Saturday, July 18, 2015

The Science of Neglect

There is an excellent article by the Center On the Developing Child at Harvard University that all parents should read who have children adopted from orphanages. The first printing was in December 2012. There is also a video overview.

You can see the video HERE and the link to the PDF file of the report is HERE.

We've heard a lot of it before in our adoption classes and the adoption and attachment books we've read, but this is the very best article I've found so far and one that goes into the most detail. I wanted to copy and paste the highlights, but it turns out that that means most of the article, which is copyright protected, so please, follow the links and read the article, or, at the very least, watch the video.

Then, there are more articles. Of particular interest is Young Children Develop in an Environment of Relationships another PDF article on the same website, which can be downloaded HERE

When following the links to find the next logical step, what to do with children who were raised in orphanages, every single source I found said the same thing: the primary caregiver (me, the mom, in my case) is the only one who can help these kids with the guidance of mental health professionals (therapists, psychologists, etc...). Almost all stressed avoided psychotropic medications unless there was a CLEARLY defined diagnosis indicating such need, but that great care needed to be taken not to misdiagnose these kids since often, conditions such as RAD and others can present the same symptoms as ADHD and other conditions where medications are usually used. Further, great emphasis was put on the fact that psychotropic medications can, in fact, make our children worse since the medications to affect the brain and the areas of the brain damaged in our children are vulnerable to many negative effects of these medications. Fortunately, no one has suggested any medications for any of my girls, but I thought this information would be helpful to those who are researching options for their children.

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