What kind of advice for adoptive parents should they be aware of before takiing that life challenging step?

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Answered by: Marilyn, An Expert in the Advice for Adoptive Parents Category
Adopting children into your home can be extremely rewarding to the adoptive parents as well as the child being adopted. On the other hand, adopting children can bring challenges into your home that have never been there before. The best advice for adoptive parents would be to talk to people who have adopted children already. Finding people who have gone through the entire process and have had years of experience raising their adopted children, can yield a wealth of information that can be a enormous help in the end.

An important item to consider first and foremost, is the age of the child being considered for adoption. Obviously, the younger the child is, will determine how much baggage they might have to overcome as they grow through the years. A child who is adopted at birth or within their toddler years, will more likely grow up in a fairly normal way with the love and nurturing of good parenting.

Older children will naturally come with extra baggage from their experiences early in life. They will naturally have a love and allegiance for their birth parents no matter how terribly offensive they might have been toward their child. It seems uncanny to think that these monsters deserve any form of loving kinship from their child, but that saying "blood is thicker than water" still holds true. These things will have an effect on their behavior throughout their years. They will especially be manifested during those troubled teen years that all children go through as they try to establish their place in adulthood.

At any rate, children are very resilient and can, with love, understanding, and open communication, grow up to be productive adults. Your example of the wholesome loving, caring, parents showing how a proper family environment should be, can, in time, override those deep seated emotions with positive results. As it is with any family, each child will develop their own personality through their life experiences. It will mostly be the adoptive parents' responsibility to try to make those life experiences positive and memorable.

Love, understanding, and communication, are key essentials to helping the adopted child mature and grow up to become what they are destined to be. These essentials are the adoptive parents' responsibility to implement at the beginning of their relationship with the adopted child and to follow through with throughout their developing years.

It is also important to note, that we all have a spiritual need as we walk through this life here on earth. Children are very eager at a young age to grasp the concept of a God who loves them and cares about them. The teachings in the Bible can have a very positive impact on the direction that a child's life will go. again, It is the adoptive parents' responsibility to see that these values are readily instilled, though not forced upon them, starting at an early age.

After raising five adoptive children ourselves, I trust that this advice for adoptive parents will give some insight to those who are genuinely interested in changing a child's future. Regardless of what your expectations might be, it is important to understand that adoption can be a blessing or curse. The most important thing, is that you are adopting children with the right motives and intentions. Your goal should be, that you want to make a difference in each child's life, to give them a better advantage of a brighter future than they might have had. Accept the fact that things might not turn out exactly the way you hoped they would be, but with God's help and guidance, you can bring a brighter tomorrow for the future of your adopted child.

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