Orphans’ Lonely Beginnings Reveal How Parents Shape A Child’s Brain

Posted By on February 26, 2014

In the Institute for the Unsalvageable in Sighetu Marmatiei, Romania, shown here in 1992, children were left in cribs for days on end.

In the Institute for the Unsalvageable in Sighetu Marmatiei, Romania, shown here in 1992, children were left in cribs for days on end.

How much does the spiritual affect the physical? Psalm 31:10 tells us that strength fails and bones are consumed because of iniquity. It seems science is showing us that the love of Christ that parents give their children both through love and lawful and appropriate chastisement, benefits their souls and their bodies. Note how the article suggests that repentance built synapse neglected in early child training.

From NPR.org

Parents do a lot more than make sure a child has food and shelter, researchers say. They play a critical role in brain development.

More than a decade of research on children raised in institutions shows that “neglect is awful for the brain,” says Charles Nelson, a professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and Boston Children’s Hospital. Without someone who is a reliable source of attention, affection and stimulation, he says, “the wiring of the brain goes awry.” The result can be long-term mental and emotional problems.

A lot of what scientists know about parental bonding and the brain comes from studies of children who spent time in Romanian orphanages during the 1980s and 1990s. Children like Izidor Ruckel, who wrote a book about his experiences.

When Ruckel was 6 months old, he got polio. His parents left him at a hospital and never returned. When he turned three, he was sent to an orphanage for “irrecoverable” children.

But Ruckel was luckier than many Romanian orphans. A worker at the orphanage “cared for me as if she was my mother,” he says. “She was probably the most loving, the most kindest person I had ever met.”

Then, when Ruckel was 5 or 6, his surrogate mother was electrocuted trying to heat bath water for the children in her care. Ruckel was on his own in a place where beatings, neglect and boredom were the norm.

Polio had left him with a weak leg. But as he got older he found he had power over many of the other children who had more serious disabilities.

Read the rest here.

Recommended Resources
Suffer the Children: The Blessing of ‘Imperfect’ Children
Rescued: The Heart of Adoption and Caring for Orphans
Shepherding a Child’s Heart, Tedd Tripp – DVD Set
Proverbs for Parenting: A Topical Guide for Child Raising from the Book of Proverbs/King James Version

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