Throughout your adoption journey there will be a lot of unexpected moments that you may not be prepared for. Some parts of the adoption process are not always commonly talked about, so you might want to consider the following before you start your adoption process.
1. Adoption is not all rainbows and butterflies.
All we typically see are the feel good stories about adoption, however there are a lot of tough moments in adoption that can make it challenging.You can’t ignore that there is loss involved as part of adoption.
2. Not all adoptees come from “bad” situations.
There are a lot of stereotypes about birth parents, and while some birth parents may be experiencing hardships that lead them to choose adoption, there are also a number of birth parents that are living stable lives and still choose adoption.
3. The adoption process can bring up tough emotions.
While there is joy, there is also grief and sorrow. The expectant mother most likely is experiencing grief, sadness, and maybe even guilt. Adoptive parents also may end up dealing with conflicting emotions of jealousy and excitement when the adoptee’s relationship with their birth family grows.
4. You will find yourself in awkward moments.
Adoption brings together two families who were complete strangers before, so there are bound to be some awkward exchanges. In most cases, both parents will be learning about adoption together, so it is normal for things to feel awkward at times.
5. You will need to budget.
There are several costs associated with the adoption process that you need to prepare for. Your social worker is going to need to know a lot about your finances, and adoption specialists can help you understand what your budget needs to look like.
6. Adoptive parents may have trouble bonding with the baby.
Bringing home the baby is not the end of the adoption journey. It may take time to get used to this new normal and adoptive parents may not connect with the baby right away, so it is important to focus on new bonding activities and meeting the baby’s needs.
7. Not everyone understands adoption.
Some people have outdated views about adoption or may not support it. It is encouraged to educate people where you can, but to move forward where you can’t, knowing that you know your own truth and their opinion is their opinion. This includes family, because your family may not react the way you expected and may not share your enthusiasm which might hurt, but you can do your best to help them understand.
8. Every adoption experience is different
You can read about other’s experiences but need to know that your experience will be unique, and you should be prepared to expect the unexpected.
9. Adopted children are different
Adoptees have different needs than a biological child. Be prepared for tough conversations about adoption and birth family, and be kind and empathetic when an adoptee expresses feelings of not fitting in.
10. Adoption is not for everyone
At the end of the day, adoption is not easy and not the right choice for every birth parent or adoptive parent. It has challenges and requires a lot of dedication. Both parents need to be educated about the challenges of adoption before starting the process.