03 November 2013

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome / Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder FAS/FASD and the Need for Biblical Counseling Material

On January 31, 2008, I wrote a post on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FAS/FASD).  That was nearly six years ago. A lot has happened in our world during those six years. I honestly expected to find some biblical counseling information on FAS/FASD.  Unfortunately, among those who are foremost in providing resources for biblical counselors; those who publish scholarly articles in the Journal of Biblical Counseling; provide resources for NANC, and write books that help us look at the problems in our lives through a biblical lens,  there has yet to be an article, sermon or book written specifically on how to help someone with FAS/FASD.  I am hoping using their information will lead them to this article and they will consider changing this. We need material on FAS/FASD from a biblical perspective.

Recently I have been contacted by a couple of different people who stumbled upon my blog looking for biblical counseling resources specific to parenting children with FAS/FASD. They have asked me if I have resources to offer them and I have promised to look. The search began. 

I have looked through all of the books I have. I have scoured my Journals of Biblical Counseling.  I have searched the internet. Although I am fairly accomplished at finding resources, I know someone who is far better than I.  He's the man that challenged me, when my goal was a doctorate in psychology, to evaluate the congruence of my faith in God and His Word with my faith in psychology when it come to healing souls.  I have called him Mr Resource for years. He's Dr. Resource now. He too went on a search for material and like me he has come up empty handed.  I found a link dated in 2009 requesting Mike Emlet  write something addressing FAS/FASD.  Dr. Resource recently asked Dr. Emlet if there were any resources he could think of and he said no. 

I hope that you, my parents looking for resources, do not stop reading at this point. I am not giving up and I do not want you to give up.  In searching I found a treasure trove of articles, sermons, and material that may hold answers for you, even though it is not labeled specifically for FAS/FASD. I am going to list a group of links for you to look through. It may take quite a bit of work, but I plan to see if I can help synthesize some of the information. Honestly, it seems overwhelming.  I am not a doctor of any kind and I probably have never had an original thought of my own. I am, however, fairly determined and tenacious. 

I may start by taking this article on FAS/FASD and researching each of the challenges they list from a biblical perspective. For instance, hyperactivity and attention deficits are listed.  Ed Welch at CCEF has some fabulous resources on ADD/ADHD:

Similarly,  Mike Emlet's work on parenting angry children may be a benefit: 

Meanwhile, I want to list some links for you to go through yourself. I hope some of them will provide you comfort and encouragement. I want to remind you that our Gracious Father does not ask us to do what He is unwilling to equip and support us through. He did not lead the Israelites out of Egypt to the edge of the Red Sea and tell them to figure things out from there. He provides grace that is sufficient.  Hang in there with hope!

I am personally unfamiliar with this material but they are recommended or written by people I trust.

Your Special Needs Child  (This resource is for single parents but I am hoping it has some help for any parent.)

Steve Viars

Psalm 29:11

 May the Lord give strength to his people!
    May the Lord bless his people with peace!


Mandy said...

You might like, and might I dare even say LOVE, "Parenting the Difficult Child" by Linda J. Rice. She is a NANC (now ACBC) certified counselor, and while the book is technically on RAD children, a lot of the principles could easily apply to FAS. It's a new book that my associate pastor recommend since my husband and I are going through the adoption process. I hope this helps! But I agree...the Biblical Counseling movement needs to get material out about FAS, and in my opinion, other adoption-related issues. God bless!

Lynda Belden said...

As a biblical counselor in Alaska, where there is a high rate of alcohol-related problems, there are many concerns about FAS. I, too, continue to look for counseling resources for FAS. One resource I have found very helpful is Dr. Laura Hendrickson's audio presentation and outline, "But My Child is Different." Though it is about her personal journey with her son who has Autism, it also holds much biblical relevance for families impacted by FAS. Here is the link for that presentation. http://www.ibcd.org/resources/messages/cdc2-35-but-my-child-is-different/.