Managing Expectations

In today’s blog post, we look at the referral process and how to make informed decisions.

The outcome of an adoption is related significantly to expectations. This is a motivating factor in the programs Adoption STAR has developed in education and support. Adoption STAR feels that it is critical to provide prospective adoptive parents accurate and practical information, in a variety of approaches, about the complex needs of children coming into families through domestic and international adoption. In addition, Adoption STAR attempts to customize the education program of each Prospective Adoptive Parent to a certain extent with information and activities specific to them and the child they plan to adopt.

When a Prospective Adoptive Parent(s) receives a referral, Adoption STAR not only tries to obtain all available information about the child and the child’s birth family and background, but also attempts to provide this information within the context of clear, everyday language and what these needs can mean within a family.

Prospective Adoptive Parent(s) are strongly encouraged to have medical records reviewed by a medical specialist before a final acceptance of a referral or match.

Adoption STAR attempts to provide families with the time, resources, information, and insights to make an appropriate and informed decision about the acceptance or denial of a referral or match.

Below are some tips that will help you to manage expectations during the adoption process:

  1. During the adoption process be honest with yourself and your family advocate. It does not benefit the child or you to accept a match when you know is not right for you, just to satisfy the urge to be a parent. Take a deep breath and evaluate your life, patience level, flexibility, logistics, income, family dynamics and willingness before moving ahead.
  2. Becoming a parent is an overwhelming feeling however it is a choice. Don’t rush things, but if you do choose to move forward then remember you are choosing love and commitment.
  3. Don’t be shy to ask questions as well as to ask for help.
  4. Do not expect perfection! There is no such thing. There is no perfect parent, perfect agency or perfect child.
  5. Don’t compare your situation to others. You are not the same as another prospective adoptive family. They are not like you. You each have your own strengths and needs. Your journey will be different from theirs. Your ultimate family will be different from theirs.
  6. Focus on continuous adoption and parenting education. Read books, attend conferences, support group activities, consider keeping a journal/blog and be open to continuous learning.
  7. Believe and stay committed. There is no window into the future, but if you are committed to the process and work hand-in-hand with the agency, you will be successful.

Read More about the Adoption Process:

© Adoption STAR blog, 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the Adoption STAR Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.