The Taboo of Love for children in care: its emergence through the transference relationship and in the system around the child by Angela Evans

The paper explores the taboo of love for children in care. A taboo is a social custom setting a thing apart, prohibiting association with a person, place, or thing (Oxford English Dictionary 2012). Love can become a taboo for children in care, something that they unconsciously forbid themselves from experiencing due to fears of further loss and pain. It can also become a taboo for many adults working with traumatised young people. The author, a Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist, presents her work with individual children and with the network of adults around them. She proposes that love is not a central theme in the care system, despite its direct relevance to children who have not experienced adequate love in crucial developmental months and years. The implication of this proposition is that unloved children are at risk of remaining unloved within the care system. The application of this to professional practice is immense. The author calls for more support for professionals to perform their vital work in promoting a loving approach in the system. Read more.