My husband and I are in the process of adopting through the foster system. It has been my dream for many years to adopt a deaf child. I know sign, my husband knows some and is willing to learn more, I was a teacher so I have some knowledge of ow the educational system works...I just think we have a lot to offer. I read somewhere the easiest way to adopt a deaf child is internationally. This is definitely not an option for us now, and I don't know if it ever will be. I guess I'm wondering if anyone knows if it is possible to adopt deaf domestically and how one would go about doing that. Right now we'd be just be happy to have a completed home study (it has been an awful process every step of the way), but if I would love to fulfill my dream of adopting deaf someday, if not now.
If you are thinking newborn domestic, your chances may not be great, as many times it is not known that the child is deaf until after they are born and so often now, matches are made before birth or right after. It would not hurt to contact adoption agencies and let them know of your interest, but I would avoid any that wanted you to pay just to have them keep your info on file in case a deaf child came into care. There are probably deaf children in the foster care system, but that would take a new home study and classes. You could do a search on domestic agencies that do special needs adoptions and see if any would just keep your name on file.
I finalized the adoption of my eldest son in 2009. He will be going in for the 2nd part of a two-part surgery for a Baha cochlear implant in April. We will schedule the date on Monday. I adopted him via the foster care system. He has some hearing, but needs hearing aids to 'get by' in the world. He has worn the Baha band for about a year and is doing very well with it.
btw: I knew pretty much at placement that he was hard-of-hearing because he failed the first 11 hearing tests as a newborn. He is now six.
Thank you for your responses. I'm sorry it took me a little while to get back to this. Life got crazy, but then when isn't it really? I'm not sure why we would need another home study. Maybe if you see this momraine you could elaborate on that? We are actually looking at adopting an older child anyway, so that doesn't bother me in the slightest. (7-12, or thereabouts. I don't want to get hung up on age when there are so many factors at play.) I just wish I knew how to specify a deaf or HOH child, if that is even possible. Oh well. One step at a time. We are currently stuck in home study Hades (some special circumstances are making even harder than usual), so just getting that done will be an accomplishment.
Antenney: Adoption photolisting has a section where you can specify a specific disability and deaf/hard of hearing is one of those. There are currently 3 listed. They do have significant other disabilities as well though. This could be a tool for you to use.
Withay: My son has bilateral BAHAs. Let me know if you need any inside information.
Last update on November 17, 8:14 am by Sachin Gupta.
MamaTay - I didn't know anyone else here had a child with a Baha. We found out yesterday that my son will have the 2nd half of the surgery on April 17. He is having a unilateral done at this time. I'm not sure if he will need a second one later, or not. How old is your son? My son was 6 in February.
The homestudy you get for a private or an international adoption is not accepted to adopt from Foster care. To adopt from foster care you need a homestudy approved by a foster care provider, either from the county directly or an agency contracted with the state. There are different requirements for different types of adoption. In the case of international adoption, different countries have different requirements for the homestudy, plus you have to make sure your homestudy is OK by immigration standards. I am pretty sure that the foster care homestudy will also require classes. I was able to get a domestic adoption homestudy amended for foreign adoption when our domestic (private) adoption fell through, but when I contacted social services they said they would not accept it, I would need a whole new one and to take the classes.
MamaTay - I didn't know anyone else here had a child with a Baha. We found out yesterday that my son will have the 2nd half of the surgery on April 17. He is having a unilateral done at this time. I'm not sure if he will need a second one later, or not. How old is your son? My son was 6 in February.
Snurf is 13 now. He had his first BAHA surgery at 20 months. They did it in two stages. The second stage at 22 months. Activation at about 25 months. He is was one of the youngest to get a BAHA at that time. He had only the one for a long time. About 2 years ago he had the second done on his left side. He has complete nerve deafness in the left side where only conduction loss in the right side. It was hopped that the left would give him a small amount of depth perception. It hasn't been all that great but, it is there.
Has someone talked to you about the difference between the Cochlear America and the Oticon abutments and aids yet?
Looks like I left out information of interest. I tend to be WAY too wordy so when I make the effort to be succinct, I tend to cut it too short. Oops! Here is our story.
A little over a year ago my husband I decided we wanted to try to adopt a older child through the foster system for many various reasons. We filled out the mountains of paperwork, we went to the IMPACT classes (in Georgia), and we had 2 of 3 home study interviews done. At that point we were told we had to get a counselor's recommendation as to the stability of our relationship.
The reason for this was we told them about some counseling we had about 5 1/2 years ago. (We've been married almost 7.) When they contacted the counselor, they were told our records were "incomplete" and the issue was "unresolved." What really happened is we moved and our counselor stopped practicing at the same time so we just stopped going. But since we were honest (rookie mistake), DFCS was now obligated to send us back to counseling. What was an issue then isn't an issue now. It's been 5 1/2 years and we are still married, after all. We found a way to make things work. But that didn't matter to them.
We hit a lot of bumps in the road with the counseling thing. He actually approved us after just 2 or 3 visits, but DFCS didn't clearly communicate what they wanted with us (surprise, surprise) so the process became rather dragged out. In that time, I just happened to find out that our home study had been closed (we weren't told when it happened or why...and we were only told because I kept emailing for info and making a nuisance of myself). We jumped through all their hoops and only needed one more interview before being sent off for approval. Now, however, we wait even longer as the supervisor decides whether or not to even reopen it. And my husband is military and will be gone for trainings pretty much until November. So everything is on hold. Sigh.
I know this doesn't really pertain to this particular forum, which is why I left it all out at first, but it does give you an idea of what we have already done. And I know not all of this is DFCS's fault or our caseworker's, but I do not feel we have been dealt with in a professional manner and so I am a bit biased against the department right now.
Perhaps this might be helpful?
[url=]So You Want to Adopt a Deaf/HOH Child?[/url]
Wanted to mention as well that rainbowkids has a great searchable photolisting for international children available for adoption. Deaf/HOH is a criteria that can be used to search. I understand that this does not appear to be an option currently and that you are working with the foster care system. However, I did want to mention this as some of these children have significant grants available
Thanks for the website. I had read at one point it's easier to this internationally, and I guess it's true. Maybe someday when we have more money...For now, I'd just like an open home study that is on the road to being closed!