Searching For Each OtherAdopting a Child
There are children waiting to be adopted in nearly every country of the world. Additionally, all around the world there are couples, and singles as well, waiting to become first time parents by adopting a child; although adopting is not limited to first time parents. There are millions of already established families, parents with one or more children, who are also interested in providing a loving home to children waiting to be adopted.
Statistically speaking, 45% of adopted children did actually live with their birth family before they were adopted. In addition, 41% of children have been adopted by people within their own family. Whether children are given a home by relatives or are placed with a family not blood related, it is reported by 81% of adoptive parents that their relationships with their adopted children are happy and loving.
Put quite simply, the definition of adoption is the transfer of parental rights from one party to another. However, the fact is that adoption goes so much deeper than that. It is a forever life changing step for both the adoptive parents and the adopted child. It sets a path for the life of the child, a path that their new parents walk down with them. Every detail of the rest of the child’s years will include the parents who choose to raise them.
When parents begin to consider giving a home to one or more children waiting to be adopted, there is a lot of research to be done, and many decisions to be made. There are several types of adoption, and parents are better able and equipped to make choices based on the understanding of the options they have. Domestic infant adoption, relative or step parent adoption, international adoption, and foster care adoption are the types of adoptions from which parents can choose. Each of these types of adoption come with their own requirements, costs, and wait times. International adoptions typically take much more time to process, and the cost usually includes traveling to the child’s home country, at least once. International adoption agencies are there to guide perspective parents through the process, both at home and abroad.
Domestic infant adoption involves birth parents choosing an adoptive family for their baby before the child is born. In these cases the birth parents have legally consented to the adoption before the choice of adoptive parents is made. There are national adoption agencies that walk both sets of parents through the process from beginning to end, and even further. Agencies provide adoption and counseling services, as well as screening and matching services. They coordinate every step of the adoption process, including the adoption itself. They set in place the home study for the adoptive parents, the case study, adoption planning, and even post adoption support.
Again, for parents who prefer a shorter wait time, and perhaps a lower cost, there are many children waiting to be adopted right in the United States. Foster parent adoption is always a possibility, as well. Whichever path is chosen, there are adoption programs in place to provide assistance and guidance along the way. There are approximately 400,000 children in the foster care system right now, but only about 100,000 of them are adoptable. Some are adopted right into their foster family, while others are only in foster care temporarily and are adopted into families that have never fostered before. Others, unfortunately, spend their growing up years in the foster care system, moving from family to family. The cost for adopting through the foster care system can range between $0 and $1000. In some states families will receive a monthly allowance, or stipend, to assist with the child’s needs.
The average age of children within the foster care system in the United States is seven years. Although many families would love to adopt an infant from a foster care situation, this is a rare occurrence. The goal of most states is typically to reunite infants with their birth parents; therefore, infants in foster care can only be adopted under certain circumstances.
Adoption laws can be very involved and parents are encouraged to do their research and consult a professional adoption agency before making decisions about the type of adoption they choose.