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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Where's our credibility?

I am a member of the AFABC Magazine. Magazine of the adoptive families association of British Columbia. There was a paragraph that caught my attention in the October/November 2011 issue called "Siblings fare better when placed together" The Children and Youth Services Review Vol. 33, Issue 7 through quotes: A national foster care study found that children placed with siblings fared better than those placed alone. Researchers divided 1,701 cases into children placed apart from siblings (split), placed with some siblings (splintered), and placed with all siblings (together). Teachers reported that siblings placed together did better academically than the other two groups, and together and splintered groups exhibited less problematic behavior than the split group. Our family has some experience in this area because we adopted three children from a sibling group of five. Now in this case scenario it was the best solution. Although I do know that the one sibling that remained in foster care struggled. What I interpret from the findings highlighted above is children develop behaviors because of their emotions from separation. Many of us have hidden thoughts we think about, we question and develop confusion on why life is what it is. I can only imagine a child tossing their conclusion around in their mind on why they aren't with their sisters and brothers. Of course I understand most reasoning's behind why children are separated. Children don't and that's when their behaviors begin. What worries me most as an adoptive mother with siblings out there, what about their future? In our case, technically our family is "too large" to keep them together. Really? Personally if that's the conclusion; that ultimately changes their life. They become problematic within our society. This also makes the adoptive family subjected to question, "Why was I separated from my siblings?" We automatically are to blame. We were asked this in the past, and I did have to explain that it was the Ministry's decision. I'm completely convinced we're still disliked "to say it lightly". All of a sudden our role of being family builders shift to family separators in the children's eyes. I've been writing lately about large families adopting siblings because yes, there is some siblings out there for us although there is a gloomy stigma around large families adopting that I don't seem to understand. Perhaps I'm ignorant to why this outcome is floating around? For us we're not actively seeking to adopt anymore but our children's siblings shouldn't be sitting in foster care wondering why me? (And developing those behaviors because of it) When children already had a loss, different forms a neglect and abuse, they migrate to each other. Children turn to each other for supports and develop sibling bonds needed to guide them through many feelings that perhaps a parent and yes, councilors can't provide. I've witnessed it. I also truly believe that children develop better permanency outcomes when placed with their siblings. Basically it's unity. Long term well-being is what we all agree, a permanency plan. Statistically I live the truth and witness everyday the importance of siblings remaining together. I'm finding I'm a voice advocating through our family that large families need more credibility. If the truth needs to be sought, I believe most of our homes are open, (anytime, day or evening) anyone interested in witnessing first hand on how our family works, the invite is there. I can guarantee anyone interested will be pleasantly surprised. And that is my formal promise.

 A quote from Henry Ford that our son just used with his homework project is - Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.

To me that quote defines "Large families"

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