Supporting Adoptive Families

One of my best friends recently adopted a baby boy, and by “recently” I mean he’s about a month old. She and her husband went through an open adoption. They’ve been tring to have a child for years and have quite literally tried almost everything medically possible. Earlier this year they decided that it was time to look at adoption as a serious option and started the process.

Some other time I will write about the heart-wrenching steps involved in adoption, and the judgment she suffered from family, friends and coworkers. There’s not enough time today to get into all of that.

However, I have noticed that since she started the process and I learned so much about this, through her, I’ve seen adoption articles everywhere. Stories online, in print, on TV about adopting, about giving up a child for adoption, and about raising an adoptive child. I thought I’d share this one since it actually applied to me: “5 Ways to Support New Adoptive Families” in mamiverse. Here’s the short version:

  1. Before the new arrival comes home, drop by some meals that can be frozen and served for their first few days as a new family.
  2. In the family’s first few days home, resist calling too much…  Then, once you are more regularly connecting, always call before you stop by.
  3. First and foremost, respect that the parenting experience in adoption is always unique and that the parents in that situation know the most about what to do.
  4. Offer to come over and give support to the parent—doing laundry, cleaning, mowing the lawn, etc. 
  5. Ask questions.  How are you doing?  What can I do?  What is going well?  What’s hard?  How can I be more helpful?  What do you need?  How was the journey?  What have you learned?  What helps?  It is so nice to have a willing listener as you process the experience.

Read the entire article, these are great tips. It’s good to know I was doing one or two things right already.

Author: Paloma Cruz

Find out more about Paloma Cruz through the About page. Connect with her on Twitter (www.twitter.com/palomacruz) and (Facebook).

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