Research the adoption process by looking at books, magazines and other publications. Find a family who has been through the adoption process to go through the experience with you; an adoption agency should be able to help you with this. Read reputable adoption blogs, so you get a diverse collection of opinions regarding the topic of adoption. You can also attend adoptive family support groups and conferences to get a deeper understanding of the adoption process.
Now that you are familiar with the adoption process, the next step is preparing yourself to be an adoptive parent. There are a few common issues that can arise in the psyche of a child after adoption. A parent’s understanding of these issues can have a significant effect on the child’s ability to cope with these problems. Here are some common challenges that children face after adoption:
Knowing your child’s medical, genetic and social history will help you identify health conditions early on. It will also provide vital information which can help an adoptive parent decide if they are a suitable match for the child. Some adoptive children require more financial and emotional resources than others. Prospective parents should consider their ability to raise a specific child before they adopt. Collecting a child’s background information is an important part of the matchmaking process.
The transitional process for an adopted child can be difficult. Although welcoming another member into your family is exciting and joyous, keep in mind that the child may be going through a very awkward experience. It is possible that your child will not show gratitude, share your enthusiasm or express love in typical ways. Understand that this is a possibility and set your expectations of the experience accordingly.
There are different types of adoption agencies who have specific roles in the adoption process. A placement agency takes on the role of matchmaker between child and parent. With any adoption agency, take the time to check their credentials. Legitimate agencies will be licensed from the state department and receive annual inspections from the department of social services.
Adoption Alliance is a licensed placement agency that helps children and infants find suitable adoptive parents. For more information about the adoption process, read our Adoptive Parent FAQs.