#130 Michelle Trager Powerful Parenting from Afar

fasd success show Oct 29, 2022
When Michelle and her husband adopted their son, they were told he may have issues in school because of his international adoption background – but no one mentioned FASD. Despite hitting all his early milestones, his challenges escalated as he got older. Their life was chaotic and stressful. They tried everything and saw all the professionals. Even the Occupational Therapist, who was on track with accommodations, didn’t mention FASD. Even with a Master of Social Work, Michelle didn’t think FASD.
Still feeling that pressure that we are doing everything we can, but there is still issues. Yet, academically, he is doing well at school. There was a part of me that was so angry because of all the professionals we had seen. Why hadn’t anyone suggested it. Why didn’t I know?

We talk about how things escalated to the point where there was involvement with the juvenile justice system, placement in a therapeutic day school and...

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#129 Anne and Jeff Munson What to do when you’ve tried EVERYTHING!

fasd success show Oct 22, 2022

Do you ever wonder how families with multiple kids on the Spectrum manage? In this week’s episode we meet Anne and Jeff Munson, parents to 19-year-old twins, a 16 and a 14-year-old. They are going to tell you what life was like living in a “hormone hurricane.” There was police involvement, constant dysregulation, and issues at school. In fact, it got so bad their son told them they needed to go to parenting school.

I felt like I was a horrible mom. I felt we were not good parents. I wondered why were they not listening to us? Why don’t the teachers understand? We always presented a unified front to the kids, but there were breaks in the armour. The water was coming over the dam. It was tough.

Once the twins turned 18, Anne decided something needed to change. We discuss what that was and how they made those changes, including:

  • Biggest shifts they each needed to make to restore balance.
  • The aha moments that shifted their parenting paradigm.
  • What...
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#128 Sara and Brad Evans From Faking It to Making It: An FASD Success Story!

fasd success show Oct 15, 2022

Brad and Sara Evans went from a loud, outgoing family involved in their community, to questioning why they ever left the house. Everybody knew them and loved them. Until they adopted their young great-niece and nephew. They anticipated challenges, because of the children’s background, but because they didn’t know about fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, they were not prepared for the challenges they faced.

In the beginning, it was like walking on eggshells every day. They expected their niece and nephew to function like their 5 bio kids, including their 3 and 5-year-olds, and respond to the same parenting strategies, but they did nor could not.

(My oldest children) would tell you I screamed all the time. I went through a time when my voice was hoarse. I kept thinking they are going to stop if I yell. It didn’t help.

In this special episode you will find out:

  • What made Brad and Sara seek out the possibility of FASD and where they found help to change their...
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#127 Kenny LaJoy A Young Author with FASD Reveals Secrets to His Success

fasd success show Oct 08, 2022

The timing couldn’t be better for the release of this episode of The FASD Success Show because it is Thanksgiving Weekend in Canada, a time for family and gratitude. These are a couple of the key messages my guest, Kenny LaJoy, writes about in his recently released book, It’s OK To Be You. Living Well with FASD or Other Disabilities.

In addition to being a new author, Kenny is an entrepreneur and pizza store manager. He started his life in an orphanage in Kyrgyzstan, but at the age of eight moved to the USA when he was adopted by the LaJoy family. His life experiences and learning challenges led him to write this book in the hopes that his story and the wisdom he has gleaned in the process might make growing up with a disability a little bit easier for someone else. In his free time, Kenny volunteers in many faith-

based leadership roles and is currently enrolled in a Pathways Theological Education course of study.

We are inundated with what’s not...

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#126 Ask Me Anything about FASD with Jeff Noble ROUND 2

fasd success show Oct 01, 2022
The first AMA episode (#112) was so successful I am back with brand new questions, submitted by caregivers, for Round 2 of the Q and Ehs!
It’s important to recognize I am not a doctor, lawyer or social worker. I do have lived experience, education and have interviewed many individuals with FASD, researchers, professionals in the field and coached hundreds of families. I like to say, you are the expert on your child, I’m an advisor.

In this Ask Me Anything episode, you will find my best research and answers to the following:

1. Why is it so hard for other people to accept that the children's behaviour doesn't mean they are just naughty little brats but little people who have no control and need more love and patience?

2. How do I respond to “I’m not preparing them for real life” when I try to explain or advocate for my parenting choices?

3. Is the wool being pulled over my eyes when my child can do something one day...

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#125 Heather Vickers 51 Years of FASD Experience

fasd success show Sep 24, 2022

Have you heard the phrase, nothing about us without us? Many self-advocates use the phrase to remind us that we need to keep people with experience in the conversations. We’ve had quite a few individuals with FASD on the Show, and I thought a great way to wrap up FASD Month was to hear from someone who openly shares her experience with many caregivers to help them understand their kids.

Heather Vickers received her diagnosis seven years ago, at age 44. She has been married since 2005, has a stepson with Autism, and is a cat mom and self-advocate.

I move in the world as a 15-year-old for a lot of things. I am 51 chronologically but 15 on the inside. My husband really guides me. Even though I can drive and make my own appointments, I rely on him for a lot of stuff.

In this episode, Heather candidly shares the difficulties she experienced before a diagnosis as a child and young adult trying to find her way, as well as what life is like now and her support system. We...

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#124 Jessica Sinarski Helping Kids Understand Big Feelings

fasd success show Sep 17, 2022

Caregivers ask me all the time … how can I teach my loved ones skills to soothe themselves, stop a meltdown, or regulate themselves. Understanding the sensory system is key to answering those questions and you can get some ideas on how to do that with my guest this week, Jessica Sinarski. We first met Jessica in episode #099, Insight on Trauma, Attachment, and Sensory Systems. She returns to talk about her upcoming book aimed at normalizing sensory processing differences and helping kids understand their sensory systems.

Jessica Sinarski is a highly sought-after therapist, speaker, and change-maker. Extensive post-graduate training and 15+ years as a clinician and educator led her to create the resource and training platform–BraveBrains. She makes brain science practical, helping parents and professionals become healers for hurting children. She is the author of the award-winning Riley the Brave series, Hello, Anger, and more.

I was actually working on a book...

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#123 BONUS Episode FASD Day Extravaganza

fasd success show Sep 09, 2022

It’s September 9 and that means it’s International FASD Awareness Day! In honour of that, we have a unique and special treat for you today! What started out as a quick promo video for a new song, turned into a BONUS podcast episode because it was so great!

I am talking to Joanne Garofalo from Voice in a Million & FASD Hub Scotland and Darren Day, an actor and singer from the UK, about the release of a new song – You Are My Song – written by James Hawkins.

I have recorded charity singles before, but there was something different when I sang this, and I felt a different emotion. The reason this feels different and is so important – I’ve spoken to others who should know about this because of the work they do, and they don’t. Suddenly I feel like it’s my mission.

The cool part is that while this version is launched today - FASDay - a bigger project is in the works that anyone can participate in. You will get all...

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#122 Essential FASD Back To School T.I.P.S. with Danna Ormstrup

fasd success show Sep 03, 2022
Even if school has started, there is still time to set the tone to help you and your child have the best year and relationship with school personnel. I brought this week’s guest back after seeing her last episode is in the top 7 downloads. This tells me that listeners like what she is saying, and I know you are going to love her back to school tips!
Danna is the Director of the Foothills Fetal Alcohol Society and an FASD Instructional Coach with the Wrap2FASD program. She has a Bachelor of Arts Degree and attended Mount Royal University for Recreation. Her career includes working with moms, serving as a teaching assistant, and managing an agency that supported adults with developmental disabilities. Danna has a deep belief that empathy can encourage us to be creative effective responders to “all things FASD: and that with compassion, all things are possible!
We think we need to have all the paperwork lined up, but I’m going to...
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#121 Audrey McFarlane Breaking FASD News

fasd success show Aug 27, 2022

One of my goals with The FASD Success Show podcast is to bring you a wide variety of guests, including those who are leading experts in the FASD community. Today’s guest, Audrey McFarlane is no exception. She returns for the third time and brings updates on research and some exciting announcements of interest to our listeners from anywhere in the world.

Ms. McFarlane is the Executive Director for the Canada Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Research Network. She was one of the founders of the Lakeland Centre for FASD and led this organization for almost 20 years. In the past 20 years, she has been passionate about working with individuals with FASD, their families, and service systems to develop best practice service models in rural diagnosis; community outreach, and prevention. Audrey has presented at the local, regional, national, and international levels on many issues related to FASD. As Executive Director of the national research network in FASD, she directs and...

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