Gayle Swift has been a coach for fifteen years, an adoptive parent for over thirty years and a foster parent. A parent of two children adopted domestically as infants, Gayle has a special passion for working with adoptive families. She enjoys coaching families who
have experienced challenges with their children.
Gayle knows first-hand that family life includes bumps, twists, turns, and the occasional pothole–some of them wide and deep! She believes addressing conflict can bring families closer as they work towards solutions together. Adoption has brought incredible joy to Gayle and has proven to be the hardest job she has ever loved and would never quit. Working with other adopted/foster families brings purpose and deep personal satisfaction to Gayle.
Gayle works with motivated clients to clarify their vision for their families and to articulate the deeply held values that define them. Her coaching works as a stepping stone to bring the family dream into reality. She operates with an inquisitive, neutral, yet rigorous style. Families will examine how they are being effective, capitalize on their strengths, and identify where their learning opportunities lie. She believes it is important for families to be educated on the complex issues that impact adopted families. This
greater understanding brings increased effectiveness and connection.
Gayle uses her love of writing to serve her goal of supporting adoptees and their families. she co-wrote ABC, Adoption and Me with her daughter, Casey. It has garnered many awards including being named a Favorite Read of 2013 by Adoptive Families. They recently released a revised and re-illustrated version which has been named a Finalist in the 2020 Next Generation Indie Book Awards (NGIBA). Gayle and Casey also co-authored We're Adopted, So What? a book aimed at middle-school-age adoptees. It also was a finalist in the 2020 Next Generation Indie Book Awards (NGIBA).
Gayle co-authored Reimagining Adoption: What Adoptees Really Seek from Families and Faith with GIFT coach Sally Ankerfelt. It was published in 2019 and won a Gold Royal Palm Literary Award from the Florida Writers Association. Gayle has personal experience with reunion in adoption as both of her children reconnected with their birth mothers in adulthood. In 2020, her son reconnected with his birth father. She understands the complexity, benefits, and challenges as well as the joys and disappointments that can occur and is convinced that the benefit far outweighs the effort!
Gayle writes most of the “Growing Intentional Families Together” blogs for GIFT Family Services.
In her blog, “Writing to Connect,” Gayle reviews children’s books through an adoption-attuned lens. She identifies talking points that can be used to open adoption-related discussions between child and parent. Using general interest books to open such sensitive and vital subjects helps the conversations flow more naturally.
Professional Development and Education
Presenter, NACAC annual conference, 2017
Presenter, Adoption Summit Experience 2015
Certified Performance Coach, Resource Realizations, 2003
Certified Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming, Resource Realizations
Certified Prepare/Enrich Marital and Pre-marital Inventory Administrator and Counselor, including the Adoption Assessment
Completed the following ALP trainings:
• Discipline and the Adopted Child, Ain’t Misbehavin’
• Adoption and Classroom Success: Beyond the Basics
• Finding the Missing Pieces: Helping Adopted Children Cope with Grief and Loss<
• Is It an Adoption Thing?
• The Journey of Attachment
• Tough Starts: Brain Development Matters
• We’re Home! Now what? For Parents of Newly Adopted Toddlers/Preschoolers
• Building Bonds of Attachment: Practical, Expert Advice
B.S. Education, Boston University; Former Editor of FACT Matters, an adoption newsletter; Community and PTA volunteer; Board Member-Hibiscus Children’s Shelter; Former foster parent, Small business owner
"Gayle provided us with numerous tools and exercises to work on our family issues ... She proved to be extremely insightful in analyzing information ... regarding issues, successes, and breakdowns in communication with our family ... Gayle always provided us with a calm and patient anchor, especially during times when there were serious issues or breakdowns ... She is a fantastic coach." M.P., D.P., and A.P.
“… I established a relationship with our new family coach, Gayle Swift. She wasn’t just any family coach, but was in tune with all that we had learned….She provided support for me and my son once he was home, without any break in continuity…Gayle helped us through a few rough spots we encountered in a non-judgmental, caring way. Her patience with my son was unsurpassed because there were times when he was reluctant to open up, but she had a way to rephrasing and redirecting the conversation to draw him into the call. I would highly recommend Gayle as a family coach. A family coach is your guardian angel." --K.F.
"She helped us as we discussed and dealt with numerous issues, some which we had never discussed as a family before. We found Gayle’s approach, which came from a position of neutrality, and encouraged us to look at ourselves and the situation and help us to come up with our own answers and solutions. She provided us with invaluable assistance…we wanted to use every tool that we had available to us as we worked to re-establish our whole and happy family… we wanted her to be our family coach." -- Anonymous
"Gayle provided us with numerous tools and exercises to work on our family issues before and especially after our son’s graduation… She proved to be extremely insightful in analyzing information we provided her with regarding issues, successes and breakdowns in communication within our family…having someone who knew us and our specific family situation helped to personalize and focus that information into helping us to use the information to the best effect. Gayle always provided us with a calm and patient anchor, especially during times when there were serious issues or breakdowns." -- Anonymous
"Based on our wonderful experience, our family would strongly encourage any family to enlist the aid of a coach, and specifically recommend Gayle to be their personal family coach. She is a fantastic coach and a marvelous human being." -- The P family