Things to Consider When Looking for a Family for Your Baby
When going through the adoption process, choosing the family that will raise your child is arguably one of the most important parts. And because it is one of the most important part, it can often feel overwhelming. We are here to hopefully ease those feelings and walk you through this part of the process. Every expectant parent is going to be looking for something different or connecting to something unique about a family. Here are a few things to think about before and during the process of looking at families.
Do you want the family to be close to where you live? Maybe the same state? Neighboring state? Or maybe even across the country. There are pros and cons to all of these options, but we think it really comes down to personal preference and the level of openness you want to have with the family. Here are a few examples to help get you thinking.
Sarah lives in Washington and is really wanting to have an open adoption that includes visits. This would be easier, logistically speaking, if the family lived in Washington or maybe even a neighboring state. But Sarah also doesn’t want to run into the family at the grocery store or when she is out with friends in her local area.
Kelly lives in Arizona and is also wanting an open adoption, but less frequent visits. She does not mind if the family lives in another state as long as they would be willing to switch off traveling for visits. She would like them to live somewhere on the West Coast so she is able to drive for visits. She may also be open to other states if the family is committed to having visits and traveling to her.
Madison isn’t sure if she wants to have an open adoption, but if she decides to, she is only comfortable with exchanging pictures and emails. She doesn’t see herself wanting to have any visits, unless her child wants one when they are older. Because of this, Madison doesn’t mind if the family lives in another state.
There are many types of families that are eager to adopt and would provide your child with a wonderful life. Do you have a preference of the type of family?
Is it important to you that your child be raised within a particular religion or set of values? Families can fall on a wide spectrum in this area, anywhere from very active in their church/religion, to spiritual, to not adhering to any particular religion but rather living by a certain set of values. Think about what is important to you and what the ideal religious upbringing or values would be.
Is it important to you that the family has children already, not have children, or want more children in the future? Some expectant parents like the idea of their child being raised with siblings, while some don’t have a preference.
This is a big one! What does the families day-to-day life look like? And what are the things you want your child to experience and be a part of? Do you want an active outdoorsy family? Or maybe a family that loves to travel so your child has the opportunity to see the world?
Level of Openness Desired
This is pretty self-explanatory, but you want to make sure the families you are looking at are open to the level of contact you want to have. There are varying levels of openness that range for no contact, indirect contact, pictures and letters, video calls and phone calls and visits. This is a great conversation to have with the adoption professional you are working with and they can help you get a better understanding of your options.
Trust your Gut
At the end of the day, it boils down to the connection you feel to the family. Sometimes the things that we think will be really important, may not end up being as important as we thought! Many expectant parents have said that they feel a gut-level connection that they can’t quite explain. If you don’t see any families you connect to in the first round of profiles you see, ask to see more. Don’t ever feel like you have to compromise and don’t feel rushed into choosing a family. It is one if the most important decisions you will make in the adoption process.