Before beginning the adoption process, it is important for any prospective parents to explore their feelings and really analyze why they want to adopt. “What’s your fantasy,” asks Dean Kirschner, Ph.D., LCSW-C, Adoption Makes Family. Basically, what does parenting look like to you?
“It probably sounds simplistic, but deep in your gut ask yourself what you hope to get out of adopting,” asks Heidi Densmore, Good Choices Good Life. “Many of those ideals you are hoping for will be shattered by reality, and the reality of adopting is that you can’t change your mind after you’ve committed to this course of action.”
So, spending some time really thinking about your intentions is an important first step in adoption.
Why Do You Want to Adopt?
“While everyone may have their own motivations for exploring adoption, the core desire for a family to adopt and what propels that family forward to complete an adoption, should be based on the right motives as well as a clear understanding of what is entailed,” writes Carrie Craft, Verywell Family. “You need to be sure you are adopting for the right reasons and that you are ready for adoption.”
Here are a few common reasons prospective parents look to adoption.
“Not everyone who chooses adoption had this process as part of their original plans,” says Craft. “If you have struggled with infertility, it is crucial that you have not only accepted your infertility, but that you also have healed from the emotional heartache involved.”
An adopted child should not be a method to mend a broken heart. The child should never feel like a consolation plan. So, if you’ve experienced infertility and are thinking adoption may be an option, consider talking to an adoption counselor to explore your feelings even further.
Want to Help a Child in Need
Are you interested in adoption because you’re looking to help a child in need?
“I could not imagine growing up without a family and unfortunately there are children who live with this reality,” writes D’Arcy Brishon Carter, HuffPost. “There are over 100,000 children in the U.S. foster care system, ages 0-17, and once they turn 18 they are released into the world without a family and it’s not fair.”
Want to be a Parent
For some people, there is no other desire to adopt that simply wanting to be a parent. As long as you keep the child’s best interests at heart, simply wanting to expand your family is reason enough. And, for some, natural childbirth is not an option. Some women face medical conditions that make it dangerous to carry a pregnancy. Some people are afraid to pass down genetic disorders or diseases. And then there are same-sex couples that simply cannot conceive on their own.
Am I Ready for Adoption?
Before moving forward with the adoption process, be sure to follow these steps.
Do Your Research
“Whether it’s joining an adoptive parent support group, talking to adoptive parents or visiting adoption websites – it’s important to gain as much insight and knowledge as you can,” says Adoptions from the Heart.
Adopting a child is not easy. It can be long, complicated, expensive, and incredibly emotional. So, it is important to do your research and learn everything you can about the process. “ If you have talked to professionals and done your homework on what your rights are, then that is a clear sign that you may be ready to begin the process.” says Craft.
Compare Adoption Agencies
Not all adoption agencies are created equal. So, it is important to “shop around” and compare. “There are thousands of adoption agencies, adoption attorneys, and adoption facilitators that can help you through the adoption journey,” says Adoptions from the Heart. “When choosing a type of an adoption professional, you must be sure they meet the needs of you and your family.”
Having someone to guide you through the process can make everything feel less overwhelming. So, finding the right adoption agency is critical. Your adoption agency will be your partner throughout your journey, from that first phone call through placement, and beyond.
Allow the professional team at Adoption Makes Family to help and support you through your adoption journey. Adoption Makes Family was founded to meet the needs of birth parents and adoptive parents in a manner that is sensitive, compassionate, and personal. We are a non-profit (501-C3), licensed adoption agency based in Maryland. Our highly trained staff is prepared to meet the needs of birth parents and adoptive parents, as well as children in need of a loving home.
Have a Plan in Mind
What are you looking for in your adoption? Do you want to pursue foster care adoption or infant adoption? Are you interested in an open adoption or closed adoption? Would you consider adopting from a foreign country or are you just looking domestic? Would you consider transracial adoption?
Before moving forward, you need to determine exactly what you’re looking for. “Considering all possible scenarios is an important part of the adoption readiness process,” says Craft.
Find a Support System
It’s important to surround yourself with positive people who will actively help you throughout your journey – whatever that may look like. “If you do not have a positive support system, you can see that through an adoption agency worker/counselor,” says Dr. Kirschner. Everyone’s support system looks different.
Exploring Your Feelings
The adoption professionals at Adoption Makes Family are here to help you as you navigate your adoption journey. We are a non-profit (501-C3) licensed adoption agency based in Maryland founded to meet the needs of birth parents and adoptive parents in a manner that is sensitive, compassionate, and personal. If you would like our advice or just need to talk, please give us a call at any time. Our adoption counselors are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for your convenience.
Call Us Now at (410) 683-2100
Counseling can also be a very important tool for adoptive parents as they navigate life with their new baby and attempt to find their new normal – both before and after adoption. Counseling can also be an important way to maintain a strong relationship with your partner.
“No doubt adoption is stressful for the child, but it is also stressful for the parents,” says Dawn Davenport, Creating a Family. “It’s not only the child’s life that has been turned upside down.”
If you have any questions, you can contact us by phone at 410-683-2100, by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or use our online contact form.
- Craft, Carrie. “5 Reasons Why You Should Consider Adopting a Child.” Verywell Family, Verywell Family, 19 Oct. 2019, https://www.verywellfamily.com/five-reasons-you-should-adopt-a-child-26587.
- Densmore, Heidi. “SO, YOU WANT TO ADOPT?” Good Choices Good Life, http://www.goodchoicesgoodlife.org/choices-for-better-parenting/so-you-want-to-adopt/.