Adoption RAD and Hope Deferred

Adoption RAD and Hope Deferred:


I start all my posts with the reason I write this blog so if we have a new comer – they will know what I am communicating. So, I write this blog for the adoptive families who are navigating through foster, adoption and RAD (Reactive Attachment Disorder) issues. Please take some time to read my other posts because they will help you understand RAD in greater depth.

My last post was about aggressive and passive aggressive behavior. It is a very informative post so check it out. If you have adopted children with RAD or behavioral problems then it will help you understand their behavior.

Today I’m going to talk about a sensitive subject called “Hope Deferred.” I hope it will be helpful. I know it was one of the hardest things I had to come to grips with in our situation.


What is Hope Deferred and Were is the Scripture Reference?

Definitions: (Taken from my phone dictionary app.)

1)  Hope – The longing or desire for something accompanied by the belief in the possibility of its occurrence.

2)  Deferred – Postponed or delay. Withheld until a future date.

Scripture: Proverbs 13:12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when the desire comes, it is a tree of life.


Our Experience:

I remember thinking if I would love longer, try harder and give more to my adopted children it would be enough to heal them. I thought it would fix their bonding issues. I wanted my love to be their example so they would know how to love a special person in their lives.

I tried, and tried to no avail. At the time I didn’t understand they were operating under a vow they made when they were babies. This is where RAD (Reactive Attachment Disorder) starts. Both my adopted children came with RAD.

This vow has to do with not letting anyone (especially the adoptive mother) close enough to hurt then like their birth mother did. So, they hold everyone at arm’s length and sabotage anyone’s effort to bond to then or to mutually bond back.

I have to admit – seeing our children struggle with their bonding issues is still hard at times (hope deferred). Even though we have seen some breakthrough with both of our children I would love to see so much more. I want them to be able to love and bond to someone.


What to Do With Deferred Hope?

1)  I do not hold back from being perfectly honest with Father God (father of Jesus) about how I am feeling. It is healthy to appropriately express your feelings and frustration. God gave us these feelings in the first place so be real. He has big shoulders and you will feel so much better when you’re done.

2)  Humbly remind God He owns your children. They are His children. I wrote a post a while ago about the principle of ownership vs. stewardship and that is what I am referring to now. Please check out my previous owner vs. steward post.

3)  Then humbly remind Father God you are merely the steward of His children. (Again – I’m referring to the post suggested in point two). Then ask Him what He is going to do about His children’s inability to bond.

4)  Remind Father God His children have RAD symptoms and need to be healed so they can develop loving relationships and social skills.

5)  I suppose a person can live a life of being an island and never bonding or having meaningful relationships. But I feel my (His) children were intended to have much more than they have. I feel Father God desires the same thing. We need to pray our (His) children fulfill their full destiny.

6)  Father God is OK with having the responsibility of owning, helping and healing His children. All things are in His timing and not mine. So, I transfer my hope deferred to God and let Him deal with it. He knows how I feel and will help me. I put my hope in Him.


     Trust has everything to do with facing deferred hopes. Changing perspective from hope deferred to hope and trust in God makes all the difference when things look bleak. Especially when the opposite of what we desire is happening. Let God carry the responsibility of it all.

Please leave a comment in the box below. I would love to hear from you. Until next week…


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Adoption, Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) and Angels | Abba Father's Love

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