Saturday, June 13, 2009

My Son is Home for the Weekend

My youngest son is home for the weekend (4 day pass from the Army). You wouldn't guess that he left under such rough terms. Still, we keep the expectations low and things generally work out.

His mouth is not what I would pick, but is not as bad as it could be. He has clearly strayed at least some from our guidance, but I will bet more of it is there than we expected.

Time will ultimately tell how much really sank in and how much he reverted to the habits of the birth family. They are not all bad, but a few are, in my opinion, so it is a bit of an emotional hit to realize.

Of course I shouldn't worry, but what true father doesn't have some concern?


Sunday, June 07, 2009

Attachment Trauma Network

One group that we received a lot of help from in the later parts of our journey with our children was the Attachment Trauma Network. This is one group that real does get it in the whole area of adoption and attachment troubles.

They have a lot of free resources to help out and the annual membership is very affordable and worthwhile. I highly recommend anyone dealing with the issues I cover in this blog to check them out.

You really aren't alone!


Keeping in Love

I have been listening to a tape series by Andrew Wommack titled God's Kind Of Love Through You.

His main point is to not let others control you and to always walk in love. That is incredibly hard when you go through the rapids as I have noted here (including ongoing rejection), but I have to agree that it is vitally necessary. This is a good point, whatever your general view on the rest of his teaching or even Christianity in general.

Keeping that love focus is the only way to be open for your children. While it can be hard to believe, they really do need you, even while they are rejecting you. You need to stay in love so that you can be their (in love) when (or if) they decide to return.

This doesn't mean this is easy. It is harder to let things slide when the slide tends to go into a wall!

Nevertheless, you need that love to continue to guide you for your own sake, even it not for them. Holding the hurt and bitterness is not helpful, though it can be incredibly hard to figure out how to not let it rise up with each and every offense, many of which remain intentional.

This is not the road I would have picked, but since I am on it I will keep following it the best I can!


Staying Strong without Good Support

I have written a lot here about my struggles with keeping a positive attitude without firm external support. That has been the hardest part of my journey down the adoption path. This direction didn't bother me when I started, I wasn't all that concerned how children came into my life. Being rejected by all 4 of them was the hardest pill to swallow though. While it is not surprising, it has really shaken me to my core.

While I maintain many of my core beliefs, doing so alone has been a tremendous challenge.

I would say that everyone just starting down this path should find some solid support first, but I am not sure that is easy to find. I may work on some solutions to this in the future, at least for those in my area, but finding support that isn't talked out of it can be incredibly difficult.

Even my own wife got swayed at times by our children because of my firm stance against many bad things. It sometimes seemed like I was just being hard, but in reality, I was seeing what was coming and desperately trying to stop it. Being someone who sees things that are coming is good and bad.

Knowing they are coming leads me to prepare for them, but it also causes me to face them before others are willing to deal with the issues being raised. Many times it seems easier for others to pretend things really aren't going the way I see. While I am not always exactly right, I believe I have been right enough to have validated that I did indeed identify the exact right issue.

Some of that has been validated after the fact, but that still makes for a bumpy ride emotionally.

I will be working through some thoughts on how to do this successfully. I am not sure I did everything exactly right (though I did correctly identify most things ahead of time), but thinking through it here may help someone else work through their own struggle, so it is worth doing.

These children really do need a family, but many will reject it (at least for a while). You are not a saint for doing things (nor was I), but you do need a lot more coming in than you may realize when you are going through the rapids.