Q: We are planning to adopt a sibling set from the foster care system within a year. I am looking for a step-by-step guidebook for the first year, kind of like a “what to expect the first year” book for parents who adopt older children. I have seen the list of resources and books you list on your site, which are very helpful, and I am also listening to many past episodes, but each article or book or podcast seems to focus on one step of the process. A “complete book on adopting older kids from foster care” would be a fantastic resource that I can’t seem to find already published. Please let me know if there is a book like that out there already!
A: There isn’t anything exactly like what you are looking for. First, make sure you check out our resources on adopting older kids and our recommended books for adopting older children. The classes you will be required to take will cover some of this. A great resource is Brothers and Sisters in Adoption by Arleta James. Parenting Your Older Adopted Child by Brenda McCreight provides a pretty good overview. Deborah Gray’s two books (Attaching in Adoption and Nurturing Adoptions) cover the attachment aspect, but probably won’t answer all your other practical questions. There are many books that address problem areas, such as Dr. Gregory Keck’s Parenting the Hurt Child, but you are looking for help with more typical adjustment issues with older kids. The last chapter in my book, The Complete Book of International Adoption covers a lot of issues that may come up within the first 6 to 12 months home. Although specifically geared to international adoption, most of the issues are the same since most internationally adopted kids are over the age of one.Image credit: _Yogu