Adoption real life stories - joy and pride!

'Hard to place'…'Older'…..'Complex needs', are often the labels we saw when searching for our children. It could deter some people from these groups of amazing children. We're glad it didn't for us.

Why did we adopt our children?.....When we took the decision that adoption was going to be our chosen route to have children together, we both had a work background that helped us understand that for some children, the chance of a family is slimmer than for others. So we made a decision to look into 'older' children and siblings.

We were 'older' too…early 40's and mid 50's. We knew we wanted more than 1 child together, so we explored adopting 'older' children in a sibling group. WOW…we were overwhelmed and saddened by just how many siblings were waiting for adoption together.

Because of how many sibling groups were waiting for adoption, it was only a short time from our approval to initial child profile reports flooding through. At this point we'd say TRUST your Social Worker…we had narrowed down potential matches and had said we'd not consider any others, but she rang and said, "I know what you'd told me but I think I have found a brother and sister who would be so right for you".  She was right…..what amazing children they are. Happy, kind, generous, beautiful inside and out are just a few words we and their friends and family use to describe them. They also had the joy of gaining an older sister (hubby's from his first marriage) and over the years 3 nephews for them. 

Just when we weren't expecting it, 6 years after becoming a family we grew again…a chance meeting when attending (in a professional capacity) an adoption activity day, there was the pleasure of meeting a beautiful little girl aged 3. We spoke briefly about her when I got home and…as they say…the rest is history. In the space of 6 months with fast track processes working wonderfully (all credit to those involved), our new little girl moved in with us, and less than 12 months from expressing interest in adopting her, she was ours legally too (so don't believe all the tales of long and drawn out processes every time). 

Our new arrival has 'complex needs'…she has cerebral palsy and possible Foetal Alcohol Syndrome, and described as having global delay and learning difficulties. Her profile reads so different from her reality. We all know how quickly children change and all the requirements to describe the 'possible' complications that can arise for children. However we couldn't stress enough that meeting little ones in person is so important (once you begin the process you can attend adoption activity days). This little bundle of joy has astounded us daily with what she achieves. She has been welcomed by her brother and sisters (and nephews), and all the family and friends already around us. She is thriving and bounding with energy, fun and a wicked sense of humour. She is on a par with her peers in mainstream school, walking independently a lot more, doing climbing walls, and generally up to the mischief of most 4 year olds.

So why are we offering up these words?...

  • Don't ever rule yourself out…we were in our 40's and 50's when we became adopters.
  • Don't let age be a barrier from the children either. At 4 and 6 our first two children were described as 'older'. We couldn't have asked for so much joy - ok we didn't get those 'first words…first steps…starting school' that you get as babies turn to toddlers to older children, but we have had so many many joyous 'firsts' that make us burst with pride.
  • Don't be put off by sibling groups. The love and support they afford each other is amazing. They have a shared story to help and love each other as well as what we can offer.
  • Don't be put off by 'complex needs'. You won't believe how quickly 'complex' becomes 'normal'. Our little girl has 3-4 daily routines we have to ensure take place for her disabilities, but they just happen now, they're part of life. The pride and joy she gives us makes any 'extra' things we have to do to help her thrive pail into insignificance every day.
  • Take time at the beginning to invest in attachment, make time for each other and adjust - it might sound hard work, but it pays off more than you ever will put in.
  • We only get the privilege to help and shape a child for a small proportion of their life but the rewards this brings are unmeasurable. If you have even briefly thought of adoption - explore it, it's the best thing we could ever have done.

Get in touch

Take the next step towards adopting, there's plenty of ways to get in touch: