GIVING HOME CAN BE VERY
A DOPTIVE families in Wales have opened up about their experience of taking on sibling groups as National Adoption Week draws to a close.
In Wales 62% of children waiting for adoption are members of sibling groups of two, three and four, and require placement in a family together.
But with only two potential adopters on the waiting list available for groups of two, and none for greater numbers as of June 2017, the National Adoption Service for Wales says the need to recruit more adopters has never been greater.
Adrian said he and his partner felt adoption was the natural option after IVF appeared unlikely to be successful.
“After long reflection we decided what was important was to have children in our family that we could nurture and love, and could see grow up and go out into the world equipped by us to make the most of their own lives,” he said. “Once you look at raising kids in this way you think less about the genetic connection that birth children share with you.”
Adrian adopted Holly (name changed), but has experience of having a birth child as well.
“When you have a newborn baby, their life story is a blank piece of paper and they orbit your world from the off,” he said.
“When you adopt, a person comes along with several chapters already written, who is in an orbit of their own. It’s daunting taking on either, but when you take on that complex character, you need to learn fast how to have a central – and reliable –place in their life. Only then will you build a strong relationship.”
Adrian and his family are open about the fact his children are adopted, and he says he encourages his children to feel accepting of it, too
He said: “They will have plenty of conflicting feelings surfacing over the years, so I want them to discuss any aspect of their his- tory with me whenever they feel the need. Emotions such as insecurity are typical among adopted children. I think helping them understand their history goes some way to tackling that insecurity.” He added: “My advice to anyone thinking about adoption is to first spend some time with someone who has adopted. Read . all about adoption, too. Try to be as well-equipped as you can be to decide whether it is something you really want to do.
“Adoption may feel like a gift of a child being delivered to your family, but try to look at it as a gift you can give that child.”
Martin, 20, is the eldest of three siblings who were adopted by a family in South Wales. He said: “Being adopted with both of my sisters has been great. Sibling groups are difficult and do require a lot of work from the parents, as you have to deal with three different personalities, but they can be incredibly rewarding.”
Martin said he believes having two sisters has helped him develop life skills such as caring for others, as well as providing him with two people to share experiences with.
“Many friends of mine who are the only child have always been more socially awkward and also less able to interact,” he said. “It is important to consider adopting siblings as they do have a bond with each other, and it can be incredibly rewarding taking care of more than one child.”
He added: “Also knowing that I have been with my sisters my whole life gives me a calming feeling, as I will always know them, and won’t have to find them in the future and start forming a bond in later life. You can also have a lot of fun being a part of a large family with siblings.”
Tony and Jacquie from North Wales adopted two brothers after three failed attempts at IVF.
He said: “We liked the idea of siblings as we felt we could accommodate two or more both financially and emotionally and physically.
“The biggest draw to siblings was we understood that sibling groups were harder to place and we did not think this was fair, and the idea that we could possibly keep a little family together was just the best feeling
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