In the adoption world, most people consider infant adoption before really considering their options when adopting, but is this truly the best choice for you and your family? When it comes to exploring the idea of adoption, besides having to inform oneself about the ins and outs of ethics, it remains to be said that it’s important that each potential couple is aware of the varying types of adoption out there.
Foster adoption is one of those types of adoption that we hear many stories about in the media or from friends, but what does it mean to potentially adopt from within the foster system? Is it easier? Harder? Those who have adopted through this means will likely tell you that it comes with it’s own set of hardships and trials, but that it can be just as rewarding.
There is the myth that babies in adoption come with a blank slate, though we know this not to be the case anymore. For instance, Foster adoption is often found in the shadows, and not considered as an option to those seeking to build their family. Why is that? With so many children stuck in the system and in desperate need of families and homes to bring them in, why are prospective adoptive couples not lining up to get on board this train?
It’s been long perpetuated that foster adoption is significantly different than infant adoption. We can argue while there are some large differences (mainly age), that the adoption is one and the same. Each adoption, infant or foster, comes with its own set of obstacles to overcome, and it’s not arguable that they are different in that context. The reality that a newborn baby does not come with a blank slate reinstates this principle simply by the measure that adoption does come with its own sets of particular traumas.
When researching adoption issues, all forms of adoption should be viewed and considered. Things like finances, other children in the home, and the flow of your home should be taken into consideration. If we are of the mindset that we want to provide a home for a child, then we most certainly should be exploring the avenue of fostering. These are children that are without homes, and are in need of a stable family life, as well as guardians who are eager to help them form a successful path in life.
On the financial side of things, foster to adopt can come with a lower price tag. Of course, this is not the only reason a family should consider adopting from the foster system. It is to say though, if money is an issue for your family this is an option that will satiate the need for a child needing a home, and not break the bank.
Can we do openness in a foster adoption? Yes, openness is possible and should be enforced as necessary. There may be more boundaries that need to be set in place, but this adoption can be no different in terms of an open agreement. In fact, this can be an amazing way for the family to band together in order to help the mother and/or father regain their standing in the world, and become successful as well. Ultimately, the openness will be key for the child as there should be awareness surrounding the fact that the child was likely comfortable within his or her home, and remembers their parents well. Unless there are harmful reasons for which openness is not possible, there is no reason why a fully open adoption cannot occur when all parties have a genuine commitment to doing so.
When we are looking at adoption, taking all avenues into consideration, as well as their pros and cons, is of the utmost importance. Adoption, no matter what kind you choose is not an easy road, and it is especially helpful if your family is prepared for the adoption choice that you are making. You want to be able to provide the most success in the adoption you possibly can to the adoptee and if you choose a branch that you are not comfortable with, it will show in the coming years.
At the end of the decision making process, the key factor should be that you feel that you are making a decision that is based on what your family is capable of handling; financially, emotionally and even physically. Fostering, as it was stated before, does come with its own set of trials, but it can be a positive experience when the right individuals and families are involved.
Credits: Danielle Barnsley-Cervo
To see local Adopting resources, please select a location (U.S. only):
Note: Our authors are dedicated to honest, engaged, informed, intelligent, and open conversation about adoption. The opinions expressed here may not reflect the views of Adoption.com.