Are you thinking about adopting again?
Many adopters who have experienced the joys of helping a child to settle into their family wish to adopt again. There are many reasons for wanting to welcome another child into the family and adoptive parents will want to consider how this will affect them and the children already in their family. There is also a particular assessment process for second time adopters.
Second time adopters will have already gained considerable experience and have already been through a thorough preparation training and the assessment process. Therefore if they wish to make a further application to be assessed to adopt through the same agency the assessment process may be shortened to 4 months.
If you’re considering adopting for a subsequent time there are a number of things you may want to think about.
THE LENGTH OF TIME SINCE PREVIOUSLY ADOPTED CHILDREN JOINED YOUR FAMILY
It is important to give a child who has joined your family plenty of time to feel secure before thinking of adopting again. It takes time for children to learn to trust new parents if the child has experienced worrying and unsettling times in the past.
The time needed for a child to feel secure in a family will vary depending on the child’s age at placement and the experiences a child may have had before joining the family. Even a child who was relatively young when placed, will need time to enjoy being the centre of attention before learning to share with another child.
We would expect the family to have had at least two years to adjust to living together as a family before considering placing another child.
AGE GAP BETWEEN CHILDREN
Considering the age gap between your children is a really important decision. Adopted children will have a range of insecurities when they join your family and you will have worked hard to help that child grow in security with you. If you adopt for a second or subsequent time, the child joining your family will probably not be a baby, but rather another child with an unsettled history.
We would not want to do anything to undermine your existing child’s security and will generally only consider placing a second or subsequent child as the youngest child in the family ideally with a minimum age gap of 2 years from your youngest child
WHAT IF MY ADOPTED CHILD’S BIRTH FAMILY HAD ANOTHER CHILD?
This does not necessarily mean that the child would be adopted. However if no-one in the birth family was able to care for the child, the Local Authority may ask us to approach you. The placing Local Authority would want us to discuss placing this child with you to enable the siblings to grow up together. There would be an assessment to establish whether this plan would be manageable for you and in the interests of all the children.
BE PREPARED FOR YOUR CHILD’S REACTION
Be prepared for your older child to regress when another child joins your family. Second time adopters can be taken aback when a child who seemed very settled and ready for a younger sibling is suddenly demanding and challenging. Even the most careful preparation won’t necessarily reassure a child who, in the past, may have lived through chaotic and scary times. Earlier feelings of insecurity may surface unexpectedly for both child and parents. For this reason it is helpful to talk through with your adoption team the timing of a second application and the age and backgrounds of children that you can consider.
WILL MY AGE PREVENT ME ADOPTING AGAIN?
Adopters who were in their 40’s when first adopting may be worried that they won’t be considered for another child. Remember that there is no upper age limit for adopters and that, as an experienced adoptive parent, you will have much to offer that is valued by adoption agencies.
If this is something you would like to discuss with us then please contact us on 01364 645480 for more information.
Who Can Adopt?
The Adoption Process
Why Choose FFC?
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Read case studies from families who have adopted through FFC.