Manipulation and Control

January 4, 2019 Justin Walters
“You’re not the boss of me,” is a childhood declaration of mine that now lives in family infamy. Growing up I longed for independence, and this announcement was my way of expressing it. Children have a God-given desire to impact their environment and make choices. But perhaps you know a child who, like me, takes
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Merry Christmas or is it?

January 4, 2019 Justin Walters
For many of us the Christmas Season generates excitement which can include everything from planning special meals and gifts, attending seasonal programs with Christmas music and time with family.  For a child from foster care the memories of Christmas may not be so merry! For many of our adopted children they may be experiencing the
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Play

January 4, 2019 Justin Walters
When I ask families newly home with their child how they are adjusting, they will often state, almost as an apology, “All we do is play, we are just playing”.  When I hear this I want to shout from the rooftops “Hooray! Hooray! Hooray! They are engaging in Play!” Play is the most important activity
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Technology

January 4, 2019 Justin Walters
Technology, social media, social networking sites, the internet; those words carry a lot of weight in our society and have brought significant change in how we do most everything in life. Many leading researchers say that children ages 0-3 need absolutely no screen time due to their developmental needs and brain growth. Older children need
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ABC’s for a Successful Start to the School Year

January 4, 2019 Justin Walters
What feelings did you have as summer vacation ended and the new school year began?  You may have experienced a range of feelings that included disappointment, excitement, delight, hopefulness, fear, anxiety, worry and insecurity. A new school year is loaded with so many changes! It can bring with it meeting new teachers, learning new schedules,
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Self-Care

January 4, 2019 Justin Walters
Self-Care! Are you kidding me?  Who has time for self-care? Have you seen my “to do” list?  Do you know my schedule of school events, extracurricular activities, medical appointments, and therapies?  You may feel like you do not have any time to add one more thing to your daily routine but the reality is that
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Self-Soothing

January 4, 2019 Justin Walters
Self-soothing behaviors in children and adolescents from hard places can be confusing and the range of parental responses to such behaviors can be vast.  Some families look at this behavior and may think it is developmentally appropriate while others may think something is “wrong” with their child. Our desire is that this information will help
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Summer Fun

January 4, 2019 Justin Walters
Great memories were triggered as we cut into the first watermelon of the summer season. Memories from childhood which meant days without schedules, sleeping in late and staying outside playing until those last beams of the sun disappeared.   When I became a mother I too looked forward to summer which meant a reprieve from early
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Touch

January 4, 2019 Justin Walters
Touch plays a very important part of developing attachment and bringing healing to our children who have experienced less than optimum beginnings.  It was discovered in the early 19th century that touch was just as important as food, clothing and shelter to the growth and well-being of infants. Children in orphanages were dying in spite
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Eye Contact

January 4, 2019 Justin Walters
Matthew 6:22 and Luke 11:34 state, “the eye is the lamp of the body”.   Shakespeare stated, “The eyes are the windows to your soul”.  There is no doubt that it is through our eyes that we connect with one another.  Much of our non-verbal communication involves a look into one another’s eyes. It is through
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Language of Adoption and Foster Care

January 3, 2019 Justin Walters
WHAT NOT TO SAY APPROPRIATE ALTERNATIVES Birth Mothers: Is she going to give her baby up? or Is she going to put up her child for adoption? Place her child for adoption or Make an adoption plan for her child Did she decide to keep her baby? Did she choose to parent? Why did the
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Airport Homecomings

January 3, 2019 Justin Walters
Many people may have prayed for and waited for the moment they get to meet your little one, but I would like to take a moment to remind you and your family and friends of the big picture of adoption. We encourage everyone (including the parents) to keep the child’s best interest in mind. For
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Teaching Feelings, Self-Awareness & Boundaries

January 3, 2019 Justin Walters
* Remember, one goal of parenting is to help teach our children to gain insight into their feelings and how those feelings affect their behaviors. * If your child stomps around and slams their door after being told “no”, it may be most helpful to focus on the child’s feelings rather than his specific behaviors.
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Making Sense of Senses

January 3, 2019 Justin Walters
* What to look for: o What sensory experiences does your child seek out? o What sensory experiences does your child avoid? o Where does your child struggle? A Child Can Be: * Over-responsive * Under-responsive * Sensory-craving * Over-Responsive o This person is hypersensitive or hyper-alert to sensory input. o They may be a
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Responding to Severe Behaviors

January 3, 2019 Justin Walters
* Lifeline is not certified to teach skills in TBRI Level 4: Protective Engagement. * Protective engagement refers to restrictive techniques such as restraining used to deescalate situations and keep children physically safe. * We do however want to give you tips on how to respond when your child is in “crisis mode”: o First
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Older Children & Tools for Discipline

January 3, 2019 Justin Walters
Older Children & Tools for Discipline Be a Role Model: * As parents, we must demonstrate or model what we want our children to do, especially when they do not have language to communicate with us initially. * They are much more likely to do what you do, not what you say. Provide Alternatives for
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Time In & Think-It-Over

January 3, 2019 Justin Walters
Time In & Think-It-Over * Children from hard places are already more likely to feel disconnected from you and sending your child away teaches them that it is okay to be disconnected. * Traditional time-out can be damaging to your child’s attachment because when you send them away for their behavior you are not connecting
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