We hope everyone is well. We are finally home with Samara and we are grateful for the prayers and support you have provided while we have worked to bring her home. We have written this letter in order to share what we’ve learned about adoption and attachment, as well as ways you can assist with helping Samara transition and adjust to her new family.
In many ways, Samara is much like Drew and Carissa and she will be raised the same as they have but there will be a few, initial differences. For years now, we have researched bonding and attachment in children who are transitioning into a loving family from institutional orphanage setting.
Firstly, Samara does not yet know her new mom and dad. She has been taken from the only home she has ever known. The people, the language, the sounds and smells, the customs and routines at home are all new to her. She will need ample time to get to know us and trust us. Research shows that it is crucial that this bond is established as early as possible upon Samara arriving home and it must be done with only immediate family present.
For the first 19 months of her life she has not had her basic needs met. She has spent 22 of 24 hours a day in her crib and she has not learned discipline or learned how to express her emotions. As you can imagine this presents challenges that must be met in a nurturing environment and only by mom and dad.
After consulting with other adoptive families from our community, and at the advice of adoption professionals, our plan is to have a no-visitors policy for 1 month. This is our time as a family to adjust to new family dynamics and develop a highly structured and nurturing environment for Samara, which is something totally new for her. After this time, we will begin branching out, but will still minimize our outside contacts until we see that she is feeling secure in her new environment.
Thank you in advance for your understanding and respect of how important these next few months are for Samara. We want to start off by doing what is best for her but we understand that some aspects may be difficult for the rest of us.