Friday, October 25, 2013

Too Many Losses, Too Soon: Loss and Grief among Foster and Adopted Children

2668ff1108063f738122db7ba22ac597 Webinar Recap: If you missed last week's webinar, we found it to be immensely informative for families at any stage of the adoption process.  “Too Many Losses, Too Soon: Loss and Grief among Foster and Adopted Children”. was presented by Madeleine Krebs, LCSW-C, the Clinical Coordinator at the Center for Adoption Support and Education. Madeleine has over 35 years of experience and has worked extensively with foster and adopted children who have experienced early trauma, grief and loss.

The webinar served  as a great reminder that everyone handles their grief and loss differently. An adopted child experiences loss on many levels through loss of their culture, loss of their religion, loss of racial connections, medical information, birth history, birth order, genealogical continuity, traditions, siblings, country and language. The loss never goes away and you can’t “fix” it. But what you can do is validate and affirm your child’s feelings and support them through the grieving process. It’s important to give the child permission to talk about their history and what they are feeling.

The webinar also highlighted the importance for adoptive parents to understand their own grief and loss in order to better understand and support their child through their grief and loss. Likely, your own experience with your parents will impact the way you parent your child? It’s also important to understand how you, the adoptive parents, process grief because your child looks to you for cues when it is acceptable to cry and grieve.

Now that the holiday season is approaching, ask your child what traditions they might have had prior to being adopted. If they had some traditions, decorations, foods, songs, games or other comforting rituals, try and incorporate them into your holiday season.

The Center for Education and Support (C.A.S.E.) is a great resource for the adoption community. C.A.S.E. has a large offering of resources for adoptive parents, adopted children, and adoption professionals. They also provide trainings, counseling and support. C.A.S.E's e-newsletter helps to keep you current with when upcoming webinars and adoption news. If you have not signed up for the C.A.S.E. e-newsletter, we would encourage you to do so.

Check them out!

By: Michelle Moreau, MSW, Post Placement Coordinator and Ghana Program Coordinator for Hopscotch Adoptions, Inc.

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