Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Biological siblings and the connection that most can't explain

This is not the post I had planned on for today. But I had a moment of pure joy and peace (not peacefulness, but peace) today and in total mom manner I have to share it with anyone who will listen.

 I was coming upstairs during 'quiet time' (formerly known as nap time, but lets be real, they don't actually sleep) when I heard the sweetest conversation between my three and a half year old JayJay and my two and a half year old Ademan. JayJay had apparently pulled out her word book, and was teaching Ademan the correct word to correspond with the picture. This is one of the books she also used as a toddler when I was teaching her new words. Their conversation went something like this:
JayJay " Ademan carrot, say carrot"
Ademan "carrot"
JayJay "Ademan butterfly, say butterfly"
Ademan "Budderby"

This conversation went on for quite a while, I actually walked away before it ended. I walked away because I feared I would either start giggling and they would hear me or I would start crying because it was such a beautiful moment. JayJay is such a 'little mommy' to her brother. They share a bond that is quite different than what they have with their other adopted sister LeiLei. I had been told that the bond between biological siblings is something that is quite amazing. You can have siblings who never lived together reunite later in life and feel like they completely know each other. From what I have been told and what I have seen now through being a Foster Parent is that the sibling bond is almost greater than the parent child bond. It really is quite interesting.

I will never forget the moment when JayJay and Ademan met for the first time. She was standing with her sister and her sister took one look at the new baby brother and then went on her merry way. Jayjay just froze, she looked at him in a way that confirmed to us that she new him. In reality, she did not, she had never met him. He was born after we completed her adoption. I remember looking down at my arm and my hairs were standing strait up, as were my husbands, and the Social Workers. Words can never explain the magic and mystery of that moment.

When I think about all of the sibling groups that are broken up when they enter Foster Care, I become overcome with emotion. It is not the Social Workers fault, we just do not have enough Foster parents, and those that we do have cant always accommodate groups of children with only a few hours notice.

There is a wonderful Bulletin put out by the Child Welfare Information Gateway about Sibling Issues in Foster Care and adoption. They state that a Benefit for keeping siblings together when entering care is an enhanced  sense of safety and well-being and they provide natural, mutual support. This benefit is in contrast to the traumatic consequences of separation, which may include additional loss, grief, and anxiety over their siblings’ well-being. Siblings have a shared history, and maintaining their bond provides continuity of identity and belonging.

Here is the link: https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/siblingissues/siblingissues.pdf

 We received a call early last week to take a placement (which was odd, because we have our license on hold until we decide what we want to do). I spent three days playing phone tag with the worker at DSHS which was not a big deal because they had already found placement. When I did finally speak to them they explained to me it was a sibling group that had to be broken up because they could not find a home with two open beds. It broke my heart.

Not to be a downer, but can you imagine being a scared child removed from your home, and then separated from your sibling...

If you know anyone with love to give, and room to spare please urge them to think about Fostering. I am always available for conversation and questions just contact me!


  1. I am so proud of you! (I type this with tears rolling down my cheek) I love you baby girl, Daddy.

  2. me too! (what daddy said)... ILY

  3. There is something about the sibling bond that is so primal. You are fortunate to have shared in that special moment. There will be lots more. Love, Aunt Linda


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