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Understanding the Importance of Neurotransmittors…(and with seratonin love…HAPPY VALENTINES!)

Last week when I went to hear a well known parenting author talk at a church here in Atlanta how he believes attachment is a myth for our adopted children, I spoke up asking how his theory would then explain the different levels of neurotransmittors in children who are from hard places due to malnourishment, lack of nurture, etc. He said children are very resilent and they will turn out just fine once in a home–and while a dog would be forever ruined if he was mistreated for a year, babies and kids would not. (You guys know how I feel about kids and dogs being compared to one another. JUST MY PET PEEVE…no pun intended). He said their issues are simply social awkwardness which will go away over time. Okay, I know that is crazy–but this is actually being taught in our churches, being recommended by pastors and I am compelled to be a voice for the voiceless. Oh to think what is at risk if we aren’t educated on this and do not know how to DEEPLY love the wounded. We need to be educated on what our precious little ones go through and HOW we can help them!!! In turn, making our home a place of love, peace, joy, kindness, goodness, forbearance, faithfulness, and self-control. (Oops! Forgot to paste it the first time! TRYING again here…) You can see more at

Understanding the Importance of Neurotransmitters from Tapestry on Vimeo.

For the next few weeks–I will be posting videos to help educate parents with kids from hard places about the special needs these kids have and parenting strategies to help them thrive. I’m SO excited to go to the Empowered to Connect conference in Denver in April. While I know you can’t all go–I’m so happy to go and come back to share what we learn! I admit I don’t know what I should know about parenting my sweet ones, but I am committed to learning and growing as a mommy so I can better love and nurture them. One thing I learned about during our adoption wait was about the different levels of nuerotransmittors in the brain and how this effects behavior (this is something PRICELESS to invest your time and energy in during the adopti

Christina - February 14, 2011 - 5:34 pm

Mr. B and I have been listening to some of my CDs from C4C and he especially appreciated Amy Monroe’s talks. We’re hoping to attend the E2C conference in Nashville in September and in the meantime to work through the study guide together. The website is so full of helpful resources. And I just have to say that I am so proud of you for having the courage to speak up and post about your objections to these other theories. I am stunned that these things are being taught to parents and so saddened to think of children with broken, wounded hearts being raised by people who follow this model–especially with all of the research and feedback that we have from internationally adopted children over the last 30-40 years.

Beth Olson - February 14, 2011 - 6:12 pm

Thank you for sharing more informoation about how our childs’ history effects them. My husband and I are working on our homestudy to adopt from Ethiopia and will also be in Denver in April. I hope we can meet then!

rachel - February 14, 2011 - 6:24 pm

the U of MN adoption clinic also has several hours of workshops on attachment available for free on their website here –
i’ve listened to them and they are *excellent*.

one of the peds at the international adoption clinic there, who has reviewed the files of over 15,000 children says this,
“The chance of an institutionalized child being completely normal on arrival in your home is essentially zero!” Here is the full letter:

i am concerned for the adoptive children being parented in the way you discussed above. there are a lot of myths out there surrounding healthy infant adoption. there are many who feel they are “saving” the child. that mentality, i feel, can create an attitude where the child *owes* the parent something – gratitude, good behavior, etc. it also may not prepare parents for the real challenges they will face in parenting an adoptive child. i strongly feel that if christian parents cannot meet the special needs of their adoptive children, then they should look for other ways to help orphans and widows. adoption is so expensive and so much good could be done with that money if given to people who would be good stewards of it. adoption is only a small (tiny) solution to the orphan crisis.

Dawn - February 14, 2011 - 6:29 pm

WHAT?????? Comparing children to dogs- OK this is where I would have lost it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

🙂 Whew…ok anyway….thank you for sharing these videos 🙂

Sandi - February 14, 2011 - 6:31 pm

I hope & pray that the adoption docs are explaining that a large percentage of problem behaviors are due to the brain & Sensory Processing Disorder. SPD is prevalent in most children who have been in an orphanage over 1 yr & if they get OT therapy before the age of 6 it results in normalized behavior. Through Sensory Integration Therapy exercises by a certified Occupational Therapist these behaviors decrease or virtually disappear. It reprograms the brain & normalizes the brain’s chemical (neurotransmitter) over or under response. So many of these kiddos are being misdiagnosed with ADHD & other disorders & it just breaks my heart. I am hoping that the books “The Out of Sync Child” & “The Out of Sync Child has Fun” by Carol Stock Kranowitz are being recommended by the adoption docs. I am so glad that you are advocating educating moms on the brain & how they can help their children heal. You are changing lives for the better! Fabulous info!

Danielle May - February 14, 2011 - 10:06 pm

I think every adoptive parent should be educated on Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD). It has a HUGE affect on the neurotransmitters and the bonding that adoptive parents and children experience. I experienced it with my son when I was diagnosed with cancer when he was only 4 months old and we missed that crucial bonding period. We have gone through a “re-bonding” period much like what adoptive parents and children experience and it has been amazing and life changing. He has begun to thrive in so many areas that we didn’t even realize he was behind.

Nikki - February 15, 2011 - 9:03 am

Hey Andrea! Two things: (1) I want you to know I made your Valentine’s fortune cookies for my three kiddos as well as the two girls I teach next door, and they were a total hit… and (2) that’s awesome that you’re coming to Denver in April! We were trying to figure out a way to get me to that conference, and we even live right here. 🙂 We need to hook up!