I recently spoke to my mom the other day and she told me a story about her best friend from high school that I thought was particularly interesting for purposes of our class. Her friend Carrie adopted three children from China since she was never able to have her own children. The middle child is currently a senior in high school and for the past few years has been struggling with a disorder known as Reactive Attachment Disorder. Here is an explanation of the disorder to provide a background for the actions of Carrie’s daughter:
Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) is a condition in which individuals exhibit markedly disturbed and developmentally inappropriate social relatedness. Children with RAD have considerable difficulty forming meaningful, affectionate relationships. Since prenatal experience (e.g., exposure to substances), birth trauma, inconsistent or inadequate day care, separation issues, abuse and neglect are precipitating factors that may lead to RAD, internationally adopted children evidence this disorder at a significantly higher rate than the general population (Rogu, 2006). (This was taken from the International Adoption Article Directory website, a post adoption learning center.)
Carrie’s daughter has run away from home several times for days at a time at the age of 17. As a result, Carrie and her husband have had to call the police and file a missing person’s report. Consequently, her daughter has appeared several times on the local news when she has gone missing. Her daughter was also dismissed from her high school because they decided she was too great of a risk to the school to continue being a student there. Carried went on to explain to my mom that she has essentially been shunned from the other parents at her daughter’s school and from all of her neighbors. They blatantly ignore her and want absolutely nothing to do with her or her family. My mom then explained to me that Carrie lives in a predominantly White neighborhood and her daughter attends a school with very few minorities. Carrie, who is also White, has admitted to my mom that it has not always been easy raising children who possess a different racial identity than her and the majority of individuals they are surrounded by in their town. What do you guys think about Carrie’s story and how she is now being treated by other members of her community? Do you think this has anything to do with the stereotype of the model Asian-American? Also, is Carrie’s current situation in any way indicative of the new wave of racism society is currently in?