Home study can be a stressful event for any adoptive families. The idea of someone critically evaluating your life and your character is intimidating at best. At worst, it’s terrifying.
You have your hearts set on welcoming a child into your lives. What if someone else decides you are unfit to fulfill that dream? Most prospective adoptive parents overthink the home study process and worry needlessly. Let’s dispel some of the common myths that give home study such a scary reputation.
Of course, money matters in all things. This does not mean that you have to be wealthy to be a good candidate for adoption. What’s more, the adoption process is expensive in itself, meaning that you may already be forced to get creative with your budgeting to afford even considering this journey. So many prospective adoptive families fear that even a comfortable income is simply not enough to meet the necessary standards for adoption. This is simply not true. Yes, your financial situation will be a big part of the evaluation, but they will be looking more at your overall debt, budget, and your spending habits. It is more important that you have stable finances rather than enormous wealth.
Only Homeowners Need Apply
Especially now with most trends reflecting a rise in renters over homebuyers, you do not need to own a house to be approved for adoption. Renting your home will not be used as judgement against your financial stability, your ability to provide, or your ability to commit. Again, you will be evaluated on your overall budget. If the massive investment of purchasing a house has not been on the table and is not even in your plans, don’t worry. As long as your living expenses are proportionate to your income, the fact that you don’t own your home does not mean that your home is not good enough for a child.
You Need to Be Perfect
This is a big one. When the topic of home study comes up, prospective adoptive parents start to nitpick and fret over every little thing in their life, past and present. They worry about everything from whether their home is clean enough to past run-ins with the law. Your home is meant to be lived in, so do not drive yourself crazy making sure it passes a white glove test. That minor arrest you had 10 years ago? It doesn’t necessarily disqualify you from being a parent. Everyone has a history and everyone makes mistakes. If you’ve clearly demonstrated that you have changed and grown into the responsible adult you are today, they will understand.
In the end, the most important thing to remember is why you are looking to adopt. The genuine love in your heart and readiness to commit to this child is more important than the lessons you learned from a few life blunders in the past. Your effort to provide a stable, promising future is more important than whether you have enough money in the bank to provide a trust fund. The home study will look at everything, but this should be a comfort rather than a source of stress. They are looking at the big picture, which means taking the bad with all the good.