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Adopting with 3 year old BC.

KandD June 16, 2020 19:40

Hi all.

Hope you're all ok and coping with our current CV19 challenges.

I'm 37 my husband 45 and our BD is 3 (just).

Me and my younger siblings come from a traumatic childhood and were in different areas of the care system with involvement from SS.

From this I have wanted to adopt and foster children since I was in my 20's but wanted to wait to be able to offer stability and security.

My husband and I have spoken about adopting for almost 6 years and I've done lots of research, read the horror stories, the positive stories and all the challenges that happen in between.

I always wanted a big family and we have decided to grow our family through adoption now rather than more birth children. I'm quite passionate about being able to give love and comfort to those children who have suffered so gravely.

Having spoken to several adoption agencies over the last month we have been advised that our BC is too young for us to adopt. I have always understood it go be that a 2 year age gap is needed which is why we have waited until now to proceed.

I can imagine the challenges to come from adopting but also the good points (my husband and I have family who have been adopted or who have adopted children themselves). I know my BC well and we have already been discussing the possibility of a sibling which she is very open to. We've also explained about sharing of attention, space, time and possessions etc (to the extent we can at her age). We both believe she is open to change and is adaptable to new situations.

Our BC is very sociable and has been in nursery from 1 years old so is used to having lots of children around and loves being around other children. We think she would relish the chance to bond with a sibling and think now is a good age for her to be accepting of big change.

In addition my husband and I have spent at least 4hrs with each agency going through our pre stage assessments for them then to come back with a recommendation of waiting for at least 12months until our BC is 4 years old. They obviously knew her age at the start of these conversations so could they not advised of this preferred age gap before?

Not that it should be a huge factor but we have a 4 bedroom house with large garden, well paying jobs (I would be taking significant time off tand then going part time), we have a huge network of friends and family ready to support and our backgrounds would help with the challenges thrown our way.

Sorry for the long post!! Just feeling very frustrated and confused as to why we unable to offer a loving home to a child in need.

I suppose I'm just looking for opinions as to whether our BC is too young and why that might be. Also if anyone else has experienced similar with the process and/or anyone that has children with a 2 year age gap or less and how you have managed.

Thank you in advance for your advise and comments.

Edited 17/02/2021
August 23, 2020 21:49


I don't get why they said to wait as the age gap is 2 years old. If I were you, I would try the local Authorities until you get a yes......

Good luck

Edited 17/02/2021
chestnuttree August 23, 2020 22:25

In 2018 only 8% of adopted children were placed at age 1 or younger. So let's say you get through the process very quickly, eg. in a 1 year, that would make your birth child 4. You would then only be able to adopt children aged 2 or younger. That is a very small group of children and highly competitive, because most prospective adopters want children as young as possible. Most social workers prefer families without birth children, so that parents can focus on the adopted child. That might be why agencies feel your child is too young. I would ask them about their reasoning though.

Edited 17/02/2021
Donatella August 27, 2020 16:59

It’s tricky. You clearly have a lot of lived experiences which may well be helpful. I’ve adopted three times. My eldest was just 3 when we had our second child and 5 when we had our 3rd so I’m always careful when responding to questions like this!

I would say think very carefully about the sort of child you imagine fitting into your family and your family fitting around. Not just you and your partner, but your child as well. It can be very difficult for a child to cope with the arrival of a child who may present with quite challenging behaviour, a child who may take up an awful lot of your time. A lot will depend on age but I know my eldest has struggled at times because my younger two were - eventually - diagnosed ASD and experienced difficulties in school. At one point all three were in different schools - the right choice because eldest was having to deal with middly’s meltdowns in school. It did mean that he missed out on time and attention from us as the younger two were very demanding of our time.

Would you consider fostering in the interim?

Good luck

Edited 17/02/2021


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