Tuesday, July 10, 2012
Parent to Parent: Teen Adoption
When you think of adoption most people think of babies, but a local couple adopted four kids, all teenagers. 7s Lynn Martinez shows us why it's so important to give older children a chance in tonight's Parent to Parent.
Marta Depasquale: "We were trying to start a family and in trying to start a family we decided to simultaneously look into adopting an older child."
The two sisters had been in foster care since they were toddlers.
Caitlin DePasquale: "We've been through so much, we've been through so many foster homes and shelters."
But when they met their adoptive parents they had an instant connection.
Caitlin DePasquale: "I met them and we talked and I thought these are nice people these are people I would like to live with."
Marta admits she was a little nervous about becoming a first time parent to teens.
Marta Depasquale: "It was overwhelming, especially that first day they move in."
She says the key is providing structure and a stable environment. Soon the girls felt right at home.
Caitlin DePasquale: "It's good to have somebody who cares, who's always on you and making sure you get everything done so you have a good future."
Then this year, the family decided to expand again. They adopted brothers 16-year-old Tyler and 14-year-old Kyle, both had been bounced around from home to home.
Tyler DePasquale: "We left our first foster home and went to our second foster home."
Barbara Schechter from the Heart Gallery of Broward County says older children also need a stable, loving home.
Barbara Schechter: "They want that chance, they need that stability, they need those connections in their life. They need a safety net as they get older."
That's why the Heart Gallery started a traveling exhibit of beautiful photos of foster kids of all ages looking for families.
Barbara Schechter: "These photos help bring out the children's personalities and interests. They're coupled by a bio card which tells a little more about the children."
When Marta and Roy saw the boys photo they knew it was meant to be.
Marta Depasquale: "There's that feeling like there was with the girls, when are we going to see them again?"
And on June 11th they made it official.
Marta Depasquale: "We were very excited to finally have the boys be permanently part of our family."
Tyler wears this dog tag his parents gave him that day which says 'A Son Born to Our Hearts.' Now one big, happy family they admit it's not always easy. But agree if you're thinking of adopting don't rule out an older child.
Caitlin DePasquale: "If you give them a chance you can see that they are good children and that they do need attention, and they will eventually get to know you and get to love you."
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Heart Gallery of Broward County:
Tel: (954) 918-3008