From the NY Times.
This guide was originally published on May 6, 2019 in NYT Parenting.
The process of adopting can be a long, complicated and emotional ride, with far more legal and financial roadblocks than many people assume. But, as most adoptive parents will tell you, it’s also a deeply fulfilling journey.
There are three main paths to adopting in the United States: through the foster care system, with the help of a local adoption agency or private attorney, and internationally. The route you choose will ultimately be based on a number of personal, legal and financial factors.
For this guide, I interviewed five adoption experts to gain insight into each of the main ways people adopt, along with a number of practical considerations prospective adoptive parents should be aware of at the outset of the process.
Know your reasons for adopting — and accept your limits.
Before embarking on an adoption process, you should be clear about your motivations for doing so. “This is a lifelong decision you’re making,” said Rita Soronen, president and C.E.O. of the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, so it’s important to be honest about any specific needs you may have. Any limit you identify should not be construed as a “failure,” Soronen clarified. “It’s an honest personal assessment.” Below are some of the more common questions adoption experts suggest you explore to help identify whether and which kind of adoption is right for you:
- Is it important to you to parent a newborn, or are you open to adopting an older child? How about a sibling group?