When you make the decision to adopt—to bring a child into your family—it’s a big step. For many couples or individuals, this is the culmination of a dream they have to complete their family and provide a loving and stable home for a child that desperately needs it. Unfortunately even though there are thousands of children adopted every year, sometimes the road to adoption can seem a little bit lonely. If you’re in the process of adopting a child and feel like you could use some support, here are places you can find the resources you need.
At agencies like Heart to Heart Adoption, you can find a whole staff of people who are dedicated to helping you get the information and support you need as you go through the process to adopt a child. They have years of experience working with families in a wide variety of situations, and can help answer all your questions and put your fears to rest during the process. They can help you explore all the options for adopting a child—including foster children, newborns, and international children—and help you navigate the entire process. They can also help connect you with potential birthparents and walk you through things like counseling, home visits, and financial questions.
On the legal side, an attorney can help you figure out exactly what you need to do to get parental rights transferred from the birthparent(s) to you as the adoptive parents. An adoption agency can often help connect you with attorneys that have experience in the legal issues surrounding adoption, and that attorney can help you get all the proper paperwork filed and understand that laws that are applicable to your situation.
In many cases it can be helpful to find a group of parents that, like you, are going through the adoption process. These groups can help you learn more about the process from the perspective of someone who has gone through it before. In many cases it’s also helpful to know that someone else has experienced many of the things you are experiencing, and can offer advice on the best ways to proceed (or cautionary tales about mistakes they made to help you avoid making the same ones). They can offer advice on relationships with birthparent(s), finding adoption agencies, international and domestic adoption, and the types of contact and relationship that you have with the birthparent(s) after the adoption is complete.
It’s important to remember that there are a lot of resources out there. Even if you don’t know anyone personally who has been through the adoption process, there are many people at adoption agencies and in other places who can walk you through the process so you never feel alone.