We think you would make an amazing adopter.
How many of these qualities do you already have?
Good Sense of Humour
Although parenting a child through adoption is no laughing matter, it doesn’t mean it has to be serious all of the time. The most successful adopters are those who are able to laugh at themselves, and find humour in difficult situations!
You will need to carry emotions for your child sometimes, and need to talk the difficult talk about why your child was adopted and what may have happened to them before they came to live with you. You will need to prove to them you can cope with anything, as they need your resilience to enable them to build their own.
Adopted children can be unpredictable. Their past can dictate early behaviour in your home as well as future behaviours.
Having an open mind to why this is happening and how you can tackle it will be essential. Taking on board new ways of thinking, new techniques, listening to others’ experiences and being open-minded is paramount.
Adopted children come from a range of backgrounds, and many have experienced early traumas. Empathising with this, and seeing the world through their eyes will support them to learn and grow into a positive understanding of themselves and others. Empathy towards their past and how it may shape their future will be essential.
Many adopted children have had no stability or guidance in their early lives. They will need positive boundaries in their lives which need to be reaffirmed and reaffirmed again.
We call it “stickability” – can you stick with a child no matter how challenging they might be at times?
Your child may well have difficulties “out there” away from home, be it socially, educationally, physically or emotionally. Your job on occasions will be to go out there and fight for what they need. A strong sense of justice, right and wrong, and understanding will enable you to fight the fight for them when required.
Willing to Learn
Parenting an adopted child is different to parenting a birth child. All adopters need to undertake learning around therapeutic parenting, and the needs of the children they care for. Adopters who are willing to learn will take the best of practice and make it their own – reading, watching, training, listening. There is a lot to gain.
Flexibility is one of the key attributes in being a successful adopter. Flexible during your assessment, flexible with regard to the type of child you may consider, flexible in how you approach parenting, and flexible in meeting the needs of your child.