Encouraging Attachment With Your Adopted Son or Daughter
For any of the areas below, think about your son or daughter's "family age", the amount of weeks and months your little one has been a member of your family, instead of chronological age as a guide to "appropriate conduct and expectations".
Feeding: Prepare for your son or daughter's hunger. Really encourage your youngster to make eye contact with you as she/he eats. Hold the child on your lap while you feed him/her or while the child feeds themselves. Assist the child with recognizing feelings of fullness.
Sleeping: Have your adopted child sleep in your bedroom; a separate bed will work out great. Tell your son or daughter that you are always available, and respond to even the smallest cries in the night to develop a sense of trust with him or her. Remember to stay close to your child as he/she falls asleep.
Toileting: Help your new family member to relate to you with eye contact and vocalizations when you are changing his or her diaper. Help your child learn how to communicate to you when he/she is wet or dirty. If your child was toilet trained prior to adoption, anticipate that there will be accidents still, or maybe even some time back in diapers.
Dressing: Dress or help your child get dressed on their own, using this as an opportunity to have safe, contained physical contact, to teach vocabulary of body parts, and also to point out similarities: "Look we both have fingers on our hands!" or “We both have two eyes and a nose!”
Injury: React, regardless of whether or not your child does, to any injury—big or small. This is the way to help teach your child that they can expect care and attention no matter what happens to them.
Playing: Play often with your child. Don't expect your little one to know what all their new toys are our how to use them. Teach your son or daughter how to play. Minimize frustration by starting out with toys that are meant for babies or toddlers (if your child is toddler aged or older). Remember that the chronological age of your adopted child may not correspond with their emotional age.
Please feel free to contact Radis Adoptions at 800-813-9345 for more information about bonding with your little one or with any other adoption questions you may have!
"We would like to thank you for giving us the greatest gift. Susan is such a beautiful child and we wouldn't have her without you."
Bruce & Tina
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