"but what about Lily and Oli"

Anytime we talk about adopting a non-infant, people seem genuinely concerned for our kids. Something about adopting a toddler or kid instead of a baby has folks thinking our poor biological kids just won't be able to deal. And part of that is founded. It will be a HUGE adjustment when we some day, adopt. For us, for the child(ren) we adopt, and for Lily and Oli. But I can't help but think the reaction is a bit over-dramatic.

When we brought Olivier home from the hospital it took Lily a good month to stop hitting, scratching, and biting him. Her brother. Our son. Sometimes we caught her before she could hurt him, other times we weren't looking and little Oli would end up with a big scratch (often drawing blood) on his tiny face. Lily was vicious. It was all so new, and as a 14 month old baby herself, she didn't understand anything.

As awful as that month was, I'm glad we went through it. I think it has prepared us a little bit for what may be to come. On the bright side, our kids will be older by the time we adopt. Lily wasn't warned at all for Oli's arrival - or I should say, she didn't understand the hundreds of times we told her she had a brother coming soon. If she's around 3 years old when we adopt, she'll be able to understand much more. Oli will probably be in her shoes when he came home, so it won't be perfect -  we'll still have one biological kid who doesn't have a clue!

My point is this: it's always hard adjusting to a new family member. No matter how they come into your family. Lily had a terrible time adjusting to Oli, but she eventually did. She was so young and couldn't put the pieces together, so she acted out in aggression and tantrums. Oli may do the same when we adopt. But I believe he would also act that way if we had a third baby, biologically. I assume he'd treat said baby the same way Lily treated him - terribly :)


  1. Anonymous9.2.12

    Glad to hear you're ready for things not being "perfect" :-) I'm sure age and time will def make the transition easier!