The anticipation of adopting a new family member can make your children both excited and anxious. Acknowledging that your family dynamic will change can help everyone prepare to welcome an adopted child.
You can prepare your children using a variety of strategies. Most importantly, remember to acknowledge your children’s questions and concerns to reassure them that you care equally, about them and their new sibling.
Take time to listen
Growing a family may shift your priorities in multiple directions while you find a new balance. According to childwelfare.gov, one of the biggest challenges your children may face about adoption is a concern about the availability of time and resources with the addition of another sibling. Take the time to listen to your children and ask them what their expectations are.
Provide reassurance that you have enough of everything to give each child what they need. Remind your children that everyone will need to acclimate, but that working together can make the experience more positive. Your willingness to listen and involve your children in finding solutions to their concerns may alleviate some of their angst and help them feel more excited.
Chances are you will prepare your home to welcome a new child. During this process, encourage your children to participate. Some of the things your family can do together include the following:
- Prepare a bedroom space for the new sibling
- Learn more about the new sibling’s background
- Create a “WELCOME” banner
Involving your children in the process of adopting a new sibling may facilitate unity. Welcoming a new family member can bring many positive memories when adequate preparation leads the way.