Cheri Hofstater JULY 20, 2018
Unfortunately I am the granddaughter of this women. My mother, (Lana) was lucky enough to get sent to live with her grandmother on a farm in Wisconsin. At the age of 12 or 13 I believe, was when her mother came back for her. I remember my mom telling the story like it was yesterday. Her mother loved to drink and play bingo, but with four new children now she found it difficult to maintain her social life, so when my mother was old enough Lucille went and got her for the sole purpose of babysitting. At least that's my mother take on the situation. With no place else to go, my mother stuck around and eventually married and had 7 children. Me, I'm right in the middle. I don't remember much about my grandmother except that she was a strong and demanding women, and I feared her. I remember my half aunt's who were always wonderful to me and my siblings. My mother eventually left her abusive and alcoholic husband and we moved away, never to see them again. Until after my mom died that is. We reconnected, breifly, with some of my mother's half sisters and there view of the situation is totally different. Because of that we never really talked about the relationship between my mother and grandmother, we were just glad to have the time together. I suppose being raised by your mother and being given away by your mother would have a tremendous impact on your opinion and thoughts about your life and the people in it. My mother never seemed bitter or angry at her, just afraid, of being hurt, I suppose. I thank God everyday for giving my mom the strength to endure her life, as lonely as it was. I guess you could say the pain, and or love, we receive throughout our lives doesn't have to dictate who we will become. My mom was proof of that.
Thanks for listening.
A tender soul.
Yeah, that seems pretty clear. Although I don't see why the impact should extend to your relationship with other random people.
My grandfather was given away by his mother a little before the Great Depression, the theory being that she couldn't afford to keep him. (The other two children were kept.) He understandably bore a grudge -- he never spoke about her, and when she tried once, a long time later, to reestablish contact, he refused.
But the only obvious candidate for a lasting impact on his relationships with people other than her was his habit of assuring us "Remember -- your (grand)father always loves you."
Even not actual "abandonment", but emotional abandonment is the main culprint for borderline personality dissorder.
It will impact a person's emotional stability and wellbeing, the way he is attracted to other people, his self esteem and so on.
Mental illnesses of all kinds, like virtually everything, are heritable. Of course, environment can play into heritability, but it's like the IQ debate... full of Culture War and the science of "why the brain does X thing" is unsettled.
I've researched a lot about BPD therapies and the most promising one -- Schema Therapy -- models heavily BPD as being rooted in abandonment issues in childhood -- and everything I've read rang like hitting a nail on it's head, at least in my case.
Because human brains aren't wholly rational :) Based on what people say about their reactions, experiencing a formative abandonment can impact your ability to trust others for the rest of your life.
Interestingly, people also say this about being cheated on in romantic relationships.
> Yeah, that seems pretty clear. Although I don't see why the impact should extend to your relationship with other random people.
People aren't robots with perfect control over themselves.
Sadly, this plays out today in many countries with parents or grandparents selling children into sex slavery, with motives ranging from pure evil to (still terrible) justifcstion of sacrificing one child so that the others can be fed.
Would it be more or less heart-breaking if they all starved homeless on the street instead?
Did you read the article?
> They were often chained up in a barn and forced to work long hours in the field. Milton remembers being called a “slave” by his new father figure, a label he accepted at the time because he didn’t understand what it meant.
> RaeAnn left home at 17, shortly after undergoing a brutally traumatic situation. As a young teen she was kidnapped and raped, which resulted in a pregnancy. She was sent away to a home for pregnant girls, and had her baby adopted when she returned.
I think plenty would take homelessness over slavery. Add in the physical and sexual abuse that's probably commonplace in "hey I went out and bought a kid" scenarios, too.
Edit: Also it was not done for the good of the kids, but for the good of the parents. Which puts it into different situation.
Also the standard deviation of prices (in 19th century London and current day Russia) is quite high. My wife’s sister is a professor who studies human trafficking and has quite a bit of data on this sort of thing.
One unsurprising trend is that girls are significantly more value than boys: they can potential do housework, cause less problems, and their sexual access can be monetized.
Would be interesting to know in that context why girls would be valued higher then boys.
A chunk of the book talks about intergenerational transmission of trauma. The rest of it is a fascinating insight into the mind-body connection. It's Thorough and well worth the read.
This is clearly not the road to a civilized society. History shows all cultures and religion dominated by stable societies and family structures going back thousands of years, and while things like famines, war, epidemics, slavery and others led to breakdown, desperation and widespread suffering they cannot be passed as 'normal' in any age or gloss over abnormal human behavior.
The whole situation was formidably cruel.
This is the natural state of the world. The fact that it's so abhorrent to us now is a testament to how far we've managed to come.
But if you interpret the "natural state of the world" to include loving parents, but not decent medical or agricultural technology, life can be "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short" in spite of parents' love. Or even "formidably cruel".
I’m not sure how you could ever think that love is somehow the a priori concept of the world. Do single-celled organisms “love”? What about insects?
The answer is no, and evolution tells us what this cruel world is all about: propogation of genes through sex. We, as beings, are irrelevent: just hosts for a game that is being played at a different level.
Animals also take care of their young, they often mourn those who died.
Plus, your incredulity at the thought of "love" between single-celled organisms is without basis. Love is a subjective state which we can only infer. We (well, some of us, not you I guess) think it's real because we've felt it at a level to which to describe it as not real would do violence to our conception of real/unreal.
And then we infer that it's felt in other organisms around us based on their actions.
Now, a single-celled organism really doesn't have a great range of "actions/behaviors" it can show us. Therefore we don't get to see it. This says nothing about whether it's experienced or not.
Animals also kill their young on purpose, including people.
Do your cells in your eyes and in your butt love each other?
If so, you have a pretty flexible definition of love.
Of course love is a thing, but is a much more recent phenomenon than pain. This is why it's much easier to feel pain, that in it is to feel love.
Humans and elements have a "S-shaped" function in which they rather avoid pain than feel pleasure. Would you rather feel a lot of joy for an hour or not be tortured for an hour? Most choose the latter: the stick is more powerful than the carrot.
I think it's a little disingenuous to that animals feel "love." Neurochemically, it's a little unclear as to what the feeling of love even is. Pain, on the other hand, is quite clear.
Therefore, we can reasonably conclude that pain has been more of driving factor of evolution than love. And then in it also follows that pain has been more prevalent than love in the history of the world.
Many animals also eat their young. Taking care of their young is just as ingrained in their evolved behavior as eating them.
Otherwise, I agreed with the rest of your post. The whole "do <x> organism 'love'" concept is a bit of a mind bender as usual.
Careful there, you'll bring out a whole cadre of people dragging you over the coals with that sort of opinion. They'll call you "godless" or something else, which translates to "I can't debate your opinion, so neener-neener".
Do you think you would be more likely to sell your children if you had 8+? Or if you were dirt poor? Homeless? Addicted to drugs? Starving? On your death bed?
Bringing another being into this meatgrinder of a world is the cruelest act in itself. Everything else is just a matter of degree.
My world view is grim, but not as pessimistic as yours. May I recommend you something?
Have you seen the movie Arrival? The protagonist makes a decision near the end of the movie that is as much in contrast of your statement as it can be. I was (and still am) unbelievably moved by that revelation and think about it to this very day.
They didn't have birth control.
I grew up in a world where my parents used it, I use it, and my grandmother guilt tripped my grandfather forever for not telling her about it until after they had three kids.
Forever, meaning she still brought up the issue when I introduced my wife to them.
> (If your question is more of a technical one: These signs weren't all individually hand-lettered. A professional lettering artist makes one copy, then the artwork is photographed and turned into a plate for silkscreening or lithography.)
Holy crap, was this so common they had it made produced like the baby on board signs? :(
Is there a typo there? Should it have been - Within two years all of the children in the pictures
Interestingly, this particular lady supposedly had another 3 children after selling her first 5. If her behavior was a result of genetics, those genes were pretty successful.
Moreover, if the child is a girl, their reproductive skew is very low: it’s highly unlikely she will produce more than 15 offspring in her entire life. So it might make sense to sell your girls, and keep your boys.
Why, you might ask? Because in an ideal world, each boy could potentially have thousands of children.
This, of course, is unlikely but we can look at history to just see how reproductively successful a man can be. Genghis Khan in all likelyhood had thousands of children.
For every extra calorie given to a boy vs a girl, the amount that it will increase the number of offspring he/she will have is more for the boy.
Of course, like you were saying, many more men than women will not be able to reproduce at all. This why we have 50/50 sex ratios. The girls mitigate or hedge the risk from boys.
As humans we kind of do a similar thing, kindergartens, schools(other people that we don't know) rise our children and spend more time with them than us as parents.
As many times and many people in HN, I'll recommend this book: The Selfish Gene
by Richard Dawkins