Success stories: Adopting later in life

Richard and Eleanor’s story

“I had three grown up children from my first marriage and always enjoyed being part of a large family. My second wife and I weren’t able to have a child naturally and while we were devoted to each other, we felt there was also room in our lives for children.

Our potential as parents

I was in my mid fifties at this stage and my wife in her mid forties. We knew how much we could offer as older parents and luckily we found a supportive adoption agency who felt the same. They moved quickly and within a year we were introduced to two girls and a boy who needed adoption. The youngest was three and the eldest was five. They’d had very little stability in their lives and had been waiting for an adoptive family for some time. It was a major undertaking as we knew the particularly difficult start they’d had in life had affected their development in different ways. We thought carefully, but the bottom line was that we simply fell in love with them.

Longing to be a family

The adoption agency properly prepared us with training for what might lie ahead and helpfully arranged meetings with other existing and prospective adopters. It was a relief when we finally took permanent care of them as we were longing to be a family. The children had never had much of a routine and there were ups and downs as they settled in. You have to be patient and work through things. Because of the stage I was at in my career I could work freelance and be at home with them often, which was important in the early days.

Deeply rewarding

My wife and I have no regrets whatsoever about adopting and watching their progress has been deeply rewarding. Today we have three independent, capable teenagers who are interested and open-minded about the world around them. We’ve had ongoing support from our adoption agency to whom we’re most grateful. We enjoy family life enormously and look forward to seeing our children become young adults.”