Attachment Series: Repeat.

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Attachment is a critical component for all families, but especially for those who adopt. Many days it can feel like you are walking barefoot uphill both ways in the snow, but better days are almost always just around the bend. It is easy to hope and wait for that moment when you

arrive

as an adoptive family, when your child is completely attached to you and you are completely attached to them and the world is filled with naught but buttercups and daisies.

Spoiler alert:

There is no moment of arrival with attachment.

If you only take away one sliver of this series, let it be that attachment is a perpetual process. It is true that some days are easier and some days are harder, but know that attachment requires time and effort. Forever.

They don’t call us “forever families” for nothing.

Practical ways to maintain, monitor, and reflect on your child’s attachment:

-Keep a journal (As in a hand-written private journal. NOT a blog. Attachment is a messy business and if you ever want your children to love you once they learn how to read, do not post the nitty gritty of their attachment struggles for the whole world to read.

But Michelle, you’ve posted some attachment stuff about Pearl on your blog.

Heavens

to Betsy, if all we have been through are the three specifics I have typed about her here...and I reviewed those tediously before sharing publicly...then our world

would

be all buttercups and daisies.)

-Spend one on one time with your adopted children. Actually, same goes for all your kids. If you have a minivan full like me, that’s going to be hard. Worth it, though.

-I heard

this lady

speak once on taking walks with your children so that you provide them with an informal, no pressure environment to talk to you without having to look you in the eye. Smart stuff. Plus, walking is salubrious, so there’s an added bonus.

-Attend conferences.

This one

is hands down, the best one for adoptive mamas. Save up, cash in points, whatever…just go.

-Listen to your children. They aren’t going to tell us over dinner that they are struggling with attachment, but they tell us plenty by how the behave and react to situations in their lives. Listen and respond to their needs. 

Questions? Concerns? Comments?

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