Adoption is not a one-size-fits-all process, and there are a variety of reasons that people adopt. There are a variety of different types of adoption depending on the situation, needs and wants of birth parents, adoptive parents and children.
The laws in each state vary, but most states allow prospective parents to either adopt through an adoption agency or an independent intermediary like a lawyer. In many infant adoption cases, the baby will go home with the adoptive parents directly from the hospital.
Adopting a Foster Child
Children who are adopted from foster care tend to be older, ranging from toddler age all the way to 21. Children in the foster care system have often been abused, neglected or abandoned by their birth parents.
Adopting from foster care is inexpensive or free, but it comes with unique challenges. Because most foster children are victims of trauma, people who adopt them go through training and trauma counseling. It is an adoptive parent’s job to provide a safe space and help the foster child heal.
Fostering Before Adopting
More and more people are choosing to become foster parents first, and then adopt foster children living in their home. There are many benefits to this process. Parenting a foster child can help you identify the child’s needs, so you can assist in finding a good adoptive home for the child or decide to adopt the child yourself.
It is important to remember that a foster parent is required to support efforts to reunite foster children with their birth parents as long as the court or agency responsible for their custody determines that reunification is their permanency plan. It is always possible that a foster child you hoped to adopt may become reunited with their birth parents.
Closed vs. Open Adoption
A closed adoption means that no identifying information about either the birth family or adoptive family is shared between the two and there is no contact between them. The records about the birth family will be sealed after the adoption is finalized. Depending on the law in your state and the adoption agreement, the child may have access to their birth records at the age of 18.
Open adoption can include contact between the birth parents and adoptive parents in the form of pictures and letters, phone calls or even open contact.
Regardless of the type of adoption, the highest priority is the health and well-being of the adoptive or foster child. Adoption often helps adoptive parents to achieve their lifelong dream, and it is meant to help children have a safe, stable, loving foundation upon which they can build their dream for a lifetime.
Author: Destiny Adoption Services
Destiny Adoption Services is proud to support and guide birth parents and adoptive families on the journey of adoption. We’re a state licensed nonprofit adoption agency with four decades of adoption experience, and our professional team of experts includes moms, adoptive moms and birth mothers who provide compassion combined with trusted resources and skills.