Dr. Karyn Purvis: Raising and Healing Abused & Neglected Kids

Children adopted from foster care or from abroad have often experienced abuse, neglect, or trauma. These children require a different form of parenting. Host Dawn Davenport, Executive Director of Creating a Family, the national infertility & adoption education and support nonprofit, interviews Dr. Karyn Purvis, author of The Connected Child: Bring Hope and Healing to Your Adoptive Family, and the founder and Director of the TCU Institute of Child Development. She is a passionate advocate for children from “hard places.”

Hit the Highlights
  • Why is parenting kids who have been abused or neglected different from traditional parenting?
  • What are the 3 most important things I should do during the first 6 months home with a newly adopted child?
  • How can we discipline our children while still remaining connected and create attachment?
  • How can we help a child who has tantrums whenever he hears the word “no,” or is told he can’t do something.
  • How long should parents stay home (if possible) when you adopt?
  • An adult adoptee asks: I’ve seen before where you say that “Adoptive parents become the biological parents through connection. We change their Biology.” I’ve seen adoptive parents now call themselves biological parents because of this statement. I wonder if it isn’t important for adoptive parents to accept they aren’t their child’s biological parents? Does their lack of acceptance affect how the child adjusts and reacts?
  • You talk a lot about being proactive with children who have experienced abuse and neglect in order to help them and to improve behavior. Can you explain what you mean?
  • Parenting kids adopted from foster care and internationally can be hard on the marriage and especially when one of the parents is the one getting educated on the type of parenting these kids need and the other one has not “bought into” it yet. How to help that parent get with the program.
  • Suggestions for maintaining a strong marriage when adopting older kids?
  • How to handle criticism (implied or direct) about your parenting style when you are trying to follow the empower to connect style?
  • Practical tools for encouraging attachment.

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Image Credit: Tjook