But I adopted my child at birth. What do you mean trauma? By Alex Stavros

Baby in tum

It is not uncommon for adoptive parents to come to us feeling out of options for their difficult child and overwhelmed about what could have created all of these DSM diagnoses and intense feelings and behaviors.  Especially if the child was adopted at or near birth.

“We adopted our son at birth. We brought him home from the hospital ourselves and have done nothing but love him.”

Does this sound too familiar? If so, then why are you now being told that all of that had something to do with the issues today?

First and foremost, it is important not to be too hard on ourselves or even our child’s birth parents. At this time, it is most important to find our child the help that they need. Understanding the diagnosis and its origins may help one decide on the most appropriate course of treatment.  Quality and traditional parenting techniques may no longer be a solution – our child’s condition will likely require trauma sensitive interventions to heal.

Fetal Trauma

First we need to understand there are many developmental milestones for your child that occur prior to birth.  Your child began feeling and learning in the womb. According to Samuel Lopez De Victoria, Ph.D., your baby learned to be comforted by the voice and heartbeat of his mother well before birth[1] – a voice that was not yours. In the case of adoption this connective disruption has an impact on the brain and body.

Paula Thomson writes for Birth Psychology, Early pre- and post-natal experiences, including early trauma, are encoded in the implicit memory of the fetus, located in the subcortical and deep limbic regions of the maturing brain. These memories will travel with us into our early days of infancy and beyond and more importantly, these early experiences set our ongoing physiological and psychological regulatory baselines.”[2]

Clearly, chaos outside of the womb, for example, may affect children in utero. This includes arguments, a chaotic home environment or an abusive spouse, and other rambunctious noise that may seem harmless to the fetus.  If the mother drinks or smokes, or is generally unhealthy, this also impacts in-utero development, including the sense of safety and self-worth for the child.  Critical brain development is also stunted.

Mothers that end up placing their child with adoptive parents are also likely to feel increased stress during their pregnancies.  Many are very young, have many other children or are emotionally or financially unable to support a child.  Each of these stressors could expose unborn babies to cortisol, making them also stressed.  The baby is then born anxious.

Surprisingly, babies are also able to sense a disconnection or lack of acceptance from their mother while in the womb – leading to attachment issues and developmental trauma down the road.

(To read more, follow the link below…)

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/i-adopted-my-child-birth-what-do-you-mean-trauma-alex-stavros

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2 thoughts on “But I adopted my child at birth. What do you mean trauma? By Alex Stavros

  1. I am an adoptee that feels very passionate about this issue. My adoptive parents were good people but I always felt like a chihuahua placed in the home of German Shepherds. They were virtuous and caring parents but our genetic differences were highly evident in nature, abilities, behavior and temperament. I always sensed a meaningful spiritual link and psychological connection with my birth mother even though we had never met. We are of the same flesh and blood, and, inevitably, we must telepathically think alike in some unknown mysterious ways. When I meditated, I perceived the existence of an inner eye that could read her thoughts and sense her emotions, even from great distances. The imperceptible primordial spiritual link we shared bound me to her and amplified my desire to find her as I matured. Like a lighthouse on a dark and stormy night, her essence was constantly transmitting a message of hope that illuminated my path. No words can describe the enigmatic, mystifying, passionate psychological potency that motivated me. Its dominance was overwhelmingly spiritually based and all encompassing. Perhaps my sixth sense was amplified to overcompensate for the lack of a physical connection and sound of her voice by projecting and receiving mental signals from afar to replace what I was lacking in direct tactile contact. Maybe some biological and psychological bonding took place in the womb before I was born, and the bonding process imprinted our souls with a genetic marker handed down from generation to generation over the millennia that is a survival mechanism. For nine months, we shared the same foods. I heard her talking, and the tone and rhythm of her speech was recorded in my small, developing brain. I knew when she was awake and when she was hungry, happy, and tense. We shared everything. I was an extension of her and part of her. I was life longing for itself. When I was a child, I saw myself as a clone of her in some obscure but meaningful way. Separation from the birth mother is the confiscation of the child’s soul, a mutual occurrence that rips apart and exposes the heart of the child. Orphans amputated from their mother’s breast hide their wounds in the darkest subconscious corners of their primal brains, where they remain hidden, but never healed. Fear of abandonment and fear of strangers are natural survival instincts common to all children and from the earliest age I was subconsciously attracted to individuals who seemed intuitively familiar. Ultimately, the crushing emotional pain that many adoptees suffer in silence is so formidable at some points in life that it can only be shared with God. Warm cookies and milk and big hugs can offer temporary emotional relief from the profound but a lingering sense of abandonment can torment the soul.

    • Thanks so much, Judith for taking time to share your feelings and experience on this important issue (which has often been minimised) with us here at “The Forever Years”.

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