One of the first things you have to decide when adopting as a couple is who is going to be the one who takes adoption leave to be at home with the children. Recent legislative changes mean that you can actually share this between the two of you, but this seems to be rarely a practical solution. For us the decision was fairly straightforward. I earned more than my husband, and it was just about enough to survive on without the need for a second income. I also work 10 minutes away from home and have fairly flexible working practices,
Some days I give up trying to justify why I might be a little bit more stressed about a situation than A. N. Other parent would be. Sometimes I get fed up with being told that it is “normal behaviour”, that it is “what I signed up for”, that “all children are like that”. It’s a situation which I’m sure many adopters are faced with. I sometimes feel like I’m getting my excuses in before people start saying those expressions. Then I’m usually greeted with a screwed up face which just says to me “I don’t understand what you mean,
I’m fairly sure that all parents suffer from overtiredness at some point, some may even live in this state constantly. As we adopted our children when they were both over the age of 1, we didn’t have to get up in the middle of the night to feed them. That doesn’t mean we didn’t wake up and irrationally wonder if they were still breathing because we hadn’t heard from them in ages. Of course they always have been breathing, they were just, you know, asleep – like I should have been! We all have our signs that we pick up
When you have a child who needs constant reassurance you find yourself attempting to preempt and address their worries before they even appear. I discovered this week that doing so can actually add to their worries and result in the polar opposite of what you were trying achieve.
As adoptive parents we sometimes celebrate some very strange things as milestones in our children’s progress through life. Where some might celebrate the first words or the first steps, we don’t always get to do that because when those things happened we were not part of our children’s lives.
Sometimes I have to wonder if we actually adopted three children rather than the two I thought we had.
Today marks the 3rd anniversary of my first ever blog post. Three years ago I never really considered how my blog would evolve into what it is now. My family and friends still read it, which was one of the reasons I started writing it, but now I have other readers too, up to 100 that seem to keep coming back (on a good day) with my current most popular post getting over 300 views in a week (which is fairly unprecedented for this little blog). It’s not just my blog that has changed in that time; I have too.
Dear Son, As I write this we have just become your longest ever home and I look back to see how far you have come, how much you have changed since that day when we first met you. Not only you though, as I have changed too. The day that I was first called ‘Dad’ will forever be stuck in my mind, how a nervous man walked into a stranger’s home and had his life changed forever. Walking tentatively through the door, we could hear your social worker chatting with your foster carer. You were still eating your lunch, which
Another break from my normal post. I’m sure many parents feel like they are pretending when they first get the role, whether they are biological children or adopted children. For adopters you have a difficult first few months where you have many professionals questioning many of the things you do. You are not the sole parents of your children as the local authority still has parental rights over them until the adoption order goes through. You can’t do many things without their permission, so it does sort of feel like you aren’t real parents.
I read somewhere once that when you have a child you will put on about half a stone in weight. This was directed at parents who have biological children rather than adopting them, but I can certainly see how it is possible.