Adults who grew up in so-called “typical” families—the families we pay no or little attention to because it looks “normal”, okay, or good-enough—can struggle too. In this post from IACD Robert W. McBride, LCSW, MSW offers insight into the experiences that may cause attachment issues in children who are not foster kids and not adopted.
Phil the Farmboy
Phil was raised in a small mid-western town where his father operated several grain silos and mom was a teacher. Phil described his family as stereotypical—a happy, church-going, farmland family—dad, mom, daughter, and son. He described himself as mostly shy, afraid, unhappy, and somewhat angry as a child. When Phil was eight-years-old, his father began to take him to work at the silos after he got out of school. He picked up the dead rats, swept out the train cars, and cleaned the elevators. By the time he got home, his mouth and nostrils were red and raw, his throat was constricted and scratchy, and his eyes were swollen nearly shut from the dust…read the full story here.
Beth the Big Sister/Mother
Beth grew up in a large western city. She did not know who her father was and her mother had been addicted to drugs until Beth was fifteen-years-old. She had four siblings by four different men. Beth raised her siblings—bathed, fed, dressed them, did the laundry, and many other caregiver roles from a very early age. As a child, she was afraid someone in authority would find out her mother was an addict and party girl and break up the family…read the full story here.
I live in Charlotte, NC with my family and am working on a memoir about raising my adopted son, Devon.