Thursday, January 17, 2013

Adoption: Q & A


I saw these posted on GIMH's blog, [thanks GIMH! :)] so I thought I would share my thoughts for those of you who might have questions.

When did you let family/friends know you were starting the process of adoption like starting your home study and working with an agency? 
We let our families know over Thanksgiving (2010), shortly after we had met with one agency and had a webinar with another (the one we chose actually). We told them we were meeting with a few more and that we would then decide what agency to go with. They were all so excited for us. I'll never forget my family's reaction - tears of joy and the room just erupted with excitement! I don't know what kind of reaction I expected, but honestly looking back my thought was - it was as though we announced we were expecting. And in a way, I guess, we were. We just had no idea of our due date. :) We also announced it in our Christmas letter a few weeks later. One of my best friends who had just moved from the area sent me an email and said she literally started crying tears of joy (we were playing phone tag the week before so I wasn't able to share it over the phone) when she read the news. Another friend I did get to tell in person started crying and told me that she and her husband had been praying specifically for that for us. People were just so excited. It was harder to break the news to our best friends, M & D (C's godparents) because they have been struggling with IF a year longer than we have. 

Any tips on how to share the news?
We just kind of told them... with DH's family, we tried to be sensitive because we were also telling his brother and sis-in-law who had gone through 2 miscarriages by then. Since everyone that we told personally knew of our struggles with IF, I don't know that it was that much of a shock. They all knew how much we wanted a family.

How many agencies did you look at before you decided on one?
Five. Four of them were in person and the one webinar - the one we chose. We liked that they were in several states and had online profiles. They also seemed to have a lot of placements. They were actually our second choice - our first choice agency had a statement of faith that we had to sign - as practicing Catholics, we couldn't. In the end though, that too was a blessing! 

Did you have the funding saved prior or did you do loans/fundraising?
We had some funds saved. DH had an investment we were no longer contributing to - and we used most of that. We didn't do any loans or do fundraising. We are counting on the tax credit as well as an employee reimbursement from DH's company to fund future adoptions. 

How did you prepare yourself emotionally for the process? Any special prayers/novenas that were helpful to you at that time?
The Rosary was our main prayer. DH & I also share a special devotion to St. Josemaria so we asked many times for his intercession. When DH and I were in Rome (Oct 2010), a few months right before I started my blog, we prayed before St. Josemaria's tomb and asked for his prayers. While I remember asking to conceive, I believe I also asked for us to be blessed with children. Shortly after we got back from Rome is when I talked to DH about starting to meet with agencies. My prayer was answered.... it was just that my heart really began to embrace adoption as a means to building our family.

Emotionally - part of me was relieved; I knew if we did this, we would be parents. I would be a mom. To some degree, it was freeing from all the IF treatments. Before we actually began the paperwork though (we actually selected our agency), I did go through one more surgery. Since it had been recommended by my doctor, I didn't want to have regrets or any "if only/I wonder if" moments. After that, we pursued both adoption and TTC. I felt that we were open to life and God would let us know how he wanted us to be parents. I didn't want to do anything to stand in the way of either option.

Did you go with a social worker from your agency to do the home study or did you find your own?
Our agency had a social worker in our area who did our home study. She was WONDERFUL. I was so comfortable with her!

How did you go about deciding the degree of open adoption that was best for your family?
Our agency only does open adoptions. We initially said letters and 1 visit per year, but C's birth mom asked for 2 visits per year. One has happened so far. I don't know if she will continue to want this, but we are open to that. You can read more on my thoughts on open adoption here: Why I Love Open Adoption. The agencies we explored all had some degree of openness. 

Were you excited when you started the process of adoption?

Yes! I had finished my last surgery a few months prior, and while we were still TTC, it took some of the pressure off. Again, as I mentioned, I really had a hard time stopping TTC and only pursuing adoption. Once I realized it was just being open to life in any way it came to us, it was such a relief. I really just wondered who the child was who would make me a mom and my husband a father. I still had fears and doubts (when on the waiting list, sometimes it seemed like we waited forever), but my overwhelming emotion was excitement when I thought about it. And I felt like I finally had the right to start looking at baby stuff! [It was really fun once we were on the waiting list and went to create our baby registry. The lady asked when we were due and we said "We don't know!!" Ironically, she put down May 1st as our due date and we got the call April 22nd! How's that for God's timing? :)]

Do you find that others are sad for you when you tell them you are adopting?
No, not at all. I think to some degree it was hard for our close friends who were still dealing with IF (they still are) - they were happy for us and sad for themselves. And I understood that having felt it so many times myself. But others, no - everyone was SO happy for us. 


Copy & Paste questions for any of you who want to share your thoughts in a post! :)
When did you let family/friends know you were starting the process of adoption like starting your home study and working with an agency? 
Any tips on how to share the news?
How many agencies did you look at before you decided on one?
Did you have the funding saved prior or did you do loans/fundraising?
How did you prepare yourself emotionally for the process? Any special prayers/novenas that were helpful to you at that time?
Did you go with a social worker from your agency to do the home study or did you find your own
How did you go about deciding the degree of open adoption that was best for your family?
Were you excited when you started the process of adoption?
Do you find that others are sad for you when you tell them you are adopting?




11 comments:

  1. great to read. I should answer these too.

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  2. Thank you for answering these questions! My DH and I are trying to get in as much input of others expereices since no one we know(outside of the blogosphere) has adopted. How long was your wait time? The agency we really like said the average is anywhere between 6-18months.

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    1. Our profile started to be shown in Dec 2011 and we were chosen in April 2012 - so just about 4 months! The agency said the typical wait time was about a year.

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    2. Our agency said our wait was a year, but we were active in Oct & matched in Feb ... 4 months too! I think prayer from our families & friends ... and our saints' intercession ... helped a great deal!

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  3. Loved reading your answers...how cool about your experience in Rome! :)

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  4. Thank you for sharing! Anthony's adoption is closed and so many aspects of that make me sad. Regardless, adoption is such a wonderful thing and I cannot wait for our boys to meet someday....soon!

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  5. This is a great! We love Josemaria Escriva!

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  6. I love your answers to the questions! I've had so many of the same thoughts ... about TTC ... and "I felt like I finally had the right to start looking at baby stuff!" :-)
    I will be answering these questions too!

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  7. I really love this post. Thank you for it--and for the very organized lay-out.

    That makes my heart so happy to hear how joyously your family and friends reacted to your news! Wonderful!

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  8. We are hoping to start the home-study this summer. Just wondering if you might be willing to email me the name of your agency? We have it narrowed down to a few, but I'm always open to suggestions.

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