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What triggers the way you feel as an adoptive parent?

Updated: Jul 8, 2023

Katy Smith Coaching having a conversation with a friend
Katy Smith putting self care first through spending time with a friend

Do you know?

  • Perhaps you blame others for the way you’re feeling or the mood that you’re in.

  • Perhaps you think you have rotten luck and believe in fate.

Have you ever considered that we make our own life?

I used to believe in fate and what will be will be..

This is true to an extent but only once you have taken action and done your very best at whatever you want to accomplish or achieve.

We have to take responsibility for our actions and that includes understanding what triggers us.

Let me explain a bit further..

You’re trying to get out of the door in the morning and you’re starting to get the familiar sensation of a tight tummy, a closed throat and you’re wondering for the umpteenth time why the kids are doing what you’ve asked them to do. I’m sure you can relate.

Something at this time is being triggered in you to react this way!

When I became aware of this it was eye-opening.

You see for me, the feelings I was experiencing - that slightly anxious feeling was down to not wanting to be late to school when I was a child. I didn’t want a ‘black mark’ against my name,

When I recognised this and thought through what the worse thing could be that would happen if we were late, it didn’t seem as bad.

We’d have to go to the office instead of straight to the classroom and quite possibly this would be a learning for the kids to hurry along and get to school in time before the gates to the classrooms closed!

They weren’t bothered to be honest and I thought why am I? It was a childhood belief carried over to my children which was only causing me angst!

Once you recognise your triggers which normally stem from childhood you can question them and ask if they are still right and true today!

Another trigger might be when you’re feeling disrespected by your kids. Because in your day, you didn’t dare disrespect your parents.

‘How dare they’ ‘I’m not standing for this’ may come to mind and before you know it, you’re shouting at them and the atmosphere has turned sour.

If we stop and question that trigger it’s down to an expectation that we deserve respect and yes it’s important but there is probably something underlying your child’s behaviours.

And remember traditional parenting doesn’t work with adoptive children. I think in the heat of feeling disrespected this knowledge can go out of the window.

When we're feeling stressed ourselves from life's pressures we can find it harder to think and see clearly.

This is also a sign that self-care needs prioritising.

At other times other parents might just not get why your child behaves and reacts the way they do. It’s not their fault they’re just not ‘in the know'’ of early life trauma and a different way of parenting.

All too often this can get our hackles up but again looking at the situation from a compassionate point of view you can see this for what it is.

It’s all about reframing, tapping into your triggers, because we all have them, and bringing awareness to what those triggers are telling us. The triggers are probably beliefs from our own childhood which would have been a lot different!

The key is to catch our trigger warnings before they can spiral into negative thought patterns which will attract more of the same.

Take a bird's eye view of your predicament and see what new perspective you see!

And if you're struggling to see a different perspective this could be a sign you need to prioritise your self-care. One of my favourites is spending time with a friend!

See my earlier blog on other self care tips to lift your mood here .

What triggers you? I’d love to know.

If you'd love support to understand yourself better and balance your LIFE, visit:


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