Monday, February 7, 2011

Working Up A Post

I'm working on a post about adoption. I'm hoping it will be series of answers to some big questions I've been getting from friends and acquaintances in recent months. I'd like some of you to weigh in on the topics. Please leave a comment with your thoughts to some of (or all of!) the questions below.  Feel free to add your own questions, as I'm fairly certain that these few are NOT enough to get us started!

  • How do I know if adoption is right for me?
  • Why should I adopt?
  • How do I choose what path of adoption is right for me and my family?
  • Where can I go to learn more about adoption?
  • How do I talk to my family (my spouse, my kids, etc.) about my interest in adoption?
  • What do I look for in an agency? Do I even need an agency?
  • What questions should I be asking to help me start the process of readying my heart and my home for an adoption?

This post (or series of posts) will be BY NO MEANS exhaustive. Or even authoritative. Rather, I'm seeking to answer from my experiences, to share the resources I've encountered, and to utilize the community of adoption-built families in a way that helps those who are seriously inquiring. I'm looking to put together some ideas, anecdotes from real life, and starting points for the folks who come to me with interest.  I doubt that everything I know will be ENOUGH for these folks, so I'd like to hear from you.

One of my favorite things to do is to network folks with resources and with other people who can be meaningful in their life journey. If you are interested in adoption, then this coming post might be for you.  If you enjoy sharing what you have experienced or helping folks connect with resources and information, then this post might be for you.  If you have done this process called adoption, even once, then this post I'm brewing up might be for you.

Come on, share away. Ask me anything.  Tell me your story. Share your tips and tricks and secrets. I'm anxious to hear from YOU!


Rachel said...

Through a series of events, we found out today that we are officially on the road to adoption! After we signed the first layer of paperwork, saying that we are officially pursuing adoption for a child that has been in our home for foster care, a heart thing happened. I can't explain it yet, and in my humaness I am still really nervous because we are in such an early stage of the process, but it was almost as if the reality that I was created for this moment in time rang true in my heart and spirit.
I was excited to see this blog today! Especially because it comes from a couple I've admired since I was a kid myself!

Aus said...

Wow - what a great idea - but instead of a blog post you might want to think about a book! ;) Happy to chime in with some thoughts - also by no means exhaustive!

•How do I know if adoption is right for me?
How about - you just do? At least for me (and a Dad's perspective is a little different in this arena) - the moment just came when I knew it was a good idea. After our bio kids I had never considered adoption until one of the bio kids asked about it. Wish they'd have asked 10 years sooner - but from the moment they asked I knew it was a good idea.

•Why should I adopt?
Only one acceptable answer as far as I'm concerned - because I want to be a parent / I like being a parent. Wile there is no argument that adoption IS an altruistic good - that Scripture tells us so - it is also not a life journey that is for everyone. There are a hundred (hundreds?) of things that adoptive parents will or could have to deal with that most bio parents may avoid, it's not for the faint of heart. I would submit that if you adopt for the sake of this altruistic good - you won't have the strength to finish the journey you started.

•How do I choose what path of adoption is right for me and my family?
No input on this one - we had a moment of insight and from the time we started we just knew - but I'll ponder the question!

•Where can I go to learn more about adoption?
Blogs are a decent start - and local adoption agencies will have tons of information - and maybe even some classes you could attend. You'll end up better parents even if after the classes you decide adoption isn't your path!

•How do I talk to my family (my spouse, my kids, etc.) about my interest in adoption?
Spouse and kids - in the quiet of the day - and with an open heart and mind. You may get a response that is not what you hoped for - but YOU have to be open to that response - adoption is well and truely a family decision! For the etc. - be open to discussion - BUT (and it is with great personal angst and experience I speak) - it's 'tell them' not 'ask them'! I could go on for pages so I'll stop now!

•What do I look for in an agency? Do I even need an agency?
I would submit that you should use an agency. There are a bazillion little things that folks with experience will know and remember that we wouldn't. We've adopted 3X, and would never consider not using an agency. As for what to look for - it's more about 'how it feels' to me. All of them do a fine job - are you confortable just speaking with the agency rep you are using? If not - they won't mind if you change agencies - and generally will even be willing to transfer a file to a different agency (if they can - agencies don't always have 100% control over that - at least as far as IA goes). Also feel free to ask any other adoptive folks you know - they'll be happy to share!

•What questions should I be asking to help me start the process of readying my heart and my home for an adoption?
If you have to "ready your heart" for adoption - there aren't really any 'questions' - you'll know when you are ready - God will let you know. I'd also submit that if you are asking this question you are probably ready - but we all just have a natural 'fear of the unknown'! As for preparing your home - as long as everyone who is already in it is in support of the adoption - you're there! If you need help with the 'nuts and bolts' of adoption - that's what your agency will help you with - and for the home - well most of that will depend on the age / gender / needs of the specific child along with the age / gender / and needs of the kids already there! That's the small stuff - and it will resolve!

cool topic - great stuff here - all kinds of fodder for thought and prayers!

hugs - aus and co.

Selma said...

GIRL! Bring this series on. I'll be reading and thinking and pondering through it all. You know our hearts are to adopt. We've even met with an agency about fostering to adopt. But the Lord said, "no."

Here are some things I am wrestling with and thinking about.

1. Why does it cost so much to adopt? I feel like people are selling babies. The thought of a baby being sold disgusts me. I'm really troubled by this.

2. I totally believe the Lord directs our path as to how and where and which way. But, I'd love to know some good specifics on the different "paths" for adoption.

3. I'm a book reader. I'd love some good recommendations on what to read. Specifically about having an adopted child in your home. I keep up with some blogs, but I'd like some good books to read.

4. Husbands.... I have a husband who wants to adopt. His heart is there. But he's not one who tends to gather a lot of information, like I do. I'd love to have some ideas for my husband to read on his own.

Okay.... that is all for the moment. Thanks for taking this series on. I look forward to reading what you have to say!

Love ya!

Aus said...

Greetings GM - thought there would be more comments...but Selma's comment triggered a thought - a book for your DH....

Not knowing if he likes to read - or what he might like to read - or how many kids might be in the household and / or extended family - ask him to plow through "The Connected Child". IMHO the concepts are extremely 'reasonable' - and while it doesn't offer an "If this then do this" formula (a good thing because no 2 folks / kids are the same) - it does give you a possible insight into what to look for so that you can understand 'why' the child is displaying a specific behavior. Once you know why - then you can help the child deal with the 'trigger' for the behavior (or cause 'triggers' for a desired behavior).

Ya see - once your child is in control of themselves and their world - then they can relax enough to be happy!

just a thought - hugs - aus and co.

Selma said...

Thank Aus and co.

I'll definetly look that book up and offer my husband it!


Joanna B said...

I am looking forward to this post! I would also love to know your thoughts on preparing for adoption. For example, what books do you recommend, what research, and how much research do you recommend doing?
For myself and my husband, we wanted to know all the ins and outs of our daughter's special need, but we also researched as much as we could about her orphanage, and dealing with toddlers, in general.