The Honestly Adoption Podcast

The Honestly Adoption Podcast, with Mike and Kristen Berry, is a podcast dedicated to being a real voice, bringing real hope to parents on the foster and adoptive journey.
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Dec 6, 2019

The Holiday season can bring up lots of memories, feelings of loss, or anxiety for our children. Those emotions can quickly lead to triggered behavior. But how do you recognize the triggers and respond to them appropriately?

We can mark our calendars every year. October 31st until January 2nd are going to be...interesting, to say the least. Lots of overstimulation, mixed with anxiety, mixed with big expectations, mixed with let down, and memories of loss. It's a massive cocktail stirring within our children. In our latest podcast episode we discuss strategies you can use to not only recognize the triggers before they go off, but respond in a way that brings healing and connection this holiday season. Listen to the episode now...

Nov 28, 2019

We've officially entered into the holiday season. That means Christmas parties, twinkling lights, frosty window panes, and potentially high emotions for some of our children. In this brand new podcast series, we're walking you through key how-to's when it comes to successfully navigating the holiday season.

Our children will always have two families. It's something we need to accept. And the holiday season can bring up feelings of deep loss and separation. As far as it depends on us, we must work to preserve the connection between our children and their first families, especially during this season. But how? In this episode, we explore some key steps to building healthy connections with first families.

Nov 1, 2019

It's November 1st. Halloween decorations are being replaced with turkey cut-outs and corn-a-capias on front doors. Soon, Christmas lights will dawn those same homes. It's officially the holiday season. But for foster and adoptive families, this can mean dysregulation city! How do you help your children stay calm and regulated during this season?

Oct 10, 2019

Are you a transracial adoptive family, foster family or mixed race family? Are you a person with fantastic curly hair? Whoever you are and whatever type of hair you have, you will love Janine Beachy. She was a true delight to interview. Janine talked with us about the importance of haircare in the Black community, why we should teach our daughters to set boundaries around others touching their hair and how her curly hair journey led to becoming a resource for transracial adoptive families. We think you will love her as much as we do!

We encourage you to listen in as well as follow her on Instagram @life_with_curlz

Oct 3, 2019

One of the greatest resources for us as adoptive and foster parents is adoptees, and adoptee's voices. We are fortunate to partner with many adoptees from all ages and walks of life. We have learned so much from them, and will continue to do so. On the latest episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast we are pleased to welcome transracial adoptee and advocate, Tori DeMartile.

Sep 26, 2019

Why is it necessary that we are regulated, and respond to our children calmly and firmly? Why do our children need to learn steps to peace that they can eventually apply to their lives on their own? And why is re-regulation so necessary to building trust and a healthy connection with our children? All of these questions may seem obvious, but oftentimes, we misunderstand the big goal of re-regulation strategies. That's what we're discussing on our latest episode. 

Sep 19, 2019

Re-regulation strategies are commonly misconstrued as enabling, or letting off the hook, when a clear consequence for behavior is warranted. However, as caregivers of children with a trauma history, we are working on a bigger picture. In our latest episode we explore why this is...

Sep 12, 2019

We often don't consider the importance of body awareness when it comes to helping our children re-regulate, but teaching them to connect to the feelings and emotions they are experiencing within their body can be a powerful tool in helping them find a place of peace quickly. Here's why...

Sep 6, 2019

We know that some children with trauma histories can display extreme behaviors (aggression, belligerence, disrespect, or even violence). But what about the child who deals with major anxiety, stress, nervousness, or often seems physically out of control of his or her body? That's where emotional regulation is key.

Aug 30, 2019

In this special episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, we are pleased to share with you, a sneak peak into our 12-month online coaching group with parents from all over the world.

Aug 1, 2019

Welcome back to Part 2 of our special podcast series "Answers." In this episode we discuss one of the questions we pose in our new book, Honestly Adoption, which is "Why Is It Important To Empower Our Children?"

Because our children have come from hard places, they often feel powerless to speak up for themselves, advocate for themselves, and even make decisions that affect their lives. The loss that lives within them often propels this. That's why it's critical that we empower our children. In this week's episode we once again take you behind the scenes of writing our latest book, but also answer the question, "Why is it important to empower our children?"

Jul 26, 2019

In just a couple of weeks, on August 6th, we will release our new book, Honestly Adoption: Answers To 101 Questions About Adoption and Foster Care. In this 3-part series called "Answers," we're taking you behind the scenes of how the book was written, and also answering some of the questions we ask in the book.

Jul 12, 2019

Fostering, adopting, or even simply parenting teenagers is no small task and it's certainly not for the faint of heart. It's challenging. But when you consider the reality of trauma histories, and how they determine present behavior, the question must be asked- "Is this a teenager being a teenager, or is there something else going on here?" That's the question we answer in this episode of the podcast.

Jun 27, 2019

We've all seen the signs with our children. Rubbing their eyes, irritable, erratic, frustrated, disobedient, you name it. They're tired. But often, we can mistake lack of sleep for bad behavior. It's not, but in our busy lives, it's easy to miss the signs...

In this latest episode of The Honestly Adoption podcast we walk through signs and symptoms of a lack of sleep. When we parent children with a trauma history, we have to remember that vigilance, and fear, and anxiety can cause them to not sleep. What do we do? How do we respond?

Jun 21, 2019

It's easy for parents who are caring for children with a trauma history to mistake triggered behavior for disobedience. But, when you understand the origin of behavior, your entire perspective changes.

Jun 14, 2019

We often confuse the need for sensory input for bad behaviors, or a child who just can't settle down. But for children who have a trauma history, and have lost control of that area of their life, there is a deep need for comfort and security that they do not know how to articulate. So, it comes out through behaviors. In today's episode we discuss strategies to help your child receive the sensory input he, or she, needs.

Jun 6, 2019

It's Week 3 of our new podcast series we're calling "Is It Disobedience Or Something Else?" In this episode we discuss some of the problems a poor diet can create for our children.

May 30, 2019

On today's episode of the The Honestly Adoption Podcast we are continuing our series called "Is It Disobedience Or Something Else," by answering the question, "Is it disobedience or lack of executive functioning?"

May 23, 2019

For the next several weeks we are asking the question, "Is it disobedience or something else?" The reality is, children who have experienced significant trauma display behaviors that can often be misinterpreted as disobedience. But the truth is, there is so much more going on.

Mar 28, 2019

The word support can be a trigger word for many foster and adoptive parents. The reason is that often, they lack it, desperately need it, but have no idea how to find it. And many organizations are at a loss as to how to provide it. In this latest episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, we talk about 3 keys to establishing genuine support.

My good friends Josh and Jenn Hook, authors, bloggers, and leaders of Replanted Ministry and Refresh Chicago, join me on this episode. Recently, the 3 of us co-wrote the brand new book Replanted: Faith-Based Support For Foster And Adoptive Families. In this episode, we're taking you inside the book to discuss 3 keys to finding and establishing genuine support for families.

Feb 22, 2019

On this week's episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, we're pleased to welcome two people who are using their gifts to change the lives of children in foster care.

Annemarie and Roger Jackson had a dream. They wanted to use their skills in interior design to better the lives of children in foster care. Being foster parents themselves they saw the need. In the process, they also desired to create home goods that people wanted to buy, and made the home warm and welcoming. The result of this dream is Through The Sea. Listen in to hear their story now...

Feb 7, 2019

In this brand new episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, our amazing producer, Matt McCarrick, chats with Mike about his brand new book, Winning The Heart Of Your Child, how to be an influence in your child's life, why your kids sometimes seem like they aren't listening at all, and some of the hardest stories he told in the new book!

Parenting is far from easy. In fact, it can take the life out of you at times. But it's beautiful and amazing, in-spite of the frustrations. Believe it or not, you are the greatest voice of influence in your child's life. You're just not the only voice of influence. In this episode, Mike and our producer Matt cover a lot of ground when it comes to building a positive lifelong relationship with your children.

Jan 18, 2019

Deborah Gray specializes in the attachment, grief, and trauma issues of children in her practice, Nurturing Attachments. Her method of working with children and families reflects her strong developmental and infant mental health perspective. Her passion is to help families develop close, satisfying relationships. She has worked for 20 years in children’s therapies. We are pleased to have her on this week's show.

Dec 14, 2018

It's almost Christmas. Presents, Christmas trees, visits to see Santa, dinners with extended family, piling in the family car to see Christmas lights at the zoo, and also potential disaster for those of us parenting kiddos from past trauma. Listen in to the newest episode of our podcast as we talk about keeping it simple and small during Christmas.

Shannan Martin knows firsthand how to keep it small and simple during the chaotic holiday season. As a wife and mother of 4 active children, it's her goal to keep the holidays memorable, but also sane. Listen in as Kristin and Shannan have a fun-filled and heartfelt conversation about life, living in the country, making lasting memories during Christmas, but also living life as small as possible.

Nov 24, 2018

The holiday season, specifically Christmas break, is often a dreaded time for foster and adoptive parents because it means a lack of normal structure for their kiddos. How do you navigate through this time successfully?

In this special Encore episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, Mike and Kristin discuss tips and tricks for maintaining a level of regulation during the chaos of the Holiday season with Licensed Mental Health Counselor and therapist, Ruth Graham. This was part of our 2017 special Holiday Podcast Series called "Holiday Survival Tips and Tricks."

Nov 16, 2018

Some of our children have gone through some really tough circumstances early in their lives. It can bring us to tears to even think about the darkness they walked through. But will they ever be able to live free of it later on in life when they are adults? Tune into the our latest episode to find out...

On today's show we are so excited to welcome Best-Selling Author, Anna LeBaron on to talk about the effects of childhood trauma and how she has worked to overcome them and live free. As a child Anna grew up in a polygamist cult and experienced horrific abuse at the hands of her father. Her story is one of hope and triumph and we know you'll find immense encouragement from her words. 

Nov 9, 2018

"How do I know if I'm called to do this?" It's a common question, even for people who have already adopted, and are thinking about going on the journey again. On this week's podcast episode (and Season 11 debut), Mike and Kristin talk to author and speaker, Alison England about how to know if you're called to adopt.

If you think about it, it wasn't that long ago that you were asking this very question, and pacing the floor, looking to the heavens, wondering what the right answer was. Alison England has been there. She is an adoptive mom and the award-winning author of Tandem: A Devotional for Adopting with God in the Lead. Alison and her husband, Joel, have been together since college and have three children. She cofounded Momentum Adoptions, a licensed adoption agency and is a professor at Arizona State University. Alison’s passion to encourage adoptive parents extends through her Tandem ministry, including Alison’s blog and speaking engagements.

Oct 26, 2018

We work hard to connect to our children, because connection is the most important thing we can do on the foster and adoptive journey. But what happens when you have honestly exhausted all of your resources, and you realize you legitimately cannot care for your child anymore?

It's an unpopular route on the adoptive journey: relinquishment. However, in some situations, it's a reality. Certainly, not something a parent should rush into when the journey becomes difficult. A healthy connection, lifelong bond, and deep trust are always the end-goal and the overall target for parents who have adopted children from trauma. But in some extreme cases, it is healthier for both children and parents to part ways. Carrie O'Toole joins our show today to discuss this topic and offer wisdom and her best advice on this subject. Listen in now...

Oct 11, 2018

Your child will always have first family. And as much as possible, we believe you should work to formulate a solid relationship with them. After all, they gave your child life. But what if there's a possibility this will hurt your child in the long run?

It's a valid question: "Will visiting with birth parents, or having a relationship with them, hurt my child in the long run?" We understand where this comes from. But we also know that oftentimes, birth parents get a bad rep thanks to current news media, and unwarranted or unfounded fear. There are situations that are not healthy, yes, that's true. But, before you make a final decision on whether or not it's healthy to be in relationship, Mike and Kristin have some advice on how to connect in the healthiest way possible...

Oct 5, 2018

The disastrous car rides, the grocery store trips that abruptly end in fights, the movie nights that turn into tears. What do you do when one of your children continually causes all your children to be disregulated? How do you stop them? On today's episode of the podcast, we're answering this big question...

This one resonates deeply with us. We've stood helplessly by and watched all of our other children, who are just trying to ride to church, or school, in peace, move into a complete emotional tailspin because one of our children cannot keep their hands, or comments, to themselves. And the day is completely ruined! Ever been there? When we're talking about children from past trauma, we're also talking about impulsive and often frustrating behavior. Oftentimes, they can't even help it.

But that's not fair to your other children! How do you stop this from happening, or at least better manage it when it does? Listen in as we answer this question...

Sep 28, 2018

They are two hot topic words that can either bring a smile to a person's face, or make them grimace. Marriage and money! But they are both intimately connected and they both matter significantly. In this week's episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, you'll discover why...

Not that long ago, Brian and Cherie Lowe found themselves in $127,000 debt and on the brink of watching their marriage crumble. But then, after hard work, re-commitment to one another, and a belief in hope, they paid off every dime. Cherie tells their entire story through her 2015 book, Slaying The Debt Dragon. Now, through their new book, Your Money, Your Marriage, they are helping couples understand the intimate connection between financial freedom and intimacy.

Sep 21, 2018

On this week’s episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, we’re continuing our special series called “I Have A Question,” with a great question about how to better help our kiddos focus.

It’s a struggle that many foster and adoptive parents have with their children. How to help them focus? This is mostly spotlighted with things like homework, chores, and daily routine. And it can be extremely frustrating on a daily basis. In this episode, hosts Mike and Kristin Berry walk listeners through 5 key strategies that can change everything for you and your children.

Sep 7, 2018

It's a big question that many foster and adoptive parents have when it comes to their children- "What do I do with a child who just doesn't seem to care about anything, or anyone?" On today's episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, Mike and Kristin bring insight to this lingering question.

You've probably experienced something similar to this... it's Christmas morning and the entire family is gathered around the tree to open presents with joy. Except for one child, who has plopped down on the sofa in the other room with her phone, earbuds in, ignoring everyone. She doesn't care that it's Christmas (or at least it appears this way). How do you handle this? Listen in as Mike and Kristin give some practical, yet valuable advice...

Aug 24, 2018

On today's episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, we're taking you back, back, waaaay back to an episode Mike and Kristin hosted a few years ago with their good friend Nicole Goerges, entitled How To Love A Child Who Won't Love You Back.

It's an all-too-common tale on the foster and adoptive parenting journey- you love the child you've welcomed into your home deeply. You have given everything to them. You have committed to being their forever mommy or daddy. The connection you have to them is deeper than deep. But they don't (at least it appears so) feel the same way toward you. In this encore episode, listen in as Mike, Kristin and Nicole talk openly about this topic, and offer practical insights...

Aug 16, 2018

On this week's episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, we're kicking off a brand new season entitled "I Have A Question." We asked you to send us your biggest questions and we received a ton of great feedback. Today Mike and Kristin begin with "How Do I Help My Child Who Doesn't Have Services?"

Communicate, communicate, communicate! That's really what it comes down to when you're talking about a child you're caring for who doesn't need, or have, special services like an IEP (Individualized Education Plan), therapy, special medical services, a behavior plan, or more.

Jun 29, 2018

Will it disrupt their lives?  What about birth order?  Will it take away from time our kids are owed by us?  Is this going to make our kids feel pushed to the side?  If you have had these, or other concerns, for your biological kids when it comes to stepping into foster care,  you are not alone!

This week we are wrapping up Season 9 of The Honestly Adoption Podcast.  Be sure to listen in as Mike talks with Jason Johnson, author of Reframing Foster Care: Filtering Your Foster Parenting Journey through the Lens of the Gospel.  Jason shares honestly about the fears, and will encourage you to reframe how you think about how foster care might affect your biological children.

Jun 22, 2018

It could be for an intense situation with a child displaying sexual maladaptive behaviors or maybe a child acting out with volatile anger and you are needing to protect other children in your home. It might be a very basic plan for protecting children who have experienced trauma but aren't displaying intense behaviors themselves. While the details and needs will vary, developing safety plans are a common need for many foster and adoptive families and we are talking about it today on the Honestly Adoption Podcast.

In today's episode you will get a chance to listen to a replay of a live training that our host, Mike Berry, recently gave at Christian Alliance for Orphans Summit (CAFO) in 2018.    It may not be something you are looking forward to, but developing and maintaining a safety plan doesn't have to be a negative experience.  Listen in for some tips and encouragement for getting this job done well.

Jun 15, 2018

While we all wish that every adoption might lead to a healthy, thriving family, the truth is that the challenges can sometimes be more than a family can handle. What happens when a struggling adoptive family comes to the place of deciding it just isn't going to work? Adoption dissolution, more commonly referred to as adoption disruption, is a topic that is often avoided and one we haven't covered before on The Honestly Adoption Podcast.

This week, Mike is interviewing Lori Word, a new friend he met at CAFO this year, to talk about adopting from disruption.  Lori and her husband have been married for 29 years and have spent most of that in full time ministry.  Lori and her husband have adopted 7 children from disruptions and now have a passion for helping to equip adoptive families to find resources to help adopted children stay in their homes and avoid disruption if possible. 

Jun 8, 2018

Feeling isolated and alone? Have you found it hard to connect with other foster or adoptive parents in your area? Maybe there aren't many in your area. Even if you do have a great support system in real life, maybe you are looking for more training and resources to help you navigate this journey?

These are just some of the reasons we created Oasis Community!

Oasis Community is here to be your virtual support system that offers 24-7, 365 days a year online access to practical resources, relevant training, and parent to parent support.

Jun 1, 2018

Maybe your child(ren) don't have a noticeable special need or an official diagnosis and you've been wondering if you are just crazy, or if anyone else understands.  When it looks "normal" to everyone outside of the home, the day to day frustrations of dealing with invisible special needs can make foster and adoptive parents feel isolated and judged by those who just don't get it.

Mike is interviewing Jamie Worley, adoption blogger at, which was one of's 2018 Best Adoption Blogs. Jamie is passionate about encouraging other adoptive families and helping to educate those considering foster care and adoption.  Don't miss this opportunity to be encouraged with some practical steps and words of hope in understanding and dealing with the invisible special needs of adoption.

May 11, 2018

Season 9, episode 83. We hear it often: hundreds of thousands of children are without families and homes, all over the world. Whose problem is this? What does that really have to do with us and what can we do about it?

On today's episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, we talk openly with Think Orphan's Phil Darke about why the orphan crisis is everyone's problem. If you've ever wondered how you can be involved, beyond or in addition to foster care and adoption, this is an episode you won't want to miss!

Apr 27, 2018

Season 9, episode 82. There is such a big need today for valuable and encouraging resources speaking the truth that children in foster care are dearly loved!

Mike and Kristin are so excited to welcome their good friend, Jamie Kaeb to this 82nd episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast. Jami is the director of The Forgotten Initiative and The Forgotten Podcast. She and her husband have an interracial family with seven children by birth and adoption, both international and from foster-care. Believing that "awareness leads to action," Jami and the Forgotten Initiative have just written a new book series to encourage children within the foster system to know that they are dearly loved and cared for. She hopes these books will bring awareness into churches and schools so that even more people can be equipped to help provide love and care for vulnerable adults and children.

Apr 12, 2018

For today's podcast episode we wanted to throw it back to this past fall when Mike was joined by his Road Trip Co-founders and leaders, Jason Morriss and Andrew Schneidler. You are going to want to listen in to this episode. Early bird registration is now open for 2018 but will be ending on April 30th. Visit our official Road Trip Page here to learn more!

"It was only three days, but it was life-changing." -adoptive dad and 2017 Road Trip attendee.

These are the words we hear all the time from Road Trip alumni. This is simply a can't miss experience for foster and adoptive dads! Can just three days truly be life-changing? Find out as Mike reminisces with Andrew Schneidler and Jason Morris about this past fall's amazing Road Trip for foster and adoptive dads. What makes this event unique and unlike anything you've ever experienced?  Listen now to find out!

Mar 30, 2018

Season 9, episode 80. We know that the goal of foster care is reunification. But how do you successfully transition children out of your home and back with their families? In today's episode of The Honestly Adoption podcast, Mike and Kristin interview blogger, speaker, and foster care expert, Jamie Finn on the importance of having a transitional plan in place, and how to establish one that helps the children in your care transition as smoothly as possible.

Mar 22, 2018

Season 9, Episode 79. Welcome Back!  We are kicking off Season 9 of the Honestly Adoption Podcast with an incredible episode! Brian and Cherie Lowe join our hosts, Mike and Kristin Berry, to talk about why eliminating debt can help bring peace to your home, your heart, and your marriage and share some practical strategies for how you can do this even in a large foster or adoptive family.

Stressed out about finances again?  Wish you could save more money and eliminate debt?  Is that even possible for families who have many children and are in debt from adoption, cars, or other major expenses?


Feb 8, 2018

Season 8, episode 78. We’ve been expectantly awaiting this week…

It's our Season 8 finale of The Honestly Adoption Podcast and today we're talking all things new book, and how the Berrys began this whole adoption process in the first place...

We are celebrating this week’s book launch of Confessions of an Adoptive Parent from our very own co-founder and host, Mike Berry.  Guest hosting the show today is Matt McCarrick, who will interview Mike and ask all the questions you’ve been dying to know about the book, the launch, and where this all began.

Feb 1, 2018

Season 8, episode 77. That first real hug. Hearing "I love you mom," and knowing she means it. These are all things that most parents are accustomed to on a daily basis. But when your child has come from a traumatic past, these are moments you cherish more than gold.

In today's episode of Honestly Adoption we discuss this openly and share some practical advice on navigating the tricky waters of reactive attachment disorder. You're not alone! There is hope!

Jan 25, 2018

Season 8, episode 76. Fourteen years ago we began the adoption process for the first time. To say that we had no idea what we were doing is an understatement. We were clueless. We had more questions than answers. In fact, we wrote an entire book about this. It's easy to get lost in the process. A few years ago, Mike sat down with Julie Craft from The Adoption Support Center in Indianapolis to discuss the process and procedure couples will find in a private adoption agency. Later on we turned that audio into a podcast. In today's episode we're sharing an encore presentation of that podcast.

Jan 18, 2018

Season 8, episode 75. An Adoptee Story Of Overcoming Obstacles And Finding Identity

Jan 11, 2018

Season 8, Episode 74. When you're parenting a sensory-seeking child, you are often exhausted and at your wit's end. Before you give up hope, tune into today's podcast episode. By the end of the show, you will have a brand new perspective...

We are welcoming our good friend, and fellow foster and adoptive parent, Carrie Blaske to The Honestly Adoption Podcast today. This is an awesome interview! We're talking about a huge topic when it comes to the foster and adoptive journey: how to create a blueprint for helping your sensory-seeking child.

Jan 3, 2018

Season 8. Episode 73. You've been asking and we listened!  We are thrilled to welcome our good friends, David and Jayne Schooler from Back2Back Ministries, to the show today. They bring valuable insight and in-depth expertise to the discussion. Today we are talking about how to provide a healing home for children who have been deeply wounded.

It's never easy for a child, who's been through significant trauma, to step into a home they're unfamiliar with. Oftentimes, it only deepens their traumatic experience. It might leave you wondering, "Is there any way to provide a healing environment for this child?" The answer is, yes. Here's why...


Dec 27, 2017

With the holiday season in full stride, it won't be long before our kids will head back to school. Perhaps for you, this school year has been filled with challenges for your children. Have you ever wondered how to adequately express those issues to your child's teacher or principal? Today, on the show, we explore some strategies.

Mike and Kristin were recently interviewed by our good friend, Jami Kaeb from The Forgotten Initiative Podcast on how to navigate school challenges with children who have experienced significant trauma. In this replay, they are practical advice to help parents navigate the challenges their children experience at school.

Dec 20, 2017

The holiday season, specifically Christmas break, is often a dreaded time for foster and adoptive parents because it means a lack of normal structure for their kiddos. How do you navigate through this time successfully?

On today's episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, Mike and Kristin are joined by Licensed Mental Health Counselor and therapist, Ruth Graham as they discuss how to create structure during the chaos of the holidays. This is the conclusion of our 4-part holiday series entitled, "Holiday Survival Tips and Tricks."

Dec 13, 2017

Season 8, episode 70. The holiday season can be full of magic and wonder, expectations and fantasies.  What can a parent do to help their child, who struggles during this season, to make sense of how their own story fits in?

Join us this week as we welcome Brooke Randolph (LMHC) to our show for part 3 of our 4 part series, "Holiday Survival Tips and Tricks." Mike, Kristin, and Brooke will discuss how we can support our children through this holiday season.

Dec 6, 2017

Season 8, episode 69. Trees! Lights! Parties! Presents! Friends! Family! Concerts! Cookies! Candy!  How can you help your child navigate all of the overstimulation they are experiencing during this time of year?

The holiday season is full of fun and exciting sights, sounds, smells, treats, and activities. Mike and Kristin have asked their good friend, Jenn Hook, to join us today as they discuss some ways parents can handle overstimulation with their kids during the holiday season.  Listen in now for Part 2 of 4 in our "Holiday Survival Tips and Tricks Series."


Nov 30, 2017

[Holiday Survival Tips & Tricks] Season 8, Episode 68. Today we will be kicking off our new podcast series: Holiday Survival Tips and Tricks!  We will spend the next four weeks interviewing amazing therapists about how we can navigate the big emotions and hard moments, with our kids, that tend to rise up during the holiday season. Mike and Kristin are excited to kick off this series with therapist and adoptive dad, Lynn Owens, as they discuss how we can help our children process disappointment and loss.

Nov 22, 2017

Season 7. Episode 67. Jamie Finn knows foster care. As an active foster parent, she consistently cares for multiple children (mostly babies) at a time. She understands fully the ups, the downs, and everything in between when it comes to the emotions you'll experience. She's here today to tell you, foster care is worth it. Even when you have to say goodbye, this is worth it. Check out our interview with her now...

Nov 15, 2017

Season 7. Episode 66. Today, Mike and Kristin want to introduce you to the people who make Oasis happen and bring encouragement to weary parents worldwide: Karen Anderson, Jen Summers, Beaver Trumble, and Matt McCarrick. Karen, Jen, and Beaver are all adoptive and foster parents, who are part of the Oasis Care Team (the people who are available online for support and encouragement), and Matt oversees content editing, emails, and publishing details. Listen in to discover what they believe makes Oasis so special!

Nov 8, 2017

Season 7. Episode 65. An adoptee herself, Sherrie Eldridge has a passion for helping adoptive parents understand, and respond empathetically to, the unique emotional needs of their children.  You will be encouraged as Sherrie shares her story with Mike, and reflects on the journey she has taken to get where she is today.

Nov 1, 2017

Season 7, Episode 64. Can just three days truly be life-changing? Find out as Mike reminisces with Andrew Schneidler and Jason Morriss about this year's amazing Road Trip for foster and adoptive dads.  What makes this event unique and unlike anything you've ever experienced?  Listen now to find out!

Oct 25, 2017

Season 7, Episode 63. This week on The Honestly Adoption Podcast, we are excited to share with you one of our exclusive "Backstage Pass" interviews from Oasis Community, our support and resource site for adoptive and foster parents.  In this interview, Mike gets honest with Ryan North as they discuss parenting methods better suited for children from trauma. Believe us, you will not want to miss this interview! 

Oct 18, 2017

Season 7, Episode 62. On this episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, Mike welcomes Dr. Gary Feldman from the Stramski Children's Developmental Center to share some insights from his work with children at their International Adoption Clinic.

Oct 11, 2017

Season 7, Episode 61. In this episode, Mike and Kristin interview author and speaker, Natalie Brenner, on the topic of pain and grief. This is an important topic for all adoptive and foster parents. Natalie is the author of a wonderful book, This Undeserved Life: Uncovering the gifts of grief and the fullness of life.

Oct 4, 2017

Season 7, Episode 60. In this episode, Mike interviews Deborah Gray (LCSW) on the topic of Attachment. Today, Deborah offers both hope, as well as amazing advice, for any parent who is dealing with attachment issues.

Sep 27, 2017

Season 7, Episode 59. In this episode, Mike interviews Angela Tucker, a voice for transracial adoption and the focus of the popular documentary, Closure. Today, Angela has an open and honest conversation with Kristin and Mike on transracial adoption from the perspective of a transracial adoptee.

Sep 20, 2017

Season 7, Episode 58. This is it! The very first episode of the Honestly Adoption podcast. Formally the Honestly Speaking Parenting Podcast, we are headed in a new direction. In this episode, Mike interviews the one and only, Dr. Ira Chasnoff, about understanding the behaviors of children with FASD.

Sep 14, 2017

#TBT to Season 1, Season 4. In this episode we're revisiting an amazing episode we did back in Season 1 with Nikka Palmer.

Sep 7, 2017

TBT to Season 2, Episode 19. In this episode we interview our daughter on what an adoptee wants you to know about open adoption. 

Aug 31, 2017

#TBT session 2. In this episode we're tossing it all the way back to our very first episode a couple of years ago, "Can You Really Find Hope On The Road Of Foster Care and Adoption?"

Aug 24, 2017

#TBT- Season 2, Episode 14. In this very first episode of our special throwback Thursday edition (leading up to the re-launch of The Honestly Adoption Podcast), we're throwing it back to Season 2. 

Aug 16, 2017

Season 6, Episode 57. In the final episode of Season 6, Mike interviews adoptee Sandeep Thomas on his traumatic past, and finding hope in-spite of it.  

Aug 9, 2017

Season 6, Episode 56. In this episode, Mike interviews Lisa Qualls. Lisa's story is one of defeat, devastation, but also immense hope through unexpected trials. 

Aug 2, 2017

Season 6, Episode 55. In this episode Mike interviews Carrie Blaske about self care. 

Jul 25, 2017

Season 6, Episode 54. In this episode, Sandra Flach, from Justice For Orphans, interviews Mike on his and Kristin's adoptive journey.

Jul 19, 2017

Season 6, Episode 53. in this episode Mike interviews Jesse and Andrea DeBoer who are domestic and international adoptive parents, as well as foster parents in the US.

Jul 12, 2017

Season 6, Episode 52. In this episode, Mike interviews author and blogger Courtney Westlake on becoming a special needs parent without warning. 

Jun 28, 2017

Season 6, Episode 50. In this episode, Mike interviews one of our team members, Michelle McKinney on their journey in parenting children with a known disease that carries a lot of stigmas and mistruth. 

Jun 21, 2017

Season 6, Episode 49. In the Season 6 debut, Mike kicks off a new summer series entitled "The Stuff I Learned." His guest in this episode is Natalie Brenner, an author and blogger from Portland, Oregon. 

Jun 7, 2017

Season 6, Episode 51. In this episode, Mike interviews Megan Stroup, former Case Manger and now the director of a special visitation center in central Indiana called Helen's House.

May 25, 2017

Season 5, Episode 48. In this episode, the crew discusses some practical strategies to help navigate summer vacation with children who thrive in structure. 

May 17, 2017

Season 5, Episode 47. In this latest episode, the crew discusses how to effectively communicate the needs of your children if they don't have an IEP. 

May 11, 2017

Season 5, Episode 46. In this episode the crew discusses practical ways you can help your children navigate a world that is still very much racially divided. 

Apr 5, 2017

Season 5, Episode 45. In this episode we are answering one of the biggest questions we receive from foster and adoptive parents? How do you maintain a level of respect for birth parents when their choices are so bad?

Mar 29, 2017

Season 5, Episode 44. In this episode, Matt, Kristin, Mike and Nicole discuss practical steps you can take if you are about to re-enter the foster care journey.

Mar 22, 2017

Season 5, Episode 43. In this episode, the crew discusses the pros and cons of placing your child on medication, and some of the alternatives.

Mar 15, 2017

Season 5, Episode 42. In this episode Mike and Matt discuss 5 key things the church can do to better support foster and adoptive families. 

Mar 8, 2017

Season 5, Episode 41. In this episode Mike and Matt discuss practical tips for staying healthy as married couples when the journey of foster care and adoption becomes tough.

Feb 22, 2017

Season 5, Episode 40. In this episode Mike and our new host, Matt McCarrick discuss practical strategies to help parents who are in the trenches of raising children with FASD.

Feb 1, 2017

Season 4, Episode 39. In our conclusion of Season 4, we're in part 2 of Dads and Adoption, and we're talking about how a spouse can help her husband overcome his resistance of adoption.

Jan 26, 2017

Season 4, Episode 38. In this first of a 2-part series, we are talking about dads and adoption, and specifically why guys tend to be so resistant to adoption.

Jan 11, 2017

Season 4, Episode 37. In this episode we're sharing a recent recording from the debut Refresh Chicago conference. 

Dec 21, 2016

Season 4, Episode 36. In this episode Mike interviews Jason Weber, the National Director of Foster Care Initiatives at Christian Alliance For Orphans.

Dec 14, 2016

Season 4, Episode 35. In this episode we discuss some practical steps you can take if, or when, you are investigated by department of child services.

Dec 8, 2016

Season 4, Episode 34. In this episode we outline the 4 keys to finding the right people for your support system in foster care and adoption.

Nov 23, 2016

Season 4, Episode 33. In the episode we share a recent session we taught on self care. 

Nov 17, 2016

Season 4, Episode 32. In this episode we unpack what attachment disorders look like in foster care and adoption, and how to navigate the tricky waters of it.

Nov 9, 2016

Season 4, Episode 31. In this episode, Nicole Goerges, co-host of the podcast, turns the mic on Mike and Kristin and asks them this question.

Nov 2, 2016

Season 4, Episode 30. In this season debut Mike, Kristin and Nicole answer a big question- "Is everyone called to be a foster parent?"

Jun 2, 2016

Season 3, Episode 27. In this episode we share Part 2 from our 3-part parenting series, Parenting On Purpose. 

May 25, 2016

Season 3, Episode 26. In the very first session of a 3-part series, entitled Parenting On Purpose, we're beginning by talking about the need for us to create boundaries for ourselves as parents first and foremost.

May 18, 2016

Season 3, Episode 25. In this episode we discuss the 7 critical battles adoptive and foster parents must fight in order to win the war for the heart of their children.

May 11, 2016

Season 3, Episode 24. In this episode we're talking about how our stories as foster and adoptive parents can show the world hope.

May 4, 2016

Season 3, Episode 23. In this episode we're talking about finding hope even when everything you see and experience around you seems hopeless.

Apr 27, 2016

Season 3, Episode 22. In this episode, we discuss practical steps you can take when your difficult or out-of-control child pushes you to the edge or beyond. 

Apr 13, 2016

Season 3, Episode 21. We are replaying the audio from our hugely successful online Q&A webinar on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.

Apr 6, 2016

Season 3, Episode 20. In the season premier of The Honestly Speaking Parenting Podcast, we welcome our good friend Andrew Schneidler to the show to talk about something that ever men need to hear when it comes to the adoptive journey.

Mar 30, 2016

Season 2, Episode 19. In the season finale for season 2 we are interviewing our firstborn daughter Jaala on what it's like to be adopted and not have contact with her birth family.

Mar 23, 2016

Season 2, Episode 18. In this episode we share the amazing audio interview that Mike did with a woman named Tricia Collins. Her story is inspiring and motivating to any foster parent who feels like they're not making a difference.

Mar 9, 2016

Season 2, Episode 17. In this episode we discuss the ins and outs of fostering-to-adopt. In the interview with the Robbins family we'll discover how beautiful fostering to adopt is.

Feb 24, 2016

Season 2, Episode 16. In this episode we're discussing the process of private adoption as we share audio from an interview with the director of a private adoption agency.

Feb 17, 2016

Season 2, Episode 15. In this episode we're sharing the audio recording from The Prepped & Polished Podcast, where host Alexis Avila interviews Mike on the premise behind Confessions Of An Adoptive Parent, how to navigate big obstacles, and get through the common myths surrounding adoption.

Feb 10, 2016

Season 2, Episode 14. In this episode, Mike, Kristin and Nicole discuss the effects of reactive attachment disorder on children from traumatic pasts, and how to keep going even when your child keeps pushing you away.

Feb 3, 2016

Season 2, Episode 13. In this episode, Mike, Kristin and Nicole interview Ellen Stumbo from Disability Matters and, on what it takes to overcome the lonely battles that parenting children with special needs often brings. 

Jan 27, 2016

Season 2, Episode 12. In this episode we discuss practical steps to help foster and adoptive parents find more rest on the weary journey of parenting.

Jan 20, 2016

Season 2, Episode 11. In this episode we're playing back the audio from a video we recorded last year for adoptive and foster parents to share with their child's teachers. 

Jan 13, 2016

Season 2, Episode 10. In this episode we discuss 7 realities that anyone who is just starting out on the foster care journey should know. 

Jan 6, 2016

Season 2, Episode 9. In this episode Mike kicks off Season 2 by sharing the roadmap of the new season of The Honestly Speaking Podcast. We also share a recent webinar recording we did with The Refresh Conference founders, Andrew and Michele Schneidler. 

Dec 16, 2015

Season 1, Episode 8. In this episode Mike and Kristin discuss the value of a support system in foster care and adoption and why it's so critical to your health and well being on the journey. 

Dec 9, 2015

Season 1, Episode 7. In this episode we interview Denise Rose, who lost her son on December 24th, 2013. Denise shares the pain they went through and how they are continuing to live life each day in the wake of a devastating tragedy.  

Dec 2, 2015

Season 1, Episode 6. In this episode we talk through 10 things foster parents wish their case manager knew about their life and the children they are caring for. 

Nov 25, 2015

Season 1, Episode 5. In this episode we interview Peter and Krista Baughn who adopted two teenage boys internationally from Africa a little more than a year ago. One of their sons is HIV positive. They share with us how often misunderstood and judged HIV is and why they are choosing to do it all over again with their next adoption.  

Nov 18, 2015

Season 1, Episode 4. In this episode we interview Nikka Palmer who grew up bouncing from home to home through foster care. She witnessed first hand, drug and alcohol abuse, as well as domestic violence. At one point she was even caught in a house fire. She survived, against all odds, and today is a wife, mother and public school teacher. She and her husband are working hard to break the cycle of foster care, abuse, and domestic violence by loving and leading their children and the children they care for through foster care. If you're an adoptive or foster parent this is an episode you must listen to!

Nov 11, 2015

Season 1, Episode 3. In today's show Mike sits down with Bruce Humphrey, father of a child diagnosed with autism, to discuss how he learned to live with the reality of his son's special need. Bruce shares openly and honestly how we blamed himself for many years, and even tried to fix his son's disorder. 

Nov 3, 2015

Season 1, Episode 2 of The Honestly Speaking Parenting Podcast. In this episode Mike and Kristin sit down with comedian, author, and Compassion International representative, Tony Wolf to discuss what a life lived with compassion really looks like and how it can have a big impact on the world we live in!

Oct 27, 2015

In this debut episode, we pose the question, "Can you really find rest on the weary road of parenting, particular foster, adoptive or special needs parenting?" We answer this big question by walking through 5 key action steps you as a parent can take to help you find the rest you need and finally stop feeling alone!

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