Empowered To Connect

Posts by Michael Monroe

Taking a New Look at Your Expectations

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Friday, March 28, 2014

As adoptive and foster parents encounter challenges and struggles, many of them discover that much of their frustration and disappointment is rooted in their own unrealistic expectations. Watch as Michael Monroe provides insight into the importance of realistic expectations and how by holding their expectations loosely, parents can actually begin to make progress toward greater healing and connection.

Healing the Wounds of Relational Trauma

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Wednesday, October 2, 2013

I remember the first time I heard it said. It came out of nowhere during a conversation with an adult adoptee, and I recoiled as the words made their way to my heart. “There is no adoption without loss,” she declared, “but sometimes adoptive parents tend to forget that.”

Such a categorical statement. So black and white. Surely there had to be an exception. Certainly there was some gray. “All adoption is born of loss?” I remember thinking to myself. All?

Motivations Can Speak Louder Than Words

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Sunday, September 29, 2013

It is important for adoptive and foster parents to examine their motivations, not only when they begin the adoption or foster care journey but also along the way. Watch as Michael Monroe encourages parents to consider why they are doing what they are doing so they can more effectively meet their child’s needs.

When Good Things Aren’t Good

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Wednesday, September 4, 2013

This summer we made a difficult parenting decision. It was the decision (made together with one of our sons) that he would not play competitive summer baseball. Now before you roll your eyes and conclude that we must not have many “real” challenges, let me explain.

You can’t be around our family long before quickly concluding that we have our hands full. We are a “real” family with “real” issues, just like many others. And a few months ago baseball had begun to create its own challenges for our son and our family – challenges that we could no longer ignore.

What made our decision so very difficult was that it involved something entirely “good” – baseball.

When Your Child Pushes You Away

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Monday, August 12, 2013

When most children get hurt or become afraid, they go to a parent. After all, parents are the ones who protect children and keep them safe from danger. They are the ones who comfort children when they are afraid. For these children it’s a simple equation: mom and dad are safe and I can trust them to help me so I will go to them.

But things aren’t always that simple for children with histories of early harm such as trauma, abuse, neglect, or relinquishment. Their life experiences impact them in any number of important ways, often making them prone to prolonged states of fear and a limited ability to trust. Instead of going to their parents for help or comfort, these children often run from them, push them away, or shut them out.

What’s Your Play Personality?

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Tuesday, June 18, 2013

I have a confession to make. I don’t like parents who are good at playing with their kids. I could have stated my feelings about these ‘playful parents’ in stronger terms, but I don’t want you to think I’ve gone mad.

When I see fun-loving moms and dads who are seemingly naturally gifted at playing with their kids, it gets under my skin a bit. I see them and their kids both having tons of fun, and I get a little green with envy. They are good at play and being playful with their kids, and I am not. Play and fun seems easy for them, and for me it is anything but. And I am not the only one. Turns out there are many parents like me. But there is good news for all of us.

10 Questions Adoptive Parents Ask

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Friday, March 8, 2013

This video collection contains ten short video interview sessions with Dr. Karyn Purvis and Michael Monroe, offering helpful insights and practical advice in response to many of the the questions that are commonly asked by adoptive and foster parents.

Watch the first video in this series – How Do I Handle Manipulation & Control – or click here to watch all ten videos.

How Can I Be Fair?

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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Parents can often feel pressure to respond to each of their children with ‘sameness’ instead of true ‘fairness’ based on individual needs and development. Watch as Michael Monroe offers helpful insights about the important question of ‘fairness’ and encourages parents to focus on meeting the unique needs of each child in order to help their children heal and grow.

How Do I Find the Right Professional To Help Us?

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Thursday, January 17, 2013

Adoptive and foster parents often need to look to professionals to help them and their child. But how do parents know which professionals to turn to?

Watch as Dr. Karyn Purvis and Michael Monroe offer practical insight about how parents should view the role of professionals and which criterion they should use in selecting the right professional to come alongside them in order to help bring about healing for their child.

Easier Said Than Done

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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

People who make things look easy really get on my nerves. You know who I’m talking about. Ever watched one of those cooking shows on TV? You see them making some recipe in 10 easy steps and it always comes out looking hot, beautiful, and delicious. So you try it at home and all you end up with is a giant mess of something ugly and inedible. Or maybe you’ve watched one of those home improvement shows where the host can build, repair, or decorate just about anything and it turns out great, all on a shoestring budget. So in a fit of inspiration you make a trip to Home Depot, spend twice as much as you wanted to, come home and four hours later all your spouse can say is “maybe we can call someone to come fix it tomorrow.” Why does it seem to be so easy for some people? Why are so many things in life easier said than done?