Talking to Kids About a Sibling
When you are ready to expand your family, it is necessary to talk over the addition with your children. Adding a sibling to the household can be both exciting and scary. Having open communication with your children about increasing the size of your family will help them to feel the exciting part of the adoption without adding to their anxiety.
Talking to Children About Adoption
If your child doesn’t already know, explain the adoption process. Share with them that their future brother or sister will be born to different parents, but will legally be part of their family. Help your child see how adding to the family can be a fun experience. Show them the future sibling’s room. Explain how important it is to be a big brother or big sister. While your child may have some initial fears about sharing you with another child, the excitement of having a sibling will soon overcome any anxiety.
Preparing for the Home Study
The home study is an important part of the adoption process. These visits allow social workers and birth moms to know if your family is ready to adopt. Part of the home study includes a visit with children.
The social worker will ask your child questions about the adoption. Share with your child that it is a safe space for them to be honest with their feelings. Do not try to scare or guilt your child into saying what you think the social workers wants to hear. The only wrong answers are the ones that are not genuine.
Intrusive Questions from Others
Children are bound to be asked about the adoption by their friends, family, and neighbors. Ready children for these questions by helping them explain how to talk about adoption. Remind them to remind others that children come into families in many different ways. Adoption is just one of them. Some may ask why the parents want to adopt a baby of a certain race or gender. Children should strive to understand that neither gender nor race is important, especially when allowing love into your home.
Issues During the Adoption
Not every adoption goes as smoothly as you might like. You may be chosen by a birth mom who later changes her mind. Though it is rare, it is possible that the child will be placed with your home before the adoption paperwork is finalized. If the birth mother changes her mind before the adoption is complete, she has the right to reclaim the child. You may have a long wait before being chosen. Remind your child to be patient. Be very clear that any issues that may come up are not the fault of your child. He or she may internalize their feelings, believing they are causing problems or delays. Always remind your children that you will always be their parent and will always love them.
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