Four years ago I felt part of something special during National Adoption Week, child 4 had just arrived and all was new and shiny, we belonged to a new exciting club. Now, I am not sure that I even like National Adoption Week. In fact this year I've kind of ignored it, well as best you can when our Twitter and Facebook feeds are full of all that is adoption.
I am saddened and angry that siblings are paraded through the media looking for their forever families. Although, I know that adoption is probably the best outcome for them. I am tired of reading stories of adoptive parents desperate for support and help with their traumatised children are not believed, are blamed, ridiculed or ignored by schools, health professionals and those supposedly in charge of our society.
I guess the new and shiny wears off, not that we are having a particularily hard time. Life here is pretty fantastic most of the time. We have our moments of anger and rage but so far we are managing it. For us adoption has brought our immediate family unit closer together. It feels like child 4 has always been here. The bit I struggle with is other people, those that just don't get it and actually don't want to get it. There are those who are unaware of child 4's difficult start in life so don't understand why he reacts to certain situations like he does and then there are those that do know but think that he should be all better now.
Our eldest described her angst about how other people are in a nutshell not so long ago.
"How would they feel if one night the police and social services arrived at their home, forcibly removed them. Carrying them through the house whilest everyone is screaming and crying. Putting them in a car and taking them to a new house to live in with a very nice new family, who they will stay with for a little while, whilst others decide where they will end up permanently. So would they recover in a few days, a week, a month, a year. If an adult couldn't cope with what we do to these children how can they expect children too!!"
What we do to these children and how we expect them to be grateful is one of the biggest issues with adoption, if everyone accepted it as a horrific thing to be party to and understood that our children needed support, counselling, love and educating, then adoption journeys would be better for all those involved.
For National Adoption Week, would I do it again. YES I would.