Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Wednesday Wisdom: To Bring or Not to Bring... That was the question

A couple weeks ago we posed a question to our Facebook families. 

When going to pick up your new child in China should you take your other children with you? Yea or Nay and why?

We had many responses to the pros and cons of traveling with your other children. Here are a couple of the highlighted points. Do you agree? 


Two of the biggest concerns that were brought up were: 

1. Bonding with new child: When taking your other child/children will that discourage your adopted child from bonding properly? Sometimes taking your other child/children actually helps the bonding process. Especially if the adoptive child has been used to living with other children in the orphanage. They might feel more comfortable with other siblings around. If your child has lived in a foster home it might be harder on them bonding if they are not the center of your universe for those few short weeks. 

2. Is the cost worth it?  The major cost of traveling and bringing your other child/children is going to be the airfare to and from the foreign country. Most hotels have a rate per family so that should not be an issue. Food and fun is going to be more but at some restaurants (even hotel restaurants) have age limits where a child under a certain age eats for less or even free. 

What our families are saying: 

Amy: I think it depends on the kids, their age, and their ability to travel. Also, the expense must be considered. We are taking ours on this trip but did not on our last adoption trip. There is no right answer.

Melody:  I think it is definitely different for each family and circumstance. We adopted twins and left our 6 year old at home. We loved having the time to bond and spend with the twins and we could not have done that with our older daughter. She would have been fine on the trip but it was best for us to spend the time with just the girls. If we had only adopted 1, we probably would have taken our older daughter.

Rachel:  I think it depends and is different for each family. We just brought home our 18-month-old daughter and had to leave our 3 and 4 year old sons at home. It was hard to be away from them but I can't imagine how difficult it would have been to travel with all three! We would have had to take someone else with us and the expense would have been so much more. We loved having one-on-one time with just our daughter before jumping back into the busy life with three little ones  For us I know this was the right decision for this time in our lives.

Janna: We have two very busy boys, 3 and 8. They stayed home with my husband and mom while my dad and I went. I missed them terribly and would have gone crazy without FaceTime. My boys would have had a very hard time in Nanchang, but would have been okay in Guangzhou. It would be easier to take them if we ever were to adopt again, because there wouldn't be so many unknowns. But I'd say it was definitely the right choice to go without them and was a special time I had with our daughter.

Dawn: We left our 5 year old at home with my parents. It was a long, emotional trip and I (even 5 years later) still feel it would have been too much for our older daughter. It also gave my husband and I some alone time to bond with our new daughter.

Ali: We left our two boys 10 and 8 at home so they would stay on their schedule and routine. This trip is not a vacation, and is emotionally taxing and physically taxing. Also it gives you time to spend with your adopted child one on one:)

Jillian: We were in china for 29 days (r/t a holiday and Asian games; govmt offices were closed), so ours was a vacation as well. It was pretty easy, no issues with crying or attachment. We even went to Chengdu and Beijing after we were done in Guangzhou. I did not feel like it was too emotionally taxing. I had a great time in china and our son was perfect. I'm usually on the go at home, so it wasn't much different, with the exception of having a new child with us, which is what we went for. I think he attached to us so well because we didn't do all the crying when we first saw him (crying scares kids). We were confident and not overbearing. He trusted us right away. We even went to his orphanage the next day, and he would no longer go to the same nannies that took care of him for 2 years. I made the trip fun with very little stress (thanks to planning and being flexible). My advice, don't stress, go with the flow, and be positive. Kids sense stress.
If I got another child from china, no doubt in my mind would we bring him with us. He will always go everywhere I go, I want him to see the world. That might be the difference though, mine IS from china. If money is an issue, my advice is to not take extra kids/family. If its not an issue, take them, it's a trip of a lifetime.
AliciaWe were so grateful to have our 4 year old son with us when we traveled for the adoption of our 2 year old son. Christian, our new son, was absolutely terrified of everything. The only time he would relax was when our 4 year old would pull out a toy and play with him. The experience was especially valuable for our 4 year old because up until that point he was starting to ask about being in my tummy (he is adopted also). After the adoption of his brother he told everyone how mommy and daddy had to fly to a faraway place to get him.

Eva:I would if it is financially possible. We took our 3 year old to adopt 15 month old and it helped great with attachment. She loved him right away and vice versa. This changed after 2 months and they fight now some:)

Rebecca: I agree it depends on each circumstance. I am so thankful that we took our 2 girls with us. They were 8 and 12. Cole was very afraid of my husband and I and wanted nothing to do with us. But he played with his sisters right away. He to this day had a very special place in his heart for his sisters and while he did come around it did help with the transition.He was able to see how they interacted with us and that helped tons. Plus, it was an awesome family experience to do together and I also think they appreciate where he came from.

Juleanne: Did it both ways and both times went great. Maybe just Depends on the family, child & situation.

SO DO YOU AGREE OR DISAGREE? Yea or Nae? Do you have any suggestions for us on whither to take a child/children with you when going to pick up your new adopted child? 
Let us know! Join the conversation! Let us know your feelings on the question. 

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