LarLa: We haven’t even tried to have a child of our own – every time a friend or family member has a baby, it seems like I learn a new terrible thing that happens and I just want no part of that. I’m too chicken to carry a baby and give birth! (Not to mention we have some health issues on both sides that we aren’t keen on passing down)
I’ve found some things and am slowly going through the materials. I also reached out to a friend who works in Child Welfare (her job is to recruit potential foster or adoptive families) and she gave me a lot of information that is specific to that particular agency. DH and I have agreed to do our own research and keep the conversation open, but we aren’t going to start any applications (or even decide if we will actually apply – he’s more on the fence than I am) until after our anniversary at the end of August.
In the meantime, I’ve got a stack of books to go through and am perusing lots of things online. I’ve found a few blogs that I really like, and I’ve listened to some podcasts that are good too.
I’ve really liked the “Foster Adoption Podcast,” by a guy named Adam R. He also cites other podcasts that I haven’t listened to yet. And Gladney Center for Adoption does a podcast called “Parent Child Relationships” that isn’t the best produced podcast, but has lots of good information (some of the episodes are taped lectures and the sound quality isn’t always awesome).
I started my research sort of gently with a book called “Instant Mom” by Nia Vardalos (Of My Big Fat Greek Wedding fame) – it’s about her family’s journey to adopting her daughter from fostercare and is easy to read, hilarious, and unexpectedly informative. I liked and learned more from this book than I expected. And I’ve also read “Adopting Older Children: A Practical Guide to Adopting and Parenting Children Over Age Four,” which was incredibly informative. I have probably 5 or 6 more books on adoption/fost-adopt on my kindle right now.
I’ve been trying to take it slowly a bit, because 1. I don’t want to wear Darling Husband out with the topic, since he’s leaning towards the idea but still somewhat undecided and 2. some of the reading has scared me or made my heart hurt. I read the blog of a woman who has fost-adopted 3 siblings and the older two are now teenagers and have reactive attachment disorder. She loves her children but their stories were harrowing to me. So I had to read something light and fun for a bit. 🙂
My friend who is a foster-adoptive parent recruiter said that on average, it takes a family about 18 months from when they have their first thoughts about doing this before they actually decide to start filling out paperwork. When she told me that, I thought she was exaggerating, but now that I’m on that road myself, I can totally understand why it would take so long. We will probably be close to that timeline ourselves.
ETA: Also – I love the blog “FosterMoms,” which I actually found through their instagram. I’m finding that stories about real families who are making this work are more interesting and compelling to me than the dry books about policies and procedures and disorders and laws and all of that (also very important) stuff.