Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on adoption.
if there's one thing you could tell yourself about adoption before you adopted...(31 Posts)
Oh lots of things actually! Be prepared for it not to be "perfect". I struggled with serious post adoption depression. I never expected to feel that way.
And one more - be patient and be prepared to wait and wait and wait for lots of things...to be linked... to be matched etc etc.
And can I have one more? That it's the best thing that I would ever do in my life.
Sorry if that's cheating
Take one day at a time.
And it's the best thing ever!
It is very intense to begin with. SW visits, LO grief, your grief at the life you had prior to LO being placed. I would say, just be kind to yourself and not feel guilty of the wider families expectations. Your relationship, bonding etc is paramount to that of grandparents, aunties etc.
<cheating as well>
- Not to worry so much about the process, because it will last for me only a couple of years, but parenting will be for a lifetime.
- That the parenting will be a marathon that will last longer than I expect and take me places I couldn't possibly envisage. And that I will, and it's okay to, take lots of steps backwards and sideways as well as forwards and upwards.
- That I shouldn't expect myself to love my children straightaway, that that is normal and natural, but that unconditional love will happen with time and lots of real parenting. And it really will be more than the most powerful feeling I could ever imagine.
- That in 20 years time, I will be able to look back and know that adoption has made the most enormous and positive difference in my future childrens lives, and I will aways know that, even when times are very tough and it's harder to see that impact. But the impact is really there. And it really has been the best thing that could have happened for them and has changed my life in many positive ways and so I will not regret starting the marathon, though it's a long way from over.
- Oh and TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF younger Lilka! You are important and you deserve it even when you don't think you do. Always. It will make an enormous difference
To live in the moment more, appreciate the good times without stressing about what could go wrong so much, to be a little easier on myself about not the amazing parent that I thought I would be, that DS would turn out to be an amazing person and not a cabbage (thanks mother!) and to take way more photos of Ust Kamenogorsk as it would be a long long time before I would get to go back.
Thats all one sentence so it counts as one thing.
(OK maybe that last point isn't relevant to almost any other person in the UK but you didn;t say it had to be transferrable!)
That those periods of unimaginable, seemingly unending hell will end eventually but that it may take days, or even weeks, to do so.
Attachment is a spectrum, not an endgame; there is no definite end to forming an attachment to your child. You will periodically look back and realise that that which was, was nowhere near as strong as our is now and or will be in the future.
that it just keeps getting better and better and better
That adoption changes everyone in the family - so I shouldn't be so worried about finding the 'right' child to fit in with my life, and just accept that life will change and go along with the ride. That adoption will make me tougher but also softer. That love takes time. That you have to take care of yourself because no-one else is going to.
Definitely, the feeling of being a fairly rubbish babysitter will pass.
Also, that people will say strange things because they don't know the etiquette (still smarting from recent friends delighted "he is just so...
normal". Why, thank you friend of 10 years, but I beg to differ - he is actually extraordinary.)
To be patient and constructive in the times when it just seems to be going so slow. It will at some point go really really fast and you'll regret not making more space in the loft when you had the chance...
Think about how much you're willing to share before telling people, and be prepared to be asked a lot how it's going. I told my work after we were approved and then embarked on the most stressful upsetting three months of my life (match disintegrated). Some days I could barely make it out of the house and sitting at work holding it together for eight hours was torture. Being asked how things were going and how excited I must feel about four times a day by well meaning colleagues was excruciating.
It's completely worth it. I've been up since 5am after having three hours sleep and I'm looking at my wonderful daughter (who's decided to fall asleep now!!) I cannot describe the depths of my love for this little dot who's came into my life like a whirlwind and changed my world completely and irrevocably. There is nothing I wouldn't do or give for her.
To ask for help in the early days - you won't be super-parent, you want to be, of course, but you won't be, not yet. You'll want to be 'better' than the birth parents and not admit that you are tired/vulnerable/emotionally drained. But you should, you really should, it's the only way to get through the first bit if you are struggling.
Take every bit of help the SWs offer.
(I now go and talk to prospective adopters and I always emphasise this to them).
Wow, so many things. But looking at the film thread what strikes is how you immediately have to endure people thinking you're semi-neurotic/overprotective/half mad, when I reality all you're trying to do is deal with a little person who has experienced trauma which has left a lasting impact and can manifest in any number of ways at any time.
Grow a very thick skin asap. And don't expect ANYONE to understand ANYTHING- only other adopters and adoptees do.
It's the most Fantastic thing you will ever do!
And be very prepared to be judged.
You will also be very thankful to those who do support you.
Be prepared for the possibility that someone in your circle of friends or family, who you thought you were close to, will let you down completely, not be able to cope with your new status or may even cut contact all together.
But that you will also make many new friends. Or perhaps someone who you knew only slightly will turn out to be one of your closest allies or biggest supporters .
Adoption changes your life in many ways, not just those you anticipated
Completely agree Kristingle. One of our very close family members, who understood adoption apparently, totally let us down with their behaviour and reaction to DD coming home. 3 years later and I am pretty much NC.
Based on that experience, I would absolutely agree with deciding what boundaries you want in place prior to your DC coming home, with regard to introducing your family to the DC, and stick to them.
However I have made the most amazing friends through DD - the kind that stick with you whatever you're going through!
Oh my goodness just reading the last 2 posts on here I feel so much relief! Our lo has been with us a year- what a roller coaster! But the one thing which has marred it completely has been the complete breakdown of a friendship I thought would last! Thank you so much for sharing! I'm still feeling vulnerable and shaky but with a new found hobby (me time!) and some fab new found friends we're definitely getting there!!! Xxx
Me too Jameme. DH thinks I'm mad, but there's a part of me that thinks DD has parts of her history missing therefore I must capture every moment! The laptop has 1000s of photos on
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