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Birth Children and Adoptive Children

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Hi there,


Is there anyone out there who already had a biological child of their own and then decided to adopt?


I was hoping you could tell me how you found your biological child reacted? What was your journey like? and just some general information around how you found the process having a birth child as well.


Hope someone can help!


Thank you Smile


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4 users have supported this.

There are lots of relevant threads if you look through this board. Our two BC were 9 and 6 when we adopted the first time, a baby of 15 months, and 17 & 14 when we adopted the second time, a half-sib of our AD, aged 2 1/2. Both our adopted daughters have various issues, and our older daughter in particular is very challenging to live with. Our older birth son has taken everything in his stride, he has a lot of compassion and is a very confident resilient person. It has been much harder for our younger birth son, who has a much more negative & anxious personality, with less empathy and resilience. He has definitely suffered in some ways, as he has lost out on a lot of attention and time with us, due to the overwhelming needs of his little sisters. I have many regrets on his behalf. However, I also don't regret what we have done, because I believe the development of our family in this way has also been enriching, in different ways, for both the boys, and they will look back as adults with a greater understanding of what we did and why we did it. I don't think suffering is necessarily detrimental to the development of character, as long as it is managed in a meaningful way. We have had to work really hard to continue to meet the needs of the boys, especially our younger son, and I mean really hard! But I think we've done OK. So much depends on the age gap between your children - the bigger the better - AND the personality / resilience of the BC. Don't underestimate the impact adoption might have, but also, don't let it put you off completely. Educate yourself as much as possible about therapeutic parenting and the effects of trauma, and do some long hard thinking. Good luck


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9 users have supported this.

I'm afraid our journey has not been great. My BD was 12 when we started the process and was with me 100% of the way - came with me to the information evening and the approval panel. It took 3 years to get through (on the old system) so was 15 when my lo was placed. It was an awful time - it transpired that my lo should not have been placed with other children in the family and, to cut a very long story short, targeted my BD (threatened her with a knife, constant aggression towards her and so on). My BD has since been diagnosed with PTSD, anxiety & depression; my lo - on the advice of her clinical psychologist and independent counsellor - was eventually placed with a foster family with no other children who have gone on to adopt her. I ended up on antidepressants.


Sorry, I don't mean to put you off. Every story is different and whilst my journey was not positive for any of us, others have happier stories and outcomes. unfortunately there are no guarantees.


You can help both your BC and AC by making sure you know as much as possible about your AC and that they can cope being part of a family. On paper we should have been fine - my BD was older; my LO was 7 and I was assured - repeatedly - that she did not have any additional needs. With a different match it may all have worked out for everyone.


I do think that it is probably harder for birth children when they are an only child too - where there is more than one they are more used to sharing time and have additional support from their siblings should they need it. As Choco says above, you do need to think about it carefully. Good luck with whatever you decide.


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8 users have supported this.

Our bd was 6 when we discussed adoption and having decided we wanted to go ahead we discussed it with her. She was pleased and said she had always wanted a little sister. Fast forward 6 years and she has had her sister for nearly 4 years. They love each other to bits, but can wind each other up too!! Overall it has been a good experience all round. Our bd has learned some patience at having to share us and copes well with that. The little one adores her big sister.


During the process I did try to protect my bd as much as possible and we were lucky in that we were matched with the first child we asked for. At that point we showed bd some photos but she didn't come to court or the life appreciation day. Once matching panel was done she took photo into school to show her classmates. She had not told any of them up to that point! Obviously things can go wrong and you can't always protect them from that unfortunately. I do remember my bd asking me on the morning of panel if her sister had been fed properly, she had started to realise neglect existed at 6 which I was sad about, but this is the reality of our ad's life before us.


If you have any other questions you think I can answer do just ask or pm me.


Cat.


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Take a look through the old posts on this board. Many have told their stories ib detail before.


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7 users have supported this.

We adopted lo when my birth son was 8... The boys are so close and have a lovely relationship. There is a 6 year age gap.

It was me who struggled, I felt guilty that now most of my time was spent dealing with a difficult 2 year old..

2 years on and the boys remain very close.. Things have eased and having 2 kids is my Normality... It did take me time to adjust.

It's not easy but 100 percent wire it.

Yesterday I was watching them together and my heart melted as I watched my eldest pushing him on the swing. Laughing with each other... It's these moments that outweigh the tough times.

Good luck xxx


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# worth


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4 users have supported this.

Ours is a happy story. We're 5 years down the road from having a baby placed with us - 3 birth children who were aged 5, 8 & 10 at placement. All were involved and agreed from the beginning. Drip drip info until placement, then lots of individual bonding time with the baby as well as special time for them. My 5 year old loved having a baby sibling but did regress to wanting a bottle etc - which we expected and embraced. That only lasted a couple of weeks. Being placed with a baby meant no major jealousy and no major personality to suddenly accept. She has grown into a 6 year old with a huge personality, but they have all grown together, so like all siblings they can be irritated by each other at times - but these moments are far far outweighed by the happiness and fun she brings.

Each of my birth children has a slightly different type of relationship with her. My eldest is less attentive, but protective and nurturing, my middle BC is the most affectionate with her, my youngest has the most playful relationship. This reflects their age gaps as well as personality differences. Things that I think may have helped our family are already having multiple siblings, and also already living with additional needs - so life has already had to be extremely flexible and adaptive before adding adoption to the mix. Our AD has additional needs too, and fits into our family perfectly. Many years to go until adulthood and maybe independence but I feel very hopeful for the future. And very blessed Smile


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7 users have supported this.

We have a birth son aged 14 now and at placement was about 9 and we adopted a boy aged one who is 7 now. We were offered our adopted son's half sister about 3 years ago and said no, but I so regret this. But thought that we can't be lucky twice that things would go well with very little issues. My husband and family weren't keen. Our birth son does have some extra learning needs but our adopted son appears to be doing fine. He can get a bit emotional sometimes but this is no different from birth children. He is very cuddly and happy and into sports like my elder son. It's funny the adopted part isn't really on our minds, but obviously he knows his past age appropriately. Our birth son has always been positive, but now at the age of nearly fifteen his console is more attractive! They have a definite bond though. They are both sporty so that's a good point.

Good luck in your decision it's a hard one.


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We have two BC and one AD we have big age gaps between all three ,seven years between the last two. Our AD was 5 when placed and despite preparing the older children exceptionally well for a number of years for adoption when it finally happened it hit my youngest BC really, really hard, it wasn`t the adopting but the huge difference in personality of the youngest two and the worry/stress of how family life had become.

I think the worst thing was the split loyalty as a mum trying to help our new little one transition and settle and help our younger BD deal with the trauma that came with adopting a child that was always trying to control the whole family.

I wont lie it was so so hard and for the first year or two I felt so guilty for putting so much stress on the family and found bonding really tricky. AD pushed for every part of my attention every minute of the day,older children in the family have to be incredibly patient when adoptive children arrive it can be very hard for them.

Fast forward four years and things are so much calmer my younger ones are not close but kind to each other , and live side by side but dont have a great bond like the elder two. They do look out for each other though which i never thought would happen!

The best thing for us was to not try and force a sibling relationship just to let it happen in its own way,and to ensure the older children have their own space and to make sure our little one respects their privacy etc

Outwardly no one would know there is not much bond between the younger two but they definitely don`t connect which is actually ok its just how it is.

I don`t know if that helps you at all I think I just rambled sorry!!


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We were foster careers for some years before we adopted so ds was used to sw Ect and had some knowledge of why the children were coming


He was 14 when we started the process we have adopted two children separately both were one older one is 4 and younger 2 and he's 17 now and is pretty much how you would expect a teen to be self Invloved he played with them a little howeve with them being girls and him being 13 years older than my youngest he's a bit indifferent about them is warm and Porte give but they don't really hold much interest to a a most adult young man I know people say a bigger age gap as possible hower


Teenagers are incredibley selfish and self Invloved tbh so I not really that sure it's actually a good time to bring another child into the family I think my son was 5 when we started fostering and tbh he just grew up with diffrent children coming and going and never new any diffrent so when it came to adoption it wasn't a massive leap for him however if we hadn't been foster carers and knowing how self Invloved he is and eveything is a battle ground I would dread to think about introductions , getting interviewed by sw Ect now it's often a task to get him to pick up his pants off the floor Sad


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Oh and can I say it is ok for siblings not to get on my husband has 4 siblings and sees none of then if they weren't related he would never see them or be in ther company he dosent hate them and has some found child hood memories but fundermnatlly they are very very diffrent.


And that's ok I actually know more people who don't get on with there siblings than do


And I think if you have a large age gap I think it's very very diffcult for the children to be close tbh that's birth children and adopted sibs


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Yes - I agree re the teen years and indifference towards younger siblings. Due to the 10 year age gap, my older teen has always been a little distant from my AC but has always had a lovely protective sort of relationship. These days, he is really not interested in anyone other than himself and his own exam stress etc. He is also generally irritated by her and he now really notices her additional needs which he finds embarrassing in public. I totally agree that trying to adopt with a teen (maybe not all teens, but certainly mine!) would be very tricky and possibly very negative for the teenager - and maybe physically impossible as my teen boys would rather dig a hole and hide than have a 1-1 interview with a stranger (SW) and talk about their thoughts!!! There does seem to be an optimum sibling age for adding to a family, and I would say that is ideally between 5-10 years of age for existing siblings. Sure hundreds will disagree with me though!!!!!


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Someone made a point earlier about their teenage birth sons personalities being the factor which affected how they reacted to the adoption - with us it was different. We had 2 BDs - aged 14 and 20 at placement - and adopted 2 toddlers - 2 1/4 snd 14 mths - very much a handful! My daughter - the eldest - placed first - accepted our eldest BD as one of the adults but was very jealous and resentful of our younger daughter. She (the 14 yr old) had been very positive about the adoption and had lots of empathy with AD and was also a very self assured and mature teenager (relatively) but it was very hard for her and we did miss out too on special times as she grew older particularly when she went to university. She lived abroad for a few years after university and I think it all affected her greatly - but as someone else said - we all have things in our life which produce challenges and affect us and it is not necessarily a bad thing in the long run - just difficulties to be dealt with - nothing can be perfect. I lost my father at 14 - my DHs parents were divorced when he was 2 - none of it ideal or what our parents would have wanted but it helps make us the person who we are in the end


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Hi everyone,


I'm new to this forum so please do excuse me if I am either reposting or posting in the wrong forum.


Myself and my partner have discussed adoption in the future, once we are married and have our careers in a happy, stable place.


I personally would like to adopt as well as have my own child, however my partner questioned why I want to do this, and why I wouldn't adopt two children instead of having my own birth child. My honest answer is that I don't really know, it's just the way I've always pictured my family.


Has anyone else ever had this question asked of them?


What are your reasonings for having both an adopted child and a birth child?


Is it recommended to adopt before or after birth, or either?


Any advice on this subject would be really helpful.


Many thanks


Lauren


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4 users have supported this.

Personally I'd say do one or the other. But if you're adamant about doing both, then birth child first and a big gap before even thinking about adoption. Whilst remembering that the two parenting experiences are likely to be totally different.


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Hi Lauren,

I always thought that one day I would adopt or foster (as I grew up with a fostered sibling) and my partner was open to the idea. But we also wanted birth children - and we did that first. I think most people would recommend having your birth children first - especially social workers - as your adopted child/children are likely to come with lots of issues that are long term - and if you then add a birth child things may be very difficult for all of you, but especially for your adopted children. (Although not impossible - as there are plenty of people on here who have had a surprise and done it this way around)

It sounds like a sensible plan to continue as you are, enjoy getting married and establishing your careers. If you have years to mull these decisions over, then at some point you'll probably decide what feels right for you - birth children first or only adopted children. There's no rush to decide as feelings evolve over time, but at least you can have a clear idea of your options. It's great that you're reading this forum - please read the Adopters and Older Adtoptees sections at length as these will give you some good insights into the realities of modern day adoption, with children who often have a lifelong need for complex emotional support.


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Thank you so much for your understanding and supportive replies. Hugely appreciated.


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