Every child deserves to be safe and healthy. We all need to do our part!
Abigail Stewart Kahn, LCSW, is the Director of Community Education and Strategic Partnership at the San Francisco Child Abuse Prevention Center. She has worked on issues of child trauma and family violence in the clinical, program development, and advocacy context for more than 15 years. A social worker and clinician by training, she joined the Prevention Center in August 2008 and is responsible for the organization’s education, partnership and collective impact strategy approaches. She is the author of “From Trauma to Healing—a social workers guide to working with survivors.”
The Girl Behind the Door, A Father’s Quest to Understand His Daughter’s Suicide, by John Brooks, provides a profound look into adoption, teenage suicide, and attachment issues.
“When John and Erika’s daughter Casey jumped off of the Golden Gate Bridge in 2008, John began to unravel a heartbreaking truth—Casey had been in pain since birth, living in an Orphanage in Poland until she was adopted at 14 months.”
John spent many years after Casey’s suicide trying to understand what lead to her taking her life. He learned so much—the things he didn’t know, the mistakes he made, and the help he didn’t get from the professional community. He asks, “What did everyone miss? What could have been done differently?”
When you tune in to hear John’s story, you’ll understand more about the struggles children who are adopted face, and the heartache any parent feels when a child’s behavior is out of control, and challenging to understand.
John Brooks, a former senior financial executive in the broadcast and media industry, has turned to writing, mental health activism, and volunteer work with teenagers in Marin County. He maintains a blog: parentingandattachment.com to share his experience and educate other adoptive families about parenting and therapy techniques unique to children with attachment disorders.
Nancy Newton Verrier, M.A., is a psychotherapist in private practice in Lafayette, CA, specializing in adoption issues. She is an internationally acclaimed lextureer on the effects of early childhood trauma and deprivation caused by the premature separation of mother and child. She is the author of, Coming Home to Self and The Primal Wound: Understanding the Adopted Child. http://nancyverrier.com/
This self-Compassion meditation came to me when I was writing Is That Me Yelling? and feelings of self-criticism were popping up.
I continue to learn how essential it is for me to develop compassion towards myself and to let go of feelings of guilt and shame about my mistakes as a parent. It’s an ongoing process, and my wish is that this meditation will be of help to you. You can read it below or listen to it by clicking this link:
Sit down in a comfortable place, in a chair or cushion, or lie on the floor. Gently close your eyes.
Become aware of your breath. Notice your breath…breathing in, and breathing out. There is no need to change your breath…just notice it with each inhalation and exhalation. Become aware of your body, sense your body, and scan for any places that have tension. Notice these places, like your neck, or shoulders, or jaw or hands. Keep your awareness on your body and on your breath.
Now imagine yourself as a baby. You were once an innocent beautiful baby. Notice your size. Look at your hands, at your feet, at your face—and become aware of your babies expression. Babies show their emotions without hesitation.
Is your baby looking Content? Curious? Sad? Afraid? Joyful? Sleepy? Take your time and notice your babies face. Are you aware of your baby without judgment? With full acceptance? You may want to pick up your baby and rock him or her gently in your arms. How does your baby respond to your gentle touch? You may want to bring your baby close to your chest patting him or her gently. (more…)