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Sunday, November 9, 2014

Dear Broken Hearted...

Dear Broken Hearted,

It may be one of those days where you don't want to get out of bed.

Crawl out of bed.

It may be one of those days where your soul feels overwhelmed.

It is well with your soul.

It may be one of those days where you just feel numb and you are walking around in shock.

Force yourself to function.

It may be one of those days where your mind escapes to another place and your thoughts aren't clear.

You have a sound mind.

It may be one of those days you are living and acting out of trauma.

Recognize the trauma and step out of it.

Your flesh may be curled up in a fetal position weeping, but tell your spirit to rise up.

Your flesh may be wanting to run, but tell your spirit to dance instead.

Your flesh may want to seek revenge, but tell your spirit to forgive.

Your flesh may want to keep hurting today, but tell your spirit you are healed.

Your flesh may want to give up today, but tell your spirit to persevere.

Dear God heal the broken hearts today. Let them feel you breathe life into their beating hearts. May their heart beat with yours. May they gently feel your restoring hands go deep inside and repair.

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. -Psalm 34:18

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. -Psalm 147:3


Wednesday, June 18, 2014

The Problem of Prideful Parenting

The Problem Of Prideful Parenting

I have a friend who used to come to me in tears, talking about her child who just screams all the time for no reason.  I never could quite understand her struggle, at least until I had a child that struggled with the same issue. My child's screaming normally turned into some raging, violent tantrum. I remember calling her on the phone apologizing for not understanding her struggle, not validating her, or truly trying to understand her.  I just always thought that maybe she was doing something wrong.  I made the ridiculous mistake that so many parents make and passed judgment on her without ever walking a mile in her shoes. 

The fact of the matter is that we as parents haven't walked in each other’s specific shoes, so we have no room to judge each other.  I think there is this Prideful Parenting Attitude that we can all get caught up in.  For example I used to see children act out in stores and I would pass judgments on them thinking they should do this or that.  I was WRONG! I had no right to judge these parents.  I had no idea what they were going through with their specific child.  I didn't understand the struggle, so I didn't have any business judging.

The Prideful Parenting Attitude is when we see a child acting out and we think, "Well if this child was in my home, he or she wouldn't be behaving in such a disgraceful manner", and we are all guilty of this in some form or fashion.  We see an outrageous behavior and naturally we want to fix it or offer suggestions on how to fix it.  Many of us just pass on our opinions without truly understanding. We think that if that specific child was in our home they wouldn't be acting out. This is wrong, and here is why. 

  • I am not called to your children and you are not called to mine.  I cannot raise your children better than you.  You cannot raise my children better than me…end of story.

  • God didn't make a mistake when he placed your children with you and my children with me. So we have no business messing with God's purpose and destiny. 

  • You are the only one called to your child; therefore you are the one that will be able to figure out how to raise your child the best of your ability.

  • No person, government, church, school, or professional can tell you more about your child then you already know. 

I want to encourage all my readers today to make sure you do not get entangled in the trap called the Prideful Parenting Attitude.  If you see a parent struggling, pray for them, offer to help them with NO judgments. Instead of criticizing them, encourage them. When thoughts come in and you think a certain child would act differently if they were raised in your home, quench those thoughts and get rid of them.  Everyone is called to their own children.  Be reassured by this.  No one could do the job better and no one has the right to think they can. 

If you have been hurt by others judging your parenting let me reassure your heart right now and encourage you to keep doing the best that you possibly can.  Shake off the critics and trust in your parenting ability.  If you need help with parenting, seek out that help but do not allow it to condemn you, but rather make you an even better parent. May our goal be to continue to better ourselves in every area of our lives.  

“Discipline your son, and he will give you peace, he will bring delight to your soul” – Proverbs 29:17

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Parental Rights

Parental Rights
"The government is not always adept at decision-making, and it really does make a terrible parent.”

I cringe every time I hear the term "children's rights."  I know most of the organizations that say they are for children's rights are simply trying to protect children from abuse, so I am for this 100%. However, I am also for children having rights when it comes to having the freedom from discrimination on the basis of race, gender, national origin, religion, disability, ethnicity, and other characteristics. I believe they should have equal protection of civil rights. What I can't grasp is how there are so many movements out there that are basically placing the child versus the parent.  

I think of my son who wants to be a Lego-spy-ninja-warrior and who could spend his days playing castle in the bath tub, cuddling with me watching Ninjago movies, and playing Legos and doing mock sword fights. So should a Lego-spy-ninja-warrior who has aspirations of defeating everyone with his karate moves be awarded so many rights by the government?  Should my Lego-spy-ninja-warrior be battling me in family court?  I will let you answer that for yourself. 

I personally would have to vote a... BIG NO. 

I am not on the bandwagon for "children's rights" when it means placing the child against the parent.  If there was a bandwagon that I would get on, it would be the one championing "Parental Rights." 

I mean, if I allowed my kids to make life altering decisions, this could get scary…and fast. 

Yes, we should allow children to think for themselves and our prayer for any of them should be that they turn out better than us and don't make the same mistakes we made.  But children need speed limits, guard rails as they journey off into this world to grow and learn.  There must be certain boundaries in place, and we as parents need to act as those guard rails to our children, as we raise them to be productive individuals of society. 

I love this quote by Mike Huckabee, whether you support him or not.  The man has a great point:

“I know this: I know that mothers and fathers raise better children than governments ever will.” 

Another quote from Assemblyman Tim Donnelly says:

“I think the system itself is flawed and needs to be fundamentally reformed from the ground up.” 

I agree with these two statements.  The system is flawed and governments were never meant to raise children....end of story. 

Today, parental rights are being stomped on. If you just take a small glimpse at the daily news to see what is happening in our family court system, it is heart wrenching.  You have people like Lou and Linda Pelletier who took their 15 year old daughter, Justina, to get medical care, and then without any notice she was hijacked by the CPS system. They have been battling for their right to decide medical care for Justina for over a year now.  

You have famous families like Will & Jada Smith being harassed by CPS over a picture that THEY DID NOT post. 

You have fathers nationwide fighting to get custody of their children that are being so freely adopted out by the mothers without their consent. 

You have children and young teens testifying against their parents and trying to sue them for outrageous accusations. 

You have families in every state fighting and begging for reunification plans to get their children back, children that were legally kidnapped by a government organization we created, an organization called Child Protective Services.

You have grandparents nationwide that are battling the court system trying to get custody of their grand-children, but the courts are giving foster parents more rights than actual blood relatives. 

You have families like me who have dedicated their life to the unwanted, hard to adopt children, who are constantly harassed by the government for our specific parenting styles just because they do not recognize RADS (Reactive Attachment Disorder) as a real issue.  

The government should not be able to tell us how to raise our children.  We as parents should have the freedom to decide what is in their best interests.  If Jim Bob & Michelle Duggar want to change all their kids names starting with the Letter "Z", decide to un-school rather than home school them, and make them all wear purple and green and walk in a straight line, then so be it.  More power to them!  If Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie want to raise their children a certain way with the convictions of their hearts, life experiences, and belief system, then so be it.  More power to them!   It is not for us to judge other peoples parenting beliefs and styles.  

Parents should have the RIGHT to decide the educational, medical, and disciplinary methods for their children. 

-To spank or not to spank? This should be your right as a parent to decide according to your belief system.

-To immunize or not immunize? This is your parental Right to decide.

-To send your kids to public school, private school, home school, or un-school.  This is your parental Right. 

-To discipline or not to discipline.  This is your parental Right.

-To have your kids eat organic or not to eat organic.  This is your Right.

-To allow your kids to play video games or not to play.  This is your parental Right.

-To watch TV or ban the television from your home.  This is your parental Right.

-To choose doctors and medicine or go the homeopathic route.  This is your parental Right. 

-To allow your child to wear tube tops or wear a parka.  This is your Right.

-To decide whether you attend church or not to attend church.  This is your Right.

I have personally had my parental rights stomped on, and I can say that it hurts deeply.  It hurts to have your parenting put on display and criticized, and it hurts all the more when those doing the criticizing have not walked in your shoes. 

So I want to send a huge cyber-hug to all those struggling with your parental rights being stomped on.  I understand and am joining you in the fight, praying for all states to recognize our parental rights.  For more information on parental rights, and to learn about the Parental Rights Amendment and sign the petition, please visit:

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Least of These (Why I Started Adopting)

The Least Of These
(Why I Started Adopting)

I had never planned on adopting. I had never really even heard that much about adopting growing up.  My family never spoke about adoption and there was no one in my family who had ventured down the adoption path.  I was a preacher/missionary kid, had visited many different countries with my father as he did church planting overseas, and knew there were orphanages and orphans, but for some reason I never fully grasped the fact that there were so many children in need.  Back then, adoption seemed unnatural, taking in children that were not your own flesh and blood. In fact, by the time I was in my late teens, I was burned out on children.  I had been the neighborhood babysitter starting when I was 12 years old, and got my first job working in a daycare just up the road from our home.  By the time I was 15 and was a senior in high school, I was convinced I didn’t want children of my own.  My mother and twin brother always told me that I should pray at night for God to bring me seven kids...I vaguely remember this, but they were all too ready to remind me of it when I was 26 and adopting my seventh child. 

I will never forget the day someone dropped off four kids at my dad’s church.  I saw several families pick the children apart, trying to decide who will go with which family.  One family wanted to take the youngest who was a baby, and another family who had some dream of adopting dark skinned children wanted to take the two middle children. But the oldest was left without a home. No one wanted the oldest child. To this day that sibling group of four got separated and adopted by two separate families, and no one stood up for the oldest child and chose to adopt her.  I remember I was only 19 at the time and there was no way I was able to myself.  Oh, I definitely tried to adopt her, and she lived with me for a while, but I had every door slammed in my face due to my age and the fact that some of the church families refused to advocate for me. I was only 19 when I agreed to adopt this 10 year old and that was the day I was marked crazy.  There was a church meeting, I had shown up early and could hear them all whispering and basically doubting me.  I got so mad thinking, “well, if I’m not qualified, then why are you not adopting her!?” One of the families refused to take her because they said she acted like she was the mommy to her youngest sibling.  I wanted to vomit.  Of course she acted like the mommy; most likely she had to take over that role to her younger siblings.  I still weep at the fact I witnessed church families all picking and choosing what kids they would take...kind of like the old song about “which doggy in the window?”.  I wish someone would have stood up and said, NO, let’s find a family who is willing to take in all FOUR KIDS. I wish the leadership of the church would have gotten involved and tried to keep the four children together, or better yet, restore them with their birth mother.  I was also bothered that no one tried to see if there were any blood relatives that could take the children in.  To this day the oldest has been tossed around and I wish I could tell you that this story had a happy ending, but it doesn’t.  It’s actually quite tragic.  That 10 year old girl is the one that birthed such a deep passion inside of my heart for the vulnerable children and the corruption happening in the adoption world.  I witnessed the injustice that took place in her life, and I was moved to action. I still can’t quite wrap my brain around how those Christian families who adopted her siblings refused to adopt her.

I also thought to myself, where is the birth mother?  We are a church! Why is the church not rallying around her?  Why do these four children need to be adopted anyway? Why can’t we fight for the birth mother to keep these kids? Let's figure out a way to help the mom get her life back on track, and let's spend our money and resources to make sure that she gets a chance to watch her children grow up. 

Because of this 10 year old girl, I then heard about such a thing called foster care.  I was shocked that there were actually waiting children in America.  I had lived in such a small Christian bubble that I had no clue about the fact that there was a government shelter filled with children just a few miles down the road from where I lived.  I contacted the State of Oklahoma, asking them if I could foster.  They told me I was too young and to come back when I was married and out of college.  You can read about my fostering journey in a blog called, Confessions of a Former Foster Parent.

I still weep at the injustice that took place in my father's church years ago and pray that we can somehow learn and make sure these kinds of injustices don't continue to happen. 

For these reasons, among others, a passion was birthed inside of me and this is why I chose to adopt sibling groups, champion around birth parents, and adopt older children like that little 10 year old girl, that precious soul that no one in God’s house could be bothered to take care of.

"The King will reply, 'Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.' – Matthew 25:40

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Dear Fellow Missionary -An Open Plea

Dear Fellow Missionary,

You and I have never met. Let me say that again. You and I have never met. Let’s say it one more time so you truly understand…we have never met. I couldn’t pick you out in a crowd. I do not know you! Even though we have never met, you claim to know so much about me. You cast aspersions on my integrity and encourage doubts about the ministries to which I am attached. Your blog and Facebook comments are filled with negative remarks about me. You spread gossip and you slander my name to your readers, hinting at my misdeeds without offering explanation or evidence to substantiate your claims.

I have sat back, silently, watching as my name and reputation were drug through the mud. I have listened as the integrity of organizations that I am attached to have not only been questioned, but also slandered and degraded. I have been falsely and baselessly accused over and over and over again. Now, through your influence, other missionaries who have never met me are questioning me. I can no longer go anywhere in Haiti without hearing rumors, whispers, and lies.
But please know this, I am not going anywhere. I am determined to stand my ground. I have chosen to count it all joy to have my reputation destroyed. My reputation is of no account to me. It is Christ whom I serve. I am ok with being disliked, misunderstood, and even hated. I gladly lay my reputation at the feet of the One who suffered shame and abuse and condemnation for me.
Over these last few months I have sought to do just this and respond with grace to these attacks:

  • When you and your friends persecuted me- I turned my cheek.“To one who strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also…
  • When you and your friends took my shirt- I offered my coat. “…and from one who takes away your cloak do not withhold your tunic either.” Luke 6:29
  • When you bore false witness against me- I forgave. “But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you…” Matthew 5:44
  • When you raided the Giving Hope Rescue Mission crèche and falsely caused the arrest of an innocent man- I stayed silent. “Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you.” John 15:20
  • When you slandered me in front of my missionaries and staff and had the crèche’s children in tears as they watched their “papa” (the Haitian crèche director) drug off in handcuffs- I stayed silent. “Yes, and everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.” 2 Timothy 3:12
  • When you trespassed into my personal apartment at Club Indigo and removed a crèche child in front of my children- I stayed silent. “Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.” 1 Thessalonians 5:15
  • When you harbored this child in your home- a child whom we have loved and raised for almost two years- I stayed silent. “Finally, brothers, rejoice. Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.” 2 Corinthians 13:11
  • When you threw around the words “investigation” and “trafficking” at Club Indigo, causing our missionaries to be evicted and costing us thousands of dollars- I stayed silent. “Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called…” 1 Peter 3:9
  • When you called me a pathological liar- I stayed silent.“Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.” Matthew 5:11
  • When you claimed the child never had HIV and didn’t find healing through antivirals and God’s grace- I stayed silent. “Share in suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus.” 2 Timothy 2:3
  • When you called me unethical and dismissed and demonized the work I have given my life and heart to do- I stayed silent. “They repay me evil for the good I have done; though I have tried to do good to them, they hurl accusations at me.” Psalm 38:20
  • When you and your friends sent letters to my own staff actually calling me a sociopath and comparing me to Charles Manson- I stayed silent. “Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.” Romans 12:17-18
  • When you falsely reported me, belittled me, and called my motives and my heart into question- I stayed silent. “They repay me evil for good and leave me like one bereaved.” Psalm 35:12

But now your accusations and slander are no longer merely impacting me. If it were only my reputation and future on the line, I could still stay silent. If the only cost of your words and actions were more shame and sorrow for me, I wouldn’t say a word. But now things have changed. Now your slander and actions have impacted my adoptive parents and their adoptions, threatening the futures of precious families. I simply cannot stay silent anymore!

Today I am choosing to speak up. Please understand, I do not do this to destroy you, but to seek reconciliation. To date you have ignored my emails requesting an opportunity to talk and reconcile, so now I would like to make that request public.
I have thrown my sword on the ground and I will not be moved. My armor is on and there is an army standing alongside of me ready to defend these adoptions and these vulnerable children.“Give justice to the weak and the fatherless; maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute.” Psalm 82:3

My fellow missionary, on your blog you speak much about the challenges in Haiti, but let me make this quite clear: It is you and I that are the problem!
  • Yes, Haiti is poor.
  • Yes, education is needed.
  • Yes, there is an orphan crisis.
  • Yes, there is corruption.
  • Yes, there are environmental issues and health issues and employment issues and international issues…

But the truth of the matter is that we are the problem!

No wonder so many people don’t want to set foot into church buildings. No wonder so many people don’t want to get involved in ministries. No wonder the word “missionary” often carries a bad connotation and that Christianity often has so little impact and carries so little weight.

Yes, my fellow missionary, I realize that if we did meet, we probably wouldn’t see eye to eye. Yes, we are very different.

But please remember this, we have the most important thing on earth in common. You and I serve the same God! We are brothers and sisters under the same King. “So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God…” Ephesians 2:19

Yes, you have been serving longer in Haiti than I have and yes, we are from two different generations, but why didn’t you use that wisdom and experience to reach out to me? Why didn’t you seek to discover what was really going on and meet me face to face before you passed judgment? Why didn’t you take me under your wing and seek to pour into me instead of sneaking behind my back, slandering without evidence and accusing without facts? My brother and sister, this should not be!

“Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind.” 1 Peter 3:8

You say you seek justice, but sadly justice here in Haiti often only exists for those who have the most money and influence. I am not interested in such pseudo-justice. I seek what God has to say about justice. I seek His justice.

“The Lord works righteousness and justice for all who are oppressed.” Psalm 103:6
Can you imagine how different things would be if you and I simply worked together? Can you picture the impact we could have- you helping mothers keep their children, me helping those who truly cannot?

“As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” Ephesians 4:1-3

So here is my invitation to you:

I am publicly inviting you to my personal home to get to know me and my children. I will pay for your airline tickets. I will cover every cost. Please, sit in my living room and let me offer you some tea.  Judge me by my fruit, by my life, by my children. Please, call up the hundreds of adoptive and adopting parents who do know me and would vouch for my integrity. Speak to my Haitian partners and friends. Please call up my father, my brother, my friends. Research my life and judge me based on what you find. Call up my boss and ask him why he hired me. Call my pastor, sit with him and let him tell you what he knows first hand and has witnessed.

I am asking you…please do this. Not for my sake, but for the sake of those who are watching us profess a Christian faith that promises that its chief identifier, its very hallmark, is unshakable and unconditional love among its members. Where is that love in this situation? “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:34-35

My fellow missionaries, please put down your stones. If you are willing to seek reconciliation and understanding, please contact me. We have a beautiful, albeit challenging, opportunity to demonstrate the power of Christ over conflict and of love over differences. Let’s rise up and lay aside all these petty distractions and bring our focus back to what we share- a love for and faith in the very same Prince of Peace.

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.” Colossians 3:12-14

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Dealing With The Sexual Issues

Dealing With The Sexual Issues

What would you do if someone started acting out sexually towards your child?  What would you do if someone hurt your child?  I asked some of my closest friends and these were some of their answers. 

- Load my shotgun
- Call the police
- Inflict bodily harm
- Press charges
- Raging momma bear would be unleashed
- I would have to hold back my husband

Now what would you do if the perpetrator just happened to share your last name? What would you do if this perpetrator was just a child?  What would you do if you had committed to this child for life, yet they constantly act out sexually? 

Unfortunately, this is a REAL LIFE NIGHTMARE for many parents.  I am one of them, and I cannot even begin to express the complete hell I have been through with this issue.  It’s the one topic I despise talking about, probably because I still need some therapy myself due to the traumatic experiences I have had with my own kids.  It wouldn’t surprise me to find that I have some kind of severe PTSD from dealing with this issue in my home.

I have mentioned before, but thought I would reiterate that my first six years of parenting were spent in a fetal position crying out to God for help.  I wasn’t over exaggerating that statement by any means.  It’s been a lonely, exhausting, private, personal hell dealing with all kinds of issues due to adopting children with Reactive Attachment Disorder. 

Yes, I am officially exhausted.  

The other day someone said they thought my life seemed glamorous, helping all these vulnerable precious children.  Let me reassure you….my life is far from glamorous.  Don’t let all the cute and vibrant pictures fool you! 

Would I do it all over again? Yes.  
Was it worth it? Yes.  
Was it the hardest thing I have ever done? Yes... 
Would I adopt another RADS child? God would have to part the red sea again and SHOW UP IN PERSON for me to say YES. I say this because I feel like I will still have to be “working” on touching my children’s hearts even as adults.  Parenting RADS children doesn’t stop at age 18!
Would I wish this life on anyone else? No. Before you adopt a child with sexual issues make sure you fully grasp the level of commitment it will take.  It’s not an issue that just magically disappears after one therapy session.  You literally have to retrain the brain. 

One day I talked to one of my child’s former adoptive parents and they mentioned that they had to get rid of my child due to the fact this child had perpetrated on another three year old child in their home.  I was horrified that this was not in my child’s records.  I am not sure it would have changed my mind on the adoption, but it would have been nice to know what I was dealing with.  Then the first week of this child being in my home they started threatening to rape and abuse the other children verbally.  I was blown away by all that my five year old knew sexually, and I couldn’t believe the vocabulary that they already had in this area.  I was in shock when I would hear about the sexual acts that this child had witnessed and endured.  Can you imagine me as a young 24 year old dealing with this stuff?  

I started my child on Reactive Attachment Therapy and we attended counseling for these sexual issues every Thursday.  I admit I was scared to let them out of my sight.  I put alarms on all the doors, and I spent a lot of time sleeping on the couch and in front of this child’s doorway for almost two years. I set rules in place that would protect the children we hung out with, and the other children in my home. I made sure this child was never allowed to spend the night in another person’s home.  It seemed we would have great victories and then this child would eventually regress to the same behaviors.  I felt like I was on this constant up and down roller coaster, and one with more downs than ups! 

I wish I could tell you that all my methods worked, and we are all living happily ever after.  I ended up trying some very creative methods that hopefully one day I will be able to share with you, but I first wanted to make sure they actually worked and my child isn’t going to be in therapy at age 35 because of them!  Only time will tell.  

I ended up developing a HUGE heart for the children who have to deal with sexual issues and ended up adopting a few more with that same struggle.  Crazy? Yes.  But I think you have to be a little passionate and a good kind of crazy to take on such behavior issues. 

Here are a few things that helped me survive living with the sexual behaviors. 

  • I made a schedule for myself.  I took 15 minutes every day and just rocked my child praying over the specific sexual issues they have.  I pretended my child was a newborn baby that I had just brought home from the hospital, and went to great lengths to try and bond with this child and rebuild the mind, heart, emotions, and self-esteem,  to overpower all the disgusting memories with precious, pure, and safe memories. 
  • I spent literally two years giving my child who struggled with sexual issues a bubble bath.  During that bath time, we would go over what every part of the body was used for.  We began to talk about sexual issues and what appropriate touches were, etc.
  • I would sit and do play therapy with the child.  We would act out situations and literally practice how to function normally with our bodies and how to behave appropriately.
  • We would read books dealing with sexual issues together at night.
  • We wrote down all the disgusting things that were done to this child on toilet paper squares and then flushed it down the toilet as a sign of getting rid of the past and starting anew.
  • We admitted our own faults and learned about the power of forgiveness. 
  • We did a 12 step program dealing with sexual behaviors.
  • We studied what it meant to be a lady and a gentleman.  
  • We picked one issue a month and purposely tried to work on that issue all month.
  • We tried to avoid any kinds of sexually charged media/ TV/Movies.
  • We talked about the God approved plan for sex and how sex can be a beautiful thing in a marriage. 
  • We set up appropriate boundaries for the child.
  • We made a safety plan.
  • We educated the other children. 
  • We sought professional help.

Some other recommendations for dealing with this extremely difficult and heart rending problem:

  • Speak life over your child.  Surround this child with constant words of encouragement.
  • Separate the sexual issues from the child.  These sexual behaviors are NOT the child.  The child is not the behavior.  Most likely these behaviors are not even the child's fault.
  • Don't ever call your child a perpetrator, sex offender, or label them with these sexual issues.  I remember several times my own father called one of my children a sex offender.  Well that is 1 out of a million reasons our relationship is estranged to this day.  I still love the precious man, but his constant negative and inappropriate words were not breathing life to me or my children. 
  • Make sure you surround yourself with a support group and positive people.  If there are people in your life that are not supporting you, and constantly criticizing you, take a pair of scissors and cut those relationships out.  You can still love them, but love them from a healthy safe distance that will protect your children’s heart. 
  • Most people just send their child to a hospital or a special treatment facility, but I was determined to bring the treatment facility into the safety of my own home.  I was determined to do whatever it took to see this child healed and whole. You don't have to send your child away; learn what treatment facilities do and bring that specialized help into your own home. 
  • Make sure this child never hears you speak about the sexual issues on the phone or in public.  If you are writing about the issues like I am in a blog, make sure to never mention the child's name.  Always refer to the child as THE CHILD, not a HE OR SHE so it doesn't give any hint to who the child is.  I also want to make it clear that I have only recently begun talking about these issues.  This is something I have kept private for over 10 years out of respect for my children.  My closest friends don't even know which children of mine have struggled with certain issues, and they will never know, because I will never tell.  Keep your child's behavior issues PRIVATE.  Respect and honor their privacy. 
  • Treat your child like royalty and the redeemed child that they are.  Don't hold the sexual behaviors over their head like a weapon when you are frustrated with them.  Don't ever use the behavior issue against them during family disagreements. Forgive them for the behavior and recognize it’s a sickness not their personality. 
  • Don't accuse them of the issue unless you 100% are sure.  
  • Allow your child to change. Don't over exaggerate.  For example, if your child gives their sibling an appropriate approved hug, don't read too much into it and pervert their purity. Our children can change!  Let's not mark them guilty and force them to wear a scarlet letter the rest of their lives. 

I truly believe that as long as a child is still breathing, there is still hope.  Now I want to make it clear that the above issues were with children that were 13 and under.  I took different precautions and methods with some of my children who were teenagers and acting out sexually, but that’s for another blog, another time.

In the meantime,  I want to send a cyberhug to all my dear fellow parents who are struggling with children who are acting out sexually.  I know this can be a complete nightmare and I share in your pain.  Be encouraged today and I wanted to leave you a list of recommended sites and books that have helped me on my journey.