Between books, podcasts, websites and organisations there is a lot of information about adoption in the public domain. As an adoption agency, we love that there is more information than ever about adoption available, but having such a high volume of information can also make it difficult for prospective adopters to know where to start.
We’ve put together a handful of popular resources to help you on your journey. It’s important to note that this list is not exhaustive, but instead designed to give you some ideas of what is available and where information can be found in the first instance.
1. Real-life stories
One of the best ways to find out about the reality of adoption is to hear the real-life stories of people who’ve been through the process themselves.
As an adoption agency, there are several ways we can help with this – firstly we have a number of videos, case studies and articles on the Our Children, Our Families pages of our website which tell a variety of real adoption stories and help bring the experience to life.
Our adopters are also actively involved in our information events and adopter training, so there is opportunity to hear about their experiences throughout the application process; there is always opportunity to ask any questions you may have too.
We also regularly introduce prospective adopters to approved adopters who act as mentors to them. The paired-up groups normally have a similar background (single parents, same sex couples, people with biological children etc) and we know a lot of our prospective adopters benefit from speaking to someone on a one-to-one basis who can advise based on experiences that are similar to their won.
You may also have friends and family who have adopted, and they could be an invaluable sounding board for you.
Further real-life adoption stories can be found on the following podcasts:
If you think you could benefit from speaking to one of our adopters please get in touch with your social worker if you’ve already started the process or with Adopt Coast to Coast directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
2. The Adoption – BBC Four Podcast
The Adoption Podcast was released in 2017 by the BBC and follows the story of brother and sister Bethany (3) and Ben (2) as social workers search for a new home for the children. Recordings were taken for over a year by journalist Jon Manel who follows the story of the children as they go from their foster carers, to their new home with their adoptive parents. Throughout the 17-episode series, Jon speaks to social workers, birth parents, birth grandparents, foster carers and adoptive parents meaning that this award-winning podcast tells the full story of the adoption process from lots of different angles and voices.
3. National websites
YouCanAdopt is a nationwide organisation focused on adopter recruitment – it aims to raise awareness of adoption and bust myths around who is eligible. Read real-life stories and find out more about adoption as a whole on this website.
First4Adoption is the national information service for people interested in adopting a child in England. The organisation gives clear and impartial information about adoption.
Adoption UK is a national charity run by and for adopters. Offering practical advice and support for agencies and adopters alike. Adoption UK also campaign to raise important issues surrounding adoption on a national level.
CoramBAAF is an independent membership organisation for professionals, foster carers and adopters, and anyone else working with or looking after children in or from care. It also supports adults who have been affected by adoption. It is a successor organisation to the British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF).
There are hundreds of books written about adoption – covering everything from how to start the adoption process, right through to supporting children with trauma, answering questions about adoption and therapeutic parenting. Here we’ve listed just a few of our recommendations – if you would like a full list of book suggestions please email us at email@example.com
Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties, Dan Hughes
This book provides expert knowledge about emotional and behavioural difficulties, coupled with facts, figures and guidance presented in a straightforward and accessible style. A foster carer and adoptive parents also describe what it is like to parent an affected child, telling it like it is, sharing their parenting experiences and offering useful advice. This combination of expert information and first-hand experience will help readers to gain knowledge and understanding, and to make informed decisions.
The Primal Wound, Nancy Newton Verrier
Originally published in 1993, this classic piece of literature on adoption has revolutionised the way people think about adopted children. Nancy Verrier examines the life-long consequences of the primal wound’ – the wound that is caused when a child is separated from its mother – for adopted people. Her argument is supported by thorough research in pre- and perinatal psychology, attachment, bonding and the effects of loss.
Therapeutic Parenting in a Nutshell: Positives and Pitfalls, Sarah Naish
A concise, clear overview of Therapeutic Parenting with integrated links to short inspirational, often humorous videos, demonstrating practical applications of therapeutic parenting techniques. Suitable for all carers, parents and supporting professionals working with children who have suffered early life trauma. Sarah Naish uses her first-hand experience to clearly explain the differences between ‘standard’ parenting and ‘therapeutic’ parenting, with case studies and examples of good therapeutic parenting strategies, along with practical applications.
The Whole Brain Child, Dr Daniel Siegel and Dr Tina Payne Bryson
In this pioneering, practical book for parents, neuroscientist Daniel J. Siegel and parenting expert Tina Payne Bryson explain the new science of how a child’s brain is wired and how it matures. Different parts of a child’s brain develop at different speeds and understanding these differences can help you turn any outburst, argument, or fear into a chance to integrate your child’s brain and raise calmer, happier children. Featuring clear explanations, age-appropriate strategies and illustrations.
Adopt Coast to Coat is a member of New Family Social – a UK charity, led by LGBT+ adopters and foster carers. New Family Social supports people decide if adoption is right for them and then supports them on their journey to becoming parents and beyond.
As an agency member of New Family Social our LGBT+ adopters and prospective adopters are also able to become members which will give them access to online advice, meetings, training and chat rooms.
Speak to your social worker about becoming a member of New Family Social.