top books about foster care and international adoption

What books would you recommend for parents adopting from foster care or international adoption? We ran a survey asking that question on the Creating a Family Facebook Support Group. We share with you the top five choices, plus two honorable mentions that I couldn’t resist adding.

Top 5 Books You Must Read When Adopting from Foster Care or International Adoption

1. The Connected Child: Bring Hope and Healing to Your Adoptive Family by Dr. Karyn Purvis

The hands-down winner in our survey of best book to read if you are adopting from foster care or through international adoption was The Connected Child by the late great Dr. Karyn Purvis. This book is often the first book that parents read when adopting a child past infancy or a child “from a hard place”. What I appreciate as much as Dr. Purvis’s wisdom is her warmth and compassion for both the child and the parents. I count as a blessing in my life that I was able to interview her several times on the Creating a Family Radio show. We also have a course in AdoptEd for Parents with her. If you want to decide whether to read the book or just want a quick refresher, listen to these interviews.

2. Adopting the Hurt Child by Drs. Gregory Keck and Regina Kupecky

I was so glad that this often overlooked classic made the list. It is packed full of great information on understanding children who have been abused and neglected. The companion book, Parenting the Hurt Child, is also a must read. We have interviewed both Dr. Keck and Dr. Kupecky on the Creating a Family Radio Show.

3. Toddler Adoption: The Weaver’s Craft by Mary Hopkins-Best

Adopting a toddler or preschooler presents unique challenges (and opportunities) to adoptive parents. If you are adopting a child 4 or under, this is a thought provoking book with practical ideas. We have interviewed Mary Hopkins-Best on the Creating a Family Radio Show.

4. Twenty Things Adopted Kids Wish Their Adoptive Parents Knew by Sherrie Eldridge

This book, written by an adoptee, gives insight to understanding the nature of adoption from the adoptees perspective, which can be quite different than the adoptive parent perspective.  We have interviewed Sherrie Eldridge on the Creating a Family Radio Show.

5. Beyond Consequences, Logic, and Control: A Love-Based Approach to Helping Attachment-Challenged Children With Severe Behaviors by Heather T. Forbes

Another great book which goes beyond the theory of why some children struggle to attach and offers a guiding hand and a heavy dose of hope for loving and parenting these children. We have interviewed Heather Forbes several times on the Creating a Family Radio Show.

Honorable Mentions

Attaching in Adoption: Practical Tools for Today’s Parents and Attaching Through Love, Hugs, and Play by Deborah Gray

I love reading Deborah Gray’s wise words and I feel fortunate to have been able to interview her several times on the Creating a Family Radio show.

The Adoptive & Foster Parent Guide: How to Heal Your Child’s Trauma and Loss by Carol Lozier

I always felt this book didn’t get the exposure it should. I found it so helpful and insightful. We interviewed Carol Lozier when it first came out.

Getting Adoption Training Credit For These Books

Creating a Family has two great online education centers for adoption training, and we have training based on all of these books/authors.

AdoptEd for Parents

We have 100+ one hour courses providing adoptive parent or professional training in our AdoptEd for Parents  Center, including courses with all of the authors of these great books.

AdoptEd CE for Social Workers

While social worker can use any of the courses in AdoptEd for Parents for continuing education training, we have courses that have already been pre-approved for accreditation by the Association of Social Worker Boards in our AdoptEd CE for Social Workers Center, including this course by Deborah Gray: Practical Tips for Disciplining While Maintaining Attachment.

Image credit: Sarah Ross photography