Volunteer Lane, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95826
Phone: 916-368-5114
RSVP: Kim@capadoptfam.org

Hosted by Sacramento County Community Champions Network and the North American Council on Adoptable Children

Caring For A Child Who is Someone Else’s?

Are you informally caring for a child, an adoptive family, a foster/resource family, or a guardian? Looking for support or information? Need help finding services? Please join us for a community discussion! With the help of the Community Champions Network we may be able to create something helpful in our community. Can’t attend the meeting but still want to participate in the conversation? Email Kathryn at kemoryka@netscape.net

Meeting Details:

Tuesday September 25, 2018 6:30pm to 8:30pm

El Dorado County Office of Education

6767 Green  Valley Rd.,

Placerville Building B, Room 2

NACAC shares current child welfare information and post-adoption best practices through publications, our website, social media, webinars, and educational events. Each year, NACAC hosts the most comprehensive adoption conference in North America.

We also provide information and training on adoption topics for parent group members, parents, young people who were adopted or in care, and child welfare professionals. As part of a federally funded collaboration called Critical Ongoing Resource Family Education or CORE, NACAC is currently working with Spaulding for Children and other partners to help improve the training offered to foster and adoptive parents of children who are older and have more needs.

Are You a Professional Who Works With Children?

We are hosting a discussion/focus group for professionals who work with children who are not being raised by their biological parents. Our community would like to assess the needs of professionals (agency workers, therapists, community providers) who serve our families. What do you need? What does the community need? A Community Champions Network may help us meet the needs and fill the gaps in our community. Can’t join us for the discussion but still want to join the conversation? Email Kathryn at kemoryka@netscape.net.

Meeting Details:

Tuesday September 25, 2018 1pm to 3pm

Cameron Park Library

2500 Country Club Dr.

Cameron Park, Ca 95682

Working with Kids with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders And Other Neuro-Based Challenges: 

A training for caregivers, child welfare professionals, mental health providers, and school and community personnel

FASD is underdiagnosed and many adoptive parents have no idea their child may have it as other diagnoses have overlapping characteristics.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018
Registration 8:30
Training 9:00-12:00
Presented by Barb Clark, Master Trainer

Location: Sierra Forever Families
8928 Volunteer Lane, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95826
Phone: 916-368-5114
RSVP: Kim@capadoptfam.org

Hosted by Sacramento County Community Champions Network and the North American Council on Adoptable Children

The Attach Place Upcoming Events Calendar

Trust-based Therapeutic Parenting Class for Parents of Children from Difficult Beginnings by Ce Eshelman, LMFT will be held in November 2018 from 10 am to 4 pmChildcare provided for an additional fee. CALVCB will reimburse this training. Register here or on our website!

AUTISM Support Group:  Monthly Strictly Social Autism Spectrum Disorder Night for Tweens (11 yrs – 16 yrs) at The Attach Place. Open to the public. September 21st, 2018 from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm.  Gluten-free snacks provided. Please RSVP to Andrea@attachplace.com so we get enough snacks, right? This is a  monthly social group for the children; and caregivers will have an opportunity to connect, chat, and chill in a separate space. A donation of $0.00 to $5.00 will be accepted for food and supervision if you are able, but please don’t let that be an attendance barrier because the group is FREE.  ASD kids need a social life and this is a great way to make it happen.

UPCOMING ADOPTION SUPPORT GROUP facilitated by Ce Eshelman, LMFT:  Click Here to join our monthly  Adoptive/Foster Parent Support Group on September 12th, 2018! Open to all parents/caregivers at no cost. Support Group is every 2nd Wednesday of every month from 6 pm to 8 pm at 3336 Bradshaw Road, Ste 175, Sacramento, CA 95827.

GIVE MY BOOK FOR SUPPORT TO A FELLOW ADOPTION ADVENTURER: Drowning With My Hair On Fire: Insanity Relief For Adoptive Parents by Ce Eshelman, LMFT.  Daily inspirational reading for those who sometimes find it hard to keep hope alive. There is hope for healing.  At Amazon or get a discounted copy here.

 

Playing Is Not the Same As Playful

Dear Parents,

The Attach Place

The Attach Place
Center for Strengthening Relationships

Sometimes I hear parents of traumatized children discuss that situation when their hurting child “turns on them.”  Suddenly, Mom can’t do anything right and Dad is the favorite.  Or vice versa, of course.  After a little listening, I can tell the remedy is more simple than complex.  Unfortunately, I sometimes say to parents something that needs nuance.

I almost always ask, Are you being playful?   

Parent, “All the time; I’m playing to death.”

That’s great, I say, And are you correcting playfully?

Crickets.

Play is the language of children, of course, and it isn’t usually the language of parents.  As a matter of fact, when correcting shenanigans, parents have to learn how to be playful.  Playing does create the neurochemical elixir of attachment; however, it is playfulness during correction, that creates safety.

Lighten up.  Every transgression does not lead to prison.  There is no such thing as an adoption to prison pipeline.  It only feels like it.

Get regularly playful, empathic, and accepting during correction and you might just find yourself back on the “favorite” list.

Love matters,

Ce

The Attach Place Upcoming Events Calendar

TOMORROW! Trust-based Therapeutic Parenting Class for Parents of Children from Difficult Beginnings by Ce Eshelman, LMFT will be held on September 15th, 2018 from 10 am to 4 pm.  Childcare provided for an additional fee. CALVCB will reimburse this training. Register here or on our website!

AUTISM Support Group:  Monthly Strictly Social Autism Spectrum Disorder Night for Tweens (11 yrs – 16 yrs) at The Attach Place. Open to the public. September 21st, 2018 from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm.  Gluten-free snacks provided. Please RSVP to Andrea@attachplace.com so we get enough snacks, right? This is a  monthly social group for the children; and caregivers will have an opportunity to connect, chat, and chill in a separate space. A donation of $0.00 to $5.00 will be accepted for food and supervision if you are able, but please don’t let that be an attendance barrier because the group is FREE.  ASD kids need a social life and this is a great way to make it happen.

UPCOMING ADOPTION SUPPORT GROUP facilitated by Ce Eshelman, LMFT:  Click Here to join our monthly  Adoptive/Foster Parent Support Group on September 12th, 2018! Open to all parents/caregivers at no cost. Support Group is every 2nd Wednesday of every month from 6 pm to 8 pm at 3336 Bradshaw Road, Ste 175, Sacramento, CA 95827.

GIVE MY BOOK FOR SUPPORT TO A FELLOW ADOPTION ADVENTURER: Drowning With My Hair On Fire: Insanity Relief For Adoptive Parents by Ce Eshelman, LMFT.  Daily inspirational reading for those who sometimes find it hard to keep hope alive. There is hope for healing.  At Amazon or get a discounted copy here.

Upcoming Sacramento Adoption Community Events

Working with Kids with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders And Other Neuro-Based Challenges: A training for caregivers, child welfare professionals, mental health providers, and school and community personnel

FASD is underdiagnosed and many adoptive parents have no idea their child may have it as other diagnoses have overlapping characteristics.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018
Registration 8:30
Training 9:00-12:00
Presented by Barb Clark, Master Trainer

Location: Sierra Forever Families
8928 Volunteer Lane, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95826
Phone: 916-368-5114
RSVP: Kim@capadoptfam.org

Hosted by Sacramento County Community Champions Network and the North American Council on Adoptable Children