We are in the very beginning stages of getting an adoption started. Recently, I did a lot of reading about the home study. I thought to myself, we got this until I came across the requirement to talk to any children living in or outside the house. My husband has two adult children (the girls are 21 and 22) the older daughter is married with 2 kids of her own. The issue I have is I have had a pretty good relationship with both of them over all. We have had both of them living with us for about a year at different times in the last 2 years. Back story- they both have different moms and I have tried to keep a great relationship with both of them. It hasn't always been easy. My husband didn't have access to his oldest while she grew up and the youngest he had until she was 5 or 6 when her mother picked up and moved to another state and married someone else. I have always encouraged my husband and the girls to spend time together and build their relationship and it has been a struggle. Mostly because the girls mothers constantly try to undo any building they do. I thought maybe he was the issue but after 6 years together ( I have known him since we were 12) and married 3 years I realized what the real issues are. My real problem and question is I am afraid of the home study and sharing our desire to have a child. I have no children and we have gone through fertility treatment over the last 2 years while never sharing that info with the girls because they haven't learned how to keep anything to themselves. I didn't want to hide that from them because I love them but I don't want my personal business spread all over the place by the people they would tell. I had the oldest living in our home while she was pregnant with her last child. It was so very hard to do treatment month after month and watch another person be pregnant everyday. She was pregnant when she came to live here and I love her so sucked it up and generally felt happy for her. But it still was hard. We definitely want to let the girls know if an adoption situation comes for us but in the early stages of home study I just don't want to share that with them until we are sure its even happening. I am looking for some advise on how to handle this with the social worker, since they will want to talk to both of the girls. I feel honestly feel defeated, I thought that adoption would allow me to have our dream but now I am afraid of our personal business out on the street and if we fail at adopting they will all know our business. Sorry for the rambling and thanks for listening.
Last update on January 5, 1:45 pm by Mrs Ve.
If you had become pregnant, your belly would quickly have informed the world that you were expecting. And if you had subsequently miscarried, the whole world would have known that you tried and failed to have a baby. Knowing that everyone would find out your business, would you have decided not to try to conceive?
Basically, it's the same with adoption. When you are in the adoption process, the word gets out. You'll need at least three references from non-relatives, in most cases, so you will have to tell them that the social worker will be sending them letters. You'll be going to an adoption agency for meetings and events, and might be seen. Your employer, or your husband's employer, or both will need to verify your employment and salary; word could get around the office. You might be seen going to the police station for a criminal records check. Even without interviews with your daughters, you won't be able to keep your plans a secret.
And, yes, some adoption efforts fail, just as some pregnancies fail. You will grieve, get counseling, and maybe try again. You may try the same approach, or another -- maybe international or foster care. And eventually, you can have a child. However, if you try to keep everything private, in pregnancy or adoption, you won't have friends or family supporting you in your grief, understanding if you get a little weepy sometimes, going with you to RESOLVE or another support group, and so on. And when you are in the adoption process, you won't have people to be understanding when the wait seems so long, or when the agency doesn't immediately email you a reply to a question or concern, or when you want to celebrate the resolution of a small problem, like when you FINALLY get your child abuse clearance, or FINALLY get your profile completed.
My suggestion to you is that you tell your daughters about the adoption, deal with their concerns, and celebrate your decision with them. They may turn out to be so happy that they'll be wonderfully supportive. And if they have concerns, from, "What if the pregnant woman changes her mind?" to "Will you still love me when you have your own biological child?" you can address them, express understanding of their concerns, assure them that they will always be loved, and so on. It can actually help your relationship with them. Young women of their age are usually so preoccupied with their own lives that they are unlikely to go jabbering to everyone about your plan to adopt -- and even if they do, so what? What you are doing is normal and natural, and very few people will be upset.
I understand your privacy concerns. I didn't want to tell most people about my plans to adopt until I received a referral. I was 51 and single, and thought that people would assume I'd lost my mind. But the more people I told, or who learned about my plan, the more people I found that were extremely supportive and excited for me. In fact, I didn't really find anyone who opposed my plan, even one crabby old uncle who, I thought, might be prejudiced against adoption from China because of his military experience; all he said was that he couldn't understand why everyone wanted to have babies (he was childless), but if I wanted to be a Mom, that was OK by him.
I lost my first referral because the child was adopted by a family in China, and the orphanage and provincial authorities failed to notify China's national adoption authority in a timely manner. And, yes, I grieved for the loss of the beautiful Li Weilin, with her calm, sweet face. I refused to answer my phone, at times, because I didn't want to have to talk to friends and family about the loss; I would just start crying. But I decided to go forward, and accepted a second referral. Ultimately, I went to China and Zeng Chufang became my daughter. She was 18.5 months old at the time. And once we were home and had "cocooned" a bit, the celebrations began -- in part, I think, because people felt involved in my adoption process.
Becca -- the former Zeng Chufang -- is now 20 years old. I can honestly say that, if I had let my desire for privacy outweigh my desire for a child, I would have made the worst mistake in the world. She was an absolutely amazing child -- and she is now an absolutely amazing young adult. She kept me young, and I fulfilled my dream of being a Mom.
Sharon