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Meet the Scheer Family: An Adoptive Family from Maryland

Rob and Reece had always wanted to adopt. Rob’s own experience in foster care from age 10–18 gave the couple special insights and motivation. Seeing children presented on Wednesday’s Child added extra incentive.

Rob and Reece are now the happy fathers of four awesome children. They proudly introduce daughter Amaya, age 13, sons Makai and Greyson, both age 10, and youngest son Tristan, age 8. The Scheers adopted Amaya and Makia seven years ago, and Greyson and Tristan two years later. All four of their children have spent time in foster care–the older two children for two years, and the younger pair for three.

All of their children have made great strides towards overcoming challenges resulting from their earlier childhoods. A “resource class” is helping Amaya to increase her focus and attention. Private school has been a good match for Makai, who has Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and a sensory disorder. Greyson has just been diagnosed with a learning disability, for which the fathers are exploring various learning options. Tristan is presently being treated for emotional instability. All the children have received counseling services as well as psychiatric services. They all see the same therapist, which helps with understanding the family dynamics.

"Family is composed of individuals who respect and love each other unconditionally."

In spite of all they have been through, the Scheer youngsters have made much progress since joining their permanent family. Amaya is an honor roll student who gets along well with peers and has a love for horseback riding and soccer. Makai is a very active young man who enjoys being around animals, water, and sand. Greyson is a skillful football player and a great helper with younger children. Tristan has been an excellent skateboarder since age 3. His dads refer to him as “an extreme athlete.”

Asked about obstacles they have faced in the adoption process, Rob writes, “As a same sex couple, we weren’t exactly accepted with open arms. I feel we did have to go ‘above and beyond’ on all requirements to make sure there was not a single reason for us to be rejected as a suitable home.” The Scheers have found encouragement and support for adoptive parenting through their church community, their school district, and a Facebook group of families like theirs.

Rob and Reece ask policymakers to understand that foster children often feel “invisible.” Unhappy with the message these vulnerable children receive when they are given garbage sacks to pack their belongings, the Scheers support a charity, ComfortCases.org, that provides travel bags and ‘comfort items’ to foster children in effort to give them more of a sense of dignity.

Reflecting on their individual adoption journeys, as varied and complex as they have been, the Scheers unanimously agree: “A family does not have to be made of people who are blood-related. Family members do not have to look like you. Family is composed of individuals who respect and love each other unconditionally.”