We had been married for 22 years and had 6 children. Our oldest child had married and was raising 3 children of her own. When our 2nd child left for Africa for two years, the house sure seemed empty. As crazy as it sounds, I was wanting to care for another child, and fill vacant bedrooms. So while searching online and teasing my husband about adoption I came across Utah Foster Care. I read and read and became so interested in something I thought I would never do, something I didn’t want my name associated with. Now I feel the opposite!
A representative came to our home and gave us the details. It was so easy! 32 hours of classes, a home inspection and background check and we soon had two little brothers ages 4 and 6. They were very hard and the family integration was difficult. The boys had been neglected, starved , beaten and sexually abused. The youngest still suffers from encopresis and both boys have been diagnosed with Mild Mental Retardation. They have wrecked and broken about everything they could get their hands on and dumped everything else out.
Our biological children suffered embarrassment, anger, jealousy… you name it. These two little boys were tough! Often it felt unmanageable especially when it seemed to be tearing any solidarity we once had as a family, away from each of us. Our bio- children were sick of the poop, the pee, the snot and the whining, the lying, the screaming, the fits, the destruction, their personal space dissolved and the restless feeling in our once peaceful lives. Oh d@!#, we had it made before this!
With our home and our lives in shambles we reached out for assistance. We all got into therapy, my husband and I enrolled in all the trainings, seminars and classes that were available. We read books, magazines, and researched online. We went to a local adoption support group. We reached out and relied upon family and friends. We called upon our case worker, our RFC, teachers, doctors, and therapists and placed the children in activities and other programs to satisfy their high levels of anxiety. Our cousins gave us the key to their family pool. Our family came back together with our youngest sons included. The entire family agreed to an adoption on June 10th, 2014.
We talk candidly about the boys bio family and support their times of grief. We often visit the other 3 siblings who were also adopted. I personally keep in touch with their birth mother. She is not an addict of any kind, but doesn’t have the mental capabilities to care for anyone besides herself and she is doing very well. At a later time in life I will allow her to visit with boundaries. I hope for all of us to continue a healthy relationship. It’s still a difficult thing to do, but I focus on them as I would a biological child that I would certainly never give up on. For me, that’s the key. To hang on tight with white knuckles until it gets better. It did! And while we are not the perfect happy family, we are the happy imperfect family.
Story written by: Liz Porter
This story was seen first on Real Imprints.