Saturday, April 16, 2011

Part I: Connection Versus Correction?

Part 1: Connection versus Correction?
I have just returned from a Colorado conference called 'Empowered to Connect,' where I had the huge gift of learning from Dr. Karyn Purvis, Director of the Institute for Child Development at Texas Christian University, from her 12 years of developmental research on the needs and approaches to healing adopted and foster children.  
It was so striking to me to learn that often as parents we have our priorities flipped upside down:  we spend 80% of our time on correction (the red!), 10% on empowerment (meals/school/chores the yellow!), and 10% of connection (the green).  It is like a triangle trying to balance itself on its tip - it just won't work!  The child, like the triangle, just can't stand on a foundation of correction.  All those 'no's and 'stop's' and 'don'ts' just pile on the discouragement and wear down the spirit.

Instead, we need to flip the triangle and exchange the correction for the connection - no matter how impossible their behavior is!  In this model the triangle sits flat on its base, with the green (go!) at the bottom as a huge foundation.  No matter whether they are babies, toddlers, elementary age, teens, or young adults, connection is what is needed.  So...just how can we connect?  More on this in part 2!

1 comment:

  1. Susan I am really going to listen and read your up and coming post.. I really have been praying for wisdom in this area and balance I cant wait to hear what you have to say to us parents that really want to do it right. I have enjoyed this blog and Sergie's story God is doing a lot right now I cant wait to share.. Please just keep praying for wisdom and Gods will in our lives with this adoption arena in our lives. God bless you and your precious family. Anne Petitt