The longer you’re “in the system,” the bleaker your chances are for getting adopted. Well, that’s what many who are going through that experience seem to think. Nobody, they feel, would want an older kid. But sometimes they find out that they are exactly who someone else needs.
Ashley Lacasse spent a lot of time in the system… growing up in it, actually… in and out of foster homes and changing schools nearly 20 times as she approached adulthood. But today, at 17 (17 and a half, as Ashley would be quick to correct anyone), she is an official member of a loving, caring family after happily walking out of an Ontario, Canada courtroom.
Say Ashley: “I just can’t believe it. I felt like I was going to cry.”
Ashley’s new mom, Amanda Jette Knox, was quick to make a tweet about it, complete with a photo of the happy family. The tweet said: IT’S A GIRL! Today we OFFICIALLY became a family of six. Ashley is adopted! Sure, she’s 17 1/2, but family doesn’t end at 18. We will love her forever. Welcome to the family, lovely human. Your new moms are over the moon.”
IT’S A GIRL! Today we OFFICIALLY became a family of six. Ashley is adopted!— Amanda Jetté Knox (@MavenOfMayhem) January 20, 2020
Sure, she’s 17 1/2, but family doesn’t end at 18. We will love her forever. Welcome to the family, lovely human. Your new moms are over the moon.
Now Ashley’s case is a bit different, in that she still has a relationship with her biological parents, but she is unable to live with them. This is something, Ashley said, that she can definitely live with.
Says Amanda: “We found out she was going to become a crown ward, which means CPS would be her caregiver until she aged out of the system. We didn’t like that, it was so unfair. She’s such a wonderful person, she deserved more.”
Amanda met Ashley through her own daughter, Alexis, who knew her at school. Says Amanda: “They got each other on a really deep level. Alexis is trans, and she had come out only a couple of years before they met. This was Alexis’ first year back at school, and she didn’t really know anybody. Ashley became one of her first very close friends.”
And for Ashley, it was much more.
Says Ashley: “I felt connected for the first time. It was the first friend I had. I moved around so much I was too scared to make a connection with anyone. I’d never even been to anyone’s house before, so when I went to her house, I was so scared. I was begging, please let me have a friend for life – and I was lucky enough to get a sister.”
Amanda soon took in Ashley, and kept her from moving into yet another foster home. They talked about adopting her, and it was perfect timing, as the family’s 21-year-old son was moving out, and his room would be up for grabs.
Says Ashley: “So many teenagers I know are still struggling, I was one of the lucky few to get adopted. You need love and care, and without it it’s hard to live, it’s hard to thrive in life. That’s the main goal of having a family. When I walked in, my room was so nice. They put a picture up on the wall which said ‘you are home’. It changed my life.”
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