When you work in the field of adoption for more than 25 years, you get to read a lot of adoption-related books. Some books stand the test of time and have such broad application to not only adoptive families but all families. The books that address attachment issues perhaps are the most regarded because attachment is critical to forming healthy relationships.
There are two essential types of attachment: parent-child and romantic. To find a set of authors who address the foundational issues in forming healthy attachments in an easy-to-understand manner and from a Christian perspective is a true gift.
This gift is brought to you by Milan and Kay Yerkovich. In a non-judgmental tone, this husband and wife team address what they call “Love Styles” in two books, How We Love, which addresses the marital relationship; and How We Love Our Kids, which addresses parenting. The books are truly companions because the Yerkoviches guide the readers to look at their own childhood issues and how their pasts are affecting their marriage relationship as well as their parenting style.
We adoption professionals believe there is a certain type of parenting style that must be employed when raising an adopted child—especially a child who has experienced trauma. Many of the principles used to parent such a child can and should be used in parenting any child. The Yerkoviches ask the reader to do some of the hard work of looking inward and to make changes to bring about positive changes in the relationships with their partner and children.
The Yerkoviches use terms that are familiar to those who understand attachment parlance—only with a twist. So instead of attachment style, they refer to one’s “love style.” They also list various styles of attachment but use different terms that some may find friendlier and easier to understand.
The authors gently bring the Gospel into the conversation—not with a Sunday school lesson dropped over secular research. Instead, they require the partner or parent to look inward and upward as a means of becoming aware of the negative and protective traits we carry into important relationships as adults. This needs to be part of the reader’s sanctification process for true healing to take place.
Not only do the Yerkoviches write compelling books, they also provide free of charge an online attachment assessment what they call a Love Style Quiz . While there is only one scientifically validated attachment assessment called the Adult Attachment Inventory (AAI) that can cost a client anywhere from $100 to $1,000, this quiz appears to be reliable as it asks some key questions leading to seemingly insightful results. There is even a chart to see what happens when one partner has one love style and the other spouse another. Some of us at Nightlight whose attachment styles were evaluated using the AAI have also gone online and taken the Lovey Style Quiz. We found the results remarkably close to the AAI.
In addition, we suggest you take time to listen to one of the best of 2018’s broadcasts on Focus on the Family "Exploring Your Love Style" by the Yerkoviches.
Many highly regarded marriage and family professionals endorse the Yerkoviches’ books and resources. Take the time to explore more of the How We Love information and products. As someone interested in adoption, make sure these compelling books enter your library.