FASD- What thoughts come to mind when you hear that acronym? Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Disorder is a relatively new term but over the last few decades much research has been done and we are the beneficiaries. Take some time to review the information here but don’t just review it. Open your mind to the possibility that perhaps your conceptions about this malady are, in truth, misconceptions! One of the books recommended for learning about FASD is “Trying Differently Rather than Harder” by Diane Malbin. It is an excellent resource. Faylene Wiebe has written the following article citing various parts of this book.
Holy, Holy, Holy! Lord God Almighty! Early in the morning our song shall rise to Thee;
Holy, Holy, Holy! Merciful and Mighty! God in Three Persons, blessed Trinity!
Holy! Holy! Holy! All the saints adore Thee, Casting down their golden crowns around the glassy sea;
Cherubim and seraphim falling down before Thee, Who was and is and evermore shall be.
Holy! Holy! Holy! Tho’ the darkness hide Thee, Tho’ the eye of sinful man Thy glory may not see,
Only Thou art holy; there is none beside Thee Perfect in Power, love, and purity.
Holy! Holy! Holy! Lord God Almighty! All Thy works shall praise thy name, in earth and sky and sea;
Holy! Holy! Holy! Merciful and Mighty! God in Three Persons, blessed Trinity! Amen
Reginald Heber, John B Dykes
It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is Thy faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23 I’ve been thinking of the mercy of God and how we need mercy one with another, especially as it applies to children/people with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. I feel like Fetal Alcohol Disorders is a vast subject and that we need to gain as much knowledge as we can to try to understand what people with FASD are dealing with and the challenges they face. One book that I feel explains it very well is “Teaching Students with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders”. It is put out by the Florida State University for Prevention and Early Intervention Policy. A PDF is available if you Google the book title with the words, “Florida school”.
Diane Malbin also has a power point presentation on the neurobehavioral model of dealing with FASD.
Eric Osborne has been a featured speaker at various care meetings in the past. He has a wealth of knowledge and experience with dealing with children who are affected by FASD. Check out his website at tfmnotalone.org. He also has a power point presentation found here: https://youtu.be/jEpEDFTtMB4 and an eBook titled “Peace in the Midst Of…”
Other websites you may find helpful are found below:
Jeff Noble is the Founder and CEO of, an organization that provides hope and education to people caring for someone living with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) through online applications and in-person training sessions, demonstrations and consultations. Jeff has also written the book, “Making Sense of the Madness”.
FASD United was established in 1990 as the National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (NOFAS). Activist and author, Patricia Munter, had observed the consequences of prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE) and fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD), then known as fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), in her visits to communities in New Mexico and South Dakota. Now the challenge is to push ahead further and faster, together as a determined united movement, to fulfill the promise of prevention and meet the needs of the courageous and deserving children, adults, and families living with FASD.
FASCETS has created an approach to understanding FASD from a completely different perspective, known as the Neurobehavioral Model. This model is applicable to FASD and any other brain-based conditions, including, but not limited to, autism, ADHD, acquired brain injuries, stroke, dementia, and many others. Our model helps establish the link between the brain and presenting behaviors.
“Are there any helpful books?”, you ask. Check out this list! Some also appear in our resources for children from hard places.
The Broken Cord, Michael Dorris
When Michael Dorris, 26, single and working on his doctorate, applied to adopt child, his request was speedily granted. He knew that his new three-year-old son, Adam, was badly developmentally disabled; but he believed in the power of nurture and love. READ MORE
The Connected Child and The Connected Parent, both by Karyn Purvis with different co-authors,
Parenting under the best of circumstances is difficult, but because of their unique needs, raising children from hard places brings additional challenges. You might discover that traditional techniques that may have worked for you with your birth children are not working with your adopted or foster child. READ MORE
Damaged Angels, Bonnie Buxton
An adoptive mother writes the book she wishes had been available — sympathetic, up-to-date, useful, hopeful and highly readable — when her family welcomed a little girl not knowing that she struggled with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD). READ MORE
Making Sense of the Madness, Jeff Noble
Jeff thought he knew all about FASD… until he started parenting a teenager with it! READ MORE
The Out-of-Sync Child, Dr Carol S Kranowitz
The Out-of-Sync Child offers comprehensive, clear information for parents and professionals–and a drug-free treatment approach for children. READ MORE
Trying Differently Rather than Harder, Diane Malbin
This book provides a readable, narrative discussion of the neurobehavioral approach for working effectively with children, adolescents, and adults with FASD. READ MORE
The Whole-brain Child , Dan Seigal
In this pioneering, practical book, Daniel J. Siegel, neuropsychiatrist, and parenting expert Tina Payne Bryson offer a revolutionary approach to child rearing with twelve key strategies that foster healthy brain development, leading to calmer, happier children. READ MORE
The Broken Cord by Michael Dorris
When Michael Dorris, 26, single and working on his doctorate, applied to adopt child, his request was speedily granted. He knew that his new three-year-old son, Adam, was badly developmentally disabled; but he believed in the power of nurture and love. This is the heartrending story, full of compassion and rage, of how his son grew up with challenges stemming from fetal alcohol syndrome, and the sheer willpower and love it took to meet them. The volume includes a short account of his own life by the 20-year-old Adam, and a foreword by Dorris’ wife, the writer Louise Erdrich.
The Connected Child and The Connected Parent, both by Karyn Purvis with different co-authors
Parenting under the best of circumstances is difficult, but because of their unique needs, raising children from hard places brings additional challenges. You might discover that traditional techniques that may have worked for you with your birth children are not working with your adopted or foster child.
Renowned child development expert Dr. Karyn Purvis will give you practical advice and powerful tools you can use to encourage secure attachment in your child. You will benefit from Karyn’s decades of research and understanding, plus some hands-on experience and successful implementation of the strategies shared.
You will learn how to simplify your approach using scripts, nurture your child, combat chronic fear, teach respect, and develop other valuable skills to add to your parenting toolbox.
Damaged Angels by Bonnie Buxton
An adoptive mother writes the book she wishes had been available — sympathetic, up-to-date, useful, hopeful and highly readable — when her family welcomed a little girl not knowing that she struggled with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD).
When Bonnie and her husband adopted Colette, she was three years old. Big for her age, she had walked alone at eleven months, had excellent verbal skills, a thick mane of curly blonde hair and a sturdy little body. They were thrilled with their gregarious second daughter, a great sister for six-year-old Cleo. But although Colette was bright and delightful, a litany of problems soon presented itself. By the time she hit first grade, her parents were coping with her frequent stealing and lying, and her learning difficulties, which necessitated special education. At the age of fourteen, she discovered drugs and sex; by eighteen, in spite of the love and support provided by her adoptive family, she was a crack addict living on the streets. After seven frustrating years of consulting numerous therapists, a TV item gave Bonnie the answer — and sent her on a quest for diagnosis and help for her daughter.
Making Sense of the Madness by Jeff Noble
Jeff thought he knew all about FASD… until he started parenting a teenager with it! Jeff and his partner, Tara had been front line staff for many years and both felt they had the tools and experience to successfully parent a special needs teen and still be able to manage their home, relationship, friends and day-to-day life. They were wrong. Through a ton of mishaps, wrong turns, failed attempts and the occasional win, Jeff and Tara were able to keep their heads above water until eventually discovering a few key principles that changed their lives. Making Sense of the Madness: An FASD Survival Guide will provide readers with key principles and ‘lightbulb moments’ of discovery that will make positive changes in the way they understand, interpret and support individuals affected by an FASD. Jeff’s website is fasdsuccess.com.
The Out-of-Sync Child by Dr Carol S Kranowitz
The Out-of-Sync Child offers comprehensive, clear information for parents and professionals–and a drug-free treatment approach for children.
Does your child exhibit…
Over-responsivity–or under-responsivity–to touch or movement? A child with SPD may be a “sensory avoider,” withdrawing from touch, refusing to wear certain clothing, avoiding active games–or he may be a “sensory disregarder,” needing a jump start to get moving.
Over-responsivity–or under-responsivity–to sounds, sights taste, or smell? She may cover her ears or eyes, be a picky eater, or seem oblivious to sensory cues.
Cravings for sensation? The “sensory craver” never gets enough of certain sensations, e.g., messy play, spicy food, noisy action, and perpetual movement.
Poor sensory discrimination? She may not sense the difference between objects or experiences–unaware of what she’s holding unless she looks, and unable to sense when she’s falling or how to catch herself.
Unusually high or low activity level? The child may be constantly on the go–wearing out everyone around him–or move slowly and tire easily, showing little interest in the world.
Problems with posture or motor coordination? He may slouch, move awkwardly, seem careless or accident-prone.
A newer version of this book will be available in April 2022
Trying Differently Rather than Harder by Diane Malbin
This book provides a readable, narrative discussion of the neurobehavioral approach for working effectively with children, adolescents, and adults with FASD. After a brief review of the diagnosis, the focus is on understanding behaviors differently — primary and secondary learning and behavioral characteristics. One section explores the most common behavioral symptoms by providing case examples, interventions, and improved outcomes. The neurobehavioral approach in Trying Differently Rather Than Harder is illustrated by stories of how alternative interventions lead to less frustration. Available from fascets.org
The Whole-brain Child by Dan Seigal
In this pioneering, practical book, Daniel J. Siegel, neuropsychiatrist, and parenting expert Tina Payne Bryson offer a revolutionary approach to child rearing with twelve key strategies that foster healthy brain development, leading to calmer, happier children. The authors explain—and make accessible—the new science of how a child’s brain is wired and how it matures. The “upstairs brain,” which makes decisions and balances emotions, is under construction until the mid-twenties. And especially in young children, the right brain and its emotions tend to rule over the logic of the left brain. No wonder kids throw tantrums, fight, or sulk in silence. By applying these discoveries to everyday parenting, you can turn any outburst, argument, or fear into a chance to integrate your child’s brain and foster vital growth. Complete with age-appropriate strategies for dealing with day-to-day struggles and illustrations that will help you explain these concepts to your child, The Whole-Brain Child shows you how to cultivate healthy emotional and intellectual development so that your children can lead balanced, meaningful, and connected lives. A workbook is also available to go along with this book.