When my husband and I started our adoption journey, I struggled to find books written by adopters sharing their experience of the process. That was one of the reasons I started my blog. I wanted to share our journey so that others considering adoption would have a better idea of what to expect.
I’m very grateful to those who’ve shared their stories so far in the magazine. Hopefully the wide range of experiences from people with different family dynamics will help to dispel some of the myths that still exist around adoption.
Chris shared his story back in October and his book, “My Adoption Journey”, has been on my “must read” list since then. He kindly gifted me a copy of his book so I could review it.
As the name suggests, the book is an account of Chris and his partner’s journey to parenthood. They’re a same sex couple and the book covers some of the issues they’ve encountered because of this. It’s an extremely honest account. It starts by taking you through the options they looked into before they decided adoption was for them.
There’s a lot of detail about the adoption assessment. Things like the preparation course and social worker visits are explained in full. Chris is honest about struggling with parts of the assessment and tells it exactly as he found it. I think that’s so important for people considering adoption to read. The assessment can be hard and it’s ok to struggle with it at times.
Other parts of the assessment that are covered include the dilemma they had about their home and whether they should delay the process and move to a bigger place. Preparing for and attending panel are also described in detail.
Chris then describes how the matching process worked for them. Again, it’s an incredibly honest account of how it was for them. He shares what he and his partner were feeling and why they felt the first match wasn’t right for them. I really worried about what would happen if a match didn’t feel right for us. Would that mean we wouldn’t be considered for another child? Reading Chris’s account of how they dealt with it will provide a lot of insight for those concerned about this issue.
My favourite part of the book is reading about how they prepared to meet their son once they found the right match. This took me right back to all the feelings I had as matching panel and introductions grew closer for our eldest. Chris takes you through how they prepared their home, picked their son’s new school and the things they made and bought to give to the foster carers to introduce to their son. Reading about their first meeting with him and how their bond developed as they got to know him is an emotional read!
Chris then shares the first few months of settling in and getting to know each other. It details the good, the bad and everything in between. He talks very honestly about his struggle to bond initially with his son, and the steps he took to overcome that. He also covers some of the issues they experienced and the types of help they’ve sought.
This is a great book to read if you’re thinking about adoption, particularly if you’re a same sex couple. By the end you’ll have a good idea of what the assessment involves and how to prepare yourself for it.
My Adoption Journey is available to buy from Amazon.