By Halla Steiner, LCSW -
Hello. My name is Halla and I am a clinical social worker with experience working with birth moms, adoptive families, and parents wishing to adopt. There are several important factors ranging from legal to personal. In the next blogs, I would like to encourage discussion about the crucial elements of the adoption process.
After you have made the decision to adopt a child, the next important decision is to create your profile. Think of this objective as the process as marketing yourself to your audience… prospective birth mothers. Be sincere and honest about yourselves and your hopes and dreams about loving and raising a child that you did not give birth to.
It is important to recognize that as much as you want a baby to love and nurture, your birth mom wants someone who will love and nurture her infant just as much! The process is mutually beneficial. So, how do you present this in a way that is friendly, honest, and appealing to that expectant mother and encourage her to choose you and your family to parent her child?
The answer is to catch her eye with Photo ops! A series of pictures of you and your family having fun is helpful for a prospective mom. Seeing you in fun filled activities (like those she would love for her child to experience) is often a determining factor. I remember one young mom who chose a family because they had great adventures three wheeling and mudding as a family. Seeing photos of outdoor activities as well as at casual family get-togethers means a lot. They don’t need to see numerous wedding photos or lots of group pictures of you and your relatives but they do like knowing that you have family interests, activities and support and many are happy when they know their baby will have generational experiences.
A sense of humor is universally appreciated. If you have a silly picture, perhaps of a Halloween costume, put it in your profile! Let your viewer know that while you take parenting very seriously, there is also a fun and playful side of your life.
Many expectant moms appreciate knowing that you have a Spiritual connection. While this is not necessarily consistent, some of the moms- to- be, have received solace and assistance from their Churches. If religion is important to your family, find a photo that illustrates that and prepare a caption regarding the meaning to you.
What you are providing is a summary of your life with snapshots. If you have an interesting job, snap a photo. Think about what you would like to know about the mother and father of your child and be sure you reflect this in your own profile. Some of the most successful profiles, those chosen most often, have been filled with pictures and captions versus long narratives, that offer lots of insight into what this family is truly like.
Next time, we will discuss what to do if you are chosen…and if you are not!