Continuing the series Called to Adopt. You can read the introduction here.
I left the introduction with “not everyone is called to adopt”
I absolutely believe this with all my heart, Just like everyone is not called to be a pastor, preacher, teacher, missionary, etc. or anyone else.
This world needs high school grads, college grads, PhD’s, garbage men, postal carriers, laborers, scientists, mathematicians, engineers, Moms and Dads, etc.
Why would God design a world that needed many different parts, and then call EVERYONE of a certain persuasion (Christian) to adopt?
It just doesn’t make sense to me.
I think that there are relatively few of us that are actually called to this life path. There’s much more to it than filling out some paperwork and bringing home a baby/child that you think will love you just because you “rescued” them.
In fact, let me assure you that a child will NOT love you because you “rescued them” They’ve experienced a loss in their life already and many children, yes, even babies, can be ANGRY because of that loss. Let’s face it anger is an easy emotion to go to when you don’t know what else you feel, when things are spinning out of control and you’re only a little person and have no idea what is happening.
Let’s talk about why they can be angry.
Many of these children, at the core, have not gotten their needs met.
Whether it is because they were yanked out of the only home they have ever known at the hands of social services, or maybe they truly were abused at the hands of their family of origin (or more likely by a boyfriend of their mother), or were placed by a loving birth-mother, or because they were starving to death in a 3rd world country.
Each of these children mourn! Yes, EVERY adopted child mourns the loss of their birth-family at some point. Even those placed at birth! They mourn not knowing who they look like, where they came from and wonder why their birth-family gave them away. (yes, calling it “placed them” is nice but that’s not how most adopted children look at it).
They mourn not knowing their medical history. They mourn not knowing their heritage. These children grieve their loss at various times for the rest of their lives. Some triggers can be:
When they go to the doctor and they have a little or no health background. Maybe they’ve been diagnosed with a chronic or fatal illness. Or maybe they’re just embarrassed because they don’t know their family health history.
When they realize that their bio parent kept other siblings but gave them away.
Sometimes they are angry because their birth mother “poisoned them” with drugs and alcohol.
Sometimes they don’t even realize that they are grieving; or why…that’s when as a parent you do the best you can to help them work through it.
And if you’re not equipped to handle that, then you have a problem on your hands. Sometimes, with a lot of prayer, work and sweat, these issues can be worked through.
Sometimes, the child ends up in a treatment center,
or, sometimes, unfortunately, the adoption must be dissolved.
PLEASE understand that I am by NO MEANS blaming any adoptive parent for feeling the need to dissolve an adoption! I have known several that have had to do so, some for the safety of the rest of the family, it wouldn’t have take our family much to have been among you. My heart breaks for EVERY one of these situations. I am NOT saying that you were not called to have your child for a time. Or that you weren’t equipped to handle the child/children God placed with you. You were equipped for that child for the time God allotted for you to have that child. Sometimes an adoptive home is a stop along the way to a child’s permanent home. Other times, unfortunately, children are so messed up that they end up spending most of their lives institutionalized.
I wish I could explain why some children make it in some homes and don’t in others… that’s one of those questions I want to ask God during eternity.
Even if you are equipped to handle it, you have different problems on your hands than raising a child you and your husband created in the inner-most place.
You must understand that these children have pain. They mourn. You must give the child room to grieve. You must support that child through their emotions. And this means when they take out their anger at their birth-family on YOU, you help them work through it.
(if you’ve been reading my blog for long, you’ll also know that I struggled with health issues for many years that made me somewhat of a “crazy” woman. Unfortunately, I did not and sometimes still do not handle my children’s feelings as well as I should. That’s when you run to them when you are able, and repent for your sin, you pull them close and hug them and then you listen to them, and help them work through the mess that they don’t understand).
You must help them grieve appropriately, but most importantly, you must learn to help that child learn to forgive!
Quite honestly, not everyone is ready to do that.
Quite honestly, I wasn’t ready to do that.
But with God’s grace, I have learned. Do I do it perfectly, Absolutely not! We all sin and fall short of God’s glory. Praise HIM for the GRACE that he gives when we are unable to be all that our children need!
But I do know without a doubt that Shane and I were called to adopt our children.
Each of our child’s adoption story is somewhere back on this blog; however, it’s been years since I told their stories on my blog, (in fact, Tabitha’s homecoming was chronicled as it happened when my blog was on homeschoolblogger.) I’m honestly not sure I can find those posts. So, look for each child’s story in the near future. (Or if I have time, I’ll find them and re post them).
For now, suffice it to say that Shane and I were talking about adoption before we were even married. God gave Shane a dream, God gave me a verse, God brought us Malachi and Tabitha when we were least expecting it. God gave us both a nudge that the homestudy needed to be updated each and every time he has called us to grow our family.
Quite honestly, I’d love to update the home study at least one more time, but God has not said yes….yet. And He may never. I’m ok with that because I want to be in His perfect will.
Being called to adopt does not mean reading James 1:27 and jumping on the adoption bandwagon because “after all, we are supposed to take care of orphans” Nope, it involves so much more!
I’ll talk about that next time 🙂
***I must give a disclaimer. My goal is not to hurt or offend anyone. I am speaking from my own personal experiences and those I’ve seen, or read about. I am by no means an expert (is anyone?) Nor do I mean to imply that anyone that has had to dissolve an adoption was outside of God’s will; In fact, my heart hurts because of your pain.