Family Frameworks

Imprinting! How does that happen in families?



Feb 2014


Recently I was reading about imprinting. It’s a way in which an animal learns who to follow. We hIMG_0006ave seen the kitten that is mothered by a dog etc. This then made me think of how we imprint our children to follow us. What are we doing to help with their bonding to us?

I believe that Oxytocin this hormone that I keep talking about has something to do with it. Oxytocin is known as the cuddle hormone, or the moral hormone or the sex hormone. But I think there is a lot to this simple little hormone. I believe God put it there for a reason.

As I have studied this, I read that people that were given a dose of Oxytocin would have good memories of their early childhood or they would have negative memories and would become very angry. That makes me think. What are we doing to increase the oxytocin in our children?

families 3 Another area that is related somewhat is the moral hormone another name for Oxytocin. What are we doing for our children to increase their morality. I read in Jeremiah 31:33 where God wants to write these decrees on our hearts and our foreheads. (Sounds LIke the way Oxytocin works) So again, What are we doing for our children to help them know morality?

And one more area that is related, bonding. How do we bond our children to us so that they want to be with us when they are older.

So in all of that I look and see ways that might increase the Oxytocin in the family. Yes, the family. I think we need to increase it in everyone. It first starts our with bonding of the mother and father sexually. When we are intimate with our partner and we are married to him or her, we feel secure and loved. There are good things going between us. This bons us stronger. We need to have that bond to keep bonding.

There are huge amounts of oxytocin shed in mom and baby when the baby is born. I think this is for bonding the baby to the mother. Kind of like imprinting that baby to the mom. But then there is a large amount of Oxytocin produced when they breastfeed too. I read that the bonding affect lessens around 3 months after baby is born so breastfeeding increases that bonding past that point. An interesting research also has found that men’s testosterone decreases for about 3 months after baby is


born. I can definitely see the advantages in that. But I think it’s even more importantly that family is bonding. When the father is not in the home is there less oxytocin for that baby? When the mother chooses not to breastfeed because it’s inconvenient is there less oxytocin for the baby? Or if a doctor chooses to do a c-section for convenience is there less oxytocin for that baby?

Could we be interfering with God’s natural bonding methods when we choose convenience? Would we be interfering with the positive nurturing that goes on when we choose alternate methods of family life? Just thought I would put these thoughts down. What do you think?

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