Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Personality Type...

Every day it is a struggle living with someone who has a different personality type than you. This has been hard enough just between the 2 of us for all of these years and now it’s even more of a struggle since we’ve added a third to the mix. Ryland’s personality takes some getting used to for us. He is social and wants to talk ALL OF THE TIME. He is very concerned about and wants to express his feelings to everyone around him. He also wants to know how everyone is felling. This is a struggle for Dustin and I because this is not how we operate. I don’t need to ask Dustin if he’s mad, I’ll just know…I’ll pick up on it.


 Just simply eating dinner turns into difficult terrain. 
  • Dustin wants to just eat; preferably while distracted by the TV. Eating is a time to relax.
  • I want to eat, have light conversation, get the meal accomplished and move on to the next task.
  • Ryland wants to talk and poke along at some food while he is talking. He wants to know why you are not smiling while eating. Are you not happy? Why? Where is the you big smile? Where is the sun? Sun go bye bye? Why is Papa all done? Why you race me? Can I ride my bike? Why? Why do I have to eat more food? Why no more talking? Are you angry? Why? I be actin’ right.

Hilarious…yes. We crack up several times a day during his conversations. It’s the neediness that we’re not used to and have to figure out a way to let him be him…and not get annoyed at the same time. I’m sure we’ll be on this quest for quite some time…

In the short term, it may be easier to permanently plaster a big smile on my face!



Smiling in Dallas,




  1. Enjoy it girl. I know it's hard. Remember he'll be a pre-teen/teen before you know it and won't want to talk to you AT ALL. Ha! Mikayla is the same way. Her favorite thing to do is ask you a question that she already knows the answer to. Crazy!

  2. I've been following your blog and commented a few times along your journey so I had to pipe up on this post. My daughter Lexie was adopted from Aktau Kaz at 14 months and turned 4 in May. So she's been home over 3 years now and I have to tell you I've never heard WHY? so much in my life as I have these last couple of months. I know Ryland is 5 so he's a little older than Lexie but his constant talking and questioning everything may be more a product of his age than his personality. Or not:-) Lexie is also a very outgoing social child who has always been pretty chatty but lately....the word why has become a four letter word in my book! But it is a fun age and it sounds like you are enjoying it for the most part. I hope he keeps a smile on your face as I'm sure the next phase will be even more....interesting!

    Great job Mom & Dad!
    Lou Ann & Lexie too

  3. I could not help at laugh at this post because we have been there. I have a post I did on my blog not to long ago about why the world needs chearleaders and pillow fights. It talked about how our newly adopted toddler really needs a big smile and a cheer to keep him on safe ground as he navigates so much new territory. I think giving up peaceful meal times was the hardest adjustment I had to parenthood. Hang in there. Sometimes John and I will have our dinner after the boys go to bed just to remember what it was like.

  4. Like Karon, I too had to laugh. Long gone are the peaceful dinners, evenings, and weekend mornings! And yes, it takes a looooong time to get used to. Truthfully I've been doing this parenting gig for over 3 years, and I'm not sure I'm used to it on occasions. Especially when all they want to do is talk, sing, and I swear, make noise just to make noise sometimes! But... like you said, they make me laugh during those times when I'm not craving silence. And try to remember that some day they won't want to talk to me, and that is way worse (doesn't always feel like it at the time, but my head knows it is!). :-)

    Good luck with the Needy Chatty Cathy challenge!

  5. Hi,

    I have been following along for some time now and while I do believe your son might have an extroverted and outgoing nature, I also think some of this behavior is anxious attachment.

    Anxious attachment is the stage just before solid, comfortable attachment and extremely common in adopted children, particularly older children.

    His fears surrounding your moods, his questioning if he is at fault, constantly smiling or making idle (nonsensical) chatter ~ some of that is age/personality and some of it most likely stems from his time in an institutionalized setting and the tremendous transition in his life.

    Truly he has only been home a short time and in that time has begun school, worked to acquire a new language, struggled to adapt to many changes in routines, etc. and that's just a drop in the bucket.

    I know you will continue to be patient and understanding of his need for reassurances and I suspect as he becomes more comfortable, some of this will fade away. Of course I could be completely mistaken here also. :)

    I just wanted to point this out as one possibility and as a way of viewing this behavior as it occurs; a way to frame it for better understanding.

    Best of luck.
    He is a darling boy!!

  6. It is all such an adjustment, just think how much Ryland's mealtimes have changed! He is learning to use his voice. He could be really outgoing, but my thoughts led me to believe he could be going back a bit to 3-4yr old stage of the 'why' questions. I've learned that despite being 5, Nicholas may have missed some developmental stages such as learning how to play games, so I try to remember to be patient.

    It could just also be just adjusting to his new life. I also had a neuropsychologist tell me that when Nicholas was asking questions in a new situation that he is stressed and this is his way of coping. Nicholas still asks where are we going, then what, then where are we going. I try to constantly tell him what is going to happen. I think it is really good that he can talk about his feelings, I think it's crucial as he learns to trust you.

    You are doing great. Real parenting is HARD work, I've learned how hard it is after Nicholas became our son. Having to constantly be attuned to everyone's needs, physical and emotional. It's a lot of emotional work. Having Ryland has changed your life as well as his and I'm sure you feel love in a completely different way. It's so hard to explain about adopting a child to someone who has not, you know?
    Keep up the good work!