A local reader and friend asked me to write down anything I've learned about attachment and bonding. I just ordered a book called Adopting the Hurt Child
I will be sure to tell you what I think of the book once I read it. I have also read other adoption books, listed on the sidebar towards the bottom of the page. But here are some of the things we are doing that I think helps...
1. We are working together (Juergen and I). Sarah’s attachment problems affect both of us. We talk about it, pray together, and are trying to help each other through this. Even talking about it has been a challenge. At times we even had to call each other on the phone because Sarah would not leave Juergens side, and I could not stay calm when I talked...but we communicated.
2. I fed Sarah everything she eats. Juergen was not allowed to feed her or give her stuff. We started saying "Every good and perfect gift comes from Mom"! Every nice new toy, every nice new piece of clothing everything came from me!
3. I made myself help dress her, and brush her teeth, and kiss her good night. She did not like this, but I did it anyway.
4. Juergen began bringing her into my bedroom every morning to cuddle. At first she only tickled and cuddled with Juergen. Then they attacked tickled me. Now she tickles me, and I tickle her.
5. I take her picture with a digital camera. She likes this. I take her picture with other family members, and then asked if we could get our picture together. Now she sees us together. Juergen also holds her up to the mirror in the bath room, and she sees herself with papa, and mama. At first she did not like this picture, but now she does!
6. I looked for things she likes for example art, and I try to do these things over and over. We walk Mickey together, we do art together, and we visit animals together at the pet shop and petting zoo. She likes pancakes, so I make them once a week. She likes fresh cut pineapple and strawberries so I buy them! She likes cherry milk shakes, so I drive through McDonalds when I want her to calm down and get something to eat (she was not eating for me at first). I try to reinforce the good stuff.
7. I don't push myself on her, and don't deny her of her papa. I just try to always be there.
8. I started taking care of myself so I was not so extremely stressed out.
9. I prayed allot, Juergen prayed, friends prayed, strangers prayed. God did a miracle!