Beware the trap of meeting all your child’s needs, but one–loving engagement. If you don’t have loving engagement to give, then spare yourself from adopting a child from difficult beginnings or raising any child for that matter. Structure is a very important part of therapeutic parenting, though it in no way heals the broken, fearful, traumatized heart of an adopted child.
Structure without nurture is institutional. Institutions do not have what it takes to heal the wounds of complex trauma to the core. Only structure with love and empathy will do that. If you have adopted a child for God because you love God though you cannot feel love for your child, then I am sure God would not want you to do such a thing. Utilitarian parenting will further manifest the wounds of the child. It is hard enough to raise a traumatized child with structure and love into a well adjusted person in society. Without love, maybe it’s easier for the parent (though I am not so sure about that), but a disservice to the child.
Okay, it is possible I am on a soap box. Maybe I ran into one too many folks in utilitarian mode, and I am tipped over into talking about it. It is okay not to adopt if you have all the means and none of the love warrior spirit. No shame in admitting that. None at all.
By the way, if you have lost your heart along the journey, I feel certain you can find it again with respite, self-care, and therapeutic help. Sometimes depression, exhaustion, desperation, lack of support, and hopelessness seeps in around the edges and can lead to utilitarian parenting. I surely understand that. Get help to find your heart again for your child and for yourself.
The next 8 hr. Trust Based Parent Training is scheduled for April 23rd and 30th from 12noon to 4pm. $200 per couple. Childcare available for $30 each day, second child $10 additional. To sign up email Jen@attachplace.com and she will register you.