I grew up in a family where I was reminded over and over that "blood is thicker than water". Not only did I not know for quite a while as a child what that was supposed to mean, but once I found out, I wasnít terribly impressed. My family was my family and I was expected to be loyal and respectful if not pleased.
I now am the parent of seven, only two of whom are related biologically. I had a moment of glee one day when one of my youngest daughters came to ask me "Which one is my sister?" As far as they are concerned they are bound by love and a desire to support each other, not by blood and inflicted loyalty.
I donít for one second doubt the existence of these same attributes in biologically formed families, but I do know that adoption and/or foster parenting provide some very meaningful chances for exploration and experience around what families can really be to each other. The job is certainly not an easy one for parents or children. There are many days when sisters, biological or otherwise, should not have to be claimed as far as their siblings are concerned. But when the attachments are made and the relationships blossom, the pride I experience my children feeling is something I am glad I have been privileged to be a part of.