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Decisions....3 boys 5 and under?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 

I've thought this through so much my brain is quite addled.

 

My husband and I have a 5 year old.  We were licensed last week and our friend is having to move the 3year old and his 6mo old brother in a month or two as she's expecting and between working and so many little ones it'd be too much.

 

They'd like to move the boys to our home.  We've had them since Friday for respite.  Unfortunately hubby and I both came down with an awful cold or flu so it's really made us wonder if having so many so young is something we can handle.  (Luckily the kids don't seem to be getting sick, doing our best to keep it that way!)

 

I'm a stay-at-homesteading momma and in a couple weeks we'll start formally homeschooling our son via an online academy (like public school but at home-trying it out this year).  I really worry about being able to successfully school our son and keep up with everything.

 

The boys are a joy and we were having a blast until hubby and I got sick.  I'd like to think we'd find a groove after a while and make it work.  My hubby, son and I really like the boys and if we could make it work would adopt them if possible (the story right now is that the mom's not working her plan and most likely will TPR in a few months, but you know how that goes).

 

Any advice from anyone on keeping your sanity, and things together with a 5yo, 2yo and 6 mo old?  I know other people make it work, but how?  LOL

post #2 of 20

I had 4 under 4 for a while, and we all survived although I would not recommend that to anyone.  I think a 5yo, 3yo, and a baby is very doable.  After a month or so, you get used to the chaos and forget that it used to be different.  Some things that helped us were: early bedtimes (6 or 7PM), healthy convenience food (dump in a pan or the oven and heat up kind of cooking), and putting away most of the toys so only a few can make a mess at once.

post #3 of 20

Also, I made sure that I had 4 hours a week ALL TO MYSELF.  That helped so much.

 

post #4 of 20

Your lives will be very different, for sure, but whether that is a good different or a bad different is completely up to you.

 

You sound like you're hesitant because you feel rushed. Were you expecting and prepared to adopt children who fit a different demographic? Only one, maybe? Or older children? I would not recommend making a quick decision if it is outside the range you expected and/or you feel rushed to decide. Visit more with the boys, take them for overnights, see how things go, and decide later. And if your heart isn't in it, no matter how great they are, don't let a time crunch force you to say yes. There are many children who need a family and recognizing you aren't the right family for specific children does not make you bad people, it makes you responsible parents for the children you will adopt who will be a perfect match for what you're able to give. Not that you're perfect or the children you'll adopt will be, but you shouldn't be starting from a point of uncertainty on if you can meet the children's needs. Give it time and see how it goes. If you still have doubts in 2 months, it's probably your gut saying these aren't your children.

post #5 of 20

Most families I know with multiple kiddos space them a couple years apart, so having a 5, 3, and baby doesn't sound odd to me at all.  I think especially as they grew up if they stayed with you it would be great fun to have them close in age.

post #6 of 20

those ages sound wonderful to me! I would want to get into a good pattern and routine for your days. I think that will help you be successful in homeschooling. Illnesses do mess up schedules and all - but 3 kids is really doable and really fun. I love it:) Mine are now 6, 2,2

post #7 of 20

I think those ages sound perfect. I would totally do it. Plus im a sucker for a bunch of boys.

post #8 of 20
Thread Starter 

Molly, great advice.  Thanks.

 

I think most of my hesitation is that I'm used to being so productive around the homestead and that will be difficult.  But these boys really feel like they belong here.  They go back to their foster mom tomorrow night and I hate for them to go.  They had a visit with their mom today and I was really ready for them to get back, it feels like they're mine, if that makes sense.  The more I think about it the more my heart jumps in and wants to make the decision for me.  :-)

post #9 of 20

10 months ago we got 3 boys 1,2,3yo.  Now they are 2,3,4yo.  It is hectic and we require a lot of help.  But, we are managing and now there are days I actually think "I can do this!"  They are sweet kids and have their own sets of challenges.  But, there is nothing like a big snuggle pile of little ones first thing in the morning.  Feel free to contact me if you have more questions about what it is like for us.  It is not an undertaking to be taken lightly.  

post #10 of 20

hugs to all of you adoptive and foster moms. you are wonderful people

post #11 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by kayleesmom View Post

hugs to all of you adoptive and foster moms. you are wonderful people



Tonight i had a lapful of boys, my two 3 yr olds (both adopted from foster care) were laughing and smiling and kissing me...and i thought, geeez i am sooo lucky that i am the mom to these boys. Its amazing how wonderful they are. I can't believe i just signed up and (of course after alot of "stuff" along the way) they gave me these kids. It suprises me every time it hits me. I could not have special ordered more perfect kids, and yet so many people dont even consider foster care adoption (often, with good reason, so i get it.)

post #12 of 20

Katherine how long have the kids been with you?  Did you feel like that from the beginning?  Did you get them all at once?  Most moments I feel lucky. But, there are whole days where I think I must be crazy to have agreed to this.  Although I find myself questioning the how I have not yet questioned the why.  

post #13 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abarat View Post

 

I think most of my hesitation is that I'm used to being so productive around the homestead and that will be difficult.  But these boys really feel like they belong here.  They go back to their foster mom tomorrow night and I hate for them to go.  They had a visit with their mom today and I was really ready for them to get back, it feels like they're mine, if that makes sense.  The more I think about it the more my heart jumps in and wants to make the decision for me.  :-)



Abarat--I would realllllly think this through and not just with your heart.  I am not an adoptive parent though one day plan to be one.  I did however, work in foster care and adoption for years. I have seen an awful lot of foster parents and pre-adoptive parents who felt strongly in their hearts that certain kids "just belonged" with them, only to see everything turn to chaos weeks or months later.  Good people, loving and caring people, with good intentions, but who didn't grasp how much foster parenting would change their lives and were unprepared for the sacrifices they would have needed to make to make things work out. 

 

There are lots of mamas on MDC who are incredible parents and who have wonderful adoption and fostering stories.  I think it is really easy to encourage others to jump in, follow their heart, etc., when an opportunity like this comes up because it is exciting in so many ways, both for your family, and for these kids to have the chance to be in a stable home.  But, unless you are 110% sure that you *will* make this work, I would not accept the placement.  I have seen it from the other side far too many times, especially with initial placements with families who haven't foster parented before. There are a million reasons for a placement to disrupt that nobody can predict.  If managing to homeschool and parent two little ones seems like it is going to be too much, don't push yourself.  Wait for a placement that you are certain you can handle.  Too many kids end up bouncing from one home to the next to the next to the next.  I've had four year olds who have had literally a dozen placements.  I don't have to tell you how damaging that is.  There will almost undoubtedly be issues that come up with these kids that require more time and energy than parenting a child who hasn't experienced so much grief and loss in their little lives.  It isn't necessarily at all like just birthing three kids in five years...  There is plenty of trauma that comes along with being separated from one's birth mother and now, bounced out of their current foster home.  My last year working in adoption, I had three separate parents end up in in-patient psych in the hospital from the sheer stress of adding to their family and not being able to meet the needs of their kids. 

 

I don't want you to think I am telling you not to do it.  There may always be some hesitation with a placement and that is okay.  I am just saying to think long and hard about whether or not you can really commit to these kids and how you are going to feel if and when your homeschooling plans don't go anything like what you planned because there are two more little people in the house needing a whole lot from you.   There could end up being a lot of resentment if you're not able to do what you had planned.  On the other hand, if you are okay with expecting the unexpected, and are certain you can commit to these children, I would go for it.  But I would be very careful.  Losing a foster parent can be just as traumatic for some kids as being separated from their birth parents and that is something to have in mind going into this.  Good luck with whatever you decide.  I am sure you will make the right decision for your family whether it is this sibling pair or another child that you end up foster parenting. 

 

post #14 of 20

I think you should go for it! They sound like such blessings for your family and that your family is a blessing for them. 

post #15 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by eyeamviolet View Post

Katherine how long have the kids been with you?  Did you feel like that from the beginning?  Did you get them all at once?  Most moments I feel lucky. But, there are whole days where I think I must be crazy to have agreed to this.  Although I find myself questioning the how I have not yet questioned the why.  


Keegan was placed at three weeks old.  Devin was placed when he was about 16.5 months old. Both boys are about 3.5 yrs old now, and i dont think they can remember not having each other. They are not bio related.

 

Before Devin came i did have a foster daughter for two months, when keegan was 15 months old, she was just under 12 months old and it was a bit of a nightmare. She was very aggressive with him and overall it was a "bad match", way different personalities, too close in age but too far apart to play well together (for example, she was not yet walking), luckily she was placed with an aunt after a short time.

 

With Keegan, perhaps because he was newborn, i felt like he was "my baby" almost from the beginning esp since there was little family contact and no parental contact at all. I used to groan when i'd hear people say they "forgot" they didnt birth their adopted kids, but seriously, i have been telling my birth story and realized, oops i mean for my older son not him. There is no possible way i could be more bonded to him. He fits in our family (in terms of personality, quirks, etc) in a way that we just "get" each other. My other son, i did NOT feel like he was "mine" right away at all, in fact it wasnt until we were approaching the end of the trial (which took five months ugh) that he even allowed himself to call me "mom" or that i felt like a mom and not a caretaker/babysitter (well MORE than a babysitter but not quite a parent)...but we were having regular visits with his very assertive bmom and its hard to fill that place that she is already filling if that makes sense. Once TPR took place it was much easier to fully bond and now i think of him as completely my son. I dont feel "that same" about D as i do K, but i think thats cuz of all four of my kids K is my favorite. duck.gif Last June i was placed with D's older bio sister and i adopted her as well. Things havent gone as well and im hard pressed to recommend older child adoption at this point without some serious cautions. She is 9 and has a lot of issues that werent disclosed to me. greensad.gif  I totally want to adopt another baby or toddler boy in the future though. I think i might just be a boy mom.

 

post #16 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by eyeamviolet View Post

10 months ago we got 3 boys 1,2,3yo.  Now they are 2,3,4yo.  It is hectic and we require a lot of help.  But, we are managing and now there are days I actually think "I can do this!"  They are sweet kids and have their own sets of challenges.  But, there is nothing like a big snuggle pile of little ones first thing in the morning.  Feel free to contact me if you have more questions about what it is like for us.  It is not an undertaking to be taken lightly.  


Now THAT sounds really hard to me, having kids that close in age. I just know shopping with my two boys (who are essentially "twins") can be a huge nightmare if both decide to run in opposite directions. I can only imagine how hard it must be to have three little ones. I imagine as they get older/more independant it will get easier, but right now, you totally have your hands full and must be really tired! My hat is off to you! It sounds really fun but exhausting and frustrating at the same time!

 

post #17 of 20

Yes that is how I feel.  Tired and some days out of patience.  But,mostly happy It really does feel right.  Just hard.  I know it will never be easy but, there are things that will be different.  Like reminding them to get ready for school but, not having to brush their hair and teeth, put on their clothes, shoes, back packs etc.  Eventually I hope they can do most of that themselves which will mean I'm spending less time running back and forth literally.

post #18 of 20
Thread Starter 

Wow, eyeamviolet, that must be difficult.  I sure hope you have a great support system!

 

Thanks everyone!  We've decided to take them!  joy.gif

post #19 of 20

Congrats!

I have a 7 year old and then we adopted a girl from foster care last year who just turned two and we are fostering a 9 month old. So kinda similar ages. I didn't hesitate for a second with my current FD. It was a little weird in the beginning adjusting to two kids 1 and under. But, we have adjusted and I love that they have each other and us. Getting in/out of the car seems to be the hardest thing with them :-)

post #20 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by christophersmom View Post
Getting in/out of the car seems to be the hardest thing with them :-)


Ain't that the truth! It takes me forever to just get out of my house, get in the car and not much less time to get out of the car and back into the house! And thats in summer with no winter coats, boots, etc to deal with!

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