Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Reluctant Child

Oh My, I misplaced my camera on Saturday and feel so lost without it! It is not lost forever, just at a friends house and should be arriving home soon- thank goodness! I love my little camera , it goes where ever I go and documents our life! We went to the apple orchard today and by golly I had to just enjoy myself instead of snapping pics the whole time! ;-)

I do have something on my mind and I just wanted to ask all of you out there in bloggyland. We feel so good about our adoption. We feel like this is a perfect fit for us! We couldn't be happier and by the looks of it everyone in the family IS happy. However, everyone in the family is not as excited as we are about adopting again.

For us it is "of course we're adopting again, how wonderful, can't wait to get this precious child home." Everything about it feels right and it is a good fit!

I understand that other family members have feelings, thoughts, and concerns. Because we feel so good about it we are not tuned into those feelings, thoughts and concerns. Hubby can understand it better than I can but I try. We do have really good conversation with the older kids about adoption and us adopting again. Usually they are okay with it after the conversation.

We are passionate for the orphans. It is a life long dream of mine. Hubby did not have this as one of his dreams- the senior golf tour was one of his dreams but he is enjoying every minute of these blessing that we have at home and looking forward to those that will be coming home!

All of the children seem to come around - they rise to the occasion as we bring a new family member home. We have seen personality characteristic growing within each one that has exceeded our dreams.
A tenderness and kindness for a child that is different than themselves.
Love that is readily given... just because...
Patience for someone that is slow to catch on...
Acceptance to a child because they are part of "our family", they are one of us but just weeks ago they weren't...
A feeling of wanting to protect them because they are your sisters...
Smiles when 4 little girls from China cheer him on at a sporting event and are just so excited to see him!
Teaching, a new sibling something new- it is as exciting and fun for the older sib as it is for the younger sib!
A tolerance, for these little girls when they are crawling all over you..
An ability, to say okay- love you girls but it's time for me to leave...
Eating and enjoying your dinner with a sister on your lap... and she's there because she loves you so much!

I just do not see a down side... as far as my data goes it is all positive!

Yes, there are uncomfortable moments- but they are passing moments, they don't last long.
Yes, there are growing pains but that is expected in all relationships.
Yes, it does cut in to individual attention time- but we work hard at still giving everyone our time.
Yes, they need to share more- (but that's okay with me).

The benefit to us is immeasurable! The benefit to the child that now has a family is lifelong!

Do you have a reluctant child? Tell me about it and tell me how do you handle it?


"Are These Kids All Yours?" said...

Can't help you there- our children all CHEER when we tell them about another sibling. In fact they are ready whenever....of course our children are all 10 and under :)

Angie said...

Reluctancy will usually hit in our family after the child comes home and reality sets in and kids realize that more self-sacrificing is needed. It's not uncommon, so don't feel bad, and don't let the enemy take the joy out of this exciting time. I've held kids as they literally sob because of tough moments. Love will come...just give it time and be sure you're there to listen and not reprimand them (not saying you're doing this...this is for me, too!).

klc112792 said...

I have followed your family and have so enjoyed your thoughts on adoption My husband and have have 4biological older children. Two are married and one in college and one a senior in high school. We are in the process of our third SN adoption from China. Our children have been less than excepting of the idea and it has been very diificult for me. We have always been very close and it has hurt me very deeply. I know they still love us but this has truly been the one thing we can't agree on. So, I guess we just have to hang in there and do what our heart tells us to.

Dr. D said...

Hi Jean, we're in the process of adopting a sibling group of 4 and I've enjoyed following your blog. Our children are all very excited about their 4 sisters coming home.

Our sons are all 12 years and under so I don't have any experience with adopting while already having teenagers and grown children. But as I read various blogs I do find myself wondering if it's too much to ask some teenagers to adjust to multiple adoptions one after the other, especially when adoption has not been a part of the fabric of their home lives growing up. There are so many adjustments to be made with one adoption, let alone multiple adoptions. Add to that the unique dynamics that can come with older child adoption. For a teenager whose home has changed dramatically by adoption, and who is going through his own set of changes and challenges, and who might feel guilty objecting to adoption because it is clearly a great thing to provide a home and family for an orphan, a good stretch of exhaling before another adoption might be a great gift to that teen. Perhaps some children legitimately need extended time to catch their breath after the huge changes brought by multiple adoptions. Of course, there are some children who are as willing and eager as their parents. But every family has its own dynamics.

Dr. D said...

Jean, I'm so honored you stopped by my blog. Thank you:-) I've found such encouragement on your blog and learned so much as you've shared your journey. I'm excited for when it's my family's turn to make the trip and get our girls ... and I'm sure I'll have a few questions for you! :-)

Sophie said...

Oh Jean this is something I've been wanting to email you about. I find that it's our older children that are more reluctant than the younger ones.Our older boys adore their sister but they're not kean on adopting again.

We have made some different choices the past couple of years as far as surrendering more of ourselves to Christ, going to a more Bible based church and hosting Bible study in our home so our older kids may be a little confused by all the change.

Unfortunately as hard as hubby and I try we do live in a society that fuels individual satisfaction and complete surrender is something that teenagers are more reluctant to do. I do think they've made peace with it though, and I continue to pray about it.

Thaanks for touching on this subject.

soontobemomof9 said...

I dOnt visit for a bit, and look what happens?! ;)

I am, quite simply, THRILLED for you!

I have reluctant children. My feeling is ... We tell the kids our decision, ask for honest feelings, try hard to work with or through them and stay our course. I would not ask my children if I could get pregnant, I don't ask them if I can adopt another child. I do not believe, however much I live them and think they are all amazing, that they have the life experience to handle the enormity of that kind of decision.

Eileen said...

We are adopting our fifth child (second adoption) and the only one who struggled with it was my oldest, our 16 year-old son. When I asked him about it, it seemed like his concern was more along the lines of, "I'll be leaving soon and I'll hardly get to know him and all of these fun things will be happening in the family without me....." Those weren't his exact words, but that's the impression I got.

We told our kids that their opinions meant a great deal to us, but that ultimately, we were the ones who needed to make the decision. When we announced that we were going to adopt the little boy we'd talked about, our son was kind of quiet about it. That night, I noticed that our new little guy's picture had been put on our computer's screen saver. Our teenage son put it there.

Ever since we announced that we were definitely doing it, I haven't heard another complaint from him. He's not gushing about it like his sisters, but I know he's excited. AND he said he's willing to share his room. With a FOUR year old! We'll see how that goes!

Anonymous said...

"He of the greatest need....." That's our family rule. No matter the issue. Big or small.

So, if your reluctant child was going to be more traumatized by bringing another child home than the benefit to the adopted child (& all the benefits that come with adopting that child) than the reluctant child's wishes would be honored.

I suspect the growth and love your family will share is a bigger benefit to all versus the detriment to the reluctant child's psyche.

Not sure if I expressed that well.
Definitely sure, I have no business offering advice as I have ZERO experience with adoption!

So, perhaps ignore all the above & go with another of my motto's: Momma knows best!

The Gang's Momma! said...

This is a great conversation! I'm here by way of the linkage at NHBO. We are all but a teensy eensy bit sure that we're ready to start the journey to child number 6. Which, seems like a really small family after reading all the notes and comments here. But anyway, our second son is a tad reluctant. We've asked him to pray and think about it. We've asked him to be honest with us, but to allow that if we feel the GO AHEAD from the Lord, we have to be obedient to HIM first, even tho we will take into consideration the thoughts and feelings of the other family members.

On another note, another family member or two (not our kids) has made it abundantly clear that they think we need to be done. That 5 is plenty and that we should be "happy with the big bunch" we have now. Boy, was that a bitter pill to swallow. 'Specially cuz we didn't really ask their opinion! Ugh.