There are many routes by which a family adopts multiples. It could be an international adoption, where you open your home to encompass needy children from another part of the world. Or maybe you became the legal parents of additional children due to circumstances that left their biological parents unable to care for them.
No matter how it came to pass, this unique and special way of forging a family has its own set of challenges and obstacles to overcome. For parents in this situation, the need for support is great. It's important to seek out resources that address the special concerns of adoptive parents, as well as those aimed at parents of multiples.
Sometimes adoptive parents perceive a lack of acceptance from fellow parents of multiples and identify more closely with other adoptive families. Fortunately, both types of support are accessible in most locales. Your local parents of multiples organization may include members who have adopted multiples. In addition, organizations for adoptive parents provide support throughout the adoption process. There are hundreds of adoption-related support groups in North America. These groups give parents the opportunity to share their experiences and emotions, as well as information. Networking with these other parents who have similar experiences can be very valuable.
In some cultures, the birth of twins or multiples is not a welcomed or cherished event. In societies plagued by famine or poverty, multiples may simply be too many mouths to feed. A desperate mother may abandon one or more of the babies in an attempt to provide for the other members of her family. In countries where male offspring are accorded precedence over females, there can be an abundance of abandoned daughters, including sets of female twins or the female of a set of boy/girl twins. Many loving families welcome the opportunity to adopt and raise these children.
Not Quite Twins
On occasion, adoption may produce a situation where two siblings are the same age, but biologically unrelated. Although not technically defined as multiples, they may be raised as such and will come to share many of the characteristics of twins, triplets, or the like. For example, if a couple in the process of adopting an infant becomes pregnant, their biological child and their adopted child could be extremely close in age, only weeks or months apart. Or a blended family might include children and stepchildren of the same age. In situations like this, it's perfectly acceptable to treat the children as twins or multiples assuming that they are comfortable with that role.