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I'm a 30-something wife and mom. My boys are my pride and joy. Together, we are navigating being a forever family post international adoption.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Community to Cure Loneliness

A few weekends ago, Hubby, Buddy and I had dinner and hung out with four other adoptive families. We all adopted from the same area, have children that are similar in age and wrapped up each of our processes within the last couple of years.

I am fairly certain all of us parents have pretty regular bedtime routines that we tend not to deviate from. I know that everyone had fun because we all stayed out very late. Hubby and I didn't get home until after 11, and we had the shortest drive.

The evening confirmed to me how important community is for adoptive families.

When Hubby and I first adopted and returned home with Buddy, we spend a few weeks just the three of us getting to know each other. Then we started adding family and close friends to our circle. When Buddy started school, we met new people and our circle expanded again.

Fairly recently I have started actively reaching out to other adoptive parents.

I'm so glad that I did.

Our family and friends are amazing, but they haven't walked a mile in our shoes. I find such comfort in having peers that listen to my story and nod their head and say "I know. Me too."

We try to spend time with other adoptive families pretty regularly. I have found it sets me up to succeed as a parent. It gives me a place to vent, not feel judged, and learn from the real-life experience of others.

It also gives Buddy a chance to be in a group where being internationally adopted, having a non-English first language, and having both birth and adoptive families is not out of the ordinary. He has the chance to feel like he is just like everyone else. He isn't afraid of being different.

I love the following quote from Kurt Vonnegut, and I think it applies so well to what I'm saying: "What should young people do with their lives today? Many things, obviously. But the most daring thing is to create stable communities in which the terrible disease of loneliness can be cured."

So, if you are an adoptive parent reading this and you haven't found your community, I encourage you to reach out. TwitterFacebook and the blogosphere are great places to start.

And if you are one of the supportive people I am talking about, thank you. You honestly mean the world to me!

2 comments:

  1. I have found myself gravitating more and more towards other adopters to create my greatest friend support. Unfortunately many still live many miles away. So glad you are able to meet with a group. Whilst the online community is brilliant and vital, human connection, face to face can never be beaten. Thanks for sharing on #WASO

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    1. I agree, online is good but face-to-face is the best. Thanks, Sarah!

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