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?


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,


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 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

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

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