Article two in the adoption series
by Dr. Art Martin
Some parents want to have a family and can not find a child to adopt in the US so they adopt children from Eastern Europe, Asia and third world countries. Most of these children have been traumatized by birth rejection, parents who could not take care of them, living conditions, wars, natural disasters and so on. Many of them have been living in orphanages or passed around to family members or people who would take care of them. Some may have been homeless children.
What was going to be happiness and joy of having a family turns into a major disaster. It feels like a hornets nest you can’t get away from. Adoption can prove to be a horror story where you can not walk out or stop it. The story goes on and on until the parent either breaks down or goes into depression thinking they have failed because they are not able control their child. This does not happen in every case. It depends on the amout of trauma the child hyas been subjected to.
The story of Justin Hansen is just one of the published stories. Some of the 15 known Russian children who were adopted by well meaning parents were killed in the US since 1996. What would cause a parent who wanted a family trying desperately to support and provide affection resort to such behavior? It is a real tangled net which the psychological, medical and criminal justice field do not have the slightest idea why parents go off the deep end. I have talked with many of these parents in sessions. They become so frustrated as the turmoil in the family becomes worse and more intense so many times they resort to violence in attempt control their child. Parents tell me stories of how they freak out because they can not handle the conflicts any longer. They are angry at themselves for bringing a hornets nest into their family. When they look back at it in retrospect after we have removed the hornets nest, they have a hard time realizing how the behavior they acted out was them. What do you do when you can’t cope any longer? When we get into a survival mode we will act out behavior which we would not normally do.
You can see why Justin Hansen’s adopted mother reacted the way she did. It was her survival or his. She knew if she had to deal with him any longer she would do physical harm to him. So she had to get him out of her life. The only problem is the psychological and legal system in this country does not understand the desperation and fear mothers are feeling so they treat it as criminal matter. The criminal justice system needs to wake up and understand why normal people go off the deep end.
Many people do not believe a baby can think or understand what is happening around them so we can do anything we want and it will not have any effects on them. Frederick Laboyer, a French doctor wrote a book entitled Birth Without Violence. In his book he described all the birthing methods which cause trauma to babies. He also interviewed many mothers and prospective mothers to find out what their feeling and awareness about how they view a baby’s ability to understand what is happening to them. He was appalled to find that most mothers and prospective mothers did not think a fetus or a baby was affected by their actions or the activity around them. In his research he found that many of the childhood conflicts and behavior problems had their root causes in the first six months of the child’s life.
The main conflict I have found in children with reactive behavior is they do not trust anyone. They have been rejected and abandoned at birth or in the first year of their life so they feel there must be something wrong with them. It is interesting to note that this same behavior happens with children who were born into a family who raised them from birth. The mothers attitudes and beliefs about birthing a child is so critical it will control their behavior throughout the child’s life no matter if they are from their family of origin or adopted. With all of the people I have worked with in the last thirty years including children, I have discovered 70% feel they were rejected before they were born. It is not conjecture on my part. This information comes directly from the data base in their subconscious mind. Reactionary behavior is not primarily in adopted children. I found it is in all types of families due to parents not understanding how to handle children and lack of unconditional love in the family. It is exaggerated in adopted children because they were rejected by their birth mother after birth and many times did not get to an adopted family until they were four years old. During this time many traumatic experiences could have happened.
We are very closely attached to our mother for the first five years of our life. If we get separated or rejected by our mother it becomes very traumatizing to a child. If our mother did not want the child she gave birth to, this is the first traumatizing experience. If she abandoned her child after birth this becomes another traumatizing experience. In the US most babies are put out for adoption in the first two months which is a better solution but it still causes rejection by the birth mother.
Each situation where the child feels abandoned or unwanted sets up another traumatic experience. As these experiences build the child becomes fearful that nobody cares for them. They begin rejecting themselves building up a mind set that they have no value and can not trust anyone. In some children I have worked with I have found behavior patterns where the child is trying to fail in school to prove to their parents they should not have adopted them because they have no value. The child does not know this consciously so they are frustrated at failing but they can not seem to do anything about it. The parents begin blaming themselves and sometimes even sending the child to private school or hiring a tutor. This does not stop the failure programs because the comprehension of the subject is not the cause. A deeply imbedded program such as this can not be addressed in today’s therapy systems because they have no method to understand this pattern. As a result they do not have any clues as to what the root cause of it is. We can only access this from the child’s Subconscious Mind. It will tell us the truth and the root cause of the pattern. Once we know what the pattern is we can delete it and release it. This can accomplished easily. The method I use is Neuro-Kinesiology. We use the persons arm to indicate yes and no answers by pushing the arm down. Strong up is yes, weak down is no. (this method is described in my book “Your Body Is Talking Are Listening).
Adopted children have been rejected by their birth mother and possibly many other people so they will not allow adopted parents to get close to them until they feel they can trust them. This may seem to be simple but it is hard to understand. It is not the child’s problem at all. It is the parent’s problem. The child can not feel this trust until they know the parents have the ability to provide support, unconditional love, acceptance, approval, validation, acknowledgement, trust and respect for them. The catch in this is if the parents do not have these qualities in their core being they may not know it but the child will sense it and react by pushing the parents away. The only way to solve this is to recover the unconditional love program the parents lost when they were a child. When they do, it is like magic, the child will be attracted to the parent and the fear is gone. The law of attrition will not work until we remove all the fear, anger and resentment from the child. I have seen these miracles happen right in from of my eyes. I have had mothers tell me “you have given my son or daughter back to me.” Life changes dramatically as the fear of intimacy and fear of commitment is gone. The resentment and anger are gone too.
Adopted children do not know why they are acting out nor do they know how to stop the behavior. Many times they have so much repressed anger and resentment they act out this anger without even knowing why. Very few psychologists understand how the human mind can go off base so far without being able to act rationally. When we feel threatened we go into auto pilot and the back up programs which are installed in our mind to protect us put us in survival mode. In this operating pattern we do not have any ability to think rationally. The psychological field describes this as Radical Associated Behavior. (RAD). Granted a person disassociates from normal behavior and acts out. What their mind is directing them to do is get any form of attention and acceptance at any cost. This becomes an attitudinal behavior which they resort to when they feel rejected. This program is locked in to their mind’s data base so it activates very easy and causes them to react out over and over again.
I have had phenomenal results working with mothers and children who act out of control. He has been able to accomplish this is a few sessions.