So you’ve got all your paperwork done, the social worker from your adoption agency has visited your home, now you’re ready for the baby, right? You’re thinking tomorrow would be good, right? Unfortunately, it doesn’t usually happen for most adoptive families that way. Depending on what you’re looking for in a child and which adoption agency or adoption agencies you’re working with, most families can expect a wait time of anywhere from a few months to a year or more.
Many families ask, “Why does it take so long?” A coworker I had once at an adoption agency liked to explain the process of waiting for an adoption like dating. You have things you’re looking for and birthparents have things they are looking for. It often takes time for that situation to come along that matches both at once. Some families are looking for a newborn; others want a little older child. Some families want a baby that looks like them, that is the same race as they are, others are wanting to share their home and love with a child of any background. Some birthmothers want to place their baby with a childless couple; others want to make sure their child has siblings. Some birthmoms want their child to be raised in the same religion they were or are drawn to families that share some of their same interests or hobbies. Between paperwork and conversations, adoption agencies get a feel for what each side is looking for. That helps them know which families a birthmom might want to select from as she is choosing a family for her baby. Occasionally, a birthmother will tell the agency what she wants but wants the agency to make the final choice. Make sure you know how the matching process works at your adoption agency.
It is so hard to wait. Like most things in life that are worth waiting for, it’ll all seem worth it when it’s over and the birthmom or adoption agency places the right child for you in your arms. Until then, hopefully the understanding of how the process works and why it may take some time will increase your patience. It really is WORTH IT!