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Thursday, January 20, 2011

SOOO many adoption questions!

Those of you who know David and I know that adoption is something we talk about quite often.  I was adopted and have always felt very strongly that I was meant to adopt.  Thankfully I was given an amazingly sweet and loving husband who is supportive of my feelings and beliefs.  Lately I have had the issue laying very heavily upon my heart.  I am not one to obsess, but I seriously cannot think of much else.  I pray daily that God will show us the path we are meant to follow and if adoption is right for our family.  Then I will go to my blogger profile, read a favorite blog, and sure enough, it will be about adoption.  I will go to Conner's preschool and, sure enough, run in to a mom that has adopted and/or is the process of adopting.  I will go to a friend's house and, sure enough, we discuss adoption.  I think there is a wee chance God is trying to tell me something ;).  David and I have had many discussions lately about the topic.  It is something we have been discussing before we even got married, but it has become much more serious and frequent lately.  We both still have many questions and are not sure what God has in store for us.  Some people look at us like we are crazy when we mention adoption, since we have a child with special needs and our lives are, well, busy!  The way I see it, though, is that God would not put this upon our hearts if he did not have a plan for us, and I am confident He will not give us more than we can handle.  I also feel like we have been given a gift.  We know how to fight and advocate for children.  We know how to help a child with special needs.  We have so much love to give.  It would be such a waste to not use the gifts we were given.  We have many questions, and I am hoping that some of you out there can help answer them for us.  Please leave your answers in the comments section or e-mail me at if you would rather communicate that way.  Thank you so much!  Without further-ado:

1- Did you adopt internationally or domestically, and how did you decide on this?  Where did you adopt from?  If it was an international adoption, did you take the whole family with you to pick up your child?

2- How long was the pre-adoption process, and how long did it take you to get a child/baby?

3- What was the age of the child/children you adopted?

4- If you have multiple children with special needs, do you feel it takes away from what you have to give of yourself?  And if your children are in wheelchairs, are you limited by space in a vehicle to transport multiple wheelchairs?

5- Did you keep your birth order (example- adopt a child younger than the children you had living at home), and if not, do you wish you had, or do you think it matters at all?

6- If you adopted an 'older' child, was it hard to bond with them at all?  Where there any major behavioral issues you dealt with?

7- How did you know when you were ready to adopt?

8- Do any of your children deal with attachment dissorders, and if so, how do you handle this? 

9- Did your children have any issues with accepting the child adopted or with the process?

10- If you fostered with the intention of adopting, how long did it take you to find a kiddo to adopt? 

If there is anything else you think would help us, please let me know :).


Andy and Kiara said...

Hooray! I agree....God is laying it on your heart for a reason! :)

We adopted two of our four children (and hope to adopt again this year, as you know). We adopted them as newborns. We do recommend keeping birth order, if at all possible. Makes for a smoother transition for everyone! But sometimes God leads another way, and it's okay to trust Him when that is the case, of course. :) (We fostered two sweeties who are related to our son, and it was challenging, but so worth it.)

We have open adoptions, meaning we have at least some contact with our children's birth families. (Closed adoptions = no identifying information exchanged.) One lives here in AZ, and another in NV. It is such a blessing! We have health history, pictures, and our children know their full story and that they were not rejected, but that this was a loving choice for them because of family circumstances. Open adoption may not be for everyone, but we are so thankful for it.

Please know you can ask us questions any time! :)

Recovering Noah said...

Hi there! I actually just found your blog from googling "Spina Bifida and Adoption." lol We're thinking of adopting a little girl with SB.. the same kind that your daughter has.. and hydrocephalus with corrected club feet. She's almost 4.

We have adopted 3 times - all internationally - from India and Guatemala. I just always knew that I wanted to adopt and fortunately my husband was on board. =)

My two boys came home at 10 and 9 months and the adoption took about 20 months start to finish for my oldest and about 12 months for my son.

My daughter came home at 3 and it was a quick adoption. 9 months total. Unheard of in India.

All three have special needs, with my oldest being the most severe (autism, nonverbal, not potty-trained at 9 year old). He also has mild CP and is mobile but uses a special stroller in public because he wanders and tires easily.

My daughter also has CP but don't tell her that! She'll take off her AFO and throw it at you. She's wild and spunky which makes it hard to raise her but is what keeps her from being a victim. She had attachment disorders and we were completely unprepared. MUCH better now... 3 years later... and she is firmly attached to us but she still has her moment.

Our biggest question in adopting another child with special needs (i.e. this little girl with SB) is if we can realistically handle taking my oldest (who is homeschooled) to all the doctor appts and who will watch him if there's a hospital stay? And how can we manuever a wheelchair and stroller at the same time? Although I did see a nifty attachment that will hook the two together.

By the way, we did not adopt out of birth order. I know several people who have, though, but for us we wanted to keep birth order.

Feel free to email if you have any questions. My name is Leslie and my email is . Best of luck!

Recovering Noah said...

Hi! I actually just left a comment about adoption. And since then, I've been going through your blog and it is soooo helpful!! I was wondering if I could possibly talk to you about SB? I'm such a newbie and have so many questions. Is it weird to say that I'd love to call you? I promise I'm not a psycho or anything. You can check out my blog to see that I'm legit. If you don't think this is too weird, you can email me at . I just feel that I was kind of led to your blog. Thanks!


Maura said...

1- We adopted from foster care so the SW dropped our little one off at our house :)

2- It took us 3 months from our first piece of paper work and being placed with our son. We live in a very busy area though so it was faster then normal.

3- Our son was 3 when he was placed with us and four by the time we finalized. Our foster daughter was placed with us when she was 6 months and she is 17 months now and we still don't know if she is here to stay or not.

4- N/a

5- We have no bio kids so birth order was not an issue but I am sure we will adopt again and I don't think we will stay in birth order but it really depends on the situation

6- Yes and yes! Our son was 3 almost 4 when he came and boy was it tough. That first year was really hard. He was so loving and affectionate to any stranger on the street but wouldn't let me hug him. He had behavioral issues and was super manipulative but we worked and worked and worked and slowly but surely he came around. It has been almost 2 years now and thing are so much better. We have a well bonded relationship now it just took time.

7- We talked a lot about it for about a year then we just took the plunge and called an agency.

8- My son all of the signs of RAD when he came but now his heart is healing and I see him open up more everyday. He went to school when he first came to us but when I decided to home school him I really saw the biggest change. Being home with him all day made a huge difference.

9- Our son adores our foster daughter. i don't think he would have any problems if we did adopt her but if she we to go back home that would be hard for him.

10- We fostered just to foster but our first placement was foster to adopt. then we waited a year for another placement and she was only going to be with us for a month before going back home and its almost been a year and she is still here so you really never know

Good luck with your journey!!

Landon Warren said...

Thanks for you blog and for all you are doing for your children.
We are a family with two birth children and one has special needs ( ages 2 & 4)
We are getting mixed responses but we are in the process of adopting another child with special needs. I would love to know how your story turns out in a few years.