Apparently, being over 40 is a barrier to adoption. WRONG! In the five years between 2008 and 2013, 66% of adoptions were by the 40+ age group (Figures obtained from the leading London Voluntary Adoption Agency, CORAM).
The British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF) survey debunked the age myth, stating that age is not a barrier. You need to be in good health and have the energy to care for a child or children. There is no upper age limit. Over 21 is the only age requirement.
Dispelling the myths that prevent adoption at 40+
Jeanne Kaniuk OBE, Coram’s Head of Adoption, said:
“People need to be in good health and have the energy to care for children until adulthood, but there is no upper age limit that restricts them from coming forward.
“Adopters are approved and matched according to what they can offer particular children. So in fact, being older or having a disability may well be an advantage if it helps them better able to empathise with a child and meet their needs.
“There is a huge need for prospective adopters to come forward and we echo BAAF’s call for them to cast away the myths, and take the first steps forward.”
The difference between fostering and adoption is that although both situations can lead to a permanent home for a child, especially when long-term fostering is taken into account, adoption is a process which legally removes the rights and responsibilities of the child’s birth parent(s) and transfers them to the adoptive parent(s). (www.barnardos.org.uk)
There are many agencies and foundations looking for both fostering and adoption for society’s most vulnerable, and just in case this myth was stopping you from trying to do either, consider the difference that you could make to someone’s life, including your own. Make a difference.
The temptation to fill this post with testimonials is overwhelming, but your reasons for considering fostering or adoption are too personal to warrant that level of distraction. Just as is my want to list every agency and foundation out there, which is … not possible at this time … wherever you are in the world, Google is your friend.
There are many things to consider before deciding to adopt or foster children. There is a lot of mental and emotional preparation, not just for the adopting parent(s), but for their families too. Some could be considering adopting or fostering after fertility issues which are not uncommon. Most agencies and foundations will connect you with other families who have adopted or fostered so that you can make the best decisions for you and your family whilst going through the process.
Are you an adoptee? Can you tell us what that meant to you growing up?
Have you considered adopting or fostering, but were concerned about they age myth?
Does being single affect your decision to foster or adopt? (Because it shouldn’t).
Have your say.