Residential Parenting Blues

My son entered residential just after Christmas at age nine. For two years prior he was daily making any semblance of normalcy at home impossible.  We were living in a constant state of chaos and crisis, often cycling our son through psychiatric hospitalizations and crisis calls. All safety measures we attempted were viewed by my son as challenges which he paid no heed to. We had no means of keeping him, our pets, our home, our other children, or ourselves safe. Creative means of homicide was the daily driving force in his mind. Continue reading “Residential Parenting Blues”

How Do You Rejuvenate Yourself?

In less than twenty four hours I am hitting the road for Pennsylvania. I am leaving everything in my husband’s hands and taking a weekend sabbatical. This will be my second time this year attending a Rejuvenate Retreat through These retreats are designed especially to nurture foster and adoptive moms. I get a whole weekend to myself to get massages, read a book, take a walk, talk uninterrupted with other moms, and even use the bathroom alone! Jealous? Continue reading “How Do You Rejuvenate Yourself?”

What is Secondary Trauma and are you experiencing this?

   Parenting in and of itself is hard. Really hard. Parenting a child with a trauma history is an entirely different arena of parenting. Hard does nothing to encompass the weight and depth of this type of parenting. Many of us start to sound like navy seals using terms like, “living in the trenches”. We often can only relate to parents sharing similar experiences and like soldiers sharing war stories we find camaraderie in commiserating with one another about our latest crisis or struggles. Often we are shell-shocked and at a loss for what has happened to our high hopes for what was supposed to be a happy home. It may seem the chaos erupting under our roof, or worse, in embarrassing public outburst, are like nothing happening in in other, “normal” families. You may retreat in isolation, despair, or defeat. If this seems to be striking a nerve you could be suffering from secondary trauma, sometimes called compassion fatigue. Continue reading “What is Secondary Trauma and are you experiencing this?”

A Tale of Two Sons

Eleven year ago I found out I was expecting, and while surprised, this baby was a welcome blessing. I took every measure as an expectant mom to make sure he was given the best environment to grow and develop in.

At the same time I was finding out this news, unbeknownst to me, another baby boy had just been born. However, this baby boy was the fourth child born cocaine and alcohol exposed to a mother who had no intention of parenting him. He had no warm welcome into this world. He had no stable environment and no one to attach to. Continue reading “A Tale of Two Sons”