Communication is probably the most important aspect of any kind of relationship, but it is especially important for parent-child relationships. However, it’s one thing to raise your own child and a completely different one when you are doing so with an adoptive kid.

In addition to that, it can be even more complicated when you are adopting an older child internationally because that comes with a whole baggage of issues. Luckily, there are some ways you can use communication to create successful relationships with your older adopted children from other countries.

1. Do Your Research Right

First things first, you need to do your research right and find out everything you can about adopting older children internationally. In other words, you need to prepare yourself for what’s to come by reading relevant books and articles, attending seminars and workshops, and getting consultation from experts.

To create a happy family, you need to be able to understand how this transition can be made and how a child can be integrated into your current family. It is extremely important that you research reactive attachment disorder, developmental trauma disorder, and post traumatic stress disorder because they can all influence the way your child adapts to their new family.

2. Be Ready to Parent Differently

One thing many parents don’t understand is that parenting a biological child is wildly different from parenting an adopted one, especially a kid that came from a different country and that isn’t young enough to be taught from zero.

Techniques such as connective parenting strategies, sensory awareness, self-care sessions, connection activities, emotional vocabulary, and others can help you find the best parenting approach to your new child. Be aware of their anxiety and the trauma they might have experienced.

3. Separate Their Behavior from Your Parenting

Speaking of parenting, when you adopt a child, especially an older one, it is extremely important to separate their behavior from your parenting. A kid who has some history without you will already be shaped in some way and will have their own behavioral habits.

This means that they could have bad habits as well as good ones, but you don’t need to take this as a reflection of your parenting because you haven’t done any parenting yet. Be patient with them at all times.

4. Have Someone to Rely On

You won’t find such information on an orphanage’s reviews page, for instance, but you will find a tip like this on a parent’s blog who has experience with adopted children. Relying only on yourself can lead to huge problems, so you need to have someone to rely on.

When going to a different country to adopt a child, you need to have someone who will support you during the trip. Jet leg, unexpected expenses, changing plans – all of these can be stressful which is why you need your spouse, a family member, or a friend to come with you.

5. Realize Their Anger Is Actually Fear

As mentioned earlier, your adopted child’s initial behavior is not a reflection of your own parenting skills. But to help your child achieve body and mind harmony, you need to realize what they are feeling.

Many newly adopted children have a honeymoon period, but others may not have a period like that and will act aggressively towards you. Realize that this anger and aggressiveness is actually their fear of the unknown. They are scared of this huge change in their life, so you need to let them take time to adjust.

6. Take Care of Social Interactions

Social interactions can be particularly challenging for your adopted child. Many experts advise parents to have at least three months for the child to adjust. During this period, avoid inviting guests or friends.

Moreover, you can notice that your child will not want to communicate with other children. Don’t force them to do it. After some time, they will get curious enough to make their first steps in this and start making new friends.

7. Plan Bedtime Beforehand

On the first night after the adoption, you will probably be staying in a hotel before you can fly back home. However, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t plan bedtime beforehand, even for when you are in the hotel.

Don’t just turn on the TV or ignore the child. Try to communicate with them, read a book together, or find a way to establish a connection. The language barrier can be difficult to break, but you should still work on it from the very beginning which will help you organize the bedtime routine appropriately.

8. Remember About Their Culture

As mentioned earlier, adopting an older kid internationally means that they will have some history without you. They could be speaking a different language, be used to a different culture, and even have specific tastes in food.

Experts from the best essay writing service reviews sites that research this topic agree that breaking the language barrier is essential, but you should also bring a piece of their home with you. Learn to cook the food they like, buy items from their culture, record them speaking their native language to watch in the future, and so on.

9. Look Beyond Their Behavior

Understanding your adopted child is the most important thing for establishing a connection with them, gradually building a healthy relationship with them, and eventually raising them to be a good person.

But you should first learn to look through their eyes and look beyond their behavior. Think about it as a part of your professional growth but in a personal way. It’s a way for you to find the most appropriate approach to raising your child and feeling what they feel. They could be anxious and lost right now, but you are the one who can change this.

10. Let Them Take Their Time

One crucial thing you should understand is that your child won’t start calling you “mommy” or “daddy” right away. In fact, they could end up misusing the terms and calling all the adults they meet this way. However, as they grow up and understand who you are to them, they will start calling you “mommy” and “daddy” just like you would expect them to.

11. Let Them Learn to Be in School

Just like social interactions, going to school can be very challenging for your kid. Remember that at first, it’s not about academics but about adjusting. Let them learn to be in school before they can learn to actually learn. Perhaps they could start by learning while playing, but then they could move on to learning just like other kids do. After all, this could actually be their very first time going to school.

12. Don’t Be Too Strict

Last but not least, don’t be too strict with your child. Because of the fear they are feeling now, they will try to be in control as much as possible, but they will also want you to be in control because this will give them more certainty in their future. Say “yes” to them to let them know they can be in control, but also take initiative to demonstrate that you are still there and they can rely on you.

Final Thoughts

To sum up, establishing a strong and long-lasting relationship with your internationally adopted older child is essential for both you and your child to feel comfortable. This is the only way you can make the process of adoption smoother which will then help you raise your child the right way.