Adoption

Adoption is such a beautiful thing. Being able to give a child a wonderful, stable home is amazing. According to the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute (CCAI), nearly 397,122 children in the United States are in foster care. Of these children, 101,666 are eligible to be adopted. That is a lot of children without a home and family to care for them. That is just statistics in the United States. There are even more children that need to be adopted in other countries, and many people have taken that route. In the past few years, adoption rates have gone up. Sometimes adoption is not the easiest decision to make, but it can change the life of a child.  

The Adoption Process

AdoptionAdoption is not for everyone. If your heart is not in it, then you should not do it. Some people adopt for the wrong reasons. Adoption should be done because you want to build a family. It is not about just helping a child in need, but when you adopt they become part of your family. Adoption is seen a lot among families who are unable to have children; this gives them the opportunity to care for a child as if the child is their flesh and blood. Some parents want to adopt a particular demographic of children, whether that be special needs children or children from another country. The decision to adopt should not be one of obligation or force. With the adoption process being so long and tedious, you must be sure this is what you desire to do.

The adoption process is not a short process by any means. You cannot just walk into an adoption agency and leave with a child. The adoption process begins with you first deciding to pursue adoption and then finding the right adoption agency. The whole process can take a year. It may even take more or less depending on the agency you choose as well as the child you are looking to adopt. Adoption is a legal matter and requires a lot of paperwork. Once you fill out the application, a home study will be done. This study is to ensure that you have a home suitable for a child. If the home is not considered fit, you may no longer be considered for adoption. After this process is over, you have to be matched with a child. They don’t pick a child for you, but they will give you some options based on your preferences. Then you decide which child you want. Then the process of legalizing adoption can begin.

Kids Left In Foster Care

Unfortunately, not all children are adopted. They grow up in the foster care system their whole life. Not all of these kids are orphans either. Sometimes parents have their children taken away from them. In other cases, parents just do not have the means to take care of their child. Once you reach a certain age, it becomes harder for you to get adopted. A lot of families are looking to adopt younger children or babies. Those in their teens are not always the first option. Once a child reaches adulthood, they are taken out of foster care. Of those children almost 40% are homeless, 60% of the men are convicted of crimes, and only 48% are employed (CCAI). It is also sad that 50% involve themselves in substance abuse and 17% of females wind up pregnant (CCAI).  

Psychological Issues

AdoptionAdoption can be an awesome thing, but it is not without its challenges. All children who are adopted are not initially receptive of a new family. Some of them struggle with becoming attached. Many deal with psychological issues that prevent them from actually being acquainted with a new home. Some children have a feeling of rejection. They are wondering why their parents left them or never wanted them. These are all tough things to handle. As an adopted child gets older, they may want to know who their birth parents are. This inquiry can be hard to the adoptive parents. It may make them feel like they have not done enough or maybe they were not good enough. Some children may not even pursue their birth parents out of anger or not wanting to hurt their adopted family.

Being a part of the foster care system can cause you to grow up having a problem with trust. Depending on the age you were adopted, those fears may have already been embedded within you. Identity becomes an issue in some cases. Although a child can have a great home, they may have a sense of not knowing who they are and where they belong. In some ways, they still feel incomplete. If an adopted child has emotional and psychological challenges, it is good to seek help. Getting professional counseling can change that child’s point of view and assist them to heal emotionally.
The foster care system is tough. Children may go through the system their whole life. Some kids do end up being adopted into wonderful homes. Adoption can completely change the course of a child’s life. As that child gets older, they may want to look for their birth parents. As adoptive parents, it may be offensive but in most cases an adopted child does not want to hurt or offend you. Knowing where you come from is a desire in most of our hearts, even those who are not adopted. Adoption has its share of challenges but being able to help at least one child makes it all worth it.

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