Trauma Messed With Your Child

If your child had trauma in the early years, then your child is still impacted by that trauma.  Trauma is hardwired into the brain.  Three specific things are altered by trauma:  your child’s perception of self, your child’s perception of others, and your child’s perception of the world.  That means that every experience, thought, and feeling your child has is filtered through the lens of traumatized perceptions. EVERY experience, thought and feeling!
 

Swearing boy

Go put your shoes on, Honey.
NO!
Here is your favorite snack.
I don’t want that!
I love you.
I hate you! And I will never love you! Why did you even adopt me!?!
 
I know YOU are tired and you find yourself quietly (or even loudly on stressful days) wanting your child to simply act normal, have normal responses to everyday life events, respond normally to interactions, and feel basically normal inside.
 
 tired 2
Guess what: your child probably can’t. It isn’t on purpose. It’s not because of stubbornness. Opposition is not the root. And defiance is not that fun. Trauma messed with your child’s brain.
 
Being angry and grief-stricken is natural given the daily frustrations of parenting an attachment and abuse-traumatized child.  However, behaving with frustration and anger toward your child for a “brain thing” is harmful and negatively reinforcing to their already distorted perceptions.
 

self care

What can YOU do? 
Don your Big Lady panties (unless you prefer boxers.)
Get support.
Take care of yourself.
Respite is necessary.
Seek
counseling.
Hobbies work.         Weekly date night–a must.       Tea breaks with friends save sanity.       Parent helpers are angels on Earth.          Housekeepers and landscapers are peacekeepers.         Lightening-up helps.          Ask for what you need.      Take naps.  Take walks.  Take breaths.   Take heart. 
YOU are not alone.
 
Love Matters,
Ce Eshelman, LMFT
The Attach Place Logo The Attach Place provides a monthly no fee Trust-based Adoptive Parent Support Group in Sacramento, every 2nd Wednesday of each month.  Next group is April 8th. Come join us.  Online RSVP each month required.   Child care provided.
Next 10-hr. Trust-based Parenting Course  is planned for May 16th and May 23th, 10am to 3pm each day.  Child care provided for an extra fee. Sign-up online at www.attachplace.com.
Next Hold Me Tight Couples Workshop by Robin Blair, LMFT at The Attach Place is planned for April 17th, 18th and 19th.
The Attach Place supports The Wounded Warrior Project by providing free neurofeedback to veterans.  Feel free to send a soldier our way for an assessment and 20 session course of treatment.
Feel free to send this link to friends or family members who you would like to receive Daily YOU Time: Wisdom for Adoptive Parents.

Forgive yourself your shortcomings and wipe the slate clean every day.
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