My husband and I have six biological children. We love parenting, and had talked of adopting older children someday, as the older children generally get overlooked when people are considering adopting a child.
We turned to international adoption and adopted a sibling group of four from Russia, which consisted of one boy and three girls. We also adopted a girl from another orphanage at the same time, and three years later we adopted another daughter. Some of what we have written about are the behaviors these children had to learn in order to survive.
Our children were ten years old, eleven years old, thirteen years old, almost fourteen years old and almost fifteen years old when we adopted them. Today, we have two fourteen year old daughters, a fifteen year old daughter, a seventeen year old daughter, an eighteen year old son and a nineteen year old daughter. Not all of their behaviors were due to their early upbringing or orphanage life; some of it was normal, run-of-the-mill teenage angst. My children are like most teenagers. They worry about their skin, their weight, being physically fit, their grades, and being pretty. They are interested in members of the opposite sex, and a wide variety of music. They throw fits and slam doors. They criticize each other and nit-pick each other unmercifully. In essence, they are just normal teenagers that happen to talk with a lovely accent and an interesting turn of phrase. They are our children, stinky feet, pimples, dimples, and all.
The materials for this course have been reprinted with permission from the book Adoption Parenting: Creating a Toolbox Building Connections, edited by Jean MacLeod and Sheena Macrae Copyright © 2006 EMK Press, all rights reserved. The complete 520 page book covering all aspects of becoming and being an adoptive family is available at Amazon.com.