Considering adoption? Take a minute to think about whether adding an older child to your family might be a good option for you. There are few certainties in adoption, but here are some reasons you should consider whether older child adoption could be a good fit.

They will (probably) already have words.

Sure, you might not like all the words that they know, but this is a start. My daughter was four when we met, and her ability to express herself verbally meant that I didn’t have to guess about what she liked and disliked, what she wanted and needed. If you choose international adoption, you may have language barriers, but your child will likely still be able to communicate with you through gestures and some words (and they may also have a desire to learn English quickly).

They will (probably) already be potty trained.

Apparently potty training is no joke. I haven’t gotten there yet with my toddler, but my daughter came to me fully potty trained and I have it on good authority that this saved me a great deal of (literal and figurative) mess.

You will (probably) not have to deal with so much daycare drama.

I’m not sure about your area, but infant daycare spots in my town are hard to come by, guarded fiercely, and crazy expensive. Before and after school care (and even toddler spots) are much easier to find. If you work outside the home, childcare is a big consideration in helping your life to run smoothly. You will likely avoid much of this drama if your child is not an infant when you bring them home.

They will (probably) not need as much paraphernalia as babies.

All. The. Stuff. The strollers. The car seats. The formula. Bottles, diapers, wipes, wipe warmers, extra clothes, blankets, teething rings, cribs, changing tables, swings, chairs, bouncers. The paraphernalia that comes with babyhood is ridiculous. It costs a lot of money, it takes up a lot of space, and you have to haul it so many places! I had my older child first (before my baby), and I didn’t have to deal with any of this. We could be up, ready and out the door in half an hour (without a car full of stuff!).

They are (definitely) already waiting for a permanent home and family.

The other reasons may or may not persuade you to take a second look at older child adoption. But, here’s the thing. Though there are few certainties in adoption, this is one of them: there are many, many older children waiting today for a family. Toddlers and preschoolers and elementary-aged kids and preteens and teenagers are waiting in foster homes, group homes, orphanages. Providing a forever family for one (or more) of these waiting children won’t be easy. There will be challenges and hard days. But every single one of these children deserves to be loved unconditionally. And one of them might just be your child.

Did you adopt an older child? What would you add to this list?