In church on Sunday, the pastor used a quote by C. S. Lewis to illustrate why it is important that the Church be comprised believers being corporately together. It was an interesting discussion, but I was struck by the quote.
"In each of my friends there is something that only some other friend can fully bring out. By myself I am not large enough to call the whole man into activity; I want other lights than my own to show all his facets." C. S. Lewis from The Four Loves
This is the closest I have ever come to being able to explain what having many children is like. It is not just that there are many individual people in a large family, but on top of the individuals, there are all the connections between them. Each child brings out something different in each of the other people in the family. Things about that person that might not have been brought out in any other way. Of course, sometimes it happens that these traits are not altogether positive, but mostly they are. We ar…
As you know, my mom visited this past week, and then we drove her to Iowa so she could visit my brother and his family. For most of my people, this was alright. They were sad to see Grammy go, but understood that we will see her again. Most of my people. In fact, all but one of my people were okay. And then there was R.
We have had a very long few days here with R. Having Grammy visit, and then having Grammy go has triggered my poor girl beyond measure. Since R. is still exhibiting some extreme indiscriminate affection, she feels most comfortable finding emotional fixes from people whom she doesn't know or who she doesn't see very often. Because I loosened up me vigilance a bit about who R. gets to cling to for my mother... grandmothers get special passes... in R.'s world, that made Grammy even more appealing.
And then she left.
She left just like every other person has in R.'s world, except her adoptive parents. I hold no illusions that she probably figures that we wi…
If you are part of the adoption world, this phrase is probably very familiar, if you're not (and I know I have more than a few readers who have landed here who are not) it might not mean anything to you. So, in the interest of continuing education, that's what I'm going to write about today.
Indiscriminate affection is the term used to describe the behavior of children who are willing to love anyone and everyone. It is a survival mechanism born out of not having a person to permanently attach to. An orphanage is not a natural place for a child and to survive it, children cope in different ways. Learning to gain the attention and affection of the adults who are there is one of these ways. And what better way to get the attention and affection of those adults than to be charming and make them think this particular child is madly in love with them. Even if the child just happened to meet that particular adult five minutes ago. And the behavior works and so is encouraged.