For most people, being part of a family is what makes them whole. Unfortunately, some Colorado residents are not lucky enough to have families of their own, whose members and relationships they can treasure and value throughout their lives. Fortunately, legal options are available that can provide a child the chance to live with a loving family - and an adult the chance to share a life with a child.

In Colorado, three types of adoption can secure a loving home for a child: kinship adoptions, custodial adoptions and stepparent adoptions. While some Colorado residents consider adopting newborns, others choose to adopt older children. One adoption expert thinks adopting an older child carries particular benefits. Unlike babies, older children more often have a say in decisions that affect their lives. Adopting parents can communicate more easily with them and hear their concerns. Children ages 5 and older typically remember the past and have a better sense of what they have been missing in their lives and what they need in parents and family.

In addition, more information about older children is usually available. This background can let adopting parents help a child rebuild his or her life more easily. With older children, parents and the child can gradually and voluntarily build trust with less difficulty. Parents who adopt older children are already demonstrating a concern for someone other than themselves, which may make them more open and adaptable when it comes to a new family member.

Before experiencing the benefits of adopting older children, parents must understand the legal restrictions and requirements of adoption in Colorado. Each type of adoption may offer a good way to put a child into a loving home, but not all of them are suitable for any given situation.

Source: The Huffington Post, "The 7 Best Things About Adopting an Older Child," John M. Simmons, June 24, 2014