Adoption: A Process
- 8 Months ago
What is involved in the adoption process? Many people naively believe that adoption simply consists of walking into an agency and walking away with a baby. Of course, it's much more complex than this. It involves considerable paperwork; asking questions; solving problems; researching; spending money; and going through emotional ups and downs. It takes time and work but remember that those who want to adopt will always succeed. These procedures have been designed for your benefit so doesn't be lured into taking "shortcuts" - these can hurt you in the long run. After all, adoption is not just a means of finding babies for infertile couples, but a way of finding the right family for a particular child.
Each adoption agency has different requirements so you may find that even though you are turned down at one agency, another will readily accept your application.
Most agencies suggest that:
• The age between the adoptive parents and the child be less than 40 years.
• The couple should have been married for at least five years to attest to the stability of the relationship.
• The couple should have a regular source of income.
• Neither of the partners should have a major illness which may reduce your life-span.
The professional who will be guiding you through this process is a medical social worker, who is fully qualified and trained. Find an agency where you are comfortable with the social worker assigned to you.
You should learn about the requirements for adoption; and the average waiting time for placement. You'll need to decide upon many factors including the child's age and sex - and there may be certain limitations on your choice. Costs vary widely, and you should enquire how much it will be.
Once an agency accepts your application, detailed interviews, both separately and jointly, are conducted. Agencies may ask you to supply references from relatives, employers and friends. Furthermore, an adoption worker will come to your home and evaluate your suitability as parents - the home study. At some point after the home study period, a child is identified who is or who might be available for adoption. You'll then have to decide whether or not to accept the child - it's finally your choice. If you choose to adopt, there is a supervisory period once the child arrives in your home, and this may range from a few weeks to several years. After a specified period, your child is legally adopted by an adoption decree.