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Siblings or a single child?(14 Posts)
We are nearly at panel and hoping to be approved for "up to two" children.
We have read and heard lots about how challenging two can be.
Please do not read into this that we are not prepared for how challenging one would be! We have been assessed, read lots of books, talked to adopters etc.
I would appreciate the perspectives of adopters please.
Genuine question, please genuine answers.
I'm in the same boat as you and we want to adopt two siblings because:
We don't want an only child to have to look after two elderly parents on their own.
Through all the seperation they have been through they have (hopefully) always had each other.
They both have another family member who shares genetic traits with them.
I think the adoption process is difficult for adults and I wouldn't feel comfortable putting an adopted child. OUR child through that process and the uncertainty and difficulty a new sibling arriving may bring.
Although it's going to be very hard as we've never had a child i'm sure if we had one we'd think it was incredably hard too so we may as well just go for it :p
Hopefully someone who has already adopted siblings will be along shortly to tell us we're making a great choice.
good luck at panel
Seriously though, siblings are hard but so utterly rewarding. I don't know what it is like to have only one child though, so don't know any different (disclaimer!)
The main reason we adopted siblings is we couldn't bear the thought of another sibling group being broken up. Also, I liked the concept that had at least one genetic link with a family member.
Also, only one lot of letterbox and same life stories which us really handy
Its a very personal decision and probably depends not only on you and your DH but also on the specific children. My friend adopted a sibling group who should never have been adopted together and one of the adoptions ultimately disrupted.
I decided against a sibling group because a) I was single b) I wanted to bond with one child at a time which as it turned out was just as well because I struggled to bond with DS initally - I'm not sure how well I would have done with two.
But if you have a very hands on DH on the parenting front I can see two could work very well. I would also question very carefully the children's relationship with each other and whether the older child might have learnt behaviours which impact on the younger which is very very difficult indeed.
Ultimately I think the choice needs to be based on specific children as I said rather than the abstract idea that a single child or a sibling group is "better". Keep open minded and talk with DH and social worker about what would and wouldn't work for you. Worth talking to a local adopter who took a sibling group about things like bonding and sibling behaviour with each other.
I agree with Kew, and also want to add that (and this may not be a popular opinion) I think it depends how old the children are. My boys were young when adopted so hadn't had the opportunity to learn to be deceptive or to "gang up" on my DH and I. I know of at least 1 family who adopted older siblings and they had a hell of a time because the sisters had learned how to be disruptive as a pair.
We have siblings who were placed with us at different times. We wanted siblings for a lot of the same reasons Locoparentis said, but initially we were matched with one child (sibling was unborn then).
Our experience was that our first child, who was placed at 10m, settled and bonded with us fairly easily, and that our second was much harder. This was partly because she was almost 2 when placed, but also because we could not give the undivided attention we'd been able to with our first. Also, we underestimated the impact our new addition would have on our first and had huge sibling rivalry type issues. Our two have only 12 months between them which I feel has made things harder for them - I think we've basically got two children with first sibling who has been knocked of their pedestal type issues! However, we are over a year in now and they are lovely and settled and it has all been worth it.
I think it will depend on the specific children and their situation very much, as others have said.
I think on balance we might have had a slightly easier ride if both children had arrived together, and I think they would have, but it is very hard to say. I wouldn't swap the one to one time we did have with our eldest for anthing.
I think it is hard to consider in the abstract, everything could change once you get some potential matches to consider.
Thank you to you all for your replies. Really helpful.
We have talked to a few adopters who took sibs; some that are full siblings, some genetically unrelated, trying to get as many perspectives as possible.
I think like Piffy says, bit abstract right now, and our SW has said she will show us singlies and siblings once we are matched.
P.S. Rudolph, your first reply made me
Quite hard to get approved for unrelated or "social" siblings unless they are adopted with some time gap or if they have been fostered together from a young age (and therefore count as "social" siblings").
Having said that - I know a family who managed to get approved for two unrelated children and adopted two who had lived together more or less since birth 8 months apart when they were around 2. She then got pregnant and when from 0 children to effectively two year old twins and a new born within the space of a year!
Think they're happy with how it worked out though!
Do you think you'd be happy with an only child or would you want to adopt a second eventually whatever? We definitely adopted one knowing we would apply for a second. Now have two gorgeous unrelated siblings but the second adoption was much tougher on our eldest than we anticipated. 'one or two depending on the ages and specific needs of the children' seems a very sensible approach to me.
Good luck at panel!
We adopted our older two together , then their birth baby sister a few years later, once the older two were at school.
Looking back on the early days it was a lot easier with "one at a time".
I found dividing my time when the first two came home difficult as the older one, two years old, was very demanding, rightly so. Fortunately her sister was just a baby, six months old, so I just "wore" her and she was constantly with me.
When we adopted dd3 , as a baby I found it was like having just one child, during the school day anyway!
I enjoyed dd3 early years a lot more, as I felt I had more time with her on a one to one basis.
The bond my older two have with each other is wonderful to see, and I'm pleased that we were able to make that happen.
As others have said, I think it depends a lot on the children.
To be honest though, if you are having any doubts over a sibling group, you would be better off with just one child.
See how your heart & head feel once start being matched- look at both only & siblings & I'm sure that whatever happens it will be your match.
We were appoved for 2 , my wonderful DH keener on 1 for 2 reasons - 1 because he is an only child so its what he is used to & he had a great childhood & secondly because he thought we would be better focussing on one child to begin with etc. I have a sibling & its what I'm used to and equally had fab early life but we agreed to look at both siblings and singles and not to discount. I'm sooooooooooo glad thatwe did as we now have a single DS & I simply cannot imagine any other child being our son & if I had decided to stick only for siblings we never ever would have been matched with him - just typing those words makes me feel sad - & thats after I have just trodden on damn piece of lego !
I completely agree that it's best to be as open minded as possible. We knew we were only looking to adopt one child (because we already had a birth child) but we had always assumed that s/he would be a pre-schoolers. In fact, DD was only 15 months old, and we might never have looked at her had our SW not suggested it.
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