When your emotionally disturbed child triggers your own issues

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When your emotionally disturbed child triggers your own issues

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Many times, families are not prepared for the baggage that the child brings into the family and what we find often times is the parents' early childhood issues or their own family issues origin are triggered when the child comes into their home and does all of the kinds of things they do. One example is of a mother who's been sexually abused in childhood and really felt that they had recovered from that and had dealt with that, then they adopt a child who's very sexualized and has had a history of sexual abuse, they may find that they are not sure what to do, because the issues have come back and they thought those issues, you know, were dormant for years ago. And we find that the couple, if there are two parents, that relationship is often impacted by what the child does, because most often attachment issues are more related to the child and the mother as that's where all attachment begins and so if the child relates to the mother in a very different way, then the child relates to the father, so you see, the marital relationship becoming more fragile, least more insecure and so all of the parents' own issues are often triggered by what the child is doing in their home to them and perhaps to the other children and they find it very difficult to deal with the child's issues simultaneous to tempting to deal with old stuff that they haven't really thought about or experienced for many years. So it's vital for families to be involved in the attachment therapy, because any decent attachment therapist is going to be working with the parents around their own issues, separately from those that the child they have. We are always telling parents that we don't really see parents as clients, but we see them as part of our treatment team to help their child heal and grow.

Watch Gregory Keck, PhD's video on When your emotionally disturbed child triggers your own issues...

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Gregory Keck, PhD

Founder & Director, Attachment & Bonding Center of Ohio

Gregory C. Keck, Ph.D., is the founder and director of the Attachment & Bonding Center of Ohio. He is an internationally known psychologist and trainer who addresses the issues of trauma, adoption, and post-adoption challenges. He and his staff provide attachment therapy for adoptive families whose children have experienced serious early childhood maltreatment prior to adoption. In 2012, he received the National Association of Social Workers State of Ohio Lifetime Achievement Award. He is the parent of two sons who were adopted in adolescence.

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