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S07.E13: All You Wanted To Know

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i'm sure I heard Bill, in voice over to the exercise and model pose say something like "everyone loves the basketball with legs".  

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I believe that Zoey learning to talk will help Will. My second child's speech was very delayed. His younger brother (by just under 2 years) learned to talk very early and that seemed to be a key to the older one learning to talk. He was in speech therapy as well so it was all working together, but I know having little brother yakking his head off helped. For one thing the older one had to talk so he could squeal on the little guy better.

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I always wondered why an adoption agency would ever allow it.

Just a guess, but I would imagine that adoption agencies really want their kids to be placed so anything that they can do to demystify the process and make it seem less intimidating and more joyful would be worth it for them.  Not for what is best for one kid but what it might open up for the kids who haven't been placed.   

 

I could watch Will giggle all day long.    

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I believe that Zoey learning to talk will help Will. My second child's speech was very delayed. His younger brother (by just under 2 years) learned to talk very early and that seemed to be a key to the older one learning to talk. He was in speech therapy as well so it was all working together, but I know having little brother yakking his head off helped. For one thing the older one had to talk so he could squeal on the little guy better.

Exactly!!!  Will is not going to pick up speech from Bill and Jen talking a hundred miles an hour.  I have seen it for years with kids who go to daycare, they suddenly come home and WOW, they can communicate so much better and learn so much faster.    

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Actually I don't believe there is a correlation between speed of parental speech and fluency of speech in young children. Usually, they just talk fast too. The key is giving them words and letting their words have power (be understood). Even then, their words not understood, they are likely to rattle on at top speed just like everyone else. 

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Bill's comments on the "smiles" had me all smiles.

 

I swear my face almost cracks from the huge grin I have on my face,  while watching Will and his antics.

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What is the cause of Will's speech impediment or did they never state what it is?

 

I thought it was due to his hearing issues early on. 

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Yes they said his speech was delayed in English and Mandarin because of fluid in the ears so the words he did hear sounded like he was underwater and the surgery was to put tubes in his ears to keep the fluid drained and his tonsils and adenoids were removed.

 

He still has great difficulty expressing himself, not for lack of wanting to that is for sure.  He has trouble with certain sounds it seems too.  Even when Bill and Jen ask him to repeat a word he says it quite differently than they do.  

 

I know myself when people talk too fast around me I tune them out completely.

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I think Zoey has been diagnosed with achondroplasia although she seems to not have more extreme limb to trunk ratio. I think it was Bill who side eyed that diagnosis in India. I'm sure they had it confirmed or will have it confirmed. Although some symptoms may be common, not every person with achondroplasia will have every symptom so Zoey will hopefully be spared some of the surgery.

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Unless they just didn't mention it, she doesn't seem to have some of the problems that Will has with it. The sleep apnea and narrow breathing and spinal passages for example.

 

She doesn't even really look physically the same as Will. Her body looks more proportionate than his does. He seems to have the bigger torso and head but with the smaller limbs. But, according to our friend Wikipedia, achondroplasia (which is the kind both the Klein's have and Will has) does account for 70% of all dwarfism so maybe her situation is manifesting differently? 

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Bill's comments on the "smiles" had me all smiles.

 

I swear my face almost cracks from the huge grin I have on my face,  while watching Will and his antics.

I knowwww! Makes me go awww... repeatedly! :-)

Hurry up Easter episode!

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She doesn't even really look physically the same as Will. Her body looks more proportionate than his does.

 

I have to admit, I kinda wondered if she was just a tiny little kid. She looks very proportionate

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I don't think Will and Jen have achondroplasia. That's why Bill said that Zoey and Will would most likely be taller as the average height for little people with achondroplasia is taller than either Bill or Jen. I tried to quickly find the types they have and couldn't.

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Trying to determine what type of dwarfism Bill or Jen may have could be very difficult without their medical information.  There are 200 different types of dwarfism.  The most common form is achondroplasia, which is about 70% of all cases of dwarfism.

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Bill and Jen have Spondyloepiphyseal Dysplasia---short trunk, neck and limbs but with average sized hands and feet.  The main medical problems are spine and hip related (which is why they've each had so many surgeries)  

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Bill and Jen have Spondyloepiphyseal Dysplasia---short trunk, neck and limbs but with average sized hands and feet.  The main medical problems are spine and hip related (which is why they've each had so many surgeries)  

From their website, they explain there is a difference in their dysplasia      "He stands at 4 feet and has a rare variation of a skeletal dysplasia called Spondyloepiphyseal Dysplasia (or SED) and has had more than 20 surgeries. She stands at just 3 foot 2 has a similar, and also rare type of dwarfism called Spondyloepiphyseal Dysplasia Type Strudwick, has had more than 30 surgeries "

                    I thought there would be a difference because Bill has the "normal" facial features and voice, whereas Jen has the helium sounding voice and her facial features seem affected too.    In some ways, she has a few primordial features.

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From their website, they explain there is a difference in their dysplasia      "He stands at 4 feet and has a rare variation of a skeletal dysplasia called Spondyloepiphyseal Dysplasia (or SED) and has had more than 20 surgeries. She stands at just 3 foot 2 has a similar, and also rare type of dwarfism called Spondyloepiphyseal Dysplasia Type Strudwick, has had more than 30 surgeries "

                    I thought there would be a difference because Bill has the "normal" facial features and voice, whereas Jen has the helium sounding voice and her facial features seem affected too.    In some ways, she has a few primordial features.

You are giving me some interesting information. Thank you. It was interesting to learn about the helium voice. 

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I thought it was funny to discover that Zoey has a thing for shoes.  Uh-oh!   And that when she says "No", she often waves her finger.

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Thanks for finding the types of dwarfism! Ratings this week: 2.527 M viewers and a .7 rating.

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Oh I thought the finger wagging was so cute!  She must have learned that from the women at the orphanage.  And the "blow up" fist bump was adorable--Zoey is one of the cutest 2 year olds I have seen in a long time.  And yes, as a shoe lover she is definitely in the right house!

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I actually did see a few of Bill's "traits" in Will very early on.  It seemed to me that they all bonded in China over Will's love of cars and his love of laughing and making other people laugh.  That's pretty much Bill.

 

Zoey, while much younger and "newer", is already showing signs of a strong spirit and independent thinking, and a love for shoes, not to mention a desire to tidy up (natural in some children, believe it or not).  So I'd say she does exhibit some of Jen's characteristics.

 

It is really no big deal for children to try and even take to their loved one's preferences; that's what kids do.  If it really isn't for them, they usually back out of the activity at an early age, or continue with suppressed rage at their parents until they work it all out in therapy.

 

My niece and I spent a lot of time together, often doing a lot of things that I loved and thought she would, too.  Luckily, our tastes in activities were similar, but probably only because she was indoctrinated from the time she was born.  She schlepped along with me until her voice was such we could decide together, and there was rarely a disagreement.  (SeaWorld debate will go unmentioned here except to say, she won, but so did I).  She is an adult who has impressed the holy hell out of me with her confidence and self-awareness at such a young age - something I'm just learning in my old age.  This kid shares so few of my genes I can't claim that, yet I proudly proclaim she takes after me (actually, I usually just think it, as I'm not much for making proclamations, except on this forum).  :-)

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I really enjoyed this episode. They actually addressed some questions that we've thought of here and on the TWoP forum.

 

Thanks, @Steff, for that beautifully written post about Bill's attributes. You said it better than I would have. I find Bill very attractive in personality, caring, AND looks. He's a great guy!

 

Regarding the question about cancer from the young poster - My mother was diagnosed with cancer the first time when I was 6 years old. I was sitting on the steps of our home when my mom asked me why I was crying and I said "I don't want you to die". At 6 years old I knew about death already. I'd seen it on tv and in movies. My mother had cancer 3 times when I was growing up. She died when I was 19. I do believe that question was real.

 

It's funny that Zoey went from not being sure about animals to allowing the dogs to lick her mouth that way. Ick. I hope she grows out of that.

 

Also, about the outfit change in India - I was thinking it might be that Zoey's original dress might have smelled too much like India. Not only did they have to do a diaper change, but a fresh clean dress would be nice. They were probably surprised to even read the initial comments that it was all staged. I didn't think of that at all. But, glad they mentioned it on their Q and A episode anyway.

 

Love love love all the "smile" clips and Bill's take on them.

Edited by SunShine Gal
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I have to admit, I kinda wondered if she was just a tiny little kid. She looks very proportionate

When Bill returned from India he said something about Zoey not being a little person on Twitter with a wink... I won't swear by it, it was so odd... it was during their "quiet time" and said with a wink. Maybe I dreamed this. Anyone remember?

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I thought it was a odd that they kept saying "Will is just like you" or "Zoey is just like you" They are adopted! It's nearly impossible for an adopted child to have the same character traits as their adopted parents. Also of course Zoey likes shoes. That is practically all Jen can think of putting on her and of course Will likes trucks. That is all they give him to play with! 

Of course Zoey and Will are too young to exhibit adult personality traits. But I am an adopted child and have two adopted children and you might be amazed how much we have in common. 

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I don't think  it is odd at all that an adopted parent would love their child so much they would want to see their character "traits" in them.  They are proud parents just the same as biological parents!  And they are right, the children do show some of the same traits.  If Zoey didn't have a love of shoes on her own, I doubt she could be compelled to love shoes at age 2.  That seems to be all Zoey's idea!

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When Bill returned from India he said something about Zoey not being a little person on Twitter with a wink... I won't swear by it, it was so odd... it was during their "quiet time" and said with a wink. Maybe I dreamed this. Anyone remember?

 

I don't remember this but I wouldn't be shocked.

 

My thought on seeing her was that she looked like a kid that hadn't gotten enough to eat and wasn't growing.

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i'm sure I heard Bill, in voice over to the exercise and model pose say something like "everyone loves the basketball with legs".

 

I envisioned Sully in Monsters, Inc.!

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Also I find it odd that in one episode, Bill says that Zoe is afraid of stranger yet in another Jen says "Children from orphanges will go off with strangers"?

 

I think its two different situations they are referring to. Bill was remarking on Zoey being shy (around Santa amongst others). Jen was talking about both Will and Jen, and was likely referring to the idea that since the orphanages probably had staff turnover, the kids in orphanages are trained to respond to adults and to not fuss when an adult gives them an order or tells them what to do.

 

He is going to be going to school soon and kindergarten does not take kids in diapers and he will most likely be made fun of not only for his small stature but also for his lack of  speech.

 

Well, I don't need to see toilet training - it grossed me out with the Jon and Kate show, but its a fair point that kindergarten in public school will insist on no diapers. I had a family member go through that with their kid - they were just doing the "she'll know when she wants to be toilet trained, its important she has something she can control" method so the kid was almost five and not reliably toilet trained. The school officials were pretty blunt with the family member - its understood that there will always be accidents, but if the kid was wearing diapers, even pull ups, she was going to be placed in special ed, not regular kindergarten, because not being able to reliably use the toilet at five meant she was special needs. (needless to say, tiny family member was trained within days)So hopefully Jen and Bill won't let it go.

 

Because frankly, you're right. He might be cute as a button but he will be smaller than all the other kids and that will never change, and he doesn't speak well, and that will put other kids off. He's already a target for teasing, adding diapers is not going to help.

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Will has 15 months before he starts kindergarten--that is plenty of time to work on his speech and his potty training.  I agree, don't need or want to see that.  Besides, its private and I think Bill and Jen have a handle on it.  

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These kids are going to be fine because of the attentive parents that they have. When they had Will's birthday party they said that some of the invitees were kids from the gym program that Bill and Will attend. So Will is around other kids in a social way.

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I think we are unlikely to see much of them playing with other kids because we only see what is filmed. I would hope they have opportunities to interact.

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My point is that this "love of cars"" and "love of shoes and pretty things' Is NOT a trait per se. I mean come on. From day one they have been exposing these kids to these things. So of COURSE they are going to  like them. Parents always give girls dolls and pink things and boys cars and "boy toys"  I think you are all missing my point. We are all born with certain traits: Whether we are outgoing,etc.We get those things from our BIOLOGICAL parents. Adoptive parents can't give a child their personality. Whatever personality they are born with is what they have. A love of cars is not a personality trait so much as that is what the kid is exposed to. You see what I am saying? 

I do see what you are saying, but the nature/nurture factors are much more complex. You are not born with your personality. I'm not certain exactly how you define personality to say it is something you are born with. Perhaps we need to start there to discuss it. 

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Bill and Jen seem to enjoy that Will and Zoey appear to have certain characteristics in common with one or the other of them, but I don't think they were implying that the children had inherited those characteristics from them. It was more like, "Isn't it fun that Will likes cars and making people laugh, like Bill, and that Zoey likes cleaning and shoes, shoes, shoes, like Jen." I think they understand that there's a difference between inherited traits and acquired traits and also there are just happy coincidences, lol. Will and Zoey may at some point exhibit inherited traits, who knows? But at their ages, they are probably still very much a product of their early environment in the orphanage or group home and, of course, of their new lives with Bill and Jen.

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Will has 15 months before he starts kindergarten--that is plenty of time to work on his speech and his potty training.  I agree, don't need or want to see that.  Besides, its private and I think Bill and Jen have a handle on it.  

I am not sure they do or it would be done and be stated as a great accomplishment by them and you are right we don't need to see it but we do need to hear how it is progressing, none of us will be able to take Will being bullied.  It will be bad enough for the things he can't control like his size but things that can be addressed need to be pdq!

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Stubborn kids and, in some cases, developmentally delayed kids can go forever without potty training and then do it in a matter of days. I think they're purposely not mentioning it because it's one thing they DON'T want on record for the world to see as Will grows up. It's truly not the biggest deal in the world. So many things that seem crucial in the moment (bottles, pacifiers, sleep issues, potty training) don't matter AT ALL once the kid is past them. As my kids and my friends' kids get older, it doesn't matter who did what when. They're all basically at the same place now that they're older. As far as the speech goes, they've showed him in speech therapy. They will likely continue to work with him on speech as he goes through preschool and, as kindergarten gets closer, work with experts to decide if he's ready for kindergarten, if he should be in a special ed classroom, or if he should even be held back another year before beginning. None of those options is the end of the world, and many people who care about Will will make those important decisions.

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My cousin is adopted and is now 59 years old. She acts JUST like her mother! And the crazy thing is, she looks like her too. My son did not even know she was adopted (it is not a secret, we simply do not think about it) and was shocked when I mentioned her failure to find her bio mother because in his mind they appeared genetically alike.

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truebluesmoky - I couldn't agree more.  My own cousin never learned to crawl - he rolled everywhere, until one day he got up and started running.  I developed early, but still remember my grandpa teasing me about my afternoon bottle, telling me I couldn't have it once I started school.  BFD - I got milk and my first oatmeal cookie in kindergarten and never looked back!  So many of these "issues" work themselves out and we learn our worry and hand wringing was for naught.  I'm sure the parents are the best informed and the best suited to deal with whatever is actually a problem, and will do so.

 

Also, I remember a little boy in my first grade class who could barely speak English and had an accident at his desk.  I remember him because he became a straight A student just like me within a year or two and was one of my "rivals" for top grades.  His name was Ming.  :-)

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My cousin is adopted and is now 59 years old. She acts JUST like her mother! And the crazy thing is, she looks like her too. My son did not even know she was adopted (it is not a secret, we simply do not think about it) and was shocked when I mentioned her failure to find her bio mother because in his mind they appeared genetically alike.

 

Cute. :)  

 

My sister, god rest her sweet soul, adopted 2 girls (my nieces are now adults with babies)  and to this day they say and do things that remind me so much of my sister.  It's precious how sometimes it works that way.

 

Forgot to say I liked when Jen & Bill were talking about their relationship and how they make it all work.   Very nice attitudes to aspire to.  

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Also we have seen these kids at the doctors getting poked and proded. We saw them at the hospital when he had his ear tubes placed and more. Why not potty training? I personally don't care to see it. But I just don't see why they would stop at that. I mean they are showing them renewing their vows on tv too. Just like Jon and Kate did. It's the typical realtiy show thing. So for them to suddenly be modest about potty training?

 

Because it really is different? I would happily talk to all of you on this random internet forum about my husband's and my upcoming 10 year anniversary and the infection I got when I had my wisdom teeth removed, but I would draw the line at discussing my bowel movements with you.

Edited by truebluesmoky
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I am not sure they do or it would be done and be stated as a great accomplishment by them and you are right we don't need to see it but we do need to hear how it is progressing, none of us will be able to take Will being bullied.  It will be bad enough for the things he can't control like his size but things that can be addressed need to be pdq!

I'm not so certain they will discuss anything more about Will's progress at all. It would be quite logical for them to be silent on the subject. As far as I can tell he may well be trained and wearing briefs now. 

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Good point--Bill and Jen haven't said if Will is or isn't potty trained.  And listen to all of us, giving child-rearing advice to a noted pediatrician!  Its like giving financial advice to a banker.  

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I was adopted at 12 days old.  In my case, nurture luckily made me so much like the fabulous woman I called Mom until her death a few years ago.  I was blessed.

 

As far as the potty training, I don't need to see that and Will does not need to see it, and possibly be humilated, years from now.  There are some things with regard to these beautiful children that simply are not our business.

Edited by LegalParrot81
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Seeing the kids being looked at by their doctor and getting shots and what else is a little different than talking about potty training.  Maybe Bill and Jen just don't want to discuss it.  

 

So many people thought it was ridiculous when potty time was shown on Jon and Kate + 8. Because "those kids will be horrified and embarrassed when they're old enough to know their potty training was shown on national tv!" 

 

And Will was in an orphanage. Where we've all seen that he was around numerous kids.

 

My nephew took FOREVER to get potty trained. He just didn't want to do it.  He got real close to his first day of preschool before he finally did it. And he was always told he couldn't go if he didn't learn.  The same nephew also went to speech therapy.  He's a normal american kid.  Sometimes it just takes longer than others, doesn't mean they have a bad parent.

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Good point--Bill and Jen haven't said if Will is or isn't potty trained.  And listen to all of us, giving child-rearing advice to a noted pediatrician!  Its like giving financial advice to a banker.  

She is actually a neonatologist.   

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Perhaps they're thinking about their eventual 15-year-old son, who might not want to have televised examinations of his toilet training challenges (IF he has any) to explain to his peers. Not that he won't be mortified by something else that his folks did. If he's a normal kid growing up, their mere existence will humiliate him at some point. But this one seems like a no-brainer for two loving, capable (and still fairly "new") parents. Maybe they feel it's TMI for an anonymous audience - which it is. I like the idea that they might have limits and err on the side of sensitivity when setting them.

Compared to all the self-absorbed, negligent, even dangerous freaks in the world - some of whom also have their own TV shows - Will and Zoey are pretty darn lucky to have these two as parents.

Edited by RealityCowgirl
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I didn't think the incident at the park was a big deal at all. Will didn't know those boys and it probably seemed to him that they were going to make off with his bike. And he wasn't having it! He doesn't have the language skills yet to express himself or fully understand an explanation and he just wanted to safeguard his property at that moment. I don't think that his reaction was so unusual for a 3-4 year old. He might be more willing to share with children he knows and trusts. I'm sure that gradually his parents and teachers will encourage him to share playthings and take turns with others, especially as his communication skills develop and improve and he can understand the concepts.

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All we have to go off is a show that was filmed months ago, and social media... So we don't actually know his progress in potty training or possible barriers, but I'm confident bill and jenn have it figured out and quite frankly it's non of my business

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Which is a sub-specialty of pediatrics.

The reason why I noted this is because there is a huge difference between taking care, treating and relating to a newborn versus a child who can communicate/is older.

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My point is that this "love of cars"" and "love of shoes and pretty things' Is NOT a trait per se. I mean come on. From day one they have been exposing these kids to these things. So of COURSE they are going to  like them. Parents always give girls dolls and pink things and boys cars and "boy toys"  I think you are all missing my point. We are all born with certain traits: Whether we are outgoing,etc.We get those things from our BIOLOGICAL parents. Adoptive parents can't give a child their personality. Whatever personality they are born with is what they have. A love of cars is not a personality trait so much as that is what the kid is exposed to. You see what I am saying? 

 

I think you would be surprised as to how much personality can be passed down simply by being around someone and not necessarily through biology.  Personality is always something that is argued in psychology as to where it truly comes from.  I know plenty of parents who have adopted children, some from birth others from age 4 and under and their children still share some of their personality traits, some are just as easy going as their parents and laid back, others are just as determined and head strong.  Things like a calm demeanor, someone who is angered easily, or patient can all be learned personality traits usually picked up by those around them.  The funny thing with personality is it is a hard thing to truly test to see where it comes from.  You can argue that a child acts like their parents because of biology but unless you can go back and remove that child from their parents and have them raised by a completely opposite set of parents you will never truly know what is nature and what is nurture.

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