As we go through the adoption process I thought it might be helpful to answer some questions we have received over the last few months (and just in case you are curious). (Please keep in mind I am not an expert in any of this and of course I am relatively new to this process and my statements are what I know/understand.)
*How long does the adoption process take?
It really varies. Our agency stated that one family matched three days after posting their information to the online site (but this was also because they also put up a billboard in a major city) and another family took up to three years. We are thinking (and hopeful) that the average time will be between 6 months to a year to match (once we have our homestudy and are approved). Honestly there are many variables in the whole process: it will depends on who wants to match with us and it also varies how many women/families are in need of adoption services.
*Do you get to pick the child?
Not exactly. With our agency you can discuss ethnicity and potential medical problems that a child may have but no you cannot select the gender of the child. In our case we are pretty much open to discuss anything.
*Why are you blogging about this/have a Facebook page?
If you haven’t yet check out our Facebook page J made at J&K Adopt. Reasons why we are doing this: 1. As part of our prerequisites our agency wants us to share the option of adoption and we have chosen to share this information via social media and word of mouth. 2. This is a way to share our story. As I/we have had to deal with infertility problems finding other families who were in the same situation was a comfort. It was a comfort to know I/we were not alone. Some of those families have chosen other means to achieve pregnancy, others have gone on to adopt and others have chosen to live childless. All of those families (some of who I talk to on a personal levels, others I have not) have become a support group and if I can help someone else out there through my little stories or even educate someone not going through infertility or adoption then I have done my job of what I planned to accomplish.
*Why are you doing an open adoption? Wouldn’t that cause problems?
When we first looked in to adoption we were hesitant regarding “open” adoption. Keeping in mind that “open adoption” can vary per situation and agency. After doing some reading, talking with our agency, hearing from birth mothers, adoptees and adoptive parents it became clear that there was no need to worry about problems from open adoption. In the case of our agency open means that you have open lines of communication between the birth parent(s) and the adoptive parent(s). In reality this is what is best for the child – especially as they get older. They will be able to know their heritage, background and medical information. Obviously each adoption is unique and all parties will discuss what they will and will not do but at this point we are open to discuss anything because ultimately we want what is best for the child.
*How much does it cost?
It varies but when it is all said and done it is around $25,000 total.
*How will you pay for this?
We have been saving for awhile now but even if we utilized all our savings we could not cover the complete cost alone. There are grants, scholarships and loans available from different places. I plan on applying for grants and scholarships but we have to have our home study complete and approval from the agency (so that will start probably next month). There is currently an adoption tax credit but you can apply for that once you have finalized and paid for your adoption. We are also planning on selling shirts to promote adoption (they are so cute) and if I get the opportunity I plan on sewing, crocheting and crafting more to open a small store online.
*Why does it cost so much?
Our agency is very upfront about costs associated with adoption. A large portion of the money goes for the all of the legal processes involved (and it is quite lengthy). In addition, our agency provides assistance and help to birthmothers/parents through helping them with their needs from medical expenses, living/housing expenses, etc. Our agency has places where birth families can stay during the adoption process. I really feel that our agency helps not only adoptive parents but focuses on the well being and needs of the birthparents as well. When explaining the fees our agency just summed up the cost by saying that when adoptive parents pay all of the fees they are essentially helping one birthparent who chooses to place their child for adoption and one who chooses to parent. I really feel that our agency is really trying to help these women/families. We are essentially helping with mission work (and I am biased but I think this is one of the best agencies who really is trying to help people).
*Why don’t use foster or go through DHS?
I know of several families who have used DHS to adopt children and while we are considering that route in the future – the purpose of DHS is reunification with families. Because of the attempts to work to reunify families adoptions can understandably take a considerable amount of time to finalize – not to mention the relationship between birth parent(s) and adoptive parent(s) are very different due to these varying life circumstances. While it is a great avenue to help children and families we have chosen not to go through the foster system to adopt yet (key word here is: yet).
Again we are so happy to be working with Christian Homes. To get an idea or simply just a glimpse of the work our agency does please watch the video below:
If you want to check out our agency’s website they are linked on the right side of this page.
And of course if you have any questions feel free to ask and I will try to answer them!