Hey everybody! Wow, this week really got away from me! I wanted to pop on and give an adoption update, half for my own memory and half for those of you who might be interested in seeing how the process works. I’ve also had a couple friends ask me IRL so I figured it might be best to post here!
The adoption meeting went really well; we’re both very glad that we went. We got to meet our social worker, Allyson, in person, as well as 3 other prospective adoptive couples and a mom who has already adopted 3 kids who was there as a real-life resource. We got a lot of questions answered and a big info packet to take home. We were also struck with how much more complicated this process really is than we thought! In a nutshell, there are three main ways to adopt (at least in CT), and here they are WAY over-simplified:
- International adoption. This is probably self-explanatory, right? It can take several years and anywhere from $20-40,000. We have decided against this, at least for our first adoption.
- Domestic private adoption. I had originally figured this was the only other option besides international. You select an agency, who then finds the child/birth mom that is the best match for you. Often the birth mom can choose your family specifically based on a “scrapbook” that you make about yourselves. Also can cost between $20-40,000.
- Adoption through state foster care/DCF. This process (which we were previously unaware of), comes with a lot of perks. The adopted child gets a free college tuition at any state school, free medical care, and the whole process is FREE. That’s right, FREE. The major downside is that, unlike in international or domestic private cases, when the child comes home with you, they are not legally “yours” yet. They are still considered a foster child/ward of the state until the parent(s) have finally given up all legal rights. For people like us, DCF would only place a child in our home that they feel is “reasonably certain” to be adoptable. However, sometimes the birth parent(s) change their minds, in which case (obviously) the child has to go back. Although they try to expedite this process, it can take months or even years.
Our first home study visit with Allyson isn’t until the middle of June, after we’re all settled into our new house. Obviously, we have a lot of thinking to do! Do we try to raise thousands and thousands of dollars and have to be concerned about where the money will come from, but have the peace of mind of knowing that when we bring our baby home, it’s ours? Or do we have the peace of mind in knowing that our adoption is paid for (and our child will have free college down the road!), but possibly go through the heartbreak of having a child have to leave our home?
As you can see, it’s a reallllly hard decision. We had both thought DCF would be best for us, but after talking to Allyson on Wednesday night on the phone and finding out the DCF route could take years, I’m not so certain anymore. Chris keeps reminding me that God knows exactly what child is out there for us, and the road we take is insignificant to Him, really. In other words, we are 100% sure that God wants us to adopt, so He’s going to work it out one way or the other. I keep telling myself that, but it still stresses me out to feel that I have to make the right first choice!
So, that’s pretty much where we’re at right now – waiting for our first home study visit and praying hard over this initial first decision. We are still total newbies at this adoption thing and if you feel led to pray for us, we would really appreciate it!
Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! I’m taking a few days off from the blog so I’ll see you next week! :)