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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

Holidays & The Adopted Child

Stimulation, sweets, and disrupted schedules can combine to make holidays go haywire for adoptive families.  Trying to limit any of the above helps.

Particularly for the adoptive child whose previous life experiences may have been vastly limited, the holidays can spell overload.  And tantrums, meltdowns, and ugliness.  Just what you don’t want around your meant-to-be family days of happiness.

Then there’s the feeling for older adoptees that they’re unworthy of family happiness, almost a type of survivor’s guilt.  Why are they the ones to receive a family and special holiday celebrations, while friends left behind enjoy none of it?  And off they go, into the proverbial downward spiral, trying to drag the entire family down with them.  Anger, resentment, and grief seek to overwhelm them.

The adoptive family has to be understanding of the child and their sensitivities.  However, when a family needs to deal with one child’s issues every. single. holiday… it can get old.  Meals, festivities, community programs… all have to be put on hold, as life centers around the one child.

In times like these, less is more.  Keep it simple.

Don’t overdo things.  Wait on the big-ticket gifts.  There’s no need for the child to sing in the choir, and play an instrument in the band, and go out for the football team, while both sides of the family fly in to your place for the holiday.

Relax.  Kick back.  Celebrate the season, rather than the trappings.  Yes, it’s a new kind of normal, which might be refreshing for all involved.

 

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