Wednesday, February 22, 2012

"Daddy's Home!"

One of the things we learned in our adoption education is that many children will bond with only one parent at first and most often it is Dad. John and I tried to prepare ourselves for this possibility as best we could. But we also knew it would be very hard on us if he rejected one of us, so we made it a matter of regular prayer prior to Joshua's homecoming. In one of our final updates as we came close to travel, we learned that Joshua was especially close to his foster father in Korea. You might think this would have made it more likely for Joshua to quickly bond to John, but actually the opposite is true. Out of grief and loyalty for the parent that was lost, most children will not bond initially to the parent of the same sex as the lost parent.

I believe the Lord was especially merciful to us in this area. Joshua did not reject either of us and would allow both of us to provide care for him. However, he overwhelmingly preferred me. This started even early on while we were still in Korea and continued for our first several months home. John had 2 weeks at home after we got back from Korea, but it really wasn't enough to form a strong bond with Joshua before he had to go back to work. Plus, I don't think Joshua was really able to form this bond at that time because he completely shut down for about 3 months when he first came home. Joshua was fine when daddy was around, but honestly he really didn't seem to notice or care when John left or came home from work.

After Christmas, John had about 2 weeks off from work. Well this turned out to be a huge blessing for John and Joshua's relationship. When John came home after his first day back, Joshua got really happy and actually went up to John and gave him a hug. Now Joshua is all smiles when Daddy gets home and follows him around everywhere. One time Joshua was in the bath when Daddy got home and he started throwing his bath toys because he knows throwing his toys ends his bath. He wanted to get out and go see Daddy. :-)

This has been so good for John. I think it was really hard on him being the less favored parent. I also think it made him less motivated to help out with Joshua - no positive reinforcement. Now John doesn't always have much choice about helping when he gets home because Joshua wants to spend time with Daddy. :-)


thewonderfulhappens said...

that's great news! Praise God!

Rita and Chris said...

Adorable pictures, Becky! So glad to hear their relationship is growing...isn't it awesome?

clepeau said...

love the photos of the boys together with "family" in the background! :) christe