Wednesday, December 11, 2013


Ohhhhhhhh this is so good.  Cate posted it over on fb today.

We can talk till we are blue in the face about how much some of our kids struggle with empathy or lack it altogether...


...if we are completely honest with ourselves...painfully many of us parents fail to show empathy towards our struggling children?

If they say..."I ABCDE!!!!!!!!!!!!"

Do we say..."Bummer.  At least you have FGHIJ."

When they say..."I HATE everything and EVERYONE in this HOUSE!!!!!!!"

Do we say..."Bummer for you.  At least you have a family to hate.  AND A HOUSE TO HATE!!!!"

Believers with struggling kids...we too are struggling kids.  

I know for a fact that I lack empathy much of the time.

Perhaps you do as well.


The relentless & ever present struggle does wear us down.  I know.

And it is oftentimes after seasons of empathetic parenting that we snap and fail miserably.

Those times are great opportunities to model a turning from sin...REPENTENCE.


And....sometimes....the person stuck in the the one walking in sin and giving into the evil desires of their own heart.

The Theology of Adoption 3

I can't stop crying.

If you too need a good cry this.  

Friday, December 6, 2013

Closed Countries

Kazakhstan & Russia.

Struggling kids & families who are having trouble & trying to find help...and the downward spiral that grows and grows and grows into a huge thing...which nobody want to see happen.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Don't Settle, Church

Bradley and I recently met with a pastor/counselor to discuss the Biblical implications of ADOPTION and the churches role in it.  

The line of thinking went something like this....

Marriage is important to the church because it is meant to be an earthly representation of a supernatural relationship between Christ and his bride/the church. 

Adoption is important to the church because it is meant to be an earthly representation of a supernatural relationship between The Lord and his children / the church. 

We are all here on earth as a broken people surrounded by broken people.

There will be trouble.  Trouble will come.  

The church is called to bear one anothers' burdens.

We are family...supernaturally connected by the blood of Christ.

re: Marriage....we offer pre-marriage counseling.   We offer marriage counseling.  We offer seminars/webinars/ & retreats for couples.  We offer support.

When a marriage fails...and a divorce is in some way/somehow/ somewhere due to sin and does not reflect what it was intended to.  

re: Adoption....we offer financial assistance.  We offer family counseling (but lack in the area of special needs that come with some adoptions.)  We offer support and encouragement (but lack in the area of special needs that come with some adoptions.)  We are learning as we go.  There is much to learn.  

When an adoption fails...and disruption is in some way/somehow/somewhere due to sin and does not reflect what it was intended to.   

As believers...we are to behave as if we are inhabitants of the the strength of the Lord.   We are to strive for that.  We are not to settle for what the world offers us.  

There will be a cost to pay.  The cost for the church is great.  

We have the resources.  

RESOURCE PAGE from The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission is very, very, very good.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Encouragement for RAD families from the Body of Christ

RAD is isolating and it rips at the hearts of communities and families. At times, it can feel like the Body is turning a blind eye to the need even when it is shared. I think that is because it is hard, even if you are close to the family, to understand that depth or intensity of the situation. As I read Dawn's posts this morning, I was so happy to be able to hop on to the blog and share a bit of good news in the area of on-going suffering for children that come home through adoption.

Dawn is so right. I stand by her 100% in this area. I am physically ILL by the sugar coating of adoption "professionals" who try and ignore the fact that these kids are hurting. I posted earlier this fall about my shock and dismay at the number of people who are adopting and fostering who have no idea about those three little letters




2/3 of the kids adopted are going to struggle.  1/2 of those will struggle for YEARS! Every certified person to care for orphans (newborn through adolescence) should know about and be able to spot warning signs of RAD. Beyond that, the Orphan Crisis should never, ever be communicated without immediately followed by the need for on going care for these kids. Only then can we can handle the struggles as a community of believers.

However, that is beginning to change. There are believers that are hearing the families. They are listening and they want to be a part of the change. Recently, when our little RADish was having a horrible time, we reached out to a few key individuals. One of the conversations brought more hope to me than the others. Not because they were a good fit for our specific need at the time, but because on the flyer I was handed was HOPE! Other believers were hearing the burdens of parents of traumatized kids and God was sending them to the rescue!

Adoptive Families Coalition is a non-profit organization dedicated to the holistic support of families with adopted children who demonstrate emotional, behavioral and psychological challenges. Their desire is to create a network of support as well as financial assistance for treatments that are too heavy for the families to carry. Treatment for these kids, even if they have insurance, can be $80K/year or more!

ALL children that come home through adoption will hurt at some point. Some will struggle a ton. A few will have mind-blowingly crazy behavior. They all need a village to help raise them. We need to be straight about this hurt so the Body of Christ can help effectively. I will say it til the day I die. The pain and behaviors are real and more prevalent than anyone can imagine. But the church is still the answer. Adoptive Families Coalition is a great first step!

You can donate to this organization AS A TAX WRITE OFF and help families that are hurting and bring hope for healing to these kids.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Don't Adopt

This message entitled Don't Adopt reminded me of an old post of mine over on our family blog.

Rather than link to it...I will copy and paste what I said here.


With all the news this week about adoption thoughts are swirling in this area.

Christians, do not adopt unless it is out of obedience to the Lord.

Hosea 6: 1-3

For hurting families. 

Hurting parents.  

Hurting siblings.

Hurting kids.

Come, let us return to the Lord. For He has torn us, but He will heal us; He has wounded us, but He will bandage us. He will revive us after two days; He will raise us up on the third day, that we may live before Him.

So let us know, let us press on to know the Lord. His going forth is as certain as the dawn; and He will come to us like the rain, like the spring rain watering the earth.

- Hosea 6:1-3

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Weepy Saturday

All adopted children have experienced trauma.  Not all adopted children struggle with attachment issues.  When we set out on our adoption journey we hadn't a clue about RAD.

14 years later it still shocks me every single time I come across a couple who is in the process of adopting (many older children) with no knowledge of RAD.

Blows me away.

Too many families are dealing with it...for it not to be a topic of discussion in the ADOPTION WORLD.


Once...when the girls were younger...we chose to remove them from sitting under the authority of a "spiritual leader" due to the fact that this leader did not demonstrate in their own home  how to deal with adoption related issues in a Biblical manner.

We explained the issue to the girls...and although it was a choice that stung...they agreed with our decision and submitted under it.

Adoption is so a part of our family story.  It never occurs to us not to talk about it openly.

Our kids know about this blog.  They are free to read it if they desire to.

There is nothing said here that they do not or would not hear verbally.


A family we know of were recently in over their heads and needed help.  They have a strong support system but did not ask for assistance for some reason.  Things crumbled.  Entirely fell apart.   Behind closed doors.  Privately.

We are meant to share in good times and bad times.  Side by side.  Together. Weddings...births...homecomings...illness...loss...brokenness. 

The Lord is good and He has intervened but relationships are broken in a wake of wounds which remain.

These sorts of stories play out far too frequently.

And entire communities are affected.


This scenario could happen to any family.  We are all vulnerable.  We all need help.

We especially need help raising our children and are reminded of that every time we dedicate those children in front of our congregations.  Entire churches affirm their role in helping couples raise up their children in the fear and admonition of the Lord.  We promise to fill that very sobering role however the Lord leads us individually and corporately over varying seasons of those children's development and growth.

We all know of stories where families are burdened by piles and piles of medical bills.  Brothers and sisters rally around and help meet the needs of struggling families all the time.  And thru it...the Lord is glorified.


I'm pretty confident that every attachinghearts reader who is a believer knows of at least a handful of stories where adopting couples ask for help in raising funds to meet the costs of bringing their children home.   Communities made up of like-minded individuals come together and thru them...the Lord moves in wonderful ways.

It's not always easy for couples to ask for financial help though.

And it seems even more difficult for some to ask for help after the adoptions are complete and continued  help is needed.

What if hurting families humbly asked their communities (the same folks who helped bring the kids home) to support them in the ongoing care of those children...if and when the need arises?

Would you be willing to "tithe" to a couple who needed financial support for their hurting child?  To help fund things like therapy or stays in treatment facilities.... etc?

Could there be a special elder fund for circumstances such as these?  

It would be very inappropriate for the church to ask the church to rise up and be a solution to the ORPHAN CRISIS and then not come alongside those who do rise ....if a crisis manifests in a home as a result.

If our friend's child were born many of us would not learn sign language?

If one needed a kidney...would we not run at full speed to see if we were a match?

Or a transfusion.  Would we not donate pint after pint of many pints as the doctors would allow if we were found to be a match?

Do we raise funds for Specialized Wheel Chair Drives?

Do we have Yard Sales and Car Washes and Bake Sales to fund the cancer treatments of children in our churches?

How many meals have we prepared and delivered to families with exhausted new Moms of healthy children?

If a family with a special needs child or an adoptive family w/ a struggling child/children were desperate for respite care...might we be willing to be trained so that we could be of help?

Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.        Galatians 6:2 


I go through seasons of being led to write here...and then not being led at all.  And all these months of silence go by.  Today I am weepy.  So so so burdened to write down what's going on in my heart.  

It will forever stand out in my mind as Weepy Saturday.

The Theology of Adoption 2

I am sitting in the Parent's Waiting Room at Jump of those indoor trampoline jumping places...waiting for the kids and I must look like a sight.  Ugly crying at the beauty of this message from Piper.

"When Christ died for us, the price was paid, and when we trust him, we are legally and permanently in the family."

I know many people who are tossed to and fro by the unbiblical idea that salvation is something which can be  lost.  That idea is born in the pit of hell.  

The Theology of Adoption POST 1

I do believe that we are seeing a movement of the Holy Spirit in regards to the church answering the call to adopt.

It follows that many families who answer the call will be met with challenges as they walk out this calling because we live in a fallen world.

There is a need within the church to come alongside those who answer the call and those who answer the call and face challenges after having done so.

Super simplistic...I know.  But....where God guides...God provides...because He finishes what He started.

(Some people...because we are people..and often follow after our flesh...make the decision to adopt in the flesh.  There are consequences to the choices we make in the flesh...and yes....even Christians have to live with consequences to choices made in the flesh.)

However......after repentance and a turning from the flesh and a turning towards the Lord...

...We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a]have been called according to his purpose.  Romans 8:28

In an attempt to communicate Biblical truths to our children...I've been pondering the Theology of Adoption.

As I find things that are helpful to my heart...I will post them here.

The first thing that brings some clarity is a re-post from John Piper.


Friday, November 15, 2013

Heavy Hearted

When I started sharing transparently about our struggles on the Attachment Road...other struggling & hurting people began to arrive in my life.  Sometimes they were brought by friends.  Often times phone calls came in.  From all corners of the country.  I received  e-mails & letters.

I am a RAD expert if you define EXPERT as.... a mom battling this beast to the the trenches for the last 14 years.

Otherwise... I cannot offer insight. 

I have always tried to offer hope where I have found it.  In Christ.  

I am so heavy heavy heavy hearted for all the hurting families out there. 

I do not know this family.  I am sure they have a horrific story to tell.  A painful story.  It is very good that they did not abandon this child to the streets.

But...oh my Lord....the stateThe systemA nine year old boy.

cringe / cry

As I process this and similar stories...I ponder this question...

Biblically speaking...what are the options for families like this one?

As believers...we do know that the world's ways are not the Lord's ways.  
Thoughts?  Please use Scripture as your guide.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013


This breaks my heart in so many ways.  For the adoptive families.  For the kids.

And I think it is more common than we know.

There's so much shame surrounding a move like this.  For all involved.

And the enemy of our souls loves to SHAME us.

I guess the bottom line is this....whatever is done in darkness will come to light.  So...if a drastic move must be the path in the light.

Friday, August 23, 2013

HSLDA Article

Oh my!!!!!!!!!!  this article.

I feel as if our whole entire life just flashed in front of me.  NO-ONE was talking about this in our circles...13 years ago.

We felt so alone for so long.

One thing I know.  The Lord is up to something.  He is at work.  He is doing something.  It's a move of the Holy Spirit.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Did Steve Jobs Have RAD?

This is an interesting article.


Sunday, August 18, 2013


Saturday, August 17, 2013

Like an Elephant

What to expect when you show your child video footage of themselves prior to your adopting them?

Footage that exposes it all.

Well, not all.  

But enough.

Orphanage footage.

If you are anything like our family you should expect a full blown out of control spiral.

Lots of pain and anger to process through.

She hasn't even identified the viewing yet as the core issue.

But it couldn't be more obvious.

Classic PTSD (alongside RAD).  Forgetting every single little concentration.  Irritability & angry outbursts.  Hyper vigilant.

Here is the trigger that she is as of yet unaware of.

While in the orphanage Girlie was made to perform.

For 4.5 years...every time  she wanted something from the caregivers...she performed.

Every time the adoption liaison arrived to video the children she was working hard to find families for...she would perform.

It's all on film.

It's absolutely ridiculous the way she was required to perform.  It's disgusting.

It makes me heartbroken for her.

We will not allow our daughter to walk in that mentality any longer.  Even so, she struggles with needing to perform at all times.  Still.  13 years home.

Since Day One we have encouraged her away from this bondage.

She is corrected and even disciplined when she chooses to walk in this temptation.

Well, long story short...seeing herself as a baby and a toddler...performing like a friggin monkey in a poor man's circus has done a number on her.  And ever since...she has been trying her hardest to perform...for everyone and anyone who will give her a glance.

She tried it with us.  But we were having none of it.  Moms, Dads, and siblings don't need to perform for one another.  In fact, it's insulting to think it necessary.  Offensive even.

And when you are dead set on performing and winning others over by your performances...let's say...wooing family friends...relatives...peers...neighbors...because if you don't you feel as if you could literally DIE...

...and that attempt at control is removed from you by the simple instruction...

"Do not speak unless you are spoken to."

...well...the entire world becomes a frightful place all over again and the need to control it threatens to overpower you.

The trigger in a nutshell.

It's like an elephant smack in the middle of the melt-down.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

good blog post

good blog post...goes for RAD too.

There is a flip side however.  Sometimes, as parents dealing with attachment issues...we can go overboard with the not wanting our kids to engage inappropriately with others ...or visa versa...though.

It's because we know that many times they are being superficial.

And that they engage with every Tom, Dick, and Harry while out and about  BUT not with intimates at home.

That they are trying to win random strangers or Joe Shmo acquaintance's approval.

This attempt of theirs is not only a grab for attention...but a grab for control.  Controlling their environment...even to the point of attempting to control others perception of a huge temptation.

As parents...we want to train and guide our the ways we see fit.  The ways we believe will most benefit them in the short term and in the long run.  We want to protect them.

One of the hardest things to do is to let go and to sit back and watch.  And to allow natural consequences to play out in the lives of our struggling kids.

When others do not think it's so cute anymore as a child/tween/teen refuses to stop nonsense chattering about NOthing.... when a child/tween/teen is constantly disregarding other people's personal spaces and hangs a littletoocloseforcomfort...or isolates in uncomfortable and strange attention seeking ways...when self control & self awareness are lacking in a child/tween/teen...etc...etc.... etc.

We can tell them until we are blue in the face why A B or C is inappropriate or when enough is enough...but in my experience...a handful of incidents where others catch on and have had enough...and get to the point of mentioning something...well....those sorts of moments speak volumes.

90 & 9

Tuesday, August 6, 2013's a verb.

To be honest...the last thing I wanted was for Girlie to touch me.  After the week we had...even the feeling of having her anywhere near me was something I needed to drum up.

Once the thought entered my head wouldn't leave.

Even if she's pushed and pushed and pushed you away....bring her close... pull her close.

I needed to make a choice.

Instead of walking in my flesh...I submitted to the Holy Spirit and asked her to do my feet.

By "do my feet" I meant...take off my old chipping nail polish with nail polish remover and attempt to get off the beach tar while she was at it...pick a color ...any color...and doctor them all up again nice & pretty.

She chose this pretty shade of lavender.

So that my feet could match her feet.

Love... it's a verb.

Added benefit...a pedicure was the perfect wrap up to my crappy week ;)

Monday, August 5, 2013

Over My Dead Body

The enemy of my soul...the enemy of my family members souls...wants nothing more than to wreak havoc and cause division.

He is completely opposed to unity.  He wants to separate.  He is like a lion prowling around waiting to pounce.  Waiting to devour.

He wants to devour Girlie.

Over my dead body is He going to win.

I've got a victorious Lord and I've got Ephesians 6.

His ass is grass.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

2 articles

good article


good article

Friday, July 26, 2013

Sometimes We Get Angry

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Control Issues

Are you an adult with RAD tendencies?  Or do you know one?

It can be very frustrating to deal with individuals who have a need to maintain such a high level of control.

I went back and located a post that I had written a five years back and the thing that struck me the that I was once so hopeful.  

Today..after dealing with 5 more years of struggle in our own home and yet another adult ( RAD seems to find me) with obvious RAD issues ...I am a bit annoyed and somewhat over it.  

And you know what?  That's okay.

The person who is the struggling person is NOT the center of the universe.  The world does not revolve around them...their fears...their perceived needs...their tantrums...their drama...their spirals.

Dethrone them in your heart.  They love to be lifted on high.

Whatever the root cause.....sin is sin.  Sin is sin.  Sin is sin.

And sin only has ONE remedy.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013


I remember one Adoptive Parenting Support Group meeting Cate and I attended together a few years back.

Nothing fancy.

Just a nondescript room filled with a bunch of traumatized adults sitting in a circle and pouring out their guts to total strangers.

Disruption....the word nobody wants to hear...never mind say out loud.

Shaun Groves is blogging about it.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Small Victories

We have many adoptive families in our circle of friends.  That means there are many adoption stories playing themselves out all around us.  Each story is different.  Each story will have different plot points.  Different character arcs.  Different climaxes and twists and turns.  Not all stories wrap up prettily or end this broken world we live in.

When one family we know passed on adopting a child who had been exposed to alcohol in utero...Girlie was affected by it.  It took some struggle & some time for her to process this information. Does that mean they would not have chosen her if she were presented to them?  We don't even know for sure that she was exposed in utero...but given her low birth weight and some of the struggles she could be true for her.

She sees herself in another adopted child who struggles and she does not always like what she sees.  This can be a trigger.  This can set her off.

Another family we know has made some changes that are apparent to Girlie.  She is struggling with the situation.

She usually spirals when this sort of stuff comes up and it's days ...if not weeks...before she can identify what's troubling her.  I'll get hourly laundry lists of anything & everything but.

Even though I am more often than not aware of it myself...I never name the core issue for her...only push her to dig down very deep and find it for herself.

It's when she identifies what's troubling her and expresses what's going on in her heart...that I see evidence of healing.  Of growth.  Of progress.

Trusting us enough to speak her fears out loud.  It does not come easy for Girlie.  It is an uphill battle.

Small victories.  Praising the Lord for them.

Dig Deeper

what I mean by "digging "deeper"

Friday, July 5, 2013


I was up all night tossing and turning.


Concerned for the future.



Over my morning cup of coffee I started to calm down.  For some strange unexplainable reason...a sense of hope began to rise up.  In my troubled heart.  Hope showed up.


A super natural peace.

A peace that flew directly in the face of the evidence.

Girlie awoke.  She was softer.  I got a "God Bless you..." after a sneeze.  She sat near me on the couch.  She wanted to be close.  On my terms...not hers.

I'm hoping we are finished with the "crazy cycle..."  I mentioned nonchalantly.

It was the open door she needed.

"Yeah, me too."

After having her read the "Out Crazy the Crazy" post...I asked her to sit quietly and process her feelings and thoughts.

She immediately and instinctively tried to blame the spiral on some little thing.

"Pickle," I said.

Immediate submission.  She knew darn well that her trying to blame this spiral on something it was so not about...was not going to fly.

But unlike during mid spiral times..I had her attention.  I had her heart.  It was turned towards me.

I asked her to write down all that she was feeling over the past few days.

Girlie chose to go deeper.

She just now said, "Thanks for out crazing my crazy, Mom"...

... and she's writing her little heart out.



This is an excellent article.

It reminds me of this post from 2009.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

out crazy the crazy

I know you've heard it said before..."when all else fails...out crazy the crazy."

If they won't do their homework...shrug your shoulders and say "okay."  And mean it.  In fact, tear up all their previous work and toss their curriculum.

When they complain about you following through with the consequence they were warned about...let's say taking away an ipod for a period of time...fill the sink up with water and slowly slip the ipod into it while they are watching and huffing and puffing.

If they shout "EFFFFFFFU!!!!!!!!!!!That's bullsh*t!!!" in your direction ....shout back.  "Are you effin kidding me???!!!!! Is that all you've effin got??!!!!?????  That's  so effin dumb!!  What a dumb a** lame a** son of a beotch sh*thead a** wipe  mothereffing thing to say!!!!

When they yell in public....yell louder.  In public.

When they throw a tantrum....throw a bigger one.  Stomp louder.  Slam harder.

If they throw something.  Throw more things.

You might get some stares.  You might be misunderstood.  

You might lose your reputation.... or gain one.

How far are you willing to go so that your child comes face to face with reality?   With themselves.

Looking in a mirror.  Not always an easy thing to do.

When all else fails...out crazy the crazy.  It just might be the most loving thing you can do.

reminds me of a post from years back.....

*stay safe at all times

*  and a reminder...I've been at this for 13 years now...(when all else fails)

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Gut Instinct

This is an interesting article about a mom who had a gut instinct which helped her son.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Early Childhood Neglect Study

The Lord is bigger than any fears we can dream up.  Press on.


Monday, June 3, 2013

Sleep Training

Good article.

I know I've posted on this before...but we never ever ever let any of our children cry it out.  It never even occurred to us.

This article reminded me of all the Dr. Ezzo / Growing Kids God's Way craziness all those years ago.

For goodness sake...if your child is crying....attempt to soothe him/her.

Meet their needs and then a whole bunch more.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Christian Adoption

Christian Adoption: Disavowals and Affirmations by John Piper

#9   Christian adoption disavows the romantic notion that the challenges of adoptive parenting are small or painless, and the na├»ve notion that the human flourishing of an adoptive child is guaranteed by sufficient parental love.

Rather, we affirm that all parenting is painful and most adoptions are preceded by some measure of trauma that affects a child’s maturing later on, and makes the challenges of parenting all the greater (Proverbs 10:117:25).

Monday, May 20, 2013

Abuse in Russian Orphanage

The video is graphic...but a MUST SEE for all those parenting children from institutionalized settings.

Not only were the basic needs of our children not met in early childhood...but many of our kids dealt with much more.

Cry out to Jehova Rapha...the Lord, our healer.

And point your children to Him...their Creator.


"Hugs have been scientifically proven to have a calming effect on people, especially those with PTSD, autism or under high stress. "

See this link.

Some kids like and desire hugs.  Some don't. 

They probably all need them. 

This might be of help to parents.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Happy Birth Mother's Day

Thanks Ladies.  Your choice to birth these kids of ours deserves a standing ovation.  And infinite curtain calls.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

SICK story

This is one of the sickest stories I've ever heard in the adoption world.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

you are a great mom

but you make a horrible savior

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Post Adoption Depression

See this article.

I do believe this is far more common than anyone is talking about.  

The enemy likes secrets.  

He thrives on secrets.  

If you are struggling...tell someone you trust.  Tell your husband first...and then tell your mom, a friend or a pastor.  

The road to healthy attachment will be bumpier if you are living with depression.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Adoption Anxiety

Read this .......from Dr. Voddie Baucham.

It's a minefield of Wacky Theology out there.   Parents Beware.

Friday, April 12, 2013

You MUST listen to this/ Mental Health Issues!!!!!!!!

...ADD... ADHD...  Bipolar...  Anxiety...  PTSD...  Depression...etc.  etc.  etc......and I would include RAD.

Dr. Voddie Baucham

With 6 adopted kids????...the Bauchams must be dealing with attachment issues.  I would be pleasantly surprised if they weren't.

"A psychiatric disorder is NOT a medical disease."   

"You do not have a medical diagnosis."

"Whatever you are facing is not bigger than a dead Jesus.  And if the power that raised Christ from the dead is available to dare you be hopeless."

Listen till the end.

I am so thankful that our pediatrician had this same mindset all those years ago.  And, that the 2 very honest specialists she referred us to...concurred.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Isolation Road

Hi Friends....long time no communication.

We've been at this for 13 years and it's probably been one of our worst seasons yet.  We are in the thick of it.

This article sums up exactly how the other family members are feeling.

It must be a lonely road...this road of isolation.

Done w/Discipline

The Lord spoke very clearly to me last week.  Not audibly....but clearly :)

I have communicated to Girlie and to the rest of the family that my days of disciplining are over.  No more discipline from Mom ever.  

(A reminder...Girlie is 17 and we have been at this for 13 years now...also much of the resistance is exhibited towards me during the day...every single day...not Dad.)

I will continue to address sin.  

I will continue to call it what it is.  

I will continue to validate others....when offenses come their way.  

I will continue to affirm that sin breaks relationships.  Especially habitual sin.   Habitual unrepentant sin.

I will continue to remind Girlie that true repentance is a turning from sin.  A changing of the mind about it.  A turning of the heart.  And that anything other than that is a bunch of bull.

I will no longer do ^^^^^  all of that with emotion attached to it.

I will no longer remind or encourage or demand that school work gets done.

There are plenty of people in the world who drop out of school....unless she takes ownership of her academic life...she may be one of them.

I will no longer remind...encourage or demand that chores get done.  

The rule want to live in this act like a family member.
You don't act like a family member...the other family members have to pick up your slack or pay the consequences for your dishonor, selfishness, and laziness.  They notice and relationships are broken.

When freak outs or melt downs or tantrums occur...I will politely remove Girlie from the presence of her siblings.  She is not the center of my universe or theirs.  She will be reminded that people do not want to hang out with people who act like the center of the universe.  And that such behavior damages relationships.

I will continue to feed and cloth and house and provide health care and dental care and fun things like recreational polish...a home library of great lessons...a piano...a ipod...beach scratches...etc. etc. etc....even if I am treated like a piece of garbage and never once appreciated and taken advantage of by her.  

I told Girlie that she is the Lord's to do with as He will.

He is her Creator and He is more than capable of disciplining her as He sees fit.  

Or not.

I'd be afraid.  

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Incentives Update

RADishes really sabotage everything. I plead with her to let me shower her with blessings and she spits on them. The iPad is not the incentive it would be for a typical child. However, it is still something I can tempt her with. She certainly wants it, even if she doesn't let on.

We had reached a bit of a lull. I encouraged her that she could pick an app to add after reaching an academic goal. We'll see.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Incentives not Consequences

For some RADishes, consequences are incredibly ineffective. If they have come from poverty or literally nothing in an orphanage, having things taken away or privileges revoked matters not to them. They are used to nothing. They have survived with a lot less than TV time. We have found ourselves over the years knocking our heads against the wall trying to find something that matters to her and would be effective in helping curb behavior. Maybe something will work for a day or so but it is as if she remembers that it wasn't that big of a deal in the first place. Control is more important.

What works for our attaching kids is to say, every day, everyone has 30 minutes on the iPad. If you make (wrong choices) you will lose time on the iPad. It works beautifully. It is something they love and want. Losing it matters. For RADish, not so much. We thought it would be a great incentive. Instead we had the same if not greater battles with attitude, schoolwork, entitlement, etc. Not only does she not care about iPad ( or playdates or treats or whatever other normal fun thing you can think of), she is destructive. In one week, she broke our dishwasher, sisters' toys,  and tried to break the washing machine. It was a long week.

So we are trying something new. Earning privileges in short doses and short time frames. She bucks me on every single math problem. It was getting to the point where I was doubting her intelligence (how do they get us to doubt that?!!?) DH was even thinking maybe she was dyslexic or something. We decided to offer her a deal. A bribe, if you will. If you do all of these corrections, you get 5 minutes on the iPad.Every new sheet you do in an honoring way, 5 more minutes. Then we sat back and watched.

Mind you over and over and over, she will have things explained to her, can explain them back to me as how she will do the problem and then hand it back to me wrong. For days on end.

But after this little deal. Low and behold, all her corrections done. Perfectly.

5 minutes.

A couple of days now and she will only do 5 minutes a day. Then out of no where, she did all her corrections and 2 new pages on her own. 15 minutes!! Don't know how long it will last, but I'll take it for now. Grade level----here we come. Just kidding. I am not insane.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Inner Dialogues

You have to get them talking.  They have to hear their inner dialogue out loud. Countless times I have then heard RADish say, "oh, that's weird." or "that doesn't make any sense" or "I think that but it can't be true."

Two consistent questions in my world right now:

Who are you REALLY mad at? Sin will continue against family members until she can figure out why she is mad and who she is frustrated with. You can't ask why, but you can ask Who? At some point, I hope she will be able to articulate her anger with people in Haiti. She needs to acknowledge it and move on. She isn't ready for that yet though. She will say she knows she is mean to me to punish me for what they did, but she won't actually move the anger towards the sin. Eventually, she will say she is mad at herself or mad at God. I am okay with these answers.  It gets her off of attacking us and helps take responsibility for her choices. I am also okay with her being pointed to wrestle it out with God. He can take it and it forces her to deal with sovereignty of God.

The second:
What is it that you want? For YEARS, she would say "nothing."

Really?? Nothing?

"Well, I want to go to the bathroom."

(lofty goal!) What? Just go to the bathroom.

"Oh. that is weird. I bet kids don't say that."

Now, finally (like in the last couple of weeks) she will say normal kid things like play outside or play on the iPad. That I can work with. . . . . .

What does your RADish cling to in their inner monologue?

Friday, January 18, 2013

A Break

It's been quiet around here.  For various reasons. I won't speak for Dawn, but we had one of the worst years RAD wise and I just couldn't stomach giving one more ounce of attention to RAD. RAD was sucking the life out of our family relationships. Her needs consumed all of our finances and then some. We found ourselves stuck talking about her on our date nights. Our children that are attaching were mimicking her behaviors. She had lost or sabotaged every relationship outside our home. There was tension from the moment she woke up until the moment she went to bed. RAD had become an idol. It took and we let it take. It would continue to take until things changed. Taking a break from blogging was a good step for me. We still have to stop conversations, interactions, etc, and remind ourselves just because she is the loudest, does not mean she gets the most attention. We have other kids and Jesus is the center of our home. So it was a good break.

I am not sure I am back, either.