We are adopting a 3 year old boy and we are concerned about his behavior and how he will treat our 7 year old son. Did anyone adopt a toddler or older child and have a bio child already? Any experiences that you could share would be greatly appreciated.
no, we didn't have other children in our home, but dd was 3.5 yrs and was basically fine with kids once we helped her break a few bad relationship communications habits.... She still likes to control others and thats her biggest challenge right now...
Hi Julie & Chad
Our birth child was 6 when we adopted a three year old. Now 11, she has an adopted 14 YO sister, 8 YO brother, 8 YO sister, and 6 YO brother.
The bottom line is each birth child is unique as is each addition to the family. It is much more accepted to respect birth order and adopt a child younger than your bio.
Adding a child via adoption presents some mixed blessings similar to adding a birth child. The first child has to scoot over a little which is not easy, nor is it necessarily a bad thing. Our bio daughter has developed much deeper compassion and acceptance of others because she has experienced the special needs of her siblings. She has learned to be more patient and courageous than she ever would have had her siblings not had special needs.
All our children are very proud of being a part of our family and of participating in adoptions subsequent to their own. Even though they have presented each other and us as parents a variety of challenges; each offers the others and us so much more than we ever could have imagined.
It is our job as the parents to teach each new child to respect others, and our job to provide protection as they learn. It is also our job to encourage the "experienced" siblings to make room, be patient, offer encouragement, avoid control battles, communicate effectively and ultimately navigate through the inevitable disappointments that come with being a part of a family.
What an amazing opportunity it has been for all of us. We wouldn't trade even the toughest most exhausting or heart breaking moments...nor could we begin to describe the blessings.
Hope this helps,
My bio daughter C was 7 when M (almost 4) joined our family in December. There have been lots of wonderful times, and some really, really rough ones, partly because I have been experiencing Post Adoption Depression. It is very similar to Post Partum Depression, which I experienced after C's birth.
At different times, the adjustment has been hardest on C, and at other times, hardest on me. M and DH have managed pretty well emotionally, under the circumstances. Of course, M has lots of emotional issues that we are working on in therapy.
When C and M are getting along, they play great together. However M does very frequently do 'antagonistic' things to C. She will make an irritating noise over and over and over and refuses to stop (until I give consequences). That has gotten better. M will 'stretch' her arm or leg out and put it in C's face. If C is jumping rope or hoola-hooping M will purposely get right in her way. M pushes past C getting into the car or going through doors. She will also stop in the doorway to block C from getting through.
C is currently feeling VERY sad. Partly about M annoying her, but more because she feels she does not get enough time for me.
C was very excited about adopting before we did it. Now, I think on most days she would say she wished we had not adopted M. I am sure things will get better...we are still adjusting and it has only been 9 months. And truly, they often have a great time playing together and sometimes C relishes her 'big sister role'...helping M and teaching her things.
Best advice is to make sure that each child gets one-on-one time with each parent, and that the older child gets plenty of time away from the new child (play dates at friends' houses).
Good luck!