I am fascinated by the topic of nature vs nurture- more so since I saw the documentary “Three Identical Strangers”. What is it that determines how people will turn out? Is someone’s destiny predetermined at birth. or does upbringing help?
I have a friend who adopted a child. The birth mother was a drug abuser and had other assorted issues. The adoptive family were/are loving and supportive. They provided the child with a nurturing and loving environment, exposed the child to art and culture and sports and whatever else the dream childhood consists of. They were involved in the child’s life in every aspect, and supportive of whatever path the child chose.
The child was quite intelligent and grasped onto concepts fairly quickly. Child had a gift for language and writing. But, the child was a behavior problem both in and out of school. Respect was not one of the things this child exceeded at. Child, who we will call Z, was regularly in trouble at school, little league, whatever.
When Z was in third grade, one parent passed away- cancer. It was quick and brutal.
After the death, Z really started to go off the rails- the transgressions got larger. The actions of the child were starting to get dangerous. Middle school saw Z stop working at all- work so poor that the decision was made to send Z to a special school. And then another special school. Because the problems kept multiplying. And drugs. and alcohol.
Ninth grade would need to be repeated because Z was unable to maintain anything close to a good average- obviously, this highly intelligent child failed everything.
I recently found out Z is now in rehab. Z is the same age as my daughter- they played together in pre-k. And now Z is in rehab. This talented amazing child. 16 and lost.
So there you go.
Did the death of a parent throw Z right off the rails? Or was Z destined to make questionable choices and become a substance abuser?
So what do you all think?