Deep Fear and Insecurity

Dear Parents,

Regardless the age of our children from difficult beginnings, they often have at their cores the fears and insecurities of their early abandonment.  Even if the abandonment happened in the baby months, there is a deep primal wound that is not easily healed by the love of adoptive parents.

Sometimes refusal, immaturity, opposition, and failure to thrive in the teen years is really about deep fear of growing up, living alone, leaving, or being left.  The fear can be debilitating and disruptive to moving from grade to grade, graduating from high school, learning independent living skills, discovering interests outside video games, acquiring job skills, experiencing the excitement of going to college or getting the first real paycheck, and becoming capable of leaving home.

My son has been afraid of growing up since he was 10 years old–maybe longer but he didn’t talk about it earlier.  For the last year, I have been psychologically preparing him to leave home. Since he was about 5 years old, I have been preparing him to living independently. The kid knows how to take care of our entire house.  A few months ago he put together an Ikea desk with zero help, and I nearly fainted.  Those suckers can be tricky.

Ultimately, I believe my son needs to experience himself without me to grow his trust in himself.  Otherwise, all he has is my ever-present safety net and his overwhelming fear–not much of a recipe for success outside the home.  In a month I expect to send him off to Job Corps in Utah where they have a training program in something he loves–technology. While I am truly delighted to get a little empty nest, I feel sorry for the amount of anxiety he is feeling.  He knows he will adjust, he says.  I think he will, too.  We both are having growing pains as he feels the fear deep within.  There is a lot of hugging going on around here–a lot.

Love matters,


The next 8 hr. Trust Based Parent Training is scheduled for February 20th and 27th from 12noon to 4pm.  $200 per couple.  Childcare available for $30 each day. To sign up email and she will register you.
Monthly Adoptive Parent Support Group is every second Wednesday of the month from 5:30pm to 7:30pm.  Group and childcare are free.
Look for Ce’s Upcoming Book
picture of cover

Expected Release Date: Feb 27, 2016

Drowning With My Hair On Fire

Insanity Relief For Adoptive Parents
Drowning with My Hair On Fire is a compilation of over 175 daily support letters to parents of adoptive children and other children from difficult beginnings.  With a forward by Dave Ziegler, Ph.D. and a brief personal memoir, this publication is a response to blog-reader requests for a book of letters that can be easily returned to day after day, when inspiration is hard to find.
Praise for Drowning with My Hair On Fire
This woman saved our family. This book will save your sanity! After years (and many therapists) of getting it wrong, Ce Eshelman got our traumatized family on the right path to attachment, sanity, and big big love. Ce’s unique therapy is grounded in the latest brain research, her own struggles raising traumatized children, and work with hundreds of families like ours. Her stories, contained in this book, are our stories: full of pain, confusion, hope, faith, love and practical magic that really works.
Elaine Smith, Adoptive Mother
Ce’s daily blog has been a lifesaver, particularly when days are most dreary and hopeless.  Not only have her words of empathy proven to be priceless to our family, but I have often forwarded them on to others.  Such a comfort to feel understood, with no judgment.
Patty O’Hair, Adoptive Mother
In a real sense “Drowning with My Hair on Fire: Insanity Relief for Adoptive Parents” is a daily mediation of struggle, success, failure and getting up and trying again.  If that sounds like too much to subject yourself to then don’t adopt a challenging child.  And one more thing, shouldn’t we require prospective adoptive parents to read “Drowning with My Hair on Fire: Insanity Relief for Adoptive Parents” rather than another ‘All they need is love’ manual?
Dave Ziegler, Ph.D., founder of Jasper Mountain Center and author of many books on raising children from difficult beginnings.

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