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As the title suggests we are considering adopting siblings and wondered if anyone had any insight and would be happy to share. Ideally one pre school and one at the start of school which is an age we've got lots of childcare experience with and have started to look after friends and families sibling pairs. We know that there is an increased expectation of time off work etc and are prepared for this. We don't know how likely it is to have siblings come up for adoption etc.
Thanks in advance!
We are considering siblings of similar ages. Our LA told us we couldn't even apply unless we were willing to accept siblings, which of course we were. I am guessing they are having difficulty placing siblings maybe?
That's interesting! We've not been given any idea how likely/unlikely siblings are although they've been to our house and said two of the spare rooms are suitable for children so I suppose that's a tick in the box. Thanks for your reply. What stage are you at?
Coming to the end of stage 1, preparation course next week. You?
Hi there! We were originally set on 1 pre schooler whilst we were going through our home study but we decided we'd also consider siblings.
We were placed with DS 5 and DD 3 in January 2015 and our lives haven't been the same since! I have made good friends with a couple we met on our preparation course who also adopted B/G siblings and she is a massive support to me- she understands and we're often going through a similar thing.
I've got to say that I'm so glad we decided on slightly older sibs as it is bloody HARD WORK looking after children that have been neglected, are traumatised and have attachment issues. The 2.5 hours I had when they were both at school and nursery was the only thing that saved my sanity.
I can obviously only speak from my experience, but I think a lot of siblings have a big sibling rivalry and will really play for your attention so prepare yourselves for how you deal with that. We have "mummy hour" and "daddy hour" at least once at the weekend and twice during the week where it's just one on one time. This has been a massive hit and what made the biggest difference to their relationship.
We also do a snuggle time with relaxing music and soft lighting for half an hour before bed where we all pile into our bed and each tell something funny or great about our day and then wind down together.
We try to avoid anything where the will be "racing" against each other ie who can get their shoes on first because our DD shoved DS down the stairs to make sure she won once. We now have them race against us as a team (they often win!)
The first year for us was really really tough. I often thought "it would have been so much easier with one". We had some good moments but often the annoying and frustrating times would overtake them. I think that you've just got to keep consistent and keep as calm as you possibly can. In month 12 of placement, we had our celebration hearing and adoption order granted since then it's like a switch flicked. They are happier, calmer, quieter and less demanding. I think it's because (as DD said one day) No-one is ever taking us away from you now mummy. The judge said we have to stay here forever and it's the law.
The fun, laughter and cuddles make it all worthwhile. My DS hasn't spat or kicked or hit since March last year which is huge achievement considering this was a daily occurrence in his carers house for 2 years and with us for the first 3 months. Our DD has not had a meltdown (which usually lasted at least an hour up to 3) since September 12th.
I know it's so cliche but these children make me feel blessed.
Cabawill - your post was so lovely I had to share it with my DH! Thank you for sharing.
Hi one thing to be warned of
I would be avoiding siblings who are in different foster placements
Not saying you don't no what your doing but
You need to wonder why the siblings were placed seprently and also I would also be very alarmed if they have never lived together
It takes a huge amount of skill to parent to two children who have never lived together and have been parented diffently by Diffrent foster parents
Cabawill-this is really useful thanks. I am really keen on the idea of siblings. We've just finished Stage One and are about to start Stage Two. Our LA asks for the second adopted to take introductions + 4 weeks leave alongside the first adopter taking a year for siblings so we are saving money to enable us to manage this. You have some really sensible helpful advice. Thanks and I'm glad it's going well for you!
we adopted siblings in different foster placements
for us it worked out with no problems between the siblings - we got lucky. read April's issue of adoption uk magazine for more info on this issue.
but tread carefully on this issue as pp said - this should ring alarm bells - why aren't they together now - has a sibling assessment been done - ask for this as this is vital.
I am very pro sibling adoption - we have 3 siblings now, and are looking at a 4th - but many many experienced adopters say only take 1 at a time. do your homework thoroughly before you decide.
look into sibling trauma bonds etc.
We have adopted siblings who are only 9 months apart - boy and girl both under 2 and we aren't even 4 weeks in and knackered ! We are lucky that both of us are home for a few months before j go back to work and my DH is going to be a stay at home dad for about 2 years. If one of us had gone back to work already then I honestly don't think we would have survived !
Please take this into account with siblings - we expected (given the lack of children at present ) that we would get older children with at least one in school but out SW gave us the reports for our Little LOs and we just knew it was right for us.
That said it's totally worth it and we love them both dearly already even if one is teething and the other has temper tantrums 20 times a day x
Good lord!! That does sound like you have your hands full! I hope all continues to go well! X
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