May 2nd, 2007
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Categories: How to...

Sibling ties are worth preserving, and it heartens me to realize how growing numbers of adoptive and birth parents are beginning to understand this fact. There are many encouraging indications that there is a huge trend to help maintain sibling ties when possible.

There are many ways to do this. Some of our adoptive moms are well aware of this and are making some wonderful efforts in this regard. Here are some of those ways to help maintain sibling ties:

1. Adopt a sibling group – Obviously, this is a no brainer, and may be the best and most involved way to maintain contact between siblings. Several of our bloggers have adopted sibling groups, and/or are in the process. This is a fantastic way to keep siblings close to each other, but not an option available to everyone.


2. If your child’s sibling live closeby, try to maintain as much contact as possible. Encourage your child and its siblings to spend time together as much as possible. Your child will need help from you to help keep them in touch with their siblings. However, it might mean a great deal to them.

3. When your child’s siblings or their location is unknown, do what you can to locate them. This is especially important with an older child that remembers their siblings. This option is also not one that is always possible. However, it can be very beneficial for siblings to reconnect with each other.

4. When distance separates siblings, consider contact by phone, regular mail or email. Help your child maintain this contact if possible. Be creative, and do try to schedule some in person visits as well when time and resources allow.

Even if some of your adopted children are unable to have contact with siblings or other birth family, do not penalize your other children from the privilege. Although it may seem unfair for one child to have contact when another does not, that is sometimes a reality of life. It is your job to try to help your child understand as much as possible and accept the situation as best they can.

For more about sibling ties:

Jean Strauss film re siblings.

Sibling Attachments.

3 Responses to “How to Preserve Siblings Ties”

  1. John says:

    Sibling ties are important, with older child adoption, they may be more important than ties with the birth parents. One difficulty is that the other kids may not have been adopted, and can be rather aggressive about how wrong it is for your child to ‘have it so good’ when they don’t. Another difficulty may be your child or the other sib not wanting contact, usually for a very valid reason.

    My four boys have a total of seven sibs. One of mine wants no contact, two others want very limited contact, and one can’t get enough contact. If your child lived with thier sibs, get their feelings about contact, it may not be what they want. John

  2. Jan Baker says:

    I can definitely see how it could present problems if the non-adopted children were in a bad situation. John, I think the key is offering children the opportunity and encouragement.

    Like most issues in adoption this one too is not simple.


    We adopted a sibling group who were abused together by some very evil people who forced them to do things to each other as well as “service” adults. They remind each other of their trauma. I almost can’t believe that they have made the progress they have…it can only be God…but I guess I would CAUTION adopting a sibling group. Trauma bonds are strong bonds and they aren’t that healthy sometimes. Even now, we have to supervise their play because our son, the eldest lets his younger sister tie him up and beat up on him. Yes, I can hear the cry from the pit, “it’s normal”. If you knew what I know, you would not be saying that.

    The healing of two very abused kids that are sibs with RAD, well…I guess before I adopted I would have thought warm fuzzies about adopting sibs, but I now am not so sure..Will my kids ever have a normal relationship? Only by the grace of God (which, incredibly, He is showering on our family.

    Just my two cents,

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