5 Books to Read Before you Adopt or Foster a Child

Hey friends! I’ve been wanting to talk more about foster care and adoption for a while here on the blog. It’s a topic I’m passionate about and would love to talk to any of you by e-mail (eatprayreadlove@gmail.com) if you’re considering either! Since we’ve only gone through the foster care system, it’s the only experience I have, but I do think support and encouragement are SO important in this journey so feel free to reach out even if you’re considering private or international adoption! 

I’m a voracious reader and I love reading to learn more about foster and adoption. I’ve read a few books that I think any Christian family considering adoption or fostering should read at some point along their journey. I think reading them before the whole process begins would be amazing (because you’re going to be SO busy during the application/training process!) but no matter where you are on your journey, these books are so helpful.

5 books to read before you foster or adopt

Reclaiming Adoption:Missional Living Through the Rediscovery of Abba Father  by John Piper, et al. Oh this book! I wish I’d read it sooner. It deeply ties adoption of children to the adoption of us by God into his family. I downloaded this on Audible for less than $4. You can do that here– paperback and Kindle versions also available.

The Connected Child by Karen Purvis. This book was required reading for our licensing and it’s SO good. Purvis recently passed away but she is world-renowned in her work with foster and adoptive parents and bonding with the children that they bring into their home. It’s no surprise that foster/adopted kids usually arrive with some emotional baggage that the parents need to help them get through. This can be tough but Purvis gives such great ideas. One of my favorite take-aways from the book is to tell children to “try again” when they mess up. I tend to lean towards disciplining every bad action (oops) but asking them to try again can result in them doing the action correctly (asking nicely for a drink rather than demanding it or whining) without discipline.

The Foster Parenting Manual

Admittedly, this book is a little dryer than Purvis’s book, but it gives GREAT practical info on things like “what do we do the first night a foster child arrives in our home?” and how to access help when you need it. (You will!)

fosterparentingmanual
The Christian Parenting Handbook by Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller- this book is NOT exclusively for foster/adoptive parents- and I think all Christian parents could benefit by reading this book! I love that it gives practical examples of discipline and rewards and great talking points for spouses to discuss.


Desperate- Hope for the Mom that Needs to Breathe– oh this book is so very good. I’ve never felt more desperation than I have in our early days of fostering. Our sweet little one doesn’t like to sleep (he prefers screaming instead 😉 ) and we had several other hard things going during the first few months. I have to admit I didn’t cope too well and I need to re-read this book. It’s also not just for foster/adoptive parents but it is so very helpful if you get easily overwhelmed like I do.


Bonus: a book called God Found Us You for your foster/adopted kids. I’m ordering this one for our little one soon!

Other foster/adoptive parents- what would you add to this list? Let me know in the comments!

About Kelli Hays

Kelli Hays is a wife, mother, writer, and friend. She has been blogging since 2008 and loves sharing inspiration for the everyday woman!

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