For those that follow my blog, you probably remember me mentioning that we were in the process of adopting again. Well, I’m happy to say that on Christmas Day our new baby girl was born (which puts all three of our kids with December birthdays…crazy, I know). It also means that now with two daughters, my son and I are outnumbered. Ha.
All joking aside, this has been a pretty crazy experience with lots of ups and downs (far more than with my other daughter’s adoption). Some of those ups and downs occurred before we were matched with our new child, others occurred afterward while waiting for paperwork to process so we could leave the state where she was born) and return home.
Since everything is all squared away and we are back home, I thought I’d share some of those ups and downs. It’s my hope that by doing so, more people might see that just because things don’t always work out how you planned (or wanted them to) it doesn’t mean that they won’t still end up well for you in the end.
One of the risks associated with adoption is that after being matched with an expectant parent, the prospective adoptive parents run the risk that something will endanger the match (i.e. one or both expectant parents changing their mind about adoption). This isn’t something that happens as often as people think, however, it does happen.
Oddly enough, this happened to us twice over the last few months. The first time, the expectant mother committed fraud about her pregnancy. The second time, the birthmother withheld medical information that showed she suffered from a mental disease. Because of this, she needed to go through psychological evaluation to prove she was mentally fit to terminate her parental rights before the adoption could continue. She didn’t want to do this. As a result, we lost several thousand dollars used to cover medical/living expenses for these two women prior to the match failing. In between these two matches, we also missed a couple of opportunities because expectant parents who initially chose us to parent their child, changed their mind once they realized that we did not live in the same state for them to visit the child post-adoption.
Unfortunately, these things happen.
More unfortunately, is that people often hear about or even experience these setbacks and get discouraged with the entire process. I find that sad. The little sacrifice or suffering we dealt with throughout these experiences is nothing compared to what we’ll be doing for and getting out of our new child. Something to remember for any adoptive parents is that a matched child is still not your child. Do not allow yourself to think of the child as yours or refer to the child as yours (even right after birth) until parental rights have been signed over to you and the child is actually yours. This outlook might seem a bit harsh, but it protects you emotionally from any ups and downs. I know it has helped us.
Next week, I’ll talk about the craziness that ensued once we were matched this last time …