Adoption is still relatively rare in the U.S. Only 1.1% of women aged 18-44 have adopted a child, and only about 1.6% seek to adopt. Still, studies show that one-third of all women ages 18-44 have at least considered the prospect of adopting a child at some point in their lives. To that end, it can be helpful to learn more about what the adoption process entails.[1.Jones, J. (2008) “Adoption Experiences of Women and Men and Demand for Children to Adopt by Women 18-44 Years of Age in the United States, 2002.” CDC. Retrieved November 18, 2015, from http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/series/sr_23/sr23_027.pdf]
Ordinarily, adoption is something that doesn’t cross the minds of most women who are just beginning to consider TTC. If you’ve already had a discussion with your partner about having a child and you know that it’s the right time for your family to bring a baby into the world, adoption will likely be the furthest thing from your mind.
If you and your partner ever find yourself in a position in which you are considering adopting a baby, you could potentially welcome a child into your family who will bring you and your partner joy and love, while also caring for him or her in a way that its birth mother likely would most likely not have been able to.
Should you ever find yourself considering adoption, your first step is to have a series of conversations with your partner. Together, you two can explore the option of adoption, do thorough research, and answer questions about whether domestic or international adoption is right for you, how you will live as an adoptive family (many couples are counseled on adoptive parenting), and whether it’s the right time to pursue adoption.
After a couple has had these conversations and done thorough research, the next step would be to select a licensed adoption agency. Representatives from a couple’s agency of choice can guide them through the next steps, which would include completing a home study, searching for a child, exchanging information with the child’s adoption agency, meeting and visiting with the child, and finalizing the adoption.[2.National Adoption Center (2015). “Ten Step Overview.” Retrieved November 18, 2015, from http://www.adopt.org/ten-step-overview]