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Liang Liang's Story

When Liang Liang was placed into his foster family at 3 years old, he was an anxious, insecure and angry little boy who suffered from split spinal cord malformation. He saw himself as unlovable and unworthy.

Whomever he met, he would tell them that he had a problem with his spine. Frequently he would have temper tantrums. His foster mother constantly overheard conversations he had with his teddy bear:

“Little bear, I kill you, I kill you. Do you have a family? Will you be abandoned again? If you don’t behave yourself, I will send you back to the orphanage.”

Liang Liang didn’t have a sense of feeling ‘full’ after his meals; though he had eaten enough food, he would still ask for more. He hoarded food and would not let anybody touch it. He wetted and soiled his bed and constantly challenged his foster mother’s patience. He kept asking his foster mother,

“Will you love me? Will you want me? Will you still give me food to eat?”

Thankfully his foster mother was very experienced and remained remarkably patient. She realized that Liang Liang was desperately hungry for love and in great need of a feeling to belong. She assured Liang Liang that she understood that he was worried about being a good child, helped him think differently about why he was abandoned, restored his trust in adults, and built up his self-esteem. Through simple conversations, she provided him with alternative reasons as to why his parents could not keep him, emphasizing that they may have had difficulties, but that they were not connected to Liang Liang’s impairment. She also worked on demonstrating to Liang Liang, in a variety of ways, that he and other family members were continuously loved, wanted and valued, regardless of their behavior.

Today Liang Liang thrives in his foster family’s unconditional love and acceptance. We have been delighted to witness the strong attachment he now has with his mother and his family. He likes to show people his family photo, saying proudly:

“This is my Mum, this is my Dad, and this is me… Mum says I am 'the apple of her eye'!”
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