Lighthouse Thoughts

10 Things Every Adoptive Parent Should Know

Our friends over at Grown In My Heart adoption forum posted this amazing and insightful post concerning adoptive families and a bit of must know info. I think it’s a quick and easy must read for anyone interested in adoption, in the process, or even complete adoptive families. Enjoy!

1. Love is the most important part of adoption and newly adopted children always need to feel that and know that. Touch, babywearing, eye contact, time, attention,etc. facilitate attachment and show love. For children who resist this parents must be advocates for their children. Find a GOOD attachment therapist, read up on attachment and work at it. Deborah Gray’s Attachment in Adoption is a great resource.
2. Discipline is important from day one, especially if you are adopting an older child. The discipline our parents used with us may not be the right style for our little ones though. A child who was abused or neglected should certainly not be spanked or sent to his room for an isolated time-out.
3. Listen to their needs. Adoptive children can come with all sorts of medical and emotional needs. Never, ever, dismiss them.
4. Grief is real. All adopted children have losses. They come to you having lost their birth parents, the only home they know, and perhaps schools, friends, belongings, and in some cases culture. As much as you are excited to welcome them into your family know that they may be just as grief stricken.
5. Post Adoption Depression is real and very common. I suffered severe Post Adoption Depression. I adopted a 2-year-old whom I believed would love me, believed would be able to walk, talk, eat, and play. Instead, he raged, he was violent, he couldn’t chew food, and he never slept. I felt that everything was my fault and I felt like I wasn’t doing anything right.

Be sure to read all ten things [HERE].

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