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Unread postPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 12:13 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2008 6:22 pm
Posts: 54
I know this might sound crazy and I don't know if I am wording this right. I am like 98% sure that I am supposed to do an older child adoption possibly through foster care. My husband and I haven't discussed it yet (because i have to present it at a good time with lots of information that i have not gathered yet) but it has just been on my heart for a while now. I know most people would think I am crazy because I already have four children.

When we adopted our oldest son I was so sure of my decision. We wanted to do a domestic infant adoption so that we could experience the infant stage. Now I feel like there is room in my heart for a child that is waiting for a home. My initial idea would be to wait until my daughter is 4 or 5 and then try to foster/adopt. My 2% unsure side just wonders if this would be too hard on my children. If we were doing foster and someone came to live with us but had to leave would this be terrible for my kids? Could I handle it?

If there's anyone who has fostered with other kids in the house how did you decide it was the right thing to do? How did you know you were strong enough to handle all the ups and downs with your children?


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Unread postPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 10:20 pm 
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Honorary Member

Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 11:18 am
Posts: 606
Your Adoption Connection: Matched family
We (obviously) haven't fostered, but what you probably don't know about me is that I had 2 foster brothers growing up. It was REALLY hard on us and my parents eventually had to find them another placement (but not until they'd been with us for a long time).

Part of the problem is that my parents violated the age order rule, so one of the boys was the same age as my brother (and both my brother and the foster brother had ADHD. Foster brother had PTSD in addition... so there was a lot of pathology going on with those two). The younger brother (who looked angelic with this gorgeous blue eyes and blonde hair) had RAD, PTSD, prenatal exposure and was older than my baby sister. He had suffered severe abuse at the hands of his biodad and both had been kidnapped to another state. He killed animals, lied, hurt people, set fires, and at the same time was sweet as an angel on the outside.

You can imagine that there was so much going on there that put stress on the family. My younger brother and sister really suffered at the hand of these two and their needs definitely had to take front and center stage a lot of the time. It wasn't a good experience for us in the moment and it wasn't a good experience for us in hindsight. I have a lot of compassion for those boys, but man, it really scared me off the foster system!

I know folks who foster and thrive with it... and I stand in constant amazement. I wonder if it's because they are more selective or are better at handling troubling behaviors.

_________________
5/10: daughter born
6/11: decided to complete our family through adoption
7/11: homestudy and paperwork complete
8/11: profile complete
10/11: approved
12/11: matched with a girl!
2/21/12: precious girl born
2/22/12: she's officially ours!


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Unread postPosted: Fri May 17, 2013 7:46 pm 
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Homeschooling Mama
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Joined: Sun Feb 10, 2008 3:21 pm
Posts: 987
Location: Hagerstown, Maryland
Your Adoption Connection: I have 3 children, all adopted as older kids.
Definitely wait until your children are much older. Not only will this be better for your kids, but it will be better for the foster children as well. They'll have normal role models instead of new victims.

_________________
Holly (35)
Waiting to adopt #4 (& maybe #5!)

Proud mom to:
Brandon (24), adopted at age 12
Jessica (23), adopted at age 10
Carolina (16), adopted at age 11


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Unread postPosted: Fri May 17, 2013 11:46 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2008 6:22 pm
Posts: 54
Thank you for your input. Gati, I didn't know that about your family. That must have been so hard. Situations like that or like Holly said they would be "new victims" are what truly scare me from it. I wonder if I need to just get over what's in my heart and not think about it any more. So do most kids in the foster care system have these troubles or is it that the bad stories get more attention?


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Unread postPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 11:01 am 
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Member

Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:14 pm
Posts: 48
Location: Forest City, NC
Your Adoption Connection: Pursuing adoption from NC foster care
I don't think you have to completely forget about the idea -- just put it aside for the time being and revisit it when your kids are a bit older. Most older kids who are available for adoption crave attention and wouldn't be happy in a situation where they have to share attention with several much-younger children.

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Heather


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Unread postPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 4:37 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2008 6:22 pm
Posts: 54
I guess I should clarify that by older I just meant not an infant. So younger than my daughter but just not an infant. I think some of the agencies I was looking at put that at 2+ years


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Unread postPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 8:02 pm 
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Honorary Member

Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 11:18 am
Posts: 606
Your Adoption Connection: Matched family
Oceanis,
I know people who do it and they seem to be very successful and I don't know how they are making it work. Maybe talk to some success stories? Also, I think if your kids are older by that point and you work with younger fosters, maybe it wouldn't be such an issue?

_________________
5/10: daughter born
6/11: decided to complete our family through adoption
7/11: homestudy and paperwork complete
8/11: profile complete
10/11: approved
12/11: matched with a girl!
2/21/12: precious girl born
2/22/12: she's officially ours!


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Unread postPosted: Thu May 23, 2013 2:29 am 
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Site Admin
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Joined: Fri Feb 08, 2008 2:23 am
Posts: 5347
Location: Farm fields of Illinois
Your Adoption Connection: International, foster and private adoption.
I'm having trouble posting. In short, see my journal entries and I would never recommend any family adopt older children from foster care without their current kids being at least in their pre-teens. Even then, any child older than 18-24 mos is an older child who can have significant problems well into their childhood that might change the entire family---forever.

Visit a support group for the parents of older adopted children. Not a group affiliated with an agency (no offense to the good ones, but around here, the difference between those and the independent ones were like night and day and the members were basically threatened to keep their mouths shut about some stuff.) Attend at least 3 or more meetings. Talk candidly with them and ask questions...lots of questions.

Adopting and raising older children is NOT EASY. IMO, those who have had successful situations are few and far between and most of the time, the parents will tell you it took incredible strength and determination, combined with some luck and prayer. FWIW IRL, most of the families around here who've adopted older children---even internationally, have had very bad experiences.

Sincerely,

Linny

_________________
There is an instinct in a woman to love most her own child - and an instinct to make any child who needs her love, her own. ~Robert Brault

Adoption Specialist for
Adopt America Network


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Unread postPosted: Thu May 23, 2013 4:36 pm 
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Super Member

Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2008 6:22 pm
Posts: 54
Thank you so much for sharing. I think maybe when we actually get serious about it we would look into more support groups and talk to people who have been there. All of the stories about horrible behavior and bad situations just scare me so much but I feel like my heart is pulling me towards that direction. I am surprised that places tell people to keep their expeirences quiet. I believe it it's just surprising. You'd think they would just want to be honest so parents would know what they are getting into. It's sad that's it's not that way.


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Unread postPosted: Sun May 26, 2013 12:34 am 
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Site Admin
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Joined: Fri Feb 08, 2008 2:23 am
Posts: 5347
Location: Farm fields of Illinois
Your Adoption Connection: International, foster and private adoption.
I don't know if it's still true, but in times past, states received monies for placing older children into permanent homes. Some areas don't want people to know what's really going on because finding foster and adoptive homes is hard enough. The root of the problem, IMO, isn't the children OR the biological. The root is in the fact (around here) the system doesn't remove the children soon enough. And once removed, the bios are given FAR too many chances to have them back----and back into a horrible situation. You cannot run a child back and forth very long before the child develops some or many attachment problems. Heaven knows, society wouldn't do this to a dog, so why do we do this to human children????

You mentioned the situations scared you but you were feeling pulled to adopt an older child. If you still feel that way in time, I'd suggest you apply to foster/adopt. Take the required classes (which, around here, aren't nearly enough to tell the real stories)....but then, get your feet wet by doing respite for other families. Respite for difficult children---even very young ones---is hard to find in many areas. You can pick and choose what types of behaviors you feel you can deal with and agree to a few hours to an entire weekend or week to help another family who's already fostering or adopted. The agencies will pay you for this service and in this way, you can get a true feel for what's out there, meet some parents who've already adopted and make a more informed decision about what you want to do, KWIM?

Sincerely,

Linny

_________________
There is an instinct in a woman to love most her own child - and an instinct to make any child who needs her love, her own. ~Robert Brault

Adoption Specialist for
Adopt America Network


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