Jump to content

Menu

Anyone want to share positive adoptive stories?


Recommended Posts

I have four kids but my husband and I have often talked about adding to our family thru adoption.

 

However, when it comes to this site it seems like all too often we only hear the negatives, which truthfully is starting to scare me away from the thought of ever adopting. Please share some positive stories--both from the adoptive parent and adoptive child standpoint.

 

I understand that many people come here to "vent" but that means we often only hear the downside. I don't always want to hear that as an adoptive parent my love will never be enough or hear that my bio children will think our adoptive child ruined our life!

 

Share the good stuff please!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it depends on what you mean by "positive adoption stories." If you mean, "We adopted our child and he/she never had any issues whatsoever and melded seamlessly into our family and we never even think about the fact the she/he's adopted," there might be few of those stories.

 

The reality (at least in my experience) is that most people who have adopted have experienced adjustment issues, and many, many families deal with attachment issues, developmental issues, learning delays, health issues, etc. Even families who have adopted same-race kids as newborns can have issues.

 

My family has struggled at times with issues brought to our family through our adoptions. Sometimes things have been extremely hard, but overall adoption has been a positive thing in our family. I think both my kids will deal with adoption-related issues their entire lives (my kids came from orphanages), but that doesn't mean our adoptions have been failures or negative experiences. All of us have had to stretch and grow and learn to be flexible and think in new ways. There has been stress along the way, but in the end I think we have all benefited.

 

Tara

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it depends on what you mean by "positive adoption stories." If you mean, "We adopted our child and he/she never had any issues whatsoever and melded seamlessly into our family and we never even think about the fact the she/he's adopted," there might be few of those stories.

 

I don't know any family, birth or adopted, that doesn't have struggles and issues they deal with. I simply mean that there are many posts that make it seem like adoption was a terrible thing for their family and/or there is no positives that have come for it. I know that isn't true for all, so I'm hoping that some will chime in and say what you said....there are issues but its worth it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't know any family, birth or adopted, that doesn't have struggles and issues they deal with.

 

I agree with you. I will say, in my experience, that dealing with adoption-related issues has been harder for me than dealing with generic family issues or struggles. I think that it is because I grew up in a bio family and experienced these generic family issues, but nothing in my upbringing prepared me for dealing with post-institutionalized children. It's a whole different ball of wax. So while it is true that all families have "issues," adoption issues are (to me) in a different category. Perhaps along the lines of dealing with serious mental illness when you didn't grow up in a family with mental illness. It's outside most people's realm of experience.

 

Tara

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Our story is 'postivie' but that doesn't mean I don't think adoption isn't a complicated issue. People feel how they feel, and that can change over time. To me postivie is to accept it and try the best you can to keep things real and honest and respectful. My dd says no to a search now, but she knows that she can come to me if she changes her mind. I have some information, but that is hers to do with as she will. We've also discussed the possibility that the future could bring her first mother to her. We don't know what databases will be part of a computer/global culture in the future.

 

Even if both the mother and the child have postivie, happy lives, there can be questions and more.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it depends on what you mean by "positive adoption stories." If you mean, "We adopted our child and he/she never had any issues whatsoever and melded seamlessly into our family and we never even think about the fact the she/he's adopted," there might be few of those stories.

 

I don't know any family, birth or adopted, that doesn't have struggles and issues they deal with. I simply mean that there are many posts that make it seem like adoption was a terrible thing for their family and/or there is no positives that have come for it. I know that isn't true for all, so I'm hoping that some will chime in and say what you said....there are issues but its worth it.

 

I think if you reread ChristyB.'s post in her thread, you'll find what you're looking for. She repeatedly comments that her experience was positive and that her adopted family was/is good to her. She's just carried pain with her, which doesn't mean her experience was negative. It just means it came with some pain.

 

Pain doesn't always equate to negative. Many overall positive experiences are coupled with pain. Think how painful and wonderful it is to give birth or how wonderful and painful it would be to win a marathon. Pain is just part of being human.

 

If you adopt, you'll end up with a child who will come with some built in reason to have some pain. As you know, we can't protect our children from all the pain of life.

 

Being a parent means you get to be a cushion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A few years ago, I'd have been happy to. All you need is love. If it doesn't matter to the adoptive family, it won't matter to the adopted child. ... Now? No. I'm sorry. I can't. I hope that someday I will feel differently again... But... And, of course, as others have said, there are plenty of problems in bio families too. But, man... Sometimes love just isn't enough... And that can be pretty darn heart-rending.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My adoption story is a wonderful one but probably because I didn't go into it (fostering) with the intention of adoption. Therefore, I did not have the stress of the "what if's" and the system to deal with.

 

My son came to us as a foster placement at 6 days old. His bio mom was very young and a foster child herself. Reunification was attempted but she realized that, after meeting our family, it was in her son's best interest to become a part of our family. We have lost touch with her but that is of her doing. I love her and think of her often. Still, the process was lengthy. It took two years to complete. I was blessed with wonderful case workers and I have an amazing agency that assigns each family an advocate that works solely with the family to make sure all their needs are met.

 

My daughter came to us at 4 weeks of age during a period when our son left us for an attempt at reunification. My agency was reluctant to place her with us because they knew that my son would come back into the system but we prevailed. Her bio mom had two visits with her, got pregnant again and relinquished her rights. It still took two years for finalization but we didn't have visitation as an issue. Birth dad was named but would not submit to a DNA test. My daughter's CA was over the top. I love her like family and we are still close. My children are 18 days apart.

 

Having said all this, this is definitely not the norm when adopting from the foster system. As much as CPS claims they work in the best interest of the child, THEY DO NOT. They give bio parents time after time after time to get their acts together and often throw them back into unhealthy situations where they suffer neglect only to return to the system again. The Humane Society would not allow a majority of these bio parents to adopt an animal from them. I have worked with bio parents who have only needed some love and support but that is not the norm unfortunately. I am currently mentoring a 10 year old little boy right now who has been TPR'd and would love to adopt him but for now it is not in the cards. If the system would have been stricter with his bio parents (they gave them FIVE years to complete their case plans) and having them comply in a timely fashion he would've had a better chance of finding a permanent family. Because they drag their feet, these children become older, develop issues and are very hard to place, especially when they are minority (this precious boy is Haitian as are my children).

 

So, I don't know if my story is positive or not but it is one of truth. For me, it was very easy and I am still a huge proponent of adoption through the foster system, especially minority children. Minority male children over the age of 8 have a single digit chance of being adopted. This is just wrong and so sad. All children deserve the love and security of a family.

Edited by blessed2fosteradopt
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Now? No. I'm sorry. I can't. I hope that someday I will feel differently again

 

:grouphug:

 

I have been through some very dark times in our adoption journey. Fortunately I seem to have come out on the other side (for the time being), but I want to extend my love and empathy to you. Two years ago I would have written your post.

 

:grouphug:

 

I also want to add that some of my strongest and most unwavering sources of support have been friends who haven't adopted, and I am forever grateful to them.

 

Tara

Link to comment
Share on other sites

:

I have been through some very dark times in our adoption journey. Fortunately I seem to have come out on the other side (for the time being), but I want to extend my love and empathy to you. Two years ago I would have written your post.

 

I should have clarified. This is not about my children. And I doubt two years will redeem this situation. It may take a whole lifetime to know for sure. ... The childhood part was beautiful.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I simply mean that there are many posts that make it seem like adoption was a terrible thing for their family and/or there is no positives that have come for it. I know that isn't true for all, so I'm hoping that some will chime in and say what you said....there are issues but its worth it.

 

 

I really have not seen much of that at all. I don't can't remember reading any posts here that made it seem like adoption has been all negative for their family or a terrible thing.

 

As an adoptive mother, I know that there is simply a hole in my child's heart. Our circumstances are a bit different (his mother died when he was two, I married his father).

 

People are not comfortable with childhood grief. They badly want to fix it, of course. Part of being human is wanting to care for children. But I think we put a lot of pressure on children to not be really sad. We are not comfortable with pain and loss being mixed with joy for children - or most of us are not. I've seen over and over how people want to say to my son and to me that he is "lucky" because he was too young to remember his mother and that he's lucky to have me, and even some of the people who love him best are dismissive of the idea that his world includes a real sense of loss that no human can ever make up for. It's just part of who he is and who he always will be.

 

What I see on the board the last couple of days is that when someone wants to say that, to talk about it, to discuss our attitudes toward adoption and birth, it makes people feel defensive. I understand that. It really is hard to hear sometimes. We want to hear that adopted children have very positive feelings about it. Some children (and the adults they will become) feel very differently about circumstances from other children in the same situation. One child might feel a profound loss and another hardly think about it, and it's not, I would imagine, because the adoptive parents did something right or wrong.

 

Anyway, I can share a lot of positive adoption situations that I have witnessed, and in a way, I am part of one, though not in the sense you are probably thinking of. But honestly, I think almost all adoption is discussed in a mostly positive way here already - I just think that it's hard to hear about the pain, and it touches a nerve.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

... She's just carried pain with her, which doesn't mean her experience was negative. It just means it came with some pain....

...

If you adopt, you'll end up with a child who will come with some built in reason to have some pain. As you know, we can't protect our children from all the pain of life. ...

 

I guess it's just discovering how *deep* that pain can go, how long the scars can last, and how little we families can sometimes do... Despite our love...

 

That yeah, sometimes that pain will always be there. And seeing a child (even, or perhaps especially, an adolescent or adult child) reeling from a heart-wound we can't fix for them... Sometimes no amount of saying, "We love you. We've always loved you" is enough...

 

So to the OP... I *do* think adoption can be wonderful. But I've come to believe that for the *child* (not the family), it may not ever be "the same" as growing up in a bio-family, no matter the situation or how much love is poured out... It's not something we want to believe. And some children thrive despite the holes that follow them... But for some of them, that pain just goes so deep... (And I don't even necessarily mean children who are abandoned, neglected, or abused in the time before they reach their adoptive families...)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My dh was adopted at birth and has never felt a "hole" in his life. His parents are his parents; his brother is his brother - end of story. He's never had the urge to find his bio-parents. His brother wasn't adopted and he's never felt any different. He and his brother are very close; they hang about once or twice every week. He's also close with his mom and dad.

 

This is definitely a positive adoption story. Every member of dh's family is equally a part of the family. There is no adoption pain, hole, or feeling like an outsider.

 

We don't feel that biology is an important aspect of what makes a family.

 

Adding: The one thing dh does feel is gratefulness. He is beyond grateful that the very young woman who gave birth to him decided to give him up for adoption. He is very thankful for the life that he has and he knows it is because of her sacrifice. I'm grateful, too :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest janainaz

I have never adopted, but my dh's parents were foster parents through the state in CA. They fostered many children, but kept five of them (4 girls, 1 boy). His parents took in each child at about three months old (one at one year and none of the kids were related). Four of them were drug babies, but there is zero evidence of that today (a couple of them had a little bit of therapy as babies, but it did not go beyond that). The oldest is now 20 and the youngest is 9. I've watched these kids grow up and they are the most beautiful and loving kids. My dh and I would do anything for them.

 

They lost their mother (my dh's mom) five years ago this July. My FIL has raised them alone since then and all I can say is that they have turned out to be amazing people.

 

There were no horror stories in all five of those adoptions. I can see how a bond can be formed with a child that is not home-grown. Real love does not know the difference. We see these kids as part of us - they belong right where they are at. People adopt for different reasons. My MIL had an issue with being needed and there was something that she received from taking care of babies. Although I don't see it as the healthiest need, she still had a gift and she was the best at taking care of them.

 

Only one child has reunited with the birth mom. I think casual conversations take place and that is the extent of the relationship. One of the daughters is ready to graduate hs and is interested in meeting her birth mom. My MIL holds a place in her heart that is very evident. She also has a boyfriend who was adopted from Romania. He has become part of the family, too. He recently took a trip to Europe to meet his birth parents. It was a happy reunion and he, too, is a great kid.

 

All of the adoption stories I know of have been good.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I really have not seen much of that at all. I don't can't remember reading any posts here that made it seem like adoption has been all negative for their family or a terrible thing.

 

As an adoptive mother, I know that there is simply a hole in my child's heart. Our circumstances are a bit different (his mother died when he was two, I married his father).

 

People are not comfortable with childhood grief. They badly want to fix it, of course. Part of being human is wanting to care for children. But I think we put a lot of pressure on children to not be really sad. We are not comfortable with pain and loss being mixed with joy for children - or most of us are not. I've seen over and over how people want to say to my son and to me that he is "lucky" because he was too young to remember his mother and that he's lucky to have me, and even some of the people who love him best are dismissive of the idea that his world includes a real sense of loss that no human can ever make up for. It's just part of who he is and who he always will be.

 

What I see on the board the last couple of days is that when someone wants to say that, to talk about it, to discuss our attitudes toward adoption and birth, it makes people feel defensive. I understand that. It really is hard to hear sometimes. We want to hear that adopted children have very positive feelings about it. Some children (and the adults they will become) feel very differently about circumstances from other children in the same situation. One child might feel a profound loss and another hardly think about it, and it's not, I would imagine, because the adoptive parents did something right or wrong.

 

Anyway, I can share a lot of positive adoption situations that I have witnessed, and in a way, I am part of one, though not in the sense you are probably thinking of. But honestly, I think almost all adoption is discussed in a mostly positive way here already - I just think that it's hard to hear about the pain, and it touches a nerve.

 

Yes, that is exactly what the 2 girls I grew up with who were adopted used to say to me. They felt like they had 'a hole in their hearts'.

 

But, remember, 4kiddies, that I was born in the mid-50's as were these girls. Things weren't as open as they are now. They weren't allowed to ask questions about birth parents. So they turned to their friends, and I just happened to be one of them.

 

OTOH, I just asked dh about his best friend whom he grew up with and had been adopted. I knew this guy, too, since we all had classes together and it was a small town. He said that the guy always told dh that his parents were the ones who loved him and took care of him. And I know that this guy totally adored his father. Unfortunately, his mother was a drinker and he wasn't so fond of her. But that had nothing to do with adoption. That's just the luck-of-the-draw ... the human condition ... some of us get great parents and some of us don't ... adopted or not.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As an adoptive mother, I know that there is simply a hole in my child's heart.

 

I'm sorry, please don't feel that I'm directing this at you, because *everybody* uses this euphemism, but not all adopted persons feel this so called "hole in their heart". Honest. Cross my whole heart.

 

I understand the hurt that adopted persons, who feel this hole, must feel when they think others are minimizing their pain. I feel the same way when other adoptees try to minimize the absolute acceptance and closeness I feel with my own adoptive parents.

 

Now I also have a second role in the adoption triad. I do not assume that my children do, or do not, feel any way. We're just open and honest about feelings. All of them are valid.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

if those posts bother you, don't read them. It's as easy as that.

 

I DO think you need to go into adoption realistically and hear the positive AND negative. There could be quite serious consequences if you adopt a mentally ill child - which we have. And if I choose to come here to vent or for support, please do not read my posts if they bother you.

 

Edited to add: I surely hope your thread doesn't cause someone to shy away from posting here. Raising troubled, mentally ill kids is a tough, tough job and I hope anyone who needs support will still freely come here for it. Raising an adopted child with so much deep, ingrained sadness in her heart is gut wrenching. I hope the warrior moms who do this job will still come here and post all they want to.

Edited by Denisemomof4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

... but not all adopted persons feel this so called "hole in their heart". Honest. Cross my whole heart.

That's wonderful. That's truly the way it *should* be. And I have no doubt that you *do* absolutely feel that way. You and Sarah's husband and many others.

 

I guess I'm just struggling with the idea that some (many) people feel that hole no matter how deep the love and acceptance coming from their adopted family. That for *some* adopted people (especially as they reach adolescence and adulthood) that "hole" is there no matter what the family does, no matter how deep our love. And it's incredibly painful to see when there's nothing that can be done to heal that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have four kids but my husband and I have often talked about adding to our family thru adoption.

 

However, when it comes to this site it seems like all too often we only hear the negatives, which truthfully is starting to scare me away from the thought of ever adopting. Please share some positive stories--both from the adoptive parent and adoptive child standpoint.

 

I understand that many people come here to "vent" but that means we often only hear the downside. I don't always want to hear that as an adoptive parent my love will never be enough or hear that my bio children will think our adoptive child ruined our life!

 

Share the good stuff please!

I think it really depends on what you are wanting. If you are wanting that picture perfect family and that is what you have now, well, Adoption probably isn't for you.

My husband and I are older so our birth children were all grown when we first started this process, although our oldest who live with us due to a spinal chord injure was not happy when we got our first sibling group from DSS. He is now our biggest support with our two adopted children.

We went the route of foster adopt and had 21 children go through our home before we were allowed to adopt the two we have. It is a long story of how God moved mountains for us and them.

Our two are siblings, 6 month and 18 months when we first got them, have birth parents with alcohol record and we have had and still work through some attatchment issues.

Has it been easy? NO Would I do it over? RESOUNDING YES!!!!

We have done many different things to keep our son off of medication(this is a personal choice). There have been things that have cost us financially, physically and emotionally but to us they have been well worth the price.

My words of advice/encouragement to you would be make sure you are adopting for the right reasons. For us #1 we felt that this was what our Heavenly Father had for us, #2 This is how I wanted to spend the next 20 yrs of my life. Did I know we were going to have the difficulties we have had? No. I really went into it all pretty naive. I think if God would have given me a glimps of some of our most difficult times I would have still said, 'Thy will be done.'

If you want more explicit details feel free to send me an email or pm.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest mrs. logic

Here are a couple of stories for you...

My inlaws had tried to start a family for approximately 9 years with no success. This was in the mid 1950's to early 1960's. A family member had suggested the possibility of adoption to them. So they filled an application and did an interview never expecting to hear from the social worker again. About nine months afterwards they received a letter in the mail telling them to come and pick up their little boy (my husband, Professor Logic) on Wednesday. My mother in law says she can still remember running out to the field where my father in law was waving the letter in her hand and yelling "It's a boy!" My inlaws were flabbergasted to say the least, as Wednesday was only two days away. They spent Tuesday purchasing baby items and Wednesday they picked my husband up at the hospital.

Interestingly enough 18 months later my husbands sibling arrived.

Our friends Dick and Jane, who work for Campus Crusade had tried for several years to have a baby, but with no success. A staff member had mentioned adoption so they filed the paperwork and did the interview never thinking they would hear from the social worker. Interestingly enough they have four beautiful children through adoption, two boys and two girls.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Our dd3.5 is adopted. I know she is still young and I expect there to be many bumps along the road, but so far our story is extremely positive. Yes, she has been in therapy for some minor issues. But she is a well-adjusted, happy, healthy, thriving 3 year old, sweet and silly and charming and outgoing, and everyone we know falls in love with her. My minor struggles in parenting her have been no more difficult than those I have encountered with dd5. And I can honestly say that her spot in my heart is completely equal to the one held by my biological daughter. We never had major attachment issues, within a few weeks I was completely attached and I think it probably took her a month or two longer than that to really bond with me 100%.

 

I cannot imagine our family's life without her in it. She brings so much joy to our lives. I honestly feel that she was meant to be part of our family, it would be incomplete without her. She and dd5 are true sisters, love each other and annoy each other, hurt each other and take care of each other. There are few times in my life where I have felt God's providence at work; her whole adoption process was one of those times.

 

We are trying to raise her with her identity intact. Yes, she is our daughter and a part of our family. But she is also her own person, and part of her story doesn't include us. This part of her story, even though it was a fraction of her life, is just as important as the time she spends in our family.

 

I know that things probably won't always be as rosy as they are right now, but adoption has impacted our family in a hugely positive way over the last 3 years and I wanted to share our experience so far, even though it isn't a complete experience just yet. :001_smile:

Edited by lovelearnandlive
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm sorry, please don't feel that I'm directing this at you, because *everybody* uses this euphemism, but not all adopted persons feel this so called "hole in their heart". Honest. Cross my whole heart.

 

 

 

I only said that MY child has that feeling - not that everyone does. In fact, I specifically said that we had different circumstances from many and I said, if you reread my post, that in similar circumstances, one child will feel a great deal of pain and another might not think about it much at all.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Since you know me well from other boards, you know that Nathan is adopted, Laura is not. Our adoption experience has been mostly positive. The only negatives (besides the occasional dumb comment someone might make about Laura being my "real" child, or referring to Nathan as my "adopted" child) have been Nathan's sensory issues and his mild fetal alcohol effect. While those are negative in the sense that my child has these problems and they cause him to struggle more than other kids, I am thankful every, single day that he was put into our home. We made sure we educated ourselves about adoption, including the potential health and emotional issues involved. If he had gone to a home where the parents HADN'T educated themselves or if he remained in his Russian orphanage, he probably would not have gotten the support he needed to help him over his hurdles. Because we were on the look-out for warning signs, Nathan was in therapy at 3 1/2 and his long-term prognosis is great. His future could potentially have been bleak if these problems were not caught until later or were chalked up to behavior problems and not dealt with at all.

 

We adopted Nathan when he was 6 months old, and we have raised him with the knowledge that he is adopted. We always talk about it in a positive way, and his favorite story to hear is his adoption story. He occasionally asks us questions about his birth parents. We answer as honestly as possible, but the truth is we don't know much. When we discuss them it is always with respect. The only regret he has ever expressed is that he doesn't know what they look like. From what I've read (and I've read A LOT!) that is one of the most common things adoptees wish they knew -- who they look like. Nathan told me that he thinks his birthmother has short, blond hair and blue eyes like him. He has asked me a couple of times if he will see his birth parents when we go to Russia someday, and I told him that if he wants to meet them when he's older that we'll try to find them. I am not threatened by his birth-parents, and I know his curiosity is healthy and has nothing to do with not feeling loved by and secure with us; if anything the fact that he feels so comfortable discussing it with us shows me that he is secure with our relationship. If he wants to meet them someday we will gladly do whatever is in our power to help make that happen.

 

Nathan told me his is glad that he is adopted. He expresses absolutely no sadness over his birth-parents. I asked him about his feelings before I posted, and he said that he's not sad that his birthparents couldn't take care of him, and he's happy that I adopted him because I'm his "real mother." It is a bit trickier when you have bio kids too. Sometimes we talk about how Laura has this feature from me, that one from Alex, and Nathan will pipe in with, "Who do I look like?" We tell him that he probably looks like his birth-parents, but that his eyes are blue like mine, and that his personality is so much like his Uncle Steve's that they could be twins. I do think he feels some sadness over not having the biological connection. He has said a couple times in the past that we wished he grew in my belly. I think the sadness he feels is because he is not biologically ours, but not because he is not being raised by his birth parents, if that makes sense.

 

Our best friends also adopted a son they were lucky enough to bring straight home from the hospital. He is a bit younger than Nathan, and has expressed little interest in his adoption story. Whenever it's discussed he spends the next few days being extra-clingy with his mom. He has told him mom that adoption is "sad." She doesn't know if he means it's sad for the birth-mother or sad for him. We've had many discussions about adoption, and she is concerned that her son may struggle with his adoption someday because he is reluctant to acknowledge it. Some kids are open about it (like Nathan), some are not.

 

A dear friend of mine growing up was adopted from Korea as a baby. She never really brought up adoption growing up. I e-mailed with her after we adopted Nathan and when I was expecting Laura because I was concerned about future adoption issues. How would he feel NOT being the biological child? My friend had a younger brother and sister who were the bio children of her parents. Did she ever wonder about her birth-mother? Was she ever sorry she was adopted? She told me she wasn't sorry she was adopted. She knew she would never meet her bio mom (like many Korean orphans at that time, she was abandoned) but that she would like to....to thank her. She loves her life and knows she wouldn't have the same wonderful family and the same opportunities if she hadn't been adopted. Yes, she wonders about her, but it never consumed her. Her parents always made her feel special and loved.

 

Don't be scared away from adoption if it's something in your heart. It is a beautiful, wonderful thing -- IF you go into it with your eyes wide open. Education is key. Read everything you can. Talk to everyone you can. Get all of the good and bad stories. The more you know, the greater the chance that you will have a positive experience. You have to go into it expecting some issues, and you have to be realistic about what you and your family can handle. The adoptions that most often do not work out are those where the people are not educated or those where the parents are not honest with themselves about their own limitations. If there are certain medical, race, birth-family issues, or ages you would not feel comfortable accepting, then don't. You also have to be realistic about the affect an adopted child will have on your family as a whole. It will be an adjustment for everyone involved. An adjustment is not necessarily a bad thing; it would be an adjustment bringing a biological child into your home as well. You have to go into it knowing that you are sharing a child with someone. Even if the birth-parents have no contact with the child, a piece of your child will always be part of them and vice-versa. If you can accept it, acknowledge it, and be grateful that you were given the chance to raise this amazing little person, you'll be doing yourself and your child a favor.

 

I would adopt another child in a heartbeat if DH was open to the idea. It was the best decision we ever made. Nathan and I are extremely close. He is a bright, energetic, happy little boy. He has a unique way of looking at the world. He is sweet and charming as could be, and always affectionate. I can't imagine my life without him. There are plenty of kids out there who do need loving, stable homes. If you are seriously considering this, don't be turned off by the negatives. Be aware of them. Seriously consider them, but don't be turned off by them. There are so many positives to adopting, and in our case the positives far outweigh the negatives.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You know, I hadn't thought of things like in this post.... My daughter lives in a family (ours) that include my husband, her two step-sisters and a younger brother. Here's the weird thing, I see that she has many issues that adopted children do. She knows her bio-dad since she's with him a total of 3-6 weeks a year. But, she still says that my husband is her "real" dad. I believe that knowing her bio-dad loves her is important, but she has a whole host of problems that come from not being able to be a "complete" family member here; although the problems/issues may be no worse than the emotional turmoil that may come if her bio-dad was willing to relinquish his rights. (BTW she's never actually "lived" with her bio-dad, and she's been with my husband since just before she was 3) I guess I should ask her more about feelings.... although I'm not sure what I could do with them. Right now, she just jokes that she'd like to not have to leave anymore.... to go stay with him... since it's an intrusion into her life.

 

Hmmmm.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Our son was adopted from China nearly a year ago, when he was 2.5, so it hasn't been that long. We prepared ourselves for the possibility that he would have issues, either physical (cleft lip/palate) or emotional. The only issue he has was needing tubes in his ear. He's amazing. He has adapted better than anyone could have expected, and, since our life has been pretty chaotic this last year, that's saying something. He's the kind of person who can walk into a room and immediately charm everyone in it. He's kind and empathetic (will even share his food! and this is a child from an orphanage!) and funny. We could run into adjustment issues as he gets older, but from what we've seen so far, he is emotionally very healthy and well adjusted. I do know from other families who have adopted from the same orphanage that our children all seem to have been well loved by their caregivers, and this probably made a big difference to D. Also, D was apparently a bit of a favorite, which probably helped him too.

 

Not to say that we won't have difficulties in the future or that we think that all adoptions run smoothly, just that ours so far has been super (well, except for his jetlag right now that's going to be waking him up at 3 a.m.!) and D is the best ever.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There have been some great posts here. I just want to add that adoptees can experience pain over the loss caused by their relinquishment, while simultaniously feeling happiness and normalcy in their adoptive families. The two are not mutually exclusive. Just a thought.:)

 

As far as positive stories...well, my experience as an adoptee has been positive. That doesn't mean it is without any difficulty or moments of pain. My experience as an adoptive mom is wonderful, I adore my dd, which is not to say it is without challenges. My experience as part of an extended birth family is also conflicted.

 

Most importantly, I suppose I cannot be simply positive in discussing adoption only because for adoption to occur at all, there first has to be incredible loss. So my view of adoption is not negative, but it takes many things into consideration, some of which are very hard.

 

Now...do I know any of you from another board? Hmmmmm. (busymama here...ringing any bells?:001_cool:)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok, I'll add my brother's story, at least the part I know.

 

He has Cystic Fibrosis. His wife is a professional psychotherapist/psychologist (not sure her proper title) who works mostly with children. They could not have children b/c CF leaves most people sterile, and they couldn't adopt b/c of his fragile health.

 

Then he had a lung transplant. He was so much healthier, it was like a miracle. Guatemala cleared them for adoption, and they began to wait.

 

It did cross my mind that perhaps they should reconsider trying to adopt, because a lung transplant is only "good" for 7-10 years. Is it fair to set a child up for losing a parent? Should they just be very kind to the children they know, or something (this is hard to articulate)? I did not share these questions or concerns with anyone. ANYone. Mine alone.

 

A few months before the adoption was final, my other brother, Mark, died. He left two beautiful girls.

 

I decided we never know, do we, about how long we have on this planet.

 

Ken and Isa adopted two sweet, dear boys from Guatemala. They gave their first the middle name of Mark. They are astoundingly happy, and my brother is still quite healthy.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Maybe I do have a positive adoption story. My own. I was raised in a family that loved me and gave me every opportunity to do well. If I ever meet my Birthmom, though Im not looking, I would thank her for giving me a chance to have a mom and dad and brother. For giving me the chance to be raised in the home I was raised in.

My oldest daughter has undiagnosed RAD. I have read horror stories of kids with RAD. She is a miracle. Yes, sometimes we can see the reason she was "labeled" with this disorder, but mostly she has integrated herself into our family 100%. She talks about some memories of her biomom. Mostly the good times. She does it not with regret, but as a memory.

We have had some hard times with her, but I believe that prayer, love, and consistentcy have really made a difference in her life.

The one thing I wish someone had told me going into this, was that you will not automatically fall in love with this child/children and bond with them. It takes time, faith, maturity, and a decision that you will love this child.

All of my kids are different. Some are easier than others. But adoption is celebrated here. We look at it as God placing us exactly where He wanted us exactly when He wanted us there. That's our family's view of adoption.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it depends on what you mean by "positive adoption stories." If you mean, "We adopted our child and he/she never had any issues whatsoever and melded seamlessly into our family and we never even think about the fact the she/he's adopted," there might be few of those stories.

 

I don't know any family, birth or adopted, that doesn't have struggles and issues they deal with. I simply mean that there are many posts that make it seem like adoption was a terrible thing for their family and/or there is no positives that have come for it. I know that isn't true for all, so I'm hoping that some will chime in and say what you said....there are issues but its worth it.

 

I don't think that's "it" at all. I think for many years while adoption became big business, the voice complexity of emotion and struggle was not given forum, given "space", given vernacular and process to express feelings.

 

The children (and by that I don't mean to suggest minors only) that have been adopted have been given a message over the years to be quiet and grateful. Voicing wonder, rejection, fear, mystery and issues of abandonment was seen to be disloyal.

 

I have a homeschooling friend who adopted internationally. The years of adoption, infancy and toddlerhood with the adopted child were stressful nearly to the breaking point of the marriage and the health of her other children.

 

In recent years, the scope, breadth and *reality* of adoption has been voiced, acknowldged. This serves everyone and brings us closer to a healthy picture and model of the issue.

 

It's an issue that will never be without feeling, passion, complication, wonder, joy and grief.

 

There are good and bad adoption stories and usually they co-exist in the same story.

Edited by Joanne
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I just want to point out that I did not say

 

I don't know any family, birth or adopted, that doesn't have struggles and issues they deal with. I simply mean that there are many posts that make it seem like adoption was a terrible thing for their family and/or there is no positives that have come for it. I know that isn't true for all, so I'm hoping that some will chime in and say what you said....there are issues but its worth it.

 

Someone else did, but it somehow got quoted as me.

 

Tara

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have a story that is close to me (inlaws). Relatives adopted a young lady from Vietnam when she was about 13. I say about because there were no records of her birth. This young lady was put into an orphanage when she was around 8 years old because her mother lived on the streets and could no longer keep her young daughter safe from the town thugs. This Vietnamese mother lives in my heart as one of the most courageous women I know. She showed selfless love for her daughter by giving her up for adoption. My niece is now married and expecting her own child. These relatives have adopted several other children as well. As in any family, raising children - whether adopted or birthed - can be challenging. Adopted children obviously have unique challenges. But that isn't to say that the birth children don't have their own as well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We've had a positive adoption of our three children. By positive,I mean we didn't have the kids and then some judge decided to give them back to their birthmom. Our adoptions all went fairly smooth, our children were very young when we adopted them, so there wasn't a lot of issues of abuse, etc. THe thing is, we're talking about people here. It's not like a chemical reaction where if you pour this much vinegar and this much baking soda into a jar you will get this reaction every time. Every person is different, and I don't think you can go into anything in life with certain expectations based on your own or other people's experiences because each person is different. Some adopted children grow up fine, some have difficulty, some long for their birth parents, some have just a general interest in who they are. Some bio-kids grow up fine, some are serial killers, some bio-kids are estranged from their parents as adults. I think it all boils down to the fact that each one of us are sinful humans who are screwed up in one way or another and this effects the way we deal with people we are close to. Would I recommend adoption - sure. It's a good thing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes! I know many. My husband, his sister, and even myself (adopted by my dad). So far my 6yo has not shown any issues but who is to say he won't later? Honestly, I know LOTS and LOTS of people who are adopted or have adopted and their experiences have been very positive. In fact, I think I only know 1 situation where it wasn't positive and that was due to RAD in a child that had spent the first 3 years of her life lying in a crib in an orphanage. It was a rough go at first with her for my firends but she is doing very nicely now.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My Diva is an 'adoptee lite' like myself. Her sperm donor was never a part of her life, by his own choice. My husband is her Dad, her only Dad.

 

She had a neighbourhood kid ask about her "real Dad". Diva and I looked at her confused, and I finally asked, "Does my husband seem imaginary to you?" which made Diva crack up. Diva knows that Wolf isn't her genetic parent, as we met shortly before her 4th birthday, marrying a few months later. She's been known to ask, "Daddy, where were you before we married you?" That's of far more interest to her than anything else. We've talked about her sperm donor, and she knows that she can ask anything she wants, and when she's 18, if she asks, I will give her the name. She's been a Daddy's Girl since laying eyes on Wolf, and he fell as hard and fast for her in return. Before we married, she told friends that she found Wolf at the store :lol:

 

Seven years later, and she's still a Daddy's Girl. And Wolf has never made any bones about all the kids being HIS, including tearing several strips off of his mother for saying Tazzie's impending birth would make him 'a real Dad'.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We look at it as God placing us exactly where He wanted us exactly when He wanted us there. That's our family's view of adoption.

 

:iagree: We adopted our dd through our states foster system. The wait to get licensed was much longer than I expected. Our file was submitted in September 07- and I truly thought we would be licensed by Christmas 2007. Wrong. I worked on my patience through January, and I was getting more and more frustrated with the wait. I expected a wait to be matched with a child, but not for the license. On Valentines Day 2008 my agency called and told me that we had to do one last thing to get our license approved- build a fence around our empty above ground pool (or take it down). We chose to build the fence and I was adament that it get done that weekend. Thankfully our neighbor helped us out, and the fence was finished on that Monday (Presidents Day). I sent the photos of the finished project that night. That weekend I had been complaining to friends at how long the process was going and how "I just wanted my license!". The next day (Tuesday) I received an email letting me know we were clear and approved (!), 15 minutes later I got the call that would forever change our lives. The placement specialist called, and at first I thought she just wanted to congratulate us on getting our license and compliment the fence. When she asked me how ready we were for a baby time stood still. I sent the kids to their rooms to play and I began frantically taking notes. I picked up our one day old daughter later that afternoon from the hospital. :D Her bio mom was not in the picture and her rights were terminated 4 months later- the adoption was finalized 8 months later. We had no need to be licensed until the very day our license was approved. Now almost 2 years later my dh and I still are amazed at our`blessings.

 

**When my ds (4 at the time) came in after the amazing phone call I told him that I was going to get his baby sister that day...he couldn't wait to tell his big brothers. He ran into the room to spread the news. I heard the older boys saying "no she's getting the babysitter" - and ds4 repeated "no our baby sister!" and they continued to argue until I interjected that in fact little brother was right- I was going to get their baby sister! (I love that story:tongue_smilie:)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

:iagree: We adopted our dd through our states foster system. The wait to get licensed was much longer than I expected. Our file was submitted in September 07- and I truly thought we would be licensed by Christmas 2007. Wrong. I worked on my patience through January, and I was getting more and more frustrated with the wait. I expected a wait to be matched with a child, but not for the license. On Valentines Day 2008 my agency called and told me that we had to do one last thing to get our license approved- build a fence around our empty above ground pool (or take it down). We chose to build the fence and I was adament that it get done that weekend. Thankfully our neighbor helped us out, and the fence was finished on that Monday (Presidents Day). I sent the photos of the finished project that night. That weekend I had been complaining to friends at how long the process was going and how "I just wanted my license!". The next day (Tuesday) I received an email letting me know we were clear and approved (!), 15 minutes later I got the call that would forever change our lives. The placement specialist called, and at first I thought she just wanted to congratulate us on getting our license and compliment the fence. When she asked me how ready we were for a baby time stood still. I sent the kids to their rooms to play and I began frantically taking notes. I picked up our one day old daughter later that afternoon from the hospital. :D Her bio mom was not in the picture and her rights were terminated 4 months later- the adoption was finalized 8 months later. We had no need to be licensed until the very day our license was approved. Now almost 2 years later my dh and I still are amazed at our`blessings.

 

**When my ds (4 at the time) came in after the amazing phone call I told him that I was going to get his baby sister that day...he couldn't wait to tell his big brothers. He ran into the room to spread the news. I heard the older boys saying "no she's getting the babysitter" - and ds4 repeated "no our baby sister!" and they continued to argue until I interjected that in fact little brother was right- I was going to get their baby sister! (I love that story:tongue_smilie:)

 

This is so similar to our story. We were lost in red tape for almost a year. We got our license one day and the next they brought my oldest son to me. He was 13m old. I remember being so frustrated that year we were trying to become fosterparents, but looking back I know it was because Adrian was meant for us!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Speaking as someone who was adopted by my step-parent, I think it's worth considering that someone may feel they have a hole in their heart and may feel a sense of sadness, but that doesn't negate the fact that many adopted children love their adoptive parents and feel overall that it was a positive thing. But it is something that grows out of tragedy. What is more tragic than a parent separating from a child -- especially when it's the parent's choice? Not much, I daresay. And sometimes it is more convenient for the parent to suppress discussion or even much acknowledgment of the child's struggles/pain/feelings on the topic, for their own various reasons, and that's understandable, but that is where some of the conflict comes. Some adoptive parents are insulted if the children have an interest in the biological parents or even wants to say that they were adopted, or something. This can be a special issue for international/trans-race adoptions (due to differences in physical appearance); sometimes people want to make things more comfortable for themselves -- Tom Cruise, for example, said on "Oprah" that he doesn't discuss race at all with his (brown) adoptive kids because it's not an issue....Yeah, maybe not an issue for him, but what about for them?

 

I think you will find positive experiences, as in, most aspects are good, but you are unlikely to find many experiences that are completely devoid of any negative experiences or stress.

 

Don't lose hope.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have adopted three children. It has been a wonderful thing.

 

I started out as their foster mom, never expecting to adopt. I knew fairly early on that each of them would be mine. I knew it in my heart long before we ever went to court and made it official.

 

My two oldest children have relationships with bio-family members too. It is a beautiful thing. My middle dd has had visits with her daddy since she was born. her dad and I get along well. He sees her when she asks to see him or when he asks for a visit. He buys her things she needs or wants and always includes my other two children. My oldest dd met her older sister a few years ago. She met her neice and nephew. It was then we got baby pictures of my dd and she saw pics of her birthmom for the first time. This year she met another sister, a brother, aunts, uncles, cousins. . . When she asked if she could meet her birthmom, her sister arranged it at a local pizzeria. She hasn't asked to see her again, but she regularly sees her sister , neice, nephew, and some cousins. Her sister is nearly my age, so we enjoy visiting too. Her siblings are my facebook friends. We may even go to a family reunion next year.

 

Relationships with biofamilies has helped my children as they form their identity. They all enjoy seeing each other's family members and have become like extended family.

 

My one wish is that I could find family members stable enough and interested in knowing him from my son's biofamily.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What is more tragic than a parent separating from a child -- especially when it's the parent's choice? Not much, I daresay.

 

I disagree. I think a child not being separated from an abusive, unfit parent is far more tragic than a child being raised by adoptive parents in a healthy, loving home. I will probably go down in flames for this, but I think our culture tends to fetishize birthparents and consider adoptive parents as somehow second best, and I don't get it. To me, a "parent" is the person who parents a child. Why is a woman, who might smoke and drink and take drugs for 9 months while carrying a child she considers an unfortunate mistake, a more real "mother" than the one who raises that child? Why is a child who was raised by a loving adoptive family more tragic and unlucky than a child raised by abusive biological parents???

 

I was raised by my birthmother ~ who was physically and emotionally abusive, who blamed me for everything that was wrong with her life, and who refused to intervene when I was being molested. I often wished I had been adopted by other parents! I have an adopted daughter and I love her every bit as passionately as my "biological" son ~ sometimes I forget that I didn't give birth to her, and I know this happens with many adoptive moms.

 

My daughter knows she is adopted, she loves to hear the story of the first time I held her, the adoption ceremony, how she peed all over her daddy in the orphanage, etc. She has asked a few times about "the lady who borned me" and I honestly told her that we simply do not have any information. I explained some of the reasons that babies are put up for adoption in her country, and I explained that her birthmother took her to a place where she knew DD would find a family quickly. She knows with absolute certainty that DH and I love her with all our hearts and that we feel she was meant to be our daughter.

 

She has also met my mother and DH's mother, she has heard the horror stories of both our childhoods, and she has seen first-hand how nasty DH's mother can be, so she has no romantic illusions about birthmothers. She has friends who were adopted, friends with "two moms," friends with step parents and single parents. We tell her that there are a lot of ways to make a family, and your "real" family are the people who really love you, whether they happen to be biologically related or not. She totally gets that. I honestly do not foresee for her a future of trauma and pain and feeling forever rejected.

 

I'm not denigrating those who do feel that pain and rejection; for many people I'm sure it's very real. But I totally disagree that it's inevitable, or that there is a deep tragic hole in the heart of every adopted child.

 

Jackie

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Our first adoption - a private one- went fairly smooth and easy with just a couple of bumps. Our second was thru foster care and a very long trying event. It took 4 years to be matched with a child that didn't have severe emotional issues that were more than we could handle - and we were only taking in children under the age of 5. Then the actual adoption took 2 years due to idiots handling the required paperwork. It was long, hard, and exhausting. However, now it is over, we have a beautiful dd and I would do it all over again for her.

 

Just like pregnancy there are no guarantees. Just like biological children there are no promises of genius or easy personalities. So far for us the child with the best pregnancy and birth history (the first adoption) has had the most learning difficulties and serious health issues. The other should have died at birth but didn't has thrived wonderously. There may be learning issues later, but so far no serious issues remain.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have four kids but my husband and I have often talked about adding to our family thru adoption.

 

However, when it comes to this site it seems like all too often we only hear the negatives, which truthfully is starting to scare me away from the thought of ever adopting. Please share some positive stories--both from the adoptive parent and adoptive child standpoint.

 

I understand that many people come here to "vent" but that means we often only hear the downside. I don't always want to hear that as an adoptive parent my love will never be enough or hear that my bio children will think our adoptive child ruined our life!

 

Share the good stuff please!

 

Thank you for saying this. :grouphug:

 

I haven't read the other responses, but I am starting to feel the same and I feel like it is already taking the joy, hope and excitment that was growing in me.

:crying:

I have started wondering if it is not something we should do...

 

 

 

I was very glad to read Laura' in NC's post. I felt my deep breath in with a *whew thank you*

 

 

And I sure won't mention that thinking of helping one of the Haitian babies came to my mind..

:001_unsure:

Edited by jazzyfizzle
typo
Link to comment
Share on other sites

my bio children will think our adoptive child ruined our life!
Well, my DS was not adopted and every family member here has thought that about him at times. :leaving:

 

The years of adoption, infancy and toddlerhood with the adopted child were stressful nearly to the breaking point of the marriage and the health of her other children.

 

This happens with bio children as well. Edited by Lovedtodeath
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I disagree. I think a child not being separated from an abusive, unfit parent is far more tragic than a child being raised by adoptive parents in a healthy, loving home. I will probably go down in flames for this, but I think our culture tends to fetishize birthparents and consider adoptive parents as somehow second best, and I don't get it. To me, a "parent" is the person who parents a child. I

Jackie

:iagree:

my step father adopted me and my 2 siblings after he married my mother.I was 6 years old. to me, he is my father . he is the one who cared for me, provided for me etc. He was the one who was there for me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...