Empowered to Connect

Posts by Amy Monroe

Being on the Same Page

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Monday, April 9, 2012

It is critically important for moms and dads to get on the same page and stay on the same page when it comes to handling the challenges and issues that come up in the parenting journey. This is especially true for adoptive and foster parents as they begin to parent in a way that is focused on healing and connection.

Watch as Amy & Michael Monroe talk about what it means to be on the same page as a couple in order to love your children well.


Avoiding Control Battles

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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Parents often become entangled in control battles with their children, leaving everyone frustrated and disconnected. Watch as Amy Monroe encourages parents to avoid control battles by becoming proactive.

Compassion is the Answer. What’s the Question?

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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

I’ve been talking with a lot of moms lately and many of them are struggling with their kids. I get it. There are days I struggle too. The issues we face vary from the small, frustrating and everyday, to the big, infuriating and out-of-control. But no matter what the issue or challenge, the one thing I constantly remind them of, and the one thing I have to constantly remind myself of, is the need to see my kids with eyes of compassion…and to approach each and every interaction with them compassionately.

Learning & Modeling How to Repair

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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Kids make plenty of mistakes as they grow and learn. But the truth is that parents do too! It’s important to try and “get it right” as parents, but it is equally important to “make it right” by repairing the mistakes we make along the way. Through our humble and genuine efforts to repair the disconnect that we as parents cause in our relationship with our kids, we have the opportunity to help them learn and grow — and to make our relationship with them stronger.

Watch as Amy Monroe talks about the importance of learning and modeling how to repair with your kids.

Becoming an Advocate for Your Child in School

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Sunday, September 18, 2011

The school experience is an important aspect in the life of a child. And yet, school often presents unique and sometimes unexpected challenges for both children and parents in adoptive and foster families.

Tapestry recently hosted an event entitled Back to School: Strategies to Help Your Child Have a Positive School Experience. During the first half of this Tapestry event, Amy & Michael Monroe discussed keys to help parents advocate well for their child in school.

Listen to Amy & Michael’s presentation. You can also download the slides for their presentation and view a list of suggested resources focused on school-related issues.

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Making the Right Moves in the Defiance Battle

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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The following story was included in Chapter 7 (Dealing with Defiance) of Created To Connect: A Christian’s Guide to The Connected Child. It illustrates well how parents can use playful engagement to correct misbehavior while also staying connected with their child.

Susan recently recounted a recurring issue she was dealing with at home with her six-year-old son, Seth, whom she adopted from foster care. The situation was becoming increasingly problematic and was causing a great deal of frustration. It involved outright defiance, but it started with a simple pair of socks.

Parenting Takes Practice

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Monday, July 18, 2011

I will never forget a phone call I made a little over three years ago to Dr. Karyn Purvis. I had just finished reading her book, The Connected Child, and I was so excited to start “practicing” what I had learned. Little did I know that I was taking a step that would lead me (and our entire family) on an incredible journey.

I had spent the better part of an entire week using her strategies of “connecting while correcting” with all four of my kids. They were all out of school for the summer, and looking back I must have been crazy to try this when they were home all day. By the end of that week I was literally exhausted — physically and emotionally. I never imagined that this “connecting while correcting” would take so much time and energy. Threatening to put my kids in “time out” or taking something away was so much easier than this.

So when I called Dr. Purvis I pretty much told her that she was crazy and that this approach of hers would never work for us. I know what you are thinking — who am I to tell the expert that her methods didn’t work? Pretty bold, huh?

Practice, Practice, Practice!

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Sunday, July 17, 2011

Practice is an essential part of life — that is, if improving competence and confidence is our goal. This is no less true for adoptive and foster parents as they begin (and continue) down the path of parenting in a manner consistent with the principles and strategies of The Connected Child.

Watch as Amy Monroe explains the importance of practice for both parents and children.

Replacing Dread with Joy this Summer

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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

If I am honest I have to admit that in many ways I dread summer. In Texas, where I live, summer means heat – at times sweltering heat. While I do not particularly like the bitter cold of winter, the heat can be downright oppressive. One hundred plus degree days in June, anyone? I guess I am a “highs in the low 70’s, blue skies and gentle breeze all year round” kind of girl.

Summer also means kids, as in all four kids, all day long, every day – or at least that’s how it feels. Only a few years ago, before they were all in school, that didn’t bother me so much, but now it can feel, well, completely overwhelming at times. So the other day I was a little convicted when I was talking with a friend and she told me how excited she was that summer had arrived. Don’t get me wrong, getting to sleep a little bit later and having the option to be lazy all day long is great. But the whining, arguing and the overall opportunity for more conflict among the kids and between me and them – none of that is all that great.

Check the Expiration Date on Your Compassion

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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

We recently moved out of our house to remodel the downstairs after experiencing a water leak. In the process, I was forced to confront one of the more unwelcome tasks of moving – cleaning out the pantry. In doing so I discovered that we had somehow collected enough random cans of food to survive for months, if not years. That was, of course, if we didn’t mind eating Spaghetti O’s that expired the same year my six-year olds were born! I’m ashamed to admit it, but I had more than a few expired food items lining the shelves.

As I look back on our adoption journey and I listen to the challenges of other adoptive and foster parents, it occurs to me that many of us view compassion for our children in much the same way as we would that old can of Spaghetti O’s. The honest truth is that for many of us, our compassion for our children – for the trauma and harm they suffered, the pain and loss that flows from their past and the lingering effects of their history – has an expiration date. All too often we think in terms of “they’ve been home for six months…they should not be doing that still” or even “they’ve been home for five years…they should know better by now.”