Pregnancy and Parenting Features

Can Foster Children Siblings Be Adopted?

Not only can foster children who are siblings both be adopted, this is generally the best of all possible scenarios for the children involved, and often a very positive experience for the adopting parents, as well.

The largest benefit to adopting foster children who are siblings doesn’t necessarily come to the adoptive parents, however. No, the greatest benefits are to the siblings themselves. In many cases, that brother or sister is the only “real” family that the child may have left. Study after study has shown the benefits of keeping adopted siblings together, and have demonstrated the negative effects of splitting siblings. In only the most extreme circumstances should one sibling be adopted and the other not. While this may have been common practice in the early twentieth century, it is no longer practiced now except in extreme situations.

If you are trying to decide whether you can adopt foster children who are siblings, there are also some benefits to your family that you should consider. For example, you have already had the foster children in your home, you don'[t have to worry as much with matching the child to the family. You’ve already done that on your own. In addition, the process of adopting your foster children is often much easier and less expensive than adopting a baby. Many expenses are waived or at least reimbursed, from the cost of a home study to the cost of an attorney and even the cost of travel. Adopted children are also often able to receive a variety of aid, including Medicaid and Title IV assistance. In addition, it is possible that the siblings will be somewhat less likely to resent the adoptive family for taking away her birth family, as she still has an important part of that birth family with her.

There are, also some negative parts about adopting foster children siblings. By their very nature of being siblings, potential adoptees are considered to be “special needs.” This does not mean that they have anything else wrong other than that they are siblings, but in many cases it does. It may be that one or both of the foster children siblings are disabled in one way or another. It is not uncommon for one child, often the older of the foster children siblings, to have experienced more profound effects of abuse or neglect than the younger sibling would have experienced.

Adopting siblings also multiplies expenses. Obviously, you need more space for two adopted children than you do for one. There are more activities, more parent-teacher meetings, more doctors’ appointments. Adopting siblings is a bigger commitment than adopting a single child.

Whether you decide to adopt foster children siblings or not, it is at least worth thinking about to see if it might fit your situation.

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