Debunking Adoption Myths
- Friday, January 21, 2011
Although the adoption process might not be as quick as you would like, be assured that God will lead you to just the right child in just the right time.
Words of Wisdom: "The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it." - 1 Thessalonians 5:24
Myth #2: You Might Lose Your Money and Your Hearts
Adoption is a costly process, and all or a portion of the money is usually non-refundable -- even if an adoption is not completed. If that thought frightens you enough that you want to stop reading right now, please be patient. Losing money in an adoption attempt is a possibility, but a relatively slim one. For every adoption that goes awry, there are thousands of other adoptions completed every year. Trust that God will lead you in the right direction if you plan to adopt, do your homework and use reputable agencies and attorneys.
Of course, some adopting parents have invested more money than they anticipated. Costs vary greatly among the types of adoption available.
U.S. domestic adoption laws lean in favor of the birthmother so that she is not coerced to give up her child. Adoptive parents pay her and the baby's medical expenses (usually covered at least in part by their own health insurance policy), as well as any agency, attorney, and filing and court fees. In most cases, they pay her living expenses -- if they are paired with a birthmother during her pregnancy. So the cost of domestic adoption varies widely. Before the birth and for a short amount of time afterward (which varies by state), birthmothers have the option of changing their minds and keeping their babies; however, most do not. Before you contract with an agency or attorney, make sure that you know what happens to your money if the adoption falls through. In a case where the birthmother does keep the baby, the agency and attorney fees paid to that point are usually applied to the next attempt to contract with a willing birthmother, but make sure you have that in writing in your initial contract.
International adoption costs should be explained up-front and should not vary much, with the exception of travel expenses. The financial risk with international adoption is that a government can close its doors to international adoption unexpectedly, as more than one thousand families discovered when Romania banned international adoptions in 2001. In this case, most agencies would then apply fees toward adoption from another country; but make sure you thoroughly investigate the policies of any agency you consider before signing on the dotted line, and be sure your contract covers what happens to the fees if for some reason the adoption can't take place. (Adopting parents would incur additional expenses, if the new country's fees are higher.)
Foster-care adopters have little up-front, out-of-pocket expense. The costs they might incur include, other than a successful home study, any costs associated with becoming licensed foster parents in their state and other smaller fees. Costs for foster adoptions sometimes come in later, such as in the case where the child has ongoing special needs medically or psychologically that subsidies do not fully cover.
As far as losing your heart, no child and no adoption comes with guarantees. If a birthmother decides to raise her child herself or if an international or foster-care adoption falls through, the heartache will come. But those who have experienced it know that God sees every one of their tears and does not waste their pain. Psalms 30:5 states, "Weeping may go on all night, but joy comes with the morning." (NLT). Only by experiencing trials does anyone have a testimony to share with others and the empathy to feel others' pain.
Myth #3: Adopted Kids Do Not Adjust
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