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Mar 30, 2015

What To Expect When You’re Expecting Adolescents

The New York Times Magazine ran a long piece on raising adolescents recently, entitled “Raising Teenagers: The Mother of All Problems. It was written by Oxford-educated writer Rachel Cusk, whose colleagues and acquaintances grimace when she tells them her daughters are 16 and 14. It paints an alternately dispiriting and disturbing picture of this stage of life.
Here are some quotes from this Mom’s experience. “The laptop has replaced me as the navigator of our lives. “Her temperature is always high. “My daughter’s friends encounter me with barely a word of greeting. Perhaps most disturbing is the scene after her daughters’ friends come over: “The kitchen is strewn with dirty plates and half-eaten food and empty wrappers; the bathroom is a swamp of wet towels, capsized bottles, crumpled tissues smeared with makeup… I tidy up, slowly.
In my northwest DC psychology practice, I heard complaints just like this.  They don’t exist only in England. The Times editorial staff must know that it has a critical mass of  readers who will either identify and commiserate with this mother, or protest loudly. And they did (be sure to see Comments).
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Week Of Passion
Mar 26, 2015

Palm Sunday: The Rest of the Story

“Now the crowd that was with him when He called Lazarus from his tomb and raised him from the dead continued to spread the word. Many people, because they had heard that he had given this miraculous sign, went out to meet him. So the Pharisees said to one another, ‘See, this is getting us nowhere. Look how the whole world has gone after Him.’ John 12:17-19


In just a few days we celebrate the renowned entry of Jesus into Jerusalem, reenacted for centuries all over the world with the waving of palm branches and recounting the fulfillment of Psalm 118.  John alone of the four Gospel accounts of the Triumphal Entry tells “the rest of the story. Neither Matthew, Mark, nor Luke records the miracle of Jesus calling a man four days in the grave back to life. John reveals the subsequent plotting by the Chief Priests and Pharisees to kill both Lazarus and Jesus in an attempt to bury the “threatening facts of both the unforgettable miracle and the “whole world crowd drawn to the Miracle Worker.  The three Synoptic Gospels were written while Lazarus still lived his resurrected life and these disciples apparently did not want to put Lazarus in greater danger by drawing attention to him in publicizing the miracle. John, though, wrote his gospel after Lazarus’ second death and most likely after his vision on the Isle of Patmos in the last decade of the first century. Many of the uniqueness’ found in John’s Gospel are brought into greater clarity for him (cf. John 12:16) by the spectacular vision of the Revelation (Marriage Feast of the Lamb-unique recounting of the wedding at Cana, for one example out of many).
Response to this miracle enormously swelled the crowd accompanying Jesus’ grand entrance into the city, so even His enemies described its size with the description “all the world has gone after Him. Even foreigner travelers just arriving for the Passover Feast were asking His disciples to see this Jesus who had publicly displayed a unique power defying the natural laws of life and death. Yet even irrefutable evidence of power not seen from any man since the beginning of history could convince the hearts and minds of observers. The results were “mixed, as John described in his Gospel, “Even after Jesus had done all these miraculous signs in their presence, they still would not believe in Him. (John 12:37) Then, a few verses later, “Yet at the same time many even among the leaders believed in Him. But because of the Pharisees they would not confess their faith for fear they would be put out of the synagogue, for they loved praise from men more than praise from God. (John 12:42-43)
Miracles sure get people’s attention, but do they always remove the scales of dumbfounded unbelief? Jesus knew they didn’t. He said, “Woe to you, Korazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago….And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted up to the skies? No, you will go down to the depths. Wow! Do  Jesus’ miracles get YOUR attention? Or was it the Holy Spirit who opened your eyes to see who He is, that the words He speaks are true, and your recognized need for Him is as great as Lazarus if you are going to see life beyond the grave? The Spirit introduces you to the joy of forgiveness and fellowship with Him here and now, just as Lazarus shared dinner with Him after answering Jesus’ call and walking out of his tomb.
You know your own susceptibility to preferring the praise of men over the praise of God, even as your sanctification as a believer is being sharpened in the world, a world which as Jesus said praying for “His own in John 17, hates you. There is a fearful tension with the world in your affiliation to it: do you seek peace with the world by minimizing Jesus’ words and commandments in order, as many say, to nurture an opportunity for future witness and mitigate the world’s hatred toward you? This was a question which Jesus addressed on the first Palm Sunday and the week which followed. It was a question which touched His closest friends, His disciples; it touched His larger group of family and followers; it touched the “whole world crowd; and it touches you and professing believers today. The only answer I can offer to this dilemma is to accept and practice Jesus’ command, “Follow me! Observe His example, learn His words, and address the world as He did. Anything less disowns Him.
Now you have “the rest of the story concerning Palm Sunday.


“Am I a soldier of the cross, a follower of the Lamb, and shall I fear to own His cause, or blush to speak His name?
(1st verse of Isaac Watts’ hymn, “Am I a Soldier of the Cross?, 1724)


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Mar 24, 2015

Parentology – The Sweet Sixteen

In trying to think of a clever title to match a topic gaining media attention, it hit me: Hey, it’s NCAA tournament time, why not Parentology!  After all, people all over are predicting and filling out their brackets (bracketology).  They are studying match-ups and quickly making decisions of who will beat who.  So, with a great pop cultural tie-in that seemed clever enough, I knew a Google search was necessary.  I have moments of creativity, but certainly I’m not the first person to use that term.  Turns out, Dalton Conley, a sociologist from New York University, wrote a book called Parentology: Everything You Wanted to Know About the Science of Raising Children but Were Too Exhausted to Ask.
That’s quite a title.  Everything you wanted to know?  There is a lot I want to know and a lot I don’t do right.  Through countless studies, research has seemed to point out numerous tactics for raising healthy adjusted children. But what are these tactics or this advice really pointing us towards? Good grades, athletic performance, success amongst peers, and financial success?  Are our tactics really helping our children answer the fundamental question, “Who am I?
Is what we do more important than how we feel about ourselves?  Do our achievements give us a sense of security and self-worth?  And if we are trying these various tactics to achieve these goals, how do we know which one is going to work in the long run?
So in honor of the Sweet Sixteen, here are 16 areas (among many others) that parents are concerned about regarding child-rearing and development.  Fair warning:  This may feel a bit overwhelming as they range from babies to teenagers, feeding schedules to naming, and most of all, self-control. (The following are not an endorsement but intended to make a point.)

  1. Secure Attachment
  2. On-demand vs. scheduled nursing
  3. How babies should sleep
  4. Timing of potty training
  5. Using board games to teach math
  6. Using playtime to improve memory and stimulate growth of the cerebral cortex
  7. The anthropology of sleep
  8. How family life affects peer relationships
  9. When to begin formal schooling
  10. Reward systems for self-control
  11. Praising children in the right way
  12. Authoritative parenting vs. permissive parenting
  13. Cause and effect parenting
  14. The Mozart Effect – increasing intelligence by listening to Mozart
  15. The effects of video games on school achievement
  16. The mental benefits of exercise

I understand why Dalton Conley used the phrase “were too exhausted to ask in the by-line of his title; parenting is overwhelming. After all, how am I to know if I should helicopter, free range, nurse (I can’t), or if I even gave them the right name to ensure they have impulse control?  If I let my children sleep in the bed with us, will they learn how to quiet themselves down and have control later in life?  How much impact will their birth order play on their psychological development (this seems a bit ex post facto, doesn’t it)?
I could have gone on with that list and easily filled out an entire bracket of 64+ tactics and perspectives.  It’s not that there are not valid and meaningful perspectives in all those noted above.  Tactics are tactics for a reason; they give us a basis to approach something.  But all of this can seem overwhelming, and it is.  Sometimes, too much information is simply that…too much. And with all the background noise and various opinions, we miss the real goal which is to give our children a sense of their own uniqueness and self-worth.  That is a process of discovery for the child and the parent that is made up of many decisions along the way.
We make countless decisions every day, largely out of habit/routine, from what we are going to wear to which hand we write with (right for 90% of us).  However, there are times, instances, and circumstances when we simply don’t choose anything.  It can be due to stress, the value we placed on a decision, knowing where to start, or simply because we have too many options.   There is actually a term for this called “Analysis Paralysis.  That means that we have over-thought a situation so much that a decision never takes place.  We are frozen.  And that is the worst decision when it comes to parenting.
There is no one parenting tactic you are going to do perfectly that will ensure the output of a “straight A–student who is popular and athletic.  No matter the amount of research you pursue to achieve your parenting definition of success, one thing has to be clear: You have to be honest enough to admit that these are our societal metrics of success and our parenting merit badges.  But badges are all they are.  Sure, we want our children to be socially adjusted and experience success.  But most of all, we should strive to give them a sense of security which comes from their identity.
That is the solution—to recognize the most important thing you can do is to help your children feel confident in their identity and not place too much emphasis on external and artificial, or at the least exaggerated, societal badges.
Identity is a question of security.  We love our children because they are a gift to us and because they are a part of us, but also because we are a part of them. We were made to be in relationship with each other. They are our family, and family is a picture of heavenly community. We need to understand that our identity is found in God the Father. We are His beloved children, and He has called us to steward well the gifts of our children, which He has given us.
That’s the ultimate goal and victory found within parentology.  Good luck!  Choose well!
 
 


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Mar 19, 2015

Abundance of Distraction

“Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap. For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole earth. Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man. Luke 21:34-36


It is worth your attentive notice that you focus on the major subject matter of the Lord Jesus in the week before He went to the cross to die; to die a death He knew was coming, and knew exactly when it was going to happen. As you approach another Holy Week culminating in the celebration of eternal Life and the power of the resurrection, if you are concerned for your protection and those for whom you care you will particularly digest the warning words of the Lord in the week immediately prior to His death. Jesus was focused upon today, your generation, and what is now falling upon all of us who live upon the face of the whole earth, believer and unbeliever alike. Jesus warns that the distractions of this day are many and powerful, intended for you to miss what He says. No one knows the exact day He will appear in the sky, but the warning signs are abundant, and He commanded, “Be attentive to the signs.
Jesus was abundantly focused on His return in the week we call Holy Week. His focus was as much upon those who would heed His warnings and take action, as it was upon the disaster that would come upon all those who purposefully would not listen. The Scripture assures us that no one will be innocently guilty by virtue of not being given fair warning. Many may be certain in their own eyes that a whole segment of the world’s population is “innocently and thoroughly oblivious; but unlike man’s perspective God knows the hearts of men and says that no one is without excuse (Romans 1-3), which should always inform every  perspective of this time in history.
The word “dissipation in today’s text refers to the many things that distract people from the truth: habitual search for constant amusement, the acquiring/desiring of abundant possessions, escapism, multiple diversions, anything to not face and deal with the truth in your life. All of this and more constitutes dissipation in one’s life. The Lord says if you are not careful and cognizant of this danger His sudden, unexpected appearance will close on you like a “spring-loaded inescapable trap, rather than an expected, desirable, eagerly anticipated event. Perhaps this picture the Lord portrays, opposite to the perspective of how you see a loving, merciful Christ, does not equate with your present mind-set; all the more reason to set your eyes on the Christ of the Scriptures who is revealed by His Word. As you approach this Holy Week “capture (it takes an aggressive approach) more time in that Word, read the words from His own mouth, concentrate your thought on what He has said. Perhaps your view of who Jesus is has been framed by someone else’s words or how your mind would like to see Him. See Jesus as He is through His own authenticated words and actions as given by God’s revelation of Him.
The troubled teenage boys who now live at the PAYH are representative of the youth in this country and the world who have been assailed since birth with the distractions of their world bestowed on them by parents, peers, worldly heroes, pride, and their own congenital sin inclinations; distractions intended to keep them from the truth of who they are as created in God’s likeness. They have been diverted by this dissipation from true manhood and have a false view of what it is to be truly human. It is the PAYH’s mission to help redirect the eyes of their heart to see in the face of Jesus Christ the authentic definition of what it is to be a man. For their parents and families we desire the transformation of their vision to see what it is to be an authentic man or woman, not the disfigured caricature the world offers. But the time to do this work is drawing to a close. We are time constrained by the average of 18 months of residence and by the Lord’s words that work ceases when the night of history descends (John 9:4) and the lightening flash of Jesus’ return brings everything to a halt (“suddenly like a trap).
There is no better preparation for Holy Week, for Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter Sunday than sitting down with your Bible and reading Matthew 23-26 and the same-time passages in Luke and John. Read what Jesus said within this calendar two millennia past, and of what may truly be prophetic of today. Convincing yourself that it is for a day yet long off is dissipation. These warning words of the Savior are intended for you today, where you are, in 2015. Do not think to be dissipated by procrastination. Flee from your distractions and get down to eternal business.


“O Lord haste the day when the faith shall be sight, the clouds be rolled back as a scroll, the trump shall resound and the Lord shall descend, “Even so—it is well with my soul. It is well…with my soul, it is well, it is well with my soul.
(4th verse of Horatio Spafford’s hymn, “It is Well with My Soul, 1873)


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Mar 12, 2015

Holy Fish Fry

“Jesus said to them, ‘Come and have breakfast.’ None of the disciples dared ask him, ‘Who are you?’ They knew it was the Lord. Jesus came and took the bread and gave it to them, and did the same with the fish. John 21:12-13
“But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written, ‘Be holy, because I am holy.’  I Peter 15-16


The source of your salvation rests in one person alone, the Lord Jesus Christ. The place of your salvation is in the community of many, a body of fellows, the fellowship of the saints. The Paul Anderson Youth Home would not exist without Christ, preeminently, and His many “eyes, arms, hands, and legs, who because of Him have come alongside and in myriads of ways kept their hands on “the ship of this ministry to troubled young men. One such “ship holder is Jim Pulliam who now inhabits the courts of heaven. Jim began the “holy fish fry at the Home which was just one of his many ideas to keep this ministry going. Jim was never lost for ideas even if we didn’t always use them. They flowed out of his mind like a fountain; because he loved the Home and He loved the Savior. From the time he was introduced to the Home by his close friend Truett Cathy, he was locked-in as a permanent supporter to the day of his entrance into glory. The fish fry was one of many of his ideas to introduce more supporters to the Home. This Saturday the Home will enjoy its first Holy Fish Fry without Jim’s visible presence, but in celebration of his love for others in the body to which he was called by God.
John 21 is a fitting ending chapter to the Gospel written by the beloved disciple, John, because it speaks to the continuation of life after the Lord’s departure into heaven impressing His call on you to bring the “holy into the common things of your life seeing this is your new character imitating His. It is not just a common fish fry; it’s a Holy fish fry. Why? Because it has more to do with who you are than eating fish and spitting out the bones. The encounter with the resurrected Lord on the beach of the Sea of Galilee was more than eight men having breakfast. Of course, it was “hallowed by the presence of the un-ascended Lord, but as He says, “Where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them. (Matthew 18:20). It is not only the Lord’s presence which “hallows a gathering of His brothers and sisters; it is what transpires in interaction with one another and the end for which you intend it.
Jesus is all about your sanctification just as He was about the sanctification of these seven men as the sun rose over the beach with the warm fire early on that morning. When we get together for any common or illustrious occasion it should be about your sanctification and of those who are there. Jim was always about this as I rubbed shoulders with him on many an occasion. His uncomplaining, encouraging presence on our 1500 mile bike ride to Omaha despite his age was a sanctifying influence on the whole enterprise. Those who claim the personal character marker of “Be holy, because I am holy must be more intentional when with others of being a sanctifying influence on their lives. Will it be a holy fish fry, a holy lunch, a holy meeting, a holy encounter, a holy greeting in passing, a holy hunting trip, a holy golf match, a holy shopping trip, a holy whatever? Do not fall into the rut of non-holy habit, but be intentional in preparing your mind for action before you enter into interaction with others, be self-controlled in what you bring to the encounter, show that Christ’s work in your life is not in vain.(1 Peter 1:13-16)
So on Saturday in Vidalia, the Youth Home is having a Holy Fish Fry in honor of Jim. What are you doing today? What encounters do you have planned? Be intentional of it being a “Holy Something, an interaction in which you bring a mind prepared for holy-conversation, holy, redeemed human-nature, holy-humor, holy-encouragement, holy-hope, intent on a sanctifying impact on your companions. There are neither an unlimited amount of days left in this life, nor an unlimited amount of encounters. But what there are can be days and encounters with holy results which God can establish as the work of your hands forever.


“Lord, I my vows to you renew, disperse my sins as morning dew; guard my first springs of thought and will, and with yourself my spirit fill.
(4th verse of Thomas Ken’s hymn, “Awake, My Soul, and with the Sun, 1709)


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Mar 05, 2015

What Did Lot Accomplish Living in Sodom?

“So Lot chose for himself [after Abraham gave him first choice] the whole plain of the Jordan and set out toward the east. The two men parted company: Abraham lived in the land of Canaan, while Lot lived among the cities of the plain and pitched his tents near Sodom. Now the men of Sodom were wicked and were sinning greatly against the Lord. Genesis 13:11-13


A recent book title described America with its title, “Slouching toward Gomorrah. Accurate or off the mark?  Not having observed or experienced this ancient city I cannot say for certain other than how the Bible described it and Sodom, but if not there yet American society is moving quickly in this direction. The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah God said was great. From whom came the outcry? A great crowd of witnesses as we read about in Hebrews 12:1? The angelic host of God? In any case God was unwilling to strive with the inhabitants of these cities any longer. He gave them up to their own evil desires which when unrestrained brings its own destruction. The citizens of Sodom and Gomorrah chose their demise. They refused the law of God written on their hearts, choosing to hate God, and his servant Lot because he would not enter into their evil behavior, and consequently, like any who refuse to join in stirred up their guilt and anger.
Apparently Lot moved into Sodom itself after moving nearby and then lived there many years. How did his righteous life, righteous in that the Apostle Peter called him righteous Lot, transform his neighbors? His own family? His uncle Abraham when told of Sodom’s and Gomorrah’s doom, bartered with the Lord to spare the cities. From 50 righteous persons he bartered God down to 10. But even ten righteous could not be found in the two cities. What can we make of this? Lot did not join in their behavior, but apparently his verbal testimony to the God of truth was silent or ineffective, for only his two covenant daughters and Lot alone survived.
We too live in a society which is fallen and evil as Lot did. If your city were under God’s judgment, how many of your neighbors would survive? How many of your own family? Your righteousness as Lot is not your own, but Christ’s, by faith, through the sacrifice of Christ, under the mercy of God. Did Lot’s neighbors ever hear of Lot’s faith from his mouth? We are not told. Perhaps he tried, and if he is called righteous, a righteous man would not remain silent, but the hardness of hearts was absolute and the society was overwhelmingly sinful. The effectiveness of our witness of the gospel rests with the Holy Spirit who can pierce even the hardest heart, yet perseverance in witness is rewarded by God. Was Lot persevering in striving to win others to the one true God during his many years living in the place of his choice? Or did the frustration of the effort wear him down. His procrastination to leave when the angels told him he needed to get out with his family exposed a double-mindedness. He had to literally be dragged out with his covenant daughters and wife, who turned her eyes (and heart) back and became a pillar of salt.
There are many Christians who do not want to offend others by speaking the gospel into their neighbors’ ears, minds, and hearts. Some will say I am building the relationship first, except the building phase never quite ends. Others will say I am not articulate enough (compare Moses), or I lack knowledge (compare Hebrews 5:11-14). While even others will say I am paralyzed by fear (compare 2 Tim. 1:7). There is a growing deafness to the words of the Savior: “Whoever acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before men, I will disown him before my Father in heaven.” (Matthew 10:32-33). I do not know what Lot did or did not do while he lived in Sodom. But neither the fruit of his life nor the instruction of his mouth saved his wife, or his sons-in-law, or his daughters’ purity. The fruit of their wombs from their father produced the Moabites and Ammonites, certainly not a people who loved God or a people of which to be proud. We never hear again about Lot in Genesis.
There is good reason for you to persevere in your witness with the purpose of seeing your hearers come to Christ. The warning of Jesus for those who will not hear you is severe; Jesus says, “It will be more bearable for the people of Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for [those who refuse to hear the gospel today]. (Matthew 10:15) So if you have a great desire for that person’s salvation you keep on keeping on. If you know the power of God you will never complain that the task is too hard and the environment too difficult to lead someone to Christ. “How can they hear without someone preaching to them? (Romans 10:14) It is not what did Lot accomplish in Sodom, but what did you accomplish where you live? After all God put you there for a purpose.


“I’m not ashamed to own my Lord, or to defend His cause, maintain the honor of His Word, the glory of His cross.
(1st verse of Isaac Watts’ hymn, “I’m Not Ashamed to Own My Lord, 1709)


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Mar 03, 2015

Epigenetics 1; Nature Versus Nurture 0

Is it nature or nurture that determines development?  Psychologists have known for some time now that this question is too binary and simplistic.  The effects of genetic inheritance and environment are complex and interrelated.  One can affect the other, and set off a chain of effects.  In this Wall Street Journal column, Alison Gopnik looks at what is known as epigenetics. What causes certain genes to be expressed or turned off, and what affects the way genetic endowment is expressed? She cites recent human and animal research that demonstrates just how complex human behavior and functioning really are.
The first time I came across the term epigenetics was in Erik Erikson’s 1968 bookIdentity:  Youth and Crisis.  He thought that psychosocial development proceeded according to what he called epigenetic principal, in which biology, environment, and culture interact.  Erikson noted that the children either thrived or failed to do so as they moved through different stages of development.  Progress was determined at least in part by the person’s success or lack of success in the previous stages.

Rich Environments Increase IQ

In this piece, two findings that are not commonly known stand out. One is that average IQ scores in the recent past have been increasing at the fairly dramatic rate of  3 points per decade! She notes that this change is keeping test designers busy, since harder questions must be added to keep average IQ at 100.  To be valid, these tests must cover the full range of intelligence which necessitates some questions that would stump the vast majority of us.
Her explanation for this rise makes sense.  We live in an information age in which a huge amount of interesting (and to be honest, sometimes really boring) information is at our fingertips.  Those with curiosity can learn so much more in a day or year than was possible one hundred years ago.  After all, our forebears did not have any book at easy access, much less the Internet, newspapers, e-readers, and smart phones.  Computers put the answer to many questions we formerly had to “look up at our fingertips.  We really can Google almost anything!
Now in all fairness, it needs to be noted that intelligence scores and sensibility are two different things.  We know any awful lot today, but may think less deeply than our forebears did.  Too many distractions.  Most people have a lot less reflective and contemplative time.  There are so many distractions:  celebrity gossip! sports trivia! bad plastic surgery!  The list goes on.

Poor Environments Decrease IQ

The other extremely interesting finding concerns the difference between rich and poor environments.  Genetics were far more predictive of intellectual functioning in poor environments; in rich ones, children were able to make gains regardless of the kind of parent (attentive or inattentive) they were born to.  This tells us that environment matters a great deal.   While children are not all “created equalgenetically, enriched environments  tend to benefit all, and average environments give people a fighting chance.  A poor one makes improving one’s functioning hard, indeed.  This tells us that decent levels of education, nutrition, and opportunity during childhood can have real effects.
Gopnik discusses how epigenetic effects involve nurture reshaping nature.  What about the effects in which nature reshapes nurture?  It works both ways.  For example, the temperament and emotional functioning of a parent can affect the way he or she nurtures. We know that depression in a parent can depress functioning in a child, and that the younger the child the stronger the impact, since the parent constitutes such a large part of  the small child’s environment.
We need to address biological (i.e. nature) problems when they arise and treat them; we also need to support (and therefore nurture) parents in their demanding job.  We need adequate healthcare for everyone and stronger support  networks around families.  And the more people who love a child, the better. We make up for one another’s lacks and glitches.  It really does take a village to raise a child to full health and well-being.
The child’s temperament and emotional functioning also affect the parent’s well-being, and in turn the quality of the parent’s nurturing behavior.  So the chain goes on and on.  In fortunate situations, the loop improves and both parent and child have potential to thrive.  In “the average expectable environment, both can do well.  But in poor  and multi-problem environments, there is potential for deterioration.  Many chronic social problems get their beginning in just these situations.
Laissez-faire social policy makes sense if most homes, schools, and neighborhoods for children are average or above.  But it is a prescription for disaster in deprived and troubled situations.  Kids’ whole lives can be ruined from very young ages if nothing in a compromised setting changes.  But it’s not only the child who is affected. Our society as a whole pays, also, for the effects of  job, marital, family, substance, medical and psychological problems. These findings  can prompt our governments, towns, and churches devise plans of action to raise all boats.


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