When setting up a closet and bedroom for older adoptive children or foster kids, you'll need to start with the basics and let them add their own touches. Though caring for adoptive children is much the same as caring for biological children, there are a few key differences. Older adoptive children will need a fully stocked room as soon as they arrive, rather than adding a few pieces at a time as they grow older. Here's how to set up a closet and bedroom for an older adoptive child:
- Basic furnishings. Your adoptive child will need a bed, dresser, and desk. Consider waiting to paint the walls until your adoptive child arrives, so that he or she can choose a color to make the space their own. Make sure there are clean sheets on the bed, but consider leaving the comforter choice to the child. Again, you want their bedroom to be a place they can call their own.
- Clothing. While your adoptive child may come with some clothing of his or her own, expect to need to go clothes shopping. You should probably wait until the child arrives for this process. An older adoptive child may not appreciate it if you choose them clothing that is not in their style. Still, have a few outfits pre-selected for them, if you feel that you know enough of their style and size to make appropriate selections.
- Toiletries. Allow your child to pick their own, for the most part, but have the basics ready upon their arrival. At the very least, get a comb or brush, deodorant, shampoo, and a toothbrush and toothpaste. The child's current foster home or children's home may be able to make recommendations on what the child is accustomed to using.
- Toys or entertainment. This depends on the age of the child. Choose age-appropriate basic toys to have on hand, or a CD player or other entertainment device for teens. Journaling paper, video games, or a TV may also be good choices when setting up your adoptive child's bedroom.
Though you may be eager to set up your adoptive child's new bedroom, consider saving some of the shopping until they arrive. Though you need the basics on hand for the first couple of days, going shopping with your new adoptive child will help you get to know them. Plus, kids enjoy having things of their own, and will want to make their own mark on the style of the room.