There are some personal stories - I've heard lots of people say 'An Adoption Diary' by Maria James is good, it has very good reviews on Amazon as well. There's another one in the same BAAF series for single parents, "Flying Solo".
There are some great books about the needs children have, attachment etc. If you are looking at Toddlers, then there's "Toddler Adoption: The Weaver's Craft", there's Dan Hughes, I recommend "Real Parents, Real Children" by Holly Van Gulden, "The Connected Child" (can't remember author) and "The Boy who was Raised as a Dog" by Bruce Perry. There's also "Why Love Matters" by Sue Gerhadt and "Attaching in Adoption".
There are books that are brilliant but are geared towards parenting tips - those are ones to get later, after you're a parent if your child needs them.
Hi there. I am new I the process, just having a log wait for parenting classes before the process can officially start! I found "what to expect when you are adopting" by Dr Ian Palmer" a good overview. good luck
Check out the podcast / radio show of www.creatingafamily.org . It is an amazing resource. You can listen to the recent shows via the website or download older ones from iTunes.
Dawn Davenport, who runs CaF and herself an expert on adoption, regularly interviews other experts in the field. They cover a wide range of topics ranging from Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, effects of trauma, easing transitions, transracial adoption - you name it. Each show lasts an hour, so they cover the topic in some depth.
I downloaded tons of the podcasts, put them on my iPod and listened to them while on the tube, doing my shopping etc. I learned so much from the show, I cannot recommend it enough!
Hmm I guess it depends a bit where you are at the moment, and what you are interested in! And also if you're more interested in 'real life accounts' or in theoretical discussions or guide books.
Below some of the stuff I have read or am reading, and finding useful. However I'm at the start of the process myself so perhaps in hindsight I will find different books more helpful! Still, hope it helps a bit
- Given our circumstances we are particularly interested in books regarding adopting when you have birth children. (Have found 'when Daisy met Tommy' to be a lovely and very insightful read). We are less interested in books about adopting sibling pairs, as it is not very likely we would be accepted for that.
- Having a birth child, we were not too interested in reading up on 'general parenting' (been there, done that, threw out most books as didn't agree with them). We are more interested in finding out more about how it is different when parenting an adopted child. (Have started on 'real parents, real children' (I think) and finding it good, though it is already a bit older and US based).
- Have done some reading regarding 'therapeutic parenting'. Though I have found that we apply many therapeutic parenting principles to our birth son already, but I think I would need to do it more consciously and consistently with an AC. Have a Dan Hughes book waiting to be read. Also can recommend 'How to talk so that kids will listen, and how to listen so that kids will talk' as well as 'playful parenting' though they are not precisely therapeutic parenting, they share many of the same principles.
- At some point the question will come as to what 'issues' you think you are able and willing to deal with. That's what I find hardest at the moment, so I have been trying to look for stuff on the realities of parenting a child who has, say, fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, or Down syndrome, or attachment disorder, etc. I have found Torey Hayden's books insightful, she is a special ed teacher and in her writing the children she teaches, who may have any or several of these 'issues', appear totally human, they are real people, she respects them for who they are but never gives up on them. So apart from direct experience it's about as close as you can get, I think. Though parenting is obviously different to teaching, but still it's a start. Or, you might want to read up on parenting a child who has experienced sexual abuse, or violence, or whatever it is that you are considering.
- Another point would be to get a good idea about what 'kind' of children are 'available' for adoption. I have found accounts from foster carers to be helpful. Casey Watson, Cathy Glass. It's just a kind of reality check of what kind of experiences children who are taken into care are likely to have had in their early lives. At the same time these books give you an idea of how you can deal with the effects of those early experiences, and an insight of what it means to have a child in your life who had such a bad start. Though of course each of these authors has their own way of doing things and it wouldn't necessarily mean that you'd choose to do things exactly the same way.
Hey, if you do end up reading any of these, come back and let me know what you thought!
We are at the very start of our adoption journey but due to various reasons aren't in a position to begin applying to LAs until later in the year/early next year.
Anyway, in order to prepare us we want to read up as much as possible. The LA that I initially contacted said that there were "loads" of books out there to read but I've been having a look on Amazon and feel a bit overwhelmed! What's a good place to start?