Attachment Trauma: A Personal Reflection Part 2 by Bryan Post

There are no two relationships ever the same. Every interaction that we have with another individual is influenced by our own personal past experiences. John Bowlby, M.D, the father of modern-day attachment theory, referred to these past experiences as our blueprints. Bowlby espoused that the first three years of our lives establish the blueprints for all of our future relationships. At a physiologic level, upon reflecting at the differences between my sister’s earliest relationship blueprints and my own, it is not difficult to determine that at even such an early age she was already imprinted to view human relationships as not safe.

When we consider trauma in the lives of children it is important to realize the far majority of traumatic experiences occurring in their lives typically involve some aspect of human relationship. If a child has been abused, battered, or neglected by the individual that is supposed to love her most then what would make subsequent relationships appear any safer?

From the earliest point in time throughout their relationship with one another, my sister and my parents struggled to be attached. The legendary attachment pediatricians Marshall Klaus and John Kennel inform us that attachment is the behavior of the child to the parent and bonding is the behavior of the parent to the child. In the mental health profession we have fostered an imbalance of influence. A child cannot develop attachment with a parent struggling to bond. Thus, unwittingly, an almost impossible task was set in motion.

Regardless of the trauma issues that my sister carried into the family, my own parents equally brought their own. As you can imagine, the family experience, the experience I refer to as the ‘secret life of the family,’ was not very attractive. To be continued.

Choose Love,


If you have children – adopted, biological or foster – with attachment issues and would like to learn how to help heal early trauma, consider this excellent parenting manual for challenging children - visit From Fear to Love: Parenting Difficult Adopted Children by Bryan Post.

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There are also FREE resources, videos and articles available for helping families with children with trauma, RAD, Reactive Attachment Disorder, Attachment Disorders, ASD, Autism Spectrum Disorder and more at,, and
There is hope. There is help.

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