Open Adoption & Siblings
It is not uncommon for women who choose Christian adoption for their babies to have other children that they decide to raise. In fact, this is more the norm than the exception. You may worry that you don’t know how to explain this to your child. It is an issue that should not be avoided. As soon as you learn of your child’s birth siblings, you should plan how to discuss the matter.
The Modern, Blended Family
Families are not one-size-fits-all. There many who represent the typical, nuclear family with a mother, father and siblings. There are also many children who are raised by either a mother or a father, but not both. Some live with a stepfamily. They may have half-siblings that live with them or with a parent who is outside of the home. There are also children who are raised by grandparents, aunts and uncles, foster parents or other legal guardians.
Pointing out the fact that families do not all look alike is important for your child’s growth. No child wants to feel different or odd. When he or she sees just how many families have their own, unique design, your child will feel less strange about having birth siblings who don’t live in the same home.
It is wise to encourage your child to develop a friendship with his or her siblings. Allow them to have playdates. Encourage them to spend time together during holidays and special occasions. Let them get to know one another in any way that is agreeable to you as well as the birth mother.
Your child may wonder what to call the birth siblings. Again, this is something that should be discussed between you and the birth mom. It is perfectly fine and even healthy for adopted children to refer to their birth siblings as brothers and sisters. Some may prefer to differentiate by calling them half-brothers or half-sisters.
One issue that is often forgotten is the relationship between your child and any siblings that live within your home. Your other children may feel left out if he or she doesn’t share birth siblings. It may be wise to host playdates at your home so all children can play and grow together.
Having Faith in Adoption
The most important tools to making adoption work are loving relationships and faith in God. Encourage your children to pray together or even attend church services as a family. This will help them to grow closer in many ways while also helping them to be nurtured from the inside out.
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