After making the decision to place a child for adoption, choosing the adoptive family for the child is often the most difficult decision a parent will make during the adoption process. With so many choices, it may be difficult for a birthmother to know where to begin. Here are some great tips for choosing the perfect adoptive family for your child.
Make a List Describing Your Ideal Adoptive Family
With so many wonderful families looking to adopt, choosing the adoptive family for your child may seem an overwhelming decision to make. Many birthmothers find jotting down the characteristics of their ideal adoptive family an easy way to begin. When doing this, it’s important to start with the non-negotiables, the “deal breakers.” The list of non-negotiables is different for every mother. In some cases, it is absolutely critical for a mother that her child be raised in a religious environment. For others, the opposite holds true. Figuring out the most important characteristics is the first step in making this list. Next come the “ideal” characteristics – the things it would be nice if a family had, but not having this characteristic isn’t enough to completely eliminate an adoptive family as an option. To help focus your list, consider how you’d answer some of the following questions:
- What type of family is the ideal family for my child? Traditional? Blended? Am I okay with my child being adopted by a single parent? Do I want an adoptive family that already has other children or do I want my child to be their first?
- What role do I want religion to play in my child’s life? How religious do I want my child’s adoptive family to be?
- In what type of environment do I want my child to live? The city? The country?
- What sort of characteristics would my ideal adoptive parent(s) have? Is it important they be highly educated, creative, athletic, etc.? Is it important my child have a stay-at-home parent who will raise them?
- How do I want my child to be educated as they grow? How do I want my child to be nurtured as they grow? How do I want my child to be disciplined as they grow?
- What future do I envision for my child and what type of family will be able to best provide that future?
This list of questions is by no means exhaustive, and your list should seek to determine what is important to you. With answers to these questions – or others that are important to you – you will be able to put together a list of the non-negotiable and ideal characteristics for your ideal adoptive family. Once you know what characteristics you are looking for in an adoptive family, you can begin looking through the profiles for waiting adoptive families to see which is the perfect fit for your child. As you filter through these families, be sure to trust not only your list (which will typically be guided by logic) but also your instincts (which will be your emotional guide). You may come across a family that meets every parameter for your ideal adoptive family but find that it just doesn’t feel like the ideal fit. Trust that instinct, remembering you know what’s best for your child.
Making a Connection with Prospective Adoptive Families
After narrowing down your list of prospective adoptive families, it is a good time to begin to get to know the people you’re considering. Meeting with or speaking to several families is not only okay, it’s recommended. A family that looks perfect on paper will not always feel right once you’ve had a chance to get to know them a little. And that’s okay! Often birthmothers will send preliminary emails to their prospective adoptive families, asking to learn a little more about them. A good place to start would be by seeing how your prospective family would answer some of your lingering questions from your list of ideal and non-negotiable characteristics. Ask questions! Discover what their values are, what they like to do for fun, how they envision raising your child. These first communications back and forth between you and your prospective families will help you narrow down your choices even further. And the more you get to know your prospective family, the better you will be able to know if they are a good fit for your child. You want to be sure you find a family you feel a strong connection with, even if you are opting for a closed adoption. If at any point during this process you start to feel unsure about a family, you have the right to choose a different family. Most importantly, you do not have to rush this process. Take as much time as you need to get to know a family so that you can feel comfortable knowing you’ve found the perfect adoptive family for your child.
We know meeting with prospective families can be an overwhelming step, and Building Blocks Adoption Service is here to help as much as you need us to. Once you’ve made contact with a family, it’s important to let them know if you decide to go in a different direction. This is another step we are happy to help you with.
Building Blocks Adoption Service is Here to Help
Every prospective adoptive family seeking to adopt through our adoption agency has gone through hours of training, criminal and child abuse background checks, and a series of home visits conducted by a licensed adoption assessor to ensure that the adoptive waiting family’s home is a loving safe environment for your unborn/born child. If you ever have questions about any of our adoptive waiting families, do not hesitate to ask.
If you are a birthmother seeking an adoptive waiting family and feel adoption is the best option for you and your unborn or born child we are here to help.
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