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Adoption 101

Our Adoption 101 Guide to growing a family through adoption. Focusing on International Adoption.

Adoption 101: The process of adoption is never the same twice. Its a path full of twists and turns that, hopefully, ends in a loving and rewarding family. Here's our crash course in adoption - Adoption 101.

1. Adoption Decision - Is adoption right for you?

There are many rational and seemingly irrational emotions that come with adoption. Questions about race and bloodlines are challenges for some while others are drawn to adoption without question their entire lives.

Adoption 101 Tip: Here are some basics to explore.

•What are your reasons for adopting?
•Are you emotionally committed to the long adoption process?
•If you are beginning the process with a partner, Are you both starting in to the adoption process with the same desire, passion and goal?
•Are you willing to adopt a special needs child?

2. Adoption Options

Domestic Adoption vs. International Adoption: There are so many options now for those looking to adopt. Both domestic and international adoptions are an important thread of our society.

3. Choosing an international adoption agency.

There are a number of useful articles on this site with great advise on choosing an agency. The most important first step in choosing an agency is talking to friends, relatives and workmates to find personal referrences. After going through the incredible adoption process, every adoptive parent has an opinion of their agency!

Choosing an Adoption Agency: An adoption 101 guide to choosing an adoption agency.

Adoption Agency Descriptions: History, contact information and details on a number of large and small adoption agencies.

Choosing your Adoption Professional by Louann Carroll

International Adoptin Agency Listing by State

4. The Adoption 101 Process - The adoption process is long, and there is a mile of paperwork. Each agency will have their own forms and processes, but here's a general outline. Many of these items are linked to detailed decriptions within our site.

a. Application
b. Home Study: This packet of information includes almost every detail about you.

•Birth Certificates
•Marriage Licenses
•Police Background Checks
•Finger Prints (local and Federal)
•Financial statements
•Medical evaluations of your physical and mental health
•Reference letters
•Legal paperwork
•Completed course work like: Parenting, safety and CPR.

c. Dossier - Notarized and State Certified

•Home Study Forms
•Petition to Adoption
CIS Approval (I-71H)
I-600A application (Application for Advance
•Processing of Orphan Petition)

5. Waiting - One of the hardest and most undermentioned part of adoption is the waiting. You spend part of the time rushing to get the right paperwork completed and sent to the right person and then you wait...and wait. Adoption 101 Tip: There's no way around it, be prepared for a long wait.

6. The Referral - The referral is the time you learn about the child you are going to adopt. Each country handles their referrals a bit differently. The three most popular countries for international adoption all handle their referrals very differently. Get the most up to date information directly from an adoption agency.

7. Travel - Travel restrictions differ greatly from country to country. The number of trips, duration of stay and process while in the adopted child's country range greatly. Some trips last days while others can last a month or more.

Summary: This adoption 101 primer is just an outline to help you get familiar and comfortable with adoption terms. Please do your research and get the details from a licensed accreditied adoption agency specific to your adoption. Good Luck.

Adoption 101 Tip: Keep your spirits up - the struggle of the adoption process will soon fade as you fill your house with love.

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