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best treatment plan for "wire mother" syndrome?


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in my work over the years with dogs/puppies I have learned it is difficult if not impossible train an un-socialized dog to do anything that didn't come hard-wired from the factory, such as service, schutzhund, show, or even basic obedience. Primarily because you are trying to "fix" something that isn't there to begin with. Its hard to teach a dog to be social if it were not raised around other beings in the CRITICAL developmental period between six and sixteen weeks of life.

Likewise it is hard to tinker with the workings of a human brain that didn't develop normally during the first six to eighteen months of age. because those first experiences become the template from which all subsequent experiences will be interpreted by the dog or person...simply put; how do you rebake a cake???

While my mother was a live human (unlike the wire mothers in the experiments) she was largely unavailable to me in that critical period. She was newly married to my step-father (who didn't work) and I remember many times when I would wake to the sound of the car engine and run after her in a panic, crying. Then my older brothers would slap or spank me to make me "dry up!"

It wasn't that my mother was perposely neglectful, mean, etc...She was BUSY

Sole breadwinner, cook, house keeper, three older kids. New husband, etc. This is in addition to the fact that she was not all that great a mother to begin with (mind of a thirteen year-old?)

Anyway, as a result of all this, I have never been able to trust anyone, have lived a mostly solitary life, and have always had an all-consuming need for female companionship but too fearful of rejection to even try to relate to them or anyone else really, and after a lifetime of counselling, drugs to correct a "Chemical imbalance", study and soul-searching I decided years ago to give it up and focus on educating the next generation so others might be spared a similar experience. Am I wrong? Are there treatments available to put back what was never there? if so, surely they are within the reach of only those with money....do I sound pessimistic??:cool:

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Yep, you sound pessimistic. :rolleyes: I wonder if statistics and science back up your conclusions H2B. I know that imprinting is important, but there are so many factors that affect what a human being becomes, I wonder if you have not created a conclusion and then made decisions based on that, when in fact no-one can be certain that is in fact why you have been such a solitarity type.

It is obvious that your Mum should have been more present for you, that you would have loved to have a mum that offered you more attention and love. I just wonder about the assumptions you have made based on her mistakes and your reactions to that ... can we then generalize about all of society based on these observations?

Edited by Symora
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Yep, you sound pessimistic. ;) I wonder if statistics and science back up your conclusions H2B. I know that imprinting is important, but there are so many factors that affect what a human being becomes, I wonder if you have not created a conclusion and then made decisions based on that, when in fact no-one can be certain that is in fact why you have been such a solitarity type.

It is obvious that your Mum should have been more present for you, that you would have loved to have a mum that offered you more attention and love. I just wonder about the assumptions you have made based on her mistakes and your reactions to that ... can we then generalize about all of society based on these observations?

)Of course their are many factors in the making of a personality, including genetic predisposition, but just as the key ingredient in potato soup is potatos, the key ingredient in dysfunction is early childhood emotional deprivation Thats not saying there are not other factors involved, there are a great variety of other factors that can and do influence development right on through to adulthood, and even beyond.

But unless I am very misinformed (which could be possible) The number one variable in MI is early emotional deprivation...and if not the I would wish someone would say what is the new number one variable.

I refer you to studies done by John Bowlby on attachment theory. Harry Harlow's wire mother experiments, Erik Erikson's eight critical stages of development. statistics on birth order, my own informal study of dog owners...over an eight month period I surveyed the training styles of everyone in my class who would answer questions and found (almost without fail) that those who were raised in a strict, conservative family trained their puppies according to strict, conservative principles "pack-dominace" etc. and those with a liberal background believed passionatly in "positive reenforcement" (neither philosophy has much to do with real dog training) IMO but the point is that I could predict how people were raised based solely on how they treated their dogs. Parenthetically, you can pick up any good dog training manual and find that even dogs have critical stages of development

Does having a less than optimum relationship with the primary car-giver during this or that stage of development guarantee a life of misery? Why of course not. EVERY BRICK THAT IS LAID DURING THE BUILDING OF A CHILDS PERSONALITY FROM BIRTH TO PUBERTY AND EVEN BEYOND DETERMINES WHETHER THE FINAL EDIFICE WILL BE A MANSION OR A JAIL..OR SOMETHING IN BETWEEN.

Am I happy that I was not raised with loving intelligent parents? No, I am not! would you be happy if your mother was so dissapointed in your gender at birth she asked the attending physician to name you? would you be happy if your mother played the sons against the stepfather (including pulling up her dress in front of me to make step-dad jealous when I was entering puberty) how about if your older brother beat you up every time you dissagreed with him would you be happy if your mother let you stay home from school if you helped her clean house? how about if your three older brothers taught you to steal and you were arrested at age ten for a felony? I could go on and on. I once had a councellor exclaim after hearing just one of the traumatic events of my life...."I don't know how your alive!":D

That said, I am happy that my mom cooked and fed me and cared enugh about me to cry when I was sent to reform-school, and write to me occasionally while I was in prison. and I am thankful that my step-dad never beat me or molested me (step-fathers are seven times more likely to abuse a step-child than a biological one) and I am thankful that my brothers taught me to steal and rob well eneugh to get me 10 years in prison which allowed me to get my GED and ALMOST a degree in psychology. and most of all I am thankful for the opportunity to teach others how NOT to train a dog...or a person....scratch that last statement, I am most thankful that I never had kids (that I know of) when I was a young man...I probably would have killed them:(

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Man, I am so sorry you had to live that. It is an amazing feat that you have lived through all of that and still remained a caring human being. Proof of the grace of God, and tons of perseverance and inner strength I'm sure ;) I admire anyone who can live through that and still have a capacity for consideration and kindness. I feel that way about people that go to war as well and come back with their heart intact.... How can one live such dreadful things, see such ugly things about humanity, and still remain open. I have a hard time and I did not live anything close to that type of trauma...

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Man, I am so sorry you had to live that. It is an amazing feat that you have lived through all of that and still remained a caring human being. Proof of the grace of God, and tons of perseverance and inner strength I'm sure :D I admire anyone who can live through that and still have a capacity for consideration and kindness. I feel that way about people that go to war as well and come back with their heart intact.... How can one live such dreadful things, see such ugly things about humanity, and still remain open. I have a hard time and I did not live anything close to that type of trauma...

Thank you Symora for your understanding and validation, I don't often go off on a rant like that. And thanks for not accusing me of sitting on my "pity pot" which I have been known to do, I figure if no one else will feel sorry for me I have to step up:D

Really there are many, many people who have had much greater challenges than I who have achieved much more than I ever will...Steven Hawking comes to mind.

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