Archive for September, 2010

Katie’s thoughts on “Child Development Isn’t Linear”

September 29, 2010

I just read an article called “Child’s Development Isn’t Linear” that you can find here.   Although it is geared toward school readiness it has a lot of truth for any parent and especially for parents whose children had a hard start in life.  Here’s one of my favorite quotes:

“Children cannot be pushed, hurried, practiced or tutored along developmental stages,” Wolfe says. “Normal growth just needs time. Outside pressures cause a child to spin out of control.”

This is so,  true, isn’t it?  And yet, how much time, money and effort is spent pushing, hurrying, practicing or tutoring skills that we think our children should have NOW?   True for typical parenting experiences and probably even more true for parents whose children whose children spent time in less than optimal care.  Especially true for parents who don’t have information about what we call a child’s “real age” as opposed to their “chronological age”.  (we’re going to talk a lot more about this in an upcoming webinar) (more…)


From Our Inbox: Race and Adoption, Birthday Parties and Hard Questions…

September 16, 2010

We received the following email this week asking a very interesting question about talking to your child about race.   Read the email and our response below.  Also,  feel free to chime in with your own thoughts and comments!

You are always my go-to gals on all things adoptive that stump. My soon to be 6year old Ethiopian daughter announced that she wanted to invite only “chocolate children” to her birthday. When I asked why, she said “There are so many white people in the world.” I reminded her when we arrived in Ethiopia we were the only white people surrounded by “chocolate” Africans, this suprised her. I asked if her father and I could come to her party and she said yes, all African parents can come. What would you have said to her and should I be introducing more of a “how about we invite all kinds of children to your party?”
Really interested in your thoughts.

Birthday Mom

The following is my response: (more…)

All Children WILL Exceed Expectations

September 12, 2010

“All Children WILL Exceed Expectations”

This sounds like one of those feel good phrases that we sometimes see in middle school hallways, but that in truth, no one really believes.

I actually believe it, though sometimes the expectations we have are not the ones we think we’re communicating.  Here’s an example:

Parent and child are in some sort of conflict, discipline moment when the child sasses something at the parent.  The parent angrily responds with something like:  “I don’t think so, young lady!  If you think you’re going to disrespect me then you’re even more sadly mistaken than I realized! You are going to learn to control your temper!

Note:  Be sure to look at this picture to really get the full flavor of not only what the mom said, but how she said it.

Ironically, the expectation stated is not the one more strongly communicated… that if one feels passionately enough, it’s okay to behave in disrespectful manner and lose your temper!

Another way parents sometimes accidentally set up negative expectations is in how they speak about their children. (more…)

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