Also, Amy sent me this letter before they left and asked me to post it. I know they have done a lot of research and thinking about the issue of attachment with children, so I know they will try to do what is best for the girls. Even if it's hard for me sometimes. :)
Attachment is a really hot topic among adoptive families. It can also lead to some really sticky situations. The reality is adoptive children have to form the attachments and bonds to their adoptive parents. Though the methods differ, we know that even though it may cause moments of discomfort for us and for others around us, we want to do what is best for the girls. We have read, counseled and prayed about this issue.
For those wondering what “rules” we are going to put in place, we are a work in progress, after we meet our girls and have a chance to spend some time with them, we may relax or tighten our ideas. For right now, in public settings (and possibly in non-public settings), we won’t be passing the girls around, but will be holding them. We praise the Lord that we feel they have attached to their caretakers. However, we also know their bonds of attachment (first with birthmom, her smell, sounds, heartbeat, etc. and then the caretakers in Mekele, and now their Addis caretakers) have been broken several times and they have most likely come to view all adults as caretakers, without differentiation. Studies also show that even children adopted as infants can feel a deep rejection/abandonment wound. We know it is very important that Jon and I do the main nurturing activities (feeding, bedtime and bathtime). We also know we have limits and reality will probably smack us in the face.
Many times, kids with orphanage backgrounds are also easily over stimulated. They can be overwhelmed more than kids used to a home environment.
Please be patient with us. If you ask to hold the girls and we say “no”, please don’t be offended. We want you to hold them and to love on them. We know that we have been surrounded with some incredible supports and know they will be blessed by it! We are praying we can do what is best for the girls in the long run. Remember, all "rules"will be temporary. ;)
Jon and Amy
This is another picture they sent as well showing some children and typical building in Ethiopia.