The New Year is fast approaching, and with it an onslaught of resolutions for self-improvement. Many focus on weight loss, finances, or a work-life balance, but adoptive families may have a few more specific goals for 2018.
If you’re an adoptive parent who is working to make adoption an ongoing priority in your home, try setting any of these goals for yourself for the next year.
1. Spread awareness about adoption.
There are so many ways to be more active in helping others to understand modern-day adoption. You can share adoption news and start conversations on social media or with a blog. You could volunteer with adoption-related charities or organizations or help hopeful adoptive families to meet their fundraising goals. You could donate adoption-themed books or movies to your local schools or libraries. The possibilities are endless!
2. Continue to work on your relationship with your child’s birth family.
If you have an open or semi-open adoption, chances are that you’re working to keep your child’s birth parents updated on his or her life throughout the year. If you are already keeping them up-to-date on special milestones and achievements, that’s great! Continue to do so. If not, consider making more frequent contact.
3. Do some adoption networking.
It can be helpful for adopted children to know other families who have also grown through adoption. Try looking for adoption-related groups in your area, whether that’s online or in-person meetings, such as playgroups. Not only will your child grow to understand that many families have adoption journeys, but you’ll be able to talk with other adoptive parents about their experiences.
4. Continue to talk to your child about adoption.
We always advocate talking to your child about adoption. This should be a priority in 2018 as well. Continue to have age-appropriate conversations with your child about their story, and make sure they know you’re open to answering any questions they may have.
5. Explore your child’s heritage.
If you adopted a child of a different heritage, make a resolution to explore new family traditions. It’s important that your child feels comfortable learning more about his or her culture.
6. Share your story.
You are not obligated to share the story of your child’s adoption with anyone if you don’t wish to. However, if you’re comfortable talking about it, the world could always use more people who are sharing how adoption has changed their lives for the better. You never know; maybe you’ll inspire someone else to begin their own adoption journey!
As it will every year, your relationship with adoption will continue to grow and evolve in 2018. Happy New Year!