“When Problems Become Too Complex, We Long For Simple Solutions, Even if They Are Wrong.”
As our world becomes more complex and problems become more difficult to solve, we turn to simple solutions that give our psyches comfort. How do we deal with poverty, over-population, global climate change, endless wars? It’s difficult to figure out what to do. We are all drawn to someone who seems to know the answer. “ISIS? Trust me, I’ll eliminate them in short order,” says Mr. Trump. Too many people in the world and an economic system that keeps people in poverty? “Don’t worry, I’ll build a wall to keep illegal immigrants out,” says Mr. Trump, “and I’ll get Mexico to pay for it.” – Dr Jed Diamond http://menalive.com/the-real-reason-donald-trump-will-be-our-next-president/#more-3797 *
And so we dumb-down, over-simplify, remove the complexity at all cost and create a world where we don’t have to teach children to cope with their emotions, reactions, confusions, difficulties, dilemmas and they grow up not able to make decisions, solve problems or live independently. Universities and college campuses were once places for rich learning, transitioning into adult life, enthusiastic debate, the forming of principles, the development of a set of ethics and the tools which would last us through life. They were once a place to test the water, to be free of parental scrutiny and ideals where the young leaned to live independently, to make ‘mistakes’, to try our new lifestyles, to try on political concepts, to cast of the limitations of childhood and the rules of home. Today it seems parents follow, hovering, observing and ready at a moment’s notice to intervene, rescue, defend and prevent the learning that could be happening. Of course they do it for the ‘best’ of reasons, they love their children and are keen to protect them from harm, influences they don’t approve of and ideas they don’t agree with. In being so involved they take away the young person’s opportunities to learn ,discover and develop. Surely when we have children the aim is to eventually produce self-sufficient, independent, responsible, caring adults. An old friend, who birthed three girls, used to say that her aim for childhood was to raise children who could think for themselves and clean their own ears! Later it was that they should be completely self-reliant and not need her, although of course she hoped love would survive the rigours of growing up and affection would be present. If we try to raise children to be our friends, our companions, our saviours and our carers we are surely doing them a grave disservice, stilting their growth and tying them to us in an unhealthy, unproductive way.
It takes dedication to teach children to look after themselves, to be safe, to make good decisions, to have wisdom and compassion, to act ethically, to be honourable, fair and self- sufficient. It requires commitment, time, patience and a degree of maturity, self-knowledge and awareness, plus a sense of humour and the ability to laugh heartily at ourselves. We must never forget that whatever we do we are modelling for our children. What we do they will do. What we say they will say. What we believe they will believe. That is a huge responsibility. If you raise the children of others, you have additional responsibilities to ensure you are the best parent possible, to give them the best life possible but firstly to ensure that there was really no other option for them but adoption. You need to have a clear conscience, to have done your research adequately because you will be answerable for the rest of your life to the child you made an adoptee. In addition you need to be fully cognisant of the things adoptees may bring with them into the adopted life – grief, loss, trauma, stigma, damage, PTSD, the deprivation from loss of language, culture, food, family, motherland. You need to be familiar with the stages of the adopted life and what to do to assist if necessary. You need to know when to step back, how to deal with your fears, disappointments, inabilities, inadequacies,frustrations, denials and preconceived ideas. You will need a sense of humour, patience, a strong sense of self, endurance, support, the ability to change your mind and ideas and to cope with feeling threatened by the unknown, the uncertain and the unresolved. You will need to prepare yourself as best you can and know that no amount of preparation will ever be enough to deal with the reality of adoption. It has a way of taking by surprise, shocking, astounding, engulfing, overwhelming, numbing, enriching and surprising!