Introducing a newly adopted child to your family can be a complex puzzle. It’s natural to be anxious and worried. We often hear, “how do you introduce an adopted child into a family with a biological child?"
Don't fret; it may take some work, but it’s possible to integrate biological children and adopted children to create a happy, healthy family.
Help Your Child Prepare For A New Sibling
Spend some time getting your child excited about a new sibling entering the home. You can help them feel prepared to be a big brother or big sister by reading books about siblings and discussing what the role of an older sibling will be.
If the child you are adopting is older than your child, talk about how nice it is to play with and rely on a big brother or big sister. Point out positive sibling relationships in movies and books when you see them.
Do Activities Together As A Family
A new child may take time to integrate into the family fully. There are a few ways to help prevent them from feeling like an outsider. Doing activities as a family together is a great way to make them feel like part of the family.
For example, taking new family photos with everyone together and displaying them around your home is a great way to show them they are loved.
Remember that siblings fight from time to time, and a mixed family is no different. Every parent has heard their child shout “I wish you were never born!” at their sibling at some point. It can feel all the more devastating when instead you hear, “you aren’t my REAL sister!”
Be prepared for that kind of fighting, and handle it the way you would with birth siblings. Remind both children that they belong in this family and always will.
Give The New Child Time To Become Comfortable
It can take time for an adopted child to become comfortable in a new family. Many may have fears that this family will not be permanent or may simply have difficulty opening up. Be patient.
Try to help your child feel secure in this new environment and dissuade any fears or anxieties they may have. Try not to get frustrated if they have difficulty integrating with your family. Work together to create a comfortable environment where they can feel secure.
Love Takes Time
The most important thing to remember is that adoption is, and always will be, a journey. When trying to integrate adopted and biological children together, do not expect perfect harmony overnight. There will be obstacles, but with time and effort, your family can overcome them.