Adoption News & Tips

Adoption news and tips for birth mothers and adoptive families from A Child’s Hope.

Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month – October

When parents lose their child, there isn’t a word to describe them. Learn more about Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month.

Going from Pregnant to Adoption Placement: Why September is a Busy Month

Learn a little about the adoption match process and answer that burning question of “Why are so many babies born in September?”

Opioid Addiction and Adoption – What Waiting Parents Need to Know

Fortunately, the effects of opioid addiction withdrawal pass within a matter of weeks and the babies seldom need long-term medication.

The Adoption Journey for Shannon and Jaxon

I tell people all the time about my adoption journey and that I would have waited forever for my sweet Jaxon. He is worth every second that we waited.

Thank You Judy & Alan – Provided Adoption Respite Care For 200+ Babies

Judy and Alan are adoption respite care providers who have been serving adopted children for 38 years.

Adoption in North Carolina is Double the Fun with Twins

This Father’s Day we sat down with Kyle for the dad’s perspective on adoption in North Carolina.

Military Families May Qualify for Significant Benefits

For military families considering adoption, there are a variety of both support services and financial resources available before, during and after the adoption process.

How Long Will it Take To Adopt?

How long you have to wait to adopt directly depends on the flexibility in your adoption plan. Simple Answer: The more open you are on six issues the shorter the wait.

Adoption Tax Credit – 2017 Taxes

With the average cost of a domestic adoption at $36,000, the Adoption Tax Credit can cover more than a third of your costs.

Adoption Agency A Child’s Hope Reaches 350 Placements

February 6, 2018, was a historic milestone for the adoption agency. We placed twins, which were the 349th and 350th children adopted.

Wes & Catherine Adopt a Daughter

Wes, Catherine and son John Michael adopt a daughter. Hear about their experience as they finalize the adoption on placement day.

Choosing a Child Guardian

Why Your Schnapps-Drinking, Atheist Uncle Oscar Might Not Be the Best Choice for Guardianship. By Angel Simpson.

Adoption Placement Day with Ethan & Ellen

Meet Octavian, the new son of Ethan and Ellen. Watch their first few moments together as a new family.

Happy Holidays 2017

We are excited to share with you our video that features the children adopted through A Child’s Hope in 2017.

National Adoption Awareness Month Honors All Families

New Dads Spoil the Princess – This adoption was especially touching because these two dads had been waiting to adopt for five years.

Birth Mothers Talk About Placing Their Baby for Adoption

As we honor National Adoption Month, we take a moment to recognize birth mothers for the brave decisions they make.

Now is a Great Time to Consider Adoption From A Child’s Hope

Watch this placement day video to hear three great reasons to consider adoption.

Raleigh Dad Enjoys 1st Father’s Day After Adopting a Child

After a two-year wait, one Raleigh dad celebrated his first Father’s Day as a dad with the help of A Child’s Hope, connecting families in North Carolina.

Every Child Deserves a Chance

Hudson had a blast in school today. A bit of a miracle because in Hudson’s first 67 days, he survived kidney and heart failure and had heart and GI surgery.

Despite Rocky Road, Durham Woman Celebrates First Mother’s Day

DURHAM, N.C. — A Durham adoption helps a woman, whose road to motherhood was paved with speed bumps at every turn, celebrated her first Mother’s Day Sunday.

Birth mothers Can Show Love to Their Child Placed for Adoption

One of the questions about adoption I often hear from birthmothers is: “How can I let my child know how much I love him/her?” Learn the answer and more.

Three Sisters, Three Different Birthmothers, One Happy Family

Beth and Steve’s first daughter came in a whirlwind in March 2000. Today they have three adopted daughters through A Child’s Hope. Read about their family.

Placement Day

These two little boys are reminiscent of the biracial siblings on the NBC series This Is Us that premiered in 2016. Read Jacob and Jackson’s adoption story.

What Happens When An Adoption Agency Closes?

A Child’s Hope is offering a free consultation for any North Carolina families that were waiting with Independent Adoption Center.

US Military offers Federal Adoption Tax Credit for Military Families looking to Adopt

By taking advantage of the federal adoption tax credit, US Military benefits and employer advantages, thousands of American families are eligible and receive financial benefits each year for the cost associated with an adoption.

Lakeisha’s Adoptive Mother Story: “Meeting our son”

I still look at pictures and treasure the moment when the birth mother handed me this precious little boy. Our birth mother was wonderful! She kept us informed and included us on what was going on from the time she went to the hospital, after delivery and even after leaving the hospital.

A Child’s Hope Q&A Adoption Facts and Figures

There are three types of adoption – domestic newborn, domestic foster, and international adoption. Each adoption type has a different average cost. Learn more here.

Why would a Shark Divorce Attorney Start an adoption agency?

The simple answer is that A Child’s Hope was born because I got mad, got scared and fell in love with a little boy born in New Mexico.

Choosing Adoption: Patrice’s Birth Mother Story of Open Adoption

I was single, expecting twins, and my due date was near. I chose adoption because I wanted my babies to have both a mother and a father.

Betsy & Tommy’s Double Adoption Story

We knew the Lord had other plans for us! I was working for SAS in the Research Triangle Park at the time and attended an Adoption Fair where we met adoption attorney Parker Herring!

Shannon’s Adoption Story

We knew from the beginning that we would have a longer waiting time since we already had a child at home. All the praying and wondering when we would get that phone call that a birth mother had chosen us came on my birthday!

Samantha’s Adoption Story

It’s 3 o’clock in the morning on October 20th. We jumped in the car as fast as we could after missing calls from both our birthmother and our adoption counselor.

Modernization Comes to Interstate Adoptions & Interstate Compact

The Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC) was established in 1960 to provide a uniform legal framework for the placement of children across State lines in foster and adoptive homes.

Birth Certificates and Adoption

The last step before you can apply for a social security card for your child is to obtain a birth certificate with the child’s formal name and your names listed as the parents.

Adopting & Raising a Child with Special Needs – Things to Know

What I hear frequently from adoptive parents who are offered the opportunity to adopt a child born with special needs is that if they had given birth to the child then they wouldn’t hesitate to jump right in.

Surrogacy Adoption and Twins

It’s always a very special holiday season for any family when there is a newborn in the house. But when there are two newborns as twins, and the twins were carried by a surrogate who is their aunt, well as you might expect there is even more magic and excitement in the air.

Birth Mothers and the Best Gift of All

A birthmother placing a newborn baby into the intended adoptive parents arms for the first time is an emotional moment any time of year.

What do your adopted children want from you as the adoptive parent?

Adoptees want to hear their birth story; want to be reassured that you will never abandon them; need to know that they were not a mistake; and deserve to know why they were placed for adoption.

How long will we have to wait to adopt?

Two questions we get the most when talking to prospective adoptive parents is 1) how long they will have to wait before adopting, and 2) how much will it cost.

Adoption & Parents: Will my child hate me?

There are a multitude of misconceptions about adoption that can cause worry for both prospective birth parents or adopting families.

Top Adoption Myths, Busted

The most common concerns I hear from birth mothers regarding adoption are concerns about the child feeling abandonment or resentment toward their birth mother.

Things on a Birth Mother’s Mind

For a pregnant woman who has decided to place her child for adoption, the emotional roller coaster may have even greater ups and downs.

A Letter To My Child — How Can I Let Them Know…

These are written suggestions for a birthmother and birthfathers struggling with how to explain this either at the time, or perhaps in the future.

Nutrition During Pregnancy

The truth is, during pregnancy, your body is working harder than ever to provide everything your baby needs to survive and to keep you healthy too.

Happily Ever After: Adoption Stories

A pregnant woman who makes the difficult decision to place her child for adoption may do so for many unselfish reasons. Perhaps she is young and doesn’t feel ready for the tremendous responsibility of raising a child. Perhaps finances or family situations make it difficult to bring a child into the fold. Regardless of the reason, a birth mom still wants to ensure that her child grows up in a loving home. She wants to know if the adoptive parents will treat the child well. She wants assurance that the child will be truly loved, and will feel like a natural part of the family. At A Child’s Hope, we talk with adoptive parents at different points before, during and after the adoption process, and we hear wonderfully reassuring success stories of how an adoption led to a “happily ever after” ending for both the child and the adoptive family. Here are a couple of examples: Deanna’s Story Deanna always knew she wanted to be a mom, but a physical condition made it unlikely that she could safely become pregnant and give birth. By the time she was married and ready to start a family, several relatives offered to become surrogates, but Deanna had researched adoption and knew it was the best option for her and her husband, Ben. Deanna and Ben adopted their first child, Ava, through A Child’s Hope. Although their little girl has a different heritage and doesn’t look like them, her personality is a blend of both of theirs. A few years later, Deanna and Ben adopted a second child, and three years after that, they completed their family with the adoption of a third child. Both the second and third child were premature and required special care and attention early in life, but with love and support from their family, both children are healthy, happy and thriving. “Not a day goes by that I do not look at my kids and think how lucky I am to be their mother,” Deanna says. Ava’s birth mother knows that Ava is doing well because she receives photos […]

Pregnancy: What to Know About the Third Trimester

The last trimester of pregnancy can be at time of anticipation and anxiety. In a few short weeks, your baby will be born. It’s an exciting time, preparing for the baby’s arrival. But it can also be scary or difficult as the tremendous responsibility you’re undertaking becomes more real. Baby’s Development in the Third Trimester During this period, the baby is growing at a phenomenal rate. The eyes open and in this trimester, begin to detect light. Bones fully develop, the nervous system continues to develop, fingernails and toenails have grown, and brain and lungs are fully formed by the end of this trimester. Although the length of pregnancy is conventionally given as 40 weeks, that is really an estimate. A baby is considered at term at 37 weeks, but babies born even early in the third trimester can survive out of the womb. At the same time, not all babies are born by 40 weeks. They may be born a week to 10 days after the 40 week mark—often a result of an inaccurate conception date. Your doctor will monitor the baby’s development to make sure the baby is progressing as he or she should. Changes For You During the Third Trimester Just as the baby grows tremendously during this third trimester, you’ll notice significant changes in your own body. The baby’s increased weight makes itself known—you may feel the strain in your back or pelvic region. Some women find relief sleeping with a pillow between their legs to ease pressure. As the baby takes up more room in the uterus, you may feel more digestive discomfort. Pregnancy hormones affect the muscles in the body, so you may get heartburn as the muscles at the top of the stomach relax, allowing digestive acids to go into the esophagus. With the uterus growing, it pushes the stomach up, closer to the throat, making it harder to digest food. Eating frequent, small meals of nutritious but non-spicy foods can help. Many women become increasingly tired this last trimester, as the body tries to adjust to the additional weight and internal activity. […]

Pregnancy: What to Know about The Second Trimester

The second trimester of pregnancy often feels like the best. You may no longer get morning sickness, and you may now enjoy a hearty appetite along with a resurgence of energy. You also are starting to see visible changes in your body as the baby grows, but you don’t yet have some of the late stage discomforts. Baby’s Development in the Second Trimester The second trimester begins in week 13 and goes to about week 28. During this time, the baby continues phenomenal growth as the systems that are now in place continue to develop. Sweat glands develop, and eyebrows, eyelashes and fingernails start to grow. Other internal organs that have already formed continue to mature. The skin becomes less transparent as necessary fat accumulates. The baby begins to have sleeping and waking cycles. Although the baby may have begun to move at the end of the first trimester, during the second trimester, you can begin to detect the movement. Doctors can find the baby’s heartbeat with a stethoscope. By the end of the second trimester, the baby measures a little over a foot—about 14 inches in length and weighs about 2 ¼ pounds. For comparison, the baby is about the size of a whole cauliflower. Changes for You During the Second Trimester Just as the baby is undergoing amazing growth during the second trimester, your body changes to support that growth. Some of the changes you’ll notice may include larger breasts, stretch marks and finally, a baby “bump.” You may also notice skin changes, almost as if you were in puberty all over again. You may get more frequent bladder or kidney infections and leg cramps as your body adjusts to the increased work it is doing. Toward the end of the second trimester, you may feel aches as the ligaments in your abdomen stretch to accommodate the growing belly. You may also begin to feel a temporary tightening, or mild contractions, called Braxton-Hicks, which help prepare your body for delivery. As the baby takes up more room, squeezing your stomach and lung area, you may feel indigestion and […]

Pregnancy: What To Know About The First Trimester

The first trimester of pregnancy can seem to pass faster than any other stage—often because you may not immediately know you’re pregnant. During the first trimester, many changes aren’t physically visible, even though your body is hard at work. Whether a pregnancy is planned or unplanned, it’s important to understand what is happening during this critical time of development. What is a Trimester? Full-term pregnancies last about 40 weeks, with that time divided into three sections, or trimesters. The first trimester starts from the day of the last normal period to about 12 weeks. The second trimester goes from week 13 to about week 28. The third trimester goes from week 29 until week 40. Some of the symptoms from one trimester may carry over to another trimester, and some symptoms from a later trimester may appear earlier. Each pregnancy may be different, but these guidelines may help you anticipate the changes you’ll experience. About The First Trimester One of the telltale symptoms of pregnancy is a missed period. Each month, your body prepares for pregnancy by creating a lining in the uterus. If your egg is not fertilized during this time, you are not pregnant and your body automatically sheds the lining in the form of a menstrual period. If you are pregnant, the lining stays in place, providing a place for the baby to develop. The Baby’s Development During the first trimester, the baby’s brain and spinal cord begin to form (Particularly during this time, doctors strongly recommend pregnant women take prenatal vitamins including folic acid to aid the development of the spinal cord). The heart develops and begins to beat. Arms and legs grow; fingers and toes start to form. At eight weeks, the baby’s sex organs begin to form. At twelve weeks, with an ultrasound, you can tell if the baby is a girl or boy. The baby’s eyes are developing and eyelids have formed to protect the eyes, which won’t begin to open until the 28th week. By the end of the first trimester, the baby is about three inches long and weighs about half […]

The Cost of Being Pregnant—And Where To Get Financial Support

It’s no surprise that raising a child can be expensive. A recent estimate puts the price tag $245,340. But what may be surprising is the financial cost women incur even before the baby is born, during pregnancy. To have a healthy pregnancy, it is important to anticipate these costs, and learn where to go for financial help if needed. Initial Medical Costs Regular pre-natal doctor visits are essential for the wellbeing of you and your baby. Your doctor is likely to prescribe a prenatal vitamin that contains folic acid, which gives your body the additional nutrients necessary to help the baby develop normally, and that can help prevent birth defects. Your doctor may give additional prescriptions if you are anemic or have other health conditions to be addressed. During the pregnancy, you will likely have certain screenings and tests to ensure the pregnancy is progressing as it should, without taking too great a toll on your own health. If you have complications during the pregnancy, or a pre-existing health issue, your doctor may require additional testing to monitor the situation. WebMD, a health news site, estimates the cost of prenatal care in an uncomplicated pregnancy to range from $0 – $2000, and the cost of prenatal vitamins as $15 per month. Where to get financial help: You may be eligible for help through Medicaid, a governmental program for low-income individuals. Maternity Clothes Some women make it through their pregnancy wearing loose shirts and drawstring pants to accommodate the baby bump, but others may need traditional maternity clothes. If you are working through the pregnancy, your needs will be determined by your work dress code. Many women get through the pregnancy without spending much on clothes by combing through their own wardrobe for comfortable clothes, borrowing from friends and family, and looking for good finds, including sale items in the men’s department or clothes from local thrift or resale shops. Food It’s not fair that healthy food is often more expensive than junk food. Making nutritious choices for meals gives your baby the best chance for a great start in life, […]

The Benefits of Open Adoption

Thirty years ago, when a woman had an unplanned pregnancy, she often was sent to a convent or a maternity home until the baby was born. Afterward, her family and friends did not discuss that she ever gave birth. With the typical closed or confidential adoption, she had no contact with the child after it was adopted. On the other side, many adoptive parents never told their children they were adopted. But times have changed, with a welcome trend toward openness and acceptance about adoption. Now, birthmothers attend school until their due date; continue working; name their babies; and are able to spend time with their babies at the hospital. Their friends, co-workers and relatives know about the pregnancy and the adoption plan. Adoptive parents know the birth parents and may treat them as extended family. One study shows that 95% of today’s adoptions are open, at least to some degree. However, when I sit with prospective adoptive parents to talk about adoption, there is still a learning curve about openness in adoption. Here are some details about open adoption that may help. What are Open Adoptions? When you agree to an open adoption, it means that you as a birth parent can have some type of contact with the adoptive parent and adopted child. That may be indirectly, through letters and photos, or more directly, through phone calls and visits. In many cases, the birth mother can help select the adoptive families and that the child grows up aware he or she is adopted. The amount of contact depends on everyone’s level of comfort—it may be in the form of an occasional letter, or it may be sharing holidays together. With open adoption, the adoptive parents retain their legal rights and responsibilities for raising the child, but the birth parent has an opportunity to be involved in the child’s life. Birth and adoptive parents can decide on varying degrees of openness. For example, a birth mother may want to select the family, but not maintain contact later. In an open adoption, she may want to be able to have […]

9 Essential Ways for a Birth Mother To Take Care During Pregnancy

As a birth mother, your goal is the same as of any pregnant woman—to deliver a healthy child while staying healthy yourself. Pregnancy puts an understandable strain on the body, which basically becomes a complete life support system for the baby. Making sure that life support system is strong and vital increases the baby’s chances to survive and thrive. But it’s not just the baby to be concerned about—pregnancy affects every part of the body, from your heart, digestive system, skeletal system, digestive system, skin—even your brain. That’s why taking care of yourself during pregnancy is so important—your body has important work to do, and in order to complete that work—and recover from it—it is important to follow these tips to stay healthy. Schedule and attend all of your prenatal doctor visits. Although they are often routine, prenatal visits confirm the baby is growing and developing on schedule, and that you remain healthy. Your doctor can diagnose pregnancy complications such as anemia, high blood pressure or gestational diabetes, even before you may feel symptoms. Free prenatal care is available through state organizations, such as NC Association of Free Clinics. Take your vitamins. Get your body off to a healthy start even if you have not seen your doctor yet. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends pregnant women take 400 mgs of folic acid every day—an important B vitamin that can reduce the risk of birth defects like spina bifida. The AAP also says to consider taking a daily prenatal vitamin that contains iron, calcium and the fatty acids DHA and ARA. Eat a healthy diet. There’s a reason pregnant women are told they are eating for two—they are. You need 300 calories per day more than your usual to help the baby develop. A healthy diet is one that contains protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and fats. Your doctor can suggest the best combination for you, but the Mayo Clinic provides some helpful guidelines. Get enough rest. Easy to say, hard to do—but important. Whether you are working, going to school, or have other children or commitments, it is still important […]

Creating Family Through The Miracle of Adoption!

We feel like the luckiest people in the world to have created our family through the miracle of adoption! We have two children – Neva and Marco. We chose to work with A Child’s Hope because we liked the idea of having a North Carolina adoption and we felt like they could guide us through this complex process. Six weeks after completing our adoption homestudy and paperwork, we were matched with a birth mom! Our son Marco was born on a gorgeous fall day. I remember thinking, “today would be a good day to be born,” and then we got the call from the agency. Ten fingers, ten toes, and a healthy baby boy was waiting for us!  He has been a delight. When Marco was 18 months-old, we decided it was time to expand our family again. It was not long after completing our paperwork again that we got the call. This time, we did an independent match with a birth mom in Texas. She picked us because of Marco. She wanted a big brother for her baby!  A few weeks later, Neva was born and we were on an airplane to Texas to meet our angel!  We finalized Neva’s adoption with A Child’s Hope. We send letters and pictures to Marco’s Birth mom twice a year. We have never met her, but we love her and know that she has given us the greatest gift possible. We have an open adoption with Neva’s Birth mom. We talk on the phone, visit her in Texas, and exchange letters and pictures. She is an important part of our lives. Adoption creates a bigger extended family. Our children are surrounded by love and we are certain that we were all meant to be together.  Adoption has made us a family. A Big thank you to Neva and Marco’s family for sharing their adoption stories! Do you have a story you’d like to tell? Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com. Visit us at www.achildshope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please […]

The Journey to Becoming a Parent Through Adoption!

As a child, I dreamed of becoming many things: a doctor, a ballerina, and a marine biologist, but, more than anything else in the world, I wanted to be a mom someday. However, as a teen, I realized that due to being born with heart defects, my dream of becoming a mom, at least biologically, may not be possible. At the time, I did not know anyone who was adopted, but, starting in college, I began to hear more and more about adoption and met both children and adults who were adopted. When I got married just after graduating, two family members and my best friend offered to be surrogates for my husband and me when we were ready to start a family, but by that time I knew that someday I was meant to become a mom through adoption! My husband and I adopted our first child, Bella, seven and-a-half years ago through A Child’s Hope. Though the whole process took less than 6 months, it was not without its ups and downs. Just before we matched with Bella’s birth mother, we were matched with another birth mother whom we met but who ultimately chose to parent. It was hard to get past the pain of this revocation, but about a month later we became parents to our beautiful Bella, who does not look like us due to her Honduran heritage, but whose personality is a perfect combination of my husband’s and my own. Two and-a-half years later, we adopted our son, Carter, again through A Child’s Hope. This time we knew we wanted a Hispanic child so that Bella could have a sibling that shared her wonderful heritage that we had learned so much about during the first few years of her life. Carter was born about 6 weeks early, less than a week after we matched with his birth mother. He had some health issues the few first years of his life but is now an always on the go, a super-ready for Kindergarten 5-year-old. While Bella and Carter truly made my dream of becoming a mother […]

Adoption vs Parenting: Making The Best Choice

It’s one of the most difficult decisions a woman with an unexpected pregnancy can face: whether to keep the baby or to place the child for adoption. Most women in this situation have already decided to carry the baby to term, and are trying to figure out what the best option is once the baby is born. And, as much as it is a deeply emotional decision, it should also be a pragmatic one, one that considers both the short and long-term effects. Here are some important aspects to consider. Are you financially able to raise a child? Babies and children are expensive. It costs an average of $245,000 to take care of a child up to age 18, not including college tuition. Some birth parents, recognizing that they are unable to financially provide for the baby, find that adoption ultimately provides the baby with more lifelong opportunities. Do you have a realistic action plan for either decision–keeping or placing your child? If you plan to keep the baby, have you determined where you’ll live and what you’ll do for childcare? Will you have to quit school or work, or rely on someone for financial support? Do you have the support of family and friends? What changes will you need to make to your lifestyle to accommodate a baby, and are you prepared for those adjustments?If you are considering placing your child for adoption, have you looked at the different types of arrangements in your state, i.e. open, closed, to see which one you are most comfortable with? Have you talked with an adoption lawyer to find out what your options are, including how much say you have in the adoption process? Do you have any automatic emotional reactions that make one option seem impossible? Some birth parents feel the idea of “giving up” a baby makes them seem unloving. However, many adoptive parents will vouch that placing a child with a nurturing family is one of the most loving things a person can do. The stigma associated with unplanned pregnancy, adoption and single parenting is diminishing, which gives you […]

Every Mother / Child Love Story is Beautiful, but Ours is My Favorite

47 years ago, a wonderful woman who was not able to carry a pregnancy to term, had a newborn baby girl placed in her arms, and a love story unfolded that spanned 40 years. People seem fascinated when they find out I’m adopted. It was always such an inconsequential thing to me. A detail. My mom was my mom, my dad was my dad, and I never gave it much thought. My parents made a point of openly discussing the fact that I was adopted from a very young age, so it was a very natural, non-dramatic thing for me. I was told that my biological mother was single, and loved me enough to want the very best for me, so she made sure I was placed in a home with two parents. My parents went on to adopt a baby boy two years later, and then months after that, ironically became pregnant and gave birth to a second baby boy. So I grew up with two siblings, in a sweet little house in North Florida. My father was a machinist, and my mom kept other children at home, and sewed and baked for extra money, so that she could stay home with us. We didn’t have much money, but it was a happy childhood. Years later, my mother and I had the typical turbulent relationship common in the teenaged years. But by the time I went to college, I was calling home every other day. There was just no one on earth that reveled in the minutia of my life like my mother. Years later, when I got married, she made my wedding dress. It was a labor of love, and she told me afterward that she alternated stitches and tears. I went on to have four girls myself, and my mother was a doting grandmother. She taught my girls to sew, and enjoyed making the same bunny cakes for them each Easter that she’d made for us growing up. Seven years ago, I got the call that my mother was rushed to the hospital with a life threatening […]

“It’s About Family”

Why is it so expensive to adopt? I am asked this question at least once a week by a couple sitting front of me in an adoption consultation. There is usually frustration expressed with both questions; they want a child and costs stand in the way.  For some reason it seems acceptable to pay for fertility, but not for adoption. What they don’t know is that I was in their shoes, twice. 17 years ago in 1998, my domestic agency  adoption cost $35,000. My husband and I got an equity line and we took three years to pay it off. We traveled across the country and spent ten days in New Mexico to get our son. Our first adoption was expensive and stressful and we were devastated by the costs. Three years later in 2001 we adopted again, this time in a domestic  independent adoption that cost $14,000.  We traveled to Tennessee and stayed there ten days to get our other son. Here is the reality:  adoptions cost a lot because they are an intensive and involved service.  An agency pays social workers and  counselors and has  tremendous advertising and outreach costs. Then there are operational costs like liability insurance, telephone, postage, etc.  Adoption agencies are service agencies with a tremendous amount of risk. Here are the facts on costs of adoption: An international adoption will cost you from $30,000 to $40,000. An independent domestic infant adoption (where you find the child on your own) will cost you $20,000 to $40,000. An agency domestic adoption will cost you $20,000 to $45,000. A foster adoption will cost you zero to $3,000 and depending on the state you may receive $2,000 in reimbursement by the child’s state. Adoptions of US children with special needs are  eligible for the full federal tax credit, regardless of actual expenses. Good news is that there is a $13,190 Federal adoption tax credit which helps. Note that there are income limitations to the tax credit. Cost, pricey. Is it worth it?  Yes, if you want a child in your life its  worth it. It’s worth borrowing, begging […]

Make A Difference!

Make a Difference! A Child’s Hope is adding an Eastern NC adoption counselor. Over the years the Agency has always relied on contract social workers to help us in counseling women with unplanned pregnancies and adoptive parents. We have six contract social workers spread throughout the State, and we are in need of an MSW who can help us in the Eastern part of the Sate. It’s a demanding job – on call, counseling in the homes of adoptive parents and in the homes of birth mothers, and also visits to the hospital. We have found that  MSW’s who have flexibility in their work schedules and home life have the ability to travel on short notice and do the best job. The rewards are big…. you help create families through adoption! If you are an MSW and would like to learn more about this job opportunity, email ach@achildshope.com. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Adoption: How Much Does It Cost?

Overwhelmed by the costs of adoption? It may not be quite what you think… Individuals and couples wishing to have a child but unable to do so naturally typically have two options: adoption or assisted reproduction (ART).  Both options are relatively comparable in cost, with the average price of a domestic adoption in the United States ranging from $20,000-$45,000 and a donor egg pregnancy via in vitro fertilization priced between $20,000-$35,000.  If, however, you require a donor embryo, the cost could be $7,500-$20,000, and gestational carrier/surrogacy can drive the cost from $50,000 to over $100,000. Assuming, however, you are looking simply at the comparable donor egg option, one important thing to keep in mind is that adoption, unlike assisted reproduction, offers a federal tax credit and many employers offer credits as well.  For a couple with combined annual incomes of less than $180,000, the federal adoption credit could be up to $13,190.  Employer tax credits typically range from $2,000-$5,000 and are offered by companies like SAS, CISCO, IBM, the United States Department of Defense and many others. I encourage clients to determine first how much these credits will offset their cost of adoption to determine their ‘bottom-line’ cost. So now that you have done your cost analysis, how do you afford your ‘bottom-line’?  Most adoptive families are middle-income and are able to work out the costs over time.  Options for financing an adoption include: Borrowing against home equity, allowing a deduction while waiting for the tax credit; Borrowing against a retirement or 401K plan Grants and adoption assistance programs through public and private organizations; Asking family members and relatives to assist with cost Where there’s a will, there’s a way! E. Parker Herring is a Board Certified Family Law Specialist and managing partner of Herring & Mills, PLLC, a Raleigh family law firm.  Herring is also director of A Child’s Hope, a North Carolina licensed adoption agency. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your […]

Adopting and Raising a Child with Special Needs Can Be a Blessing

Adopting and raising a child with special needs is not for everyone…. There are many adoptive parents who have taken on the loving and demanding job of adopting and raising a child with special needs. These parents in my mind are as special as the children they adopt. What I hear frequently from adoptive parents who are offered the opportunity to adopt a child  born with special needs is that  if they had given birth to the child they wouldn’t hesitate.  They think of the child as their own almost from the start and they become fierce advocates.  For many its a lifetime commitment. One of my favorite memories as an adoption agency director is seeing a three year old named Matthew laughing at a local mall as he tried to  run away from his parents, Jack and Peggy.  His parents smiled broadly, they were so proud.  He was a beautiful toddler , with black curls and a smile that was  big and open.  And he didn’t walk, he ran… “And this is the child that we were told might never walk, “ Peggy said “And look at him now. We have to run to keep up.“  The family added another son by adoption, Michael,  # of years later. The brothers are best friends! Michael  was born with a life threatening physical condition called esophageal fistula. He was airlifted shortly after birth to a major medical center. Jack and Peggy were with him while he had 7  operations, first to connect his esophagus to his stomach and then later to remove a finger that didn’t function and construct a thumb from his index finger.  He still has challenges swallowing and has had four procedures in the last two years. Jack and Peggy’s  time and heart commitment has been enormous . Michael is now thirteen years old and doing well.  “You have to take on what you feel you can handle,” Peggy said recently. “We feel blessed. “ Thank you to Director Parker Herring and parents Jack and Peggy for allowing us to share their story. Do you have a story […]

When a Long Adoption Wait Ends with Just a Few Days Notice!

Bill and Priscila have been waiting for over three years to adopt a brother or sister for their son Thomas, who was placed with them five and a half years ago in the Agency’s offices.  Yesterday was the the end to their long adoption journey… Bill and Priscila  were notified by the Agency on Tuesday and offered the opportunity to adopt a nine pound baby boy who was a last minute placement.  They got it together in two days time and came with smiles and a car seat! Sometimes birth mothers make last minute decisions at the hospital to place their baby for adoption, and when they do, there is a lot of  hard work done by many people to make the last minute placement work. Social workers, attorneys and staff scramble to make birth mom’s situation and the baby’s transition go as smoothly as possible. Today, this nine pound baby named Lucas was dressed for Christmas and handed over to the adoptive parents by his respite care provider. It was worth the wait his parents said. Big brother Thomas leaned down to his brother in the car seat before they left the agency and when asked what he thought about his new baby brother, Thomas grinned and  said “So far he’s been pretty good .” A Big thank you to Bill, Priscila, Thomas and Lucas for allowing us to tell the story of their adoption journey! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call if you are a birth mother, please call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Placement Day – The Best Gift of All!!

Hunter and Laura got the best Christmas gift that anyone could ask for at Christmas – a newborn boy placed lovingly in their arms by their birth mother!! The adoptive parents and the birthmother had agreed on a name – Hezekiah – to be called “Kiah” for short. This was not the first time that the intended parents had seen the baby – they held their heart in their hands last Sunday when they visited him in the hospital. We took photographs then and marveled at how beautiful he was. During the seven day waiting period that North Carolina law requires, the birthmother was very emotional as one could expect and was counseled. It was a difficult week for her, but she stayed firm in her decision to place the baby for adoption. On placement day, she lovingly held the baby again for an hour in the agency’s offices while the adoptive parents executed legal documents. She kissed him tenderly as she held him and told him how much she loved him. He was very alert and would glace up at her while she was talking to him. She selflessly and lovingly gave her baby and the adoptive parents the Best Gift of All! The parts we play in helping our families create forever families through adoption is a rewarding one and we love to share their stories!! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.  

The Best Gift of All…

A birth mother placing a newborn into the intended adoptive parents arms for the first time  is an emotional moment any time of year. But when a newborn is placed for adoption at Christmas, emotions run high. Last Sunday, I watched as a young  woman with an unplanned pregnancy visited in the hospital with the adoptive parents she chose as they met their baby.  She wanted them to share in the moment.  She had delivered him three days before  cuddling the baby on her chest and then watched the emotion as she handed the baby over to the new adoptive mom to be.  She said how much she loved him. All in the hospital room tried to hold their emotions in check.  North Carolina law allows birth parents seven (7) days to revoke her consent. Even though the birth mother in this hospital room  had signed relinquishments the day before, all were mindful that despite all her best intentions that she could change her mind and the baby they were holding would not be theirs to raise. Birth mother admitted that she was feeling very emotional, but she knew that she was giving the best gift of all to this couple who had struggled for years with infertility and had been waiting with an adoption agency.   She smiled to see how their eyes filled with tears as they held him for the very first time! Thank you to Director Parker Herring for sharing her experience with us! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.  

Contest Winners!!!

A big thanks to all the submitted their heartfelt entry in our contest! Congratulations to our winners birth mother Sara, adoptive parent Elise, adult adoptee Sheryl and adoption professional Anne!!! To view all of our “Note from the Heart” entries go to – http://on.fb.me/1545B8P Although our contest has ended, if you have a special story of how adoption has touched your heart and changed your life, you can still tell us your story!  Whether you’re a birth mother, adoptive parent, or someone who was adopted as a child… No matter what your role has been in the adoption process, your story is special, and we still want to hear about it! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

FINALLY HOME!

For those of you who have sent best wishes to Baby Boy Hudson, he is finally home from the hospital! At nine weeks old Hudson has had a long wait in the hospital since birth before he could travel home to be with adoptive parents Marcy and Philip and 9 year old brother, Tyler.  Baby Boy Hudson was transferred shortly after birth and has been in two major medical centers since that time.  He has endured numerous tests, surgeries and the diagnosis and treatment is still continuing.  But on August 27, 2013, Hudson traveled home and neighbors, friends, and family had a celebration in mind.  And what a celebration it was!! Babies born and placed with adoptive parents  and those who are born and live with biological parents all have in common the fact that good health should not be taken for granted.  God plans for some babies to need special care life long and some to go home shortly after birth and thrive and meet milestones. Hudson is one of those special care babies, and his adoptive family has been with him every step of the way, no day without a visit and many days with tears and coping with the medical procedures. A Big thank you to Hudson and his family for allowing us to share their story! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

We Want to Hear Your Adoption Story!!

Whether you are a birth mother, an adoptive parent, adoptive parent or adoption professional, we want to hear your story! Beginning September 3, 2013 A Child’s Hope will launch our Facebook Contest “A Note from the Heart”. To enter join us on September 3, upload your photograph and a “Note From the Heart” about your adoption experience (Entry must be 500 words or less)   Contest Rules and Details – RULES Categories: For Birth mothers and Families Adoptees Adoptive Parents and Families Adoption Professionals Users will submit their photo and story into one of the four categories beginning on September 3, at 12:00AM EST (Eastern Time). Each person is allowed one submission, but multiple submissions about specific adoption stories are allowed (e.g. a birth mother and her adoption counselor can both submit an entry about their experience working together and building a lifetime bond). All submissions that include a link to a Pinterest board with more photos of their story will automatically earn 10 bonus votes! **View Official Rules and Privacy Policy. PRIZES The adoption story that receives the most votes in each category will win a $150 gift card! Be sure to encourage people you know to enter the contest and share their story, and tell your friends and family to visit the page and vote for your story! **Winners will be notified via e-mail and announced on Facebook following the conclusion of the contest. VOTES Your vote for your favorite adoption story will help decide our winner. Judges from an expert panel of contest sponsors will select finalists from each of the categories. Facebook fans will have an opportunity during the public voting period from September 3 at 12:00AM EST to September 30 11:59PM EST to choose their favorite adoption story from the selected finalists. “A Note From The Heart” Contest is sponsored by Noah Z.M. Goetz Foundation, Our Chosen Child, My Adoption Advisor and A Child’s Hope.   Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Completing Their Forever Family Through Adoption Networking!

Josh and Kelly took placement of their beautiful baby girl Ansley in late January this year.  The also took the networking challenge as waiting adoptive parents.  They signed up and participated in the online courses through My Adoption Advisor, created a profile, website, Facebook page, and YouTube video!  Not to mention getting the word out to family and  friends that they were looking to adopt! Through a  friend of a friend who knew they were looking to adopt, they connected with their birth mother. Once they established contact with their birth mom, they found it was extremely helpful that they were able to refer her to their website, where she was able to learn more about them and their family. Since their placement, they have learned that waiting parents are indeed putting themselves out there and networking in an effort to shorten their wait time and best of all… it really works!!!  “Networking brought us to our birth parents who gave us the gift of completing our forever family!”, said Kelly. A big thanks to Josh, Kelly and their family  for allowing us to tell the story of their adoption journey. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

John & Laura’s Networking Adoption Journey

John and Laura took home their newborn daughter Anna Claire from California in March. They call how they found her a miracle, but it’s really an example of how getting the word out to friends and family that you want to adopt can lead you to an adoption situation. “We took the courses through My Adoption Advisor, had a new profile and webpage created which was posted to Facebook and we also let friends know we were looking to adopt,” said John.  “A coworker who knew we were looking to adopt located a distant relative on Facebook who had recently adopted via an agency.  In their brief conversation, she shared that she had friends at work who were looking to adopt.   That was it; that was the extent of the conversation. The very next day, the agency’s social worker happened to email the adoptive mother and said that she had two birth mother situations, and was looking for potential adoptive families.  Our friend’s relative forwarded the email to her who sent it to Laura who called and spoke with the social worker.  We shared our profile webpage with the social worker who showed it to the potential birth mother.  Within 24 hours we were matched!” John and Laura had been waiting since January of 2010 with A Child’s Hope. They had previously worked with another agency for four years prior to signing with A Child’s Hope. “We had already waited for so long for a child, when the opportunity came along to create a new profile and to increase our advertising on a national level, we knew we had to put ourselves out there and give it a try.  So we did everything we could – Facebook, advertising, networking, etc. to get the word out – and it worked. Our daughter is everything we had prayed for”, said Laura. John and Laura will be attending the April 17th Hopeful Parents Support Group to talk about their adoption journey.  They have also invited waiting parents to contact them at JohnandLauraadopt@gmail.com if they have any questions. A big thanks to John, Laura […]

Birth Mom’s – The Testimonial of An Adoption Counselor

“I love working with birth moms because they are essential; ~without them, there is no adoption process!” “It is such an honor to have a pregnant woman share her journey with me and talk through her thoughts, feelings and experiences that have brought her to the decision that adoption is the right choice for her and her baby.  Every woman is an individual and I am reminded of that in working with birth moms because no two women’s journeys are ever the same.  I also love hearing why they feel drawn to certain adoptive families and watching the process of birth moms feel a sense of control over the placement of their child.  It is a wonderful, unpredictable and always unique experience with every individual, expectant mom.” – Leslie, A Child’s Hope Adoption Counselor A big thanks to Leslie for allowing us to share her experience! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

The Networking Challenge

In 2012, Jody and Paige took the networking challenge to heart and reached out to family and friends with an email… which led them to Riley’s birth mom and their placement!! Jody and Paige went on our website in 2011, and took to heart the need to network on their behalf to find a child to adopt.  They were matched with a birthmother who was due August 2012, and the match is a direct result of their efforts to reach out and let others know that they wish to adopt. They found their birth mother Megan by putting out the word among family and friends in an email with links to their website.  After finishing their profile and website with Hal and Joanna, Paige sent out an email to everyone on her contact list that she and Jody were planning to adopt, wanted to share their story and get the word out there!  Paige referred back to My Adoption Advisor’s online “Adoption Advertising & Networking” class which helped her create her email.  And about a week later they got a phone call from a woman Jody had served with in the military…  Her daughter had just come to her and told her she was pregnant and they reached out to Jody and Paige for a possible adoption plan.  All from an email! A Big thank you to Jody, Paige and Riley for allowing us to tell the story of their family! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

What is the adoption tax credit?

Congress recently passed a bill to avert the “fiscal cliff,” with the bill signed on January 2, 2013. The bill made the adoption tax credit permanent. However, it is not refundable. This has many adoptive parents asking questions like, what is the adoption tax credit, who’s eligible and what does it mean that the adoption tax credit is permanent? To view this entire article and all of it’s adoption tax credit FAQ’s go to: http://adoptiontaxcredit.org/faqs/ Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

It’s a Family Affair!

Cindy was joined by her sister on the most special occasion – Placement Day! This photo was taken on Dec. 21, 2012 with the birth mother, birth father and the birth mother’s mom. Ella was 7 days old. Single mom Cindy will never forget the Christmas of 2012.  Her newborn daughter was placed with her for adoption just four days before Christmas. “The fact that Santa brought me a stork for Christmas was the best gift of all,” said Cindy , who herself is adopted. Cindy’s sister, Janet, joined her at the office on placement day to meet Ella. “No matter the journey, the waiting process is the most difficult to manage,” Cindy explained.  Cindy, an advocate for open adoption, looks forward to having a relationship with the birth family. A big thank you to Cindy and baby Ella for allowing us to tell the story of their family! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Sisters!!

Alexis, now age 12, Meghan 10, and Savannah 6, all share the same last name but each has a different biological mother and father.  Their parents, Steve and Beth, used adoption through A Child’s Hope to help them grow a family. “The girls are as close as sisters can be,” said Dad Steve, who stayed home with all three until returning to work full time last year.  They each know they were adopted and each have different birth parents, but except for the fact that they all three share different biology, they are sisters.” Alexis was on hand to greet each of her new siblings when they were newborn. Each adoptive placement was a family affair.  Alexis first in 2000, then her sister Meghan in 2002, and their sister Savannah in 2006! A Big thank you to Steve, Beth, Alexis, Meghan and Savannah for allowing us to tell the story of their family!!! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

The open adoption spectrum? Or something better…

“My word for 2012 was write, and my word for 2013 is speak. I aim to talk with people about the benefits of openness in adoption (which is not necessarily the same as “open adoption,” as you’ll see below) to anyone involved in adoption who will listen.” Below is a guest post that originally appeared on the site of the organization that is sponsoring Lori’s attendance at the Gala where she will receive the award for Commitment to Excellence for 2013. The post was prompted by a question put to me. What is open adoption — and is it a spectrum?   I bet if you asked a bunch of people who know about adoption what open adoption is, you would get variations on the theme of contact, that there is a continuum of contact, and that each adoption will find its way on to a point on the continuum. On one end might be a fully closed adoption, meaning no contact and no identifying information. At the other end people might place full openness — adoptive and birth parents treating each other as extended families. Seems kinda flat, no? But as we move into the third decade of the movement toward open adoptions, I submit that we should stop using contact as our measure. Why? To view this blog in its entirety and become a follower go to: http://lavenderluz.com/ ***************************** Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Hopeful Parents – Are You A Waiting or Past Placed Family with A Child’s Hope??

Are you waiting or past placed family with A Child’s Hope? If you would like to be a part of a support group for waiting parents and for birth parents we invite you to join us at our upcoming 2013 organizational meeting! Hopeful Parents was started in 2001 as a support group for waiting adoptive parents, past placed parents and birth mothers. Waiting to adopt can be stressful, but support through others waiting and those who have adopted is a great way to deal with the stress!  When the group first started, activities were limited to an annual Holiday Celebration held in November, National Adoption Month, and for those families that had adopted that year lead a swearing in and adoption oath.. There were quarterly grab bag showers or “celebrations” for those who had placed in the last four months,  and there was a spring fund raiser which was a tea, featuring all babies and their mothers from the last year. For awhile the tea was held at the home of Parker Herring, and then tea was moved to a historic home in Raleigh. In 2004, one of the placed adoptive families asked for help in forming the group as a nonprofit and in that year the first slate of officers were elected and programs were held every year through 2012. In November 2012, the officers of Hopeful Parents asked that they be relieved of their positions so they could form another group, NC Adoptive Families.  This group is for families who have adopted and live in NC and plan to have play dates for kids as well as support meeting for parents. Over the years in Hopeful Parents there has been other activities including: gift bags for birth mothers at the hospital; a birth mother fund, an annual CPR class, and a maternity clothes closet in addition, each year there was either a “Cookies with Santa” or “Potluck with Santa.” There is interest in the existing non-profit Hopeful Parents being revived in a version of what existed before, and the most interest has been expressed on a monthly support group […]

OPENNESS IN ADOPTION: FROM SECRECY AND STIGMA TO KNOWLEDGE AND CONNECTIONS

A major new report depicts just how extensively adoption in the U.S. has changed over the last several decades – from a time when it was shrouded in so much secrecy that birth and adoptive families knew nothing about each other, to a new reality today in which the vast majority of infant adoptions are “open,” meaning the two families have some level of ongoing relationship. The institution of adoption has made significant strides in the last several decades, but elements of its clandestine, stigmatized past remain – and, as a consequence, so do many myths, misconceptions and inaccurate stereotypes. One stark example is that even though openness in adoption is fast becoming the norm within the United States (especially in the placement of infants), the very notion of “open adoption” – which entails varying levels of ongoing connections between adoptive families and their children’s families of origin – is unfamiliar, misunderstood and even incomprehensible to much of our culture. To read this entire article go to: http://bit.ly/UbqzNt Authors: Deborah H. Siegel, Ph.D. and Susan Livingston Smith, LCSW Published: 2012 March, New York NY: Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute   Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at ach@achildshope.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Michael and Katy – zip line anyone?

Large families, zip lines, and snuggly puppies!  That’s what life is like with Katy and Michael – along with sci-fi/fantasy books and movies and the Big Bang Theory on TV. Katy is a special education teacher, and Michael is a mechanical engineer who loves to take things apart to see how they work.  Time for a baby to share the fun! They long for the day when they can introduce their adopted baby to their niece Ella and do all the fun things they like to do, from playing football and ultimate Frisbee in the back yard, hikes through the woods, read lots of books, and eating hot dogs while watching a baseball game. They have so many fun things in store for the child they’re hoping to adopt soon! A Big thank you to Michael and Katy for allowing us to tell their story! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Have you ever been late for a date?

Hunter almost blew his first date with Laura when he was late on their first date, but he finally made it, and neither one of them ever wanted the night to end!  Hunter and Laura’s friends had been trying to set them up for months, but Hunter got impatient and took matters into his own hands and called Laura. After talking for several hours, SHE asked him out! When their dogs met the next day and became best friends, the handwriting was in the cards, and their friendship grew into marriage in 2008.  They walked down the aisle to “Here Comes the Sun” by the Beatles instead of the traditional wedding march – that is how they roll! Now they like to fish at the beach and work and play in their 10-acre back yard.  They are waiting to adopt a boy or girl to share the fun! A Big thank you to Hunter and Laura  for allowing us to tell the story of their family!  You can also visit their Facebook page at: http://on.fb.me/SDPkoa Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Saying Hello Before Saying Goodbye…

You will be saying goodbye to your baby.  We encourage you to say “hello” and spend time with your baby before you place him or her with the adoptive family you have chosen.  Time in the hospital can be used to feed him or her, change, sing, snuggle, and rock your baby.  However you wish to spend this time is up to you! Many birth mothers ask for 24 hours to be with the baby just by herself, and take pictures. We encourage you to bring a special outfit for the baby and dress him or her. You do not want to regret later on not having that special time.  Birth mothers who take the time at the hospital to be with their child have a very precious memory that stays with them forever. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Ever wondered what you would be getting into if you stayed at home with the kids?

Mike wasn’t sure what he was getting into when he decided to stay home with the kids, but he loves it!  Mike is a stay-at-home dad, and Sheila is a Certified Public Accountant.  So he is a “Mr. Mom” and Sheila goes to the office each day. The list of what the family enjoys is very long.  They enjoy music, sports, board games, traveling, amusement parks…the list goes on and on!  Mike and Dylan (age 9) take guitar lessons, and Summer (age 7) is starting piano lessons.  And Presley (age 2), who knows what instrument she’ll decide to pick up, but whatever it is, her family will be right there to help her along. “Being a family is about the people who love and support you no matter what.”  That’s what Mike and Sheila believe, and along with Dylan, Summer and Presley, they are ready to love and support their next child no matter what! A Big thank you to Mike, Sheila for allowing us to tell the story of their family! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Sharing Their Dreams!

Rob and Emily both work in health care. Emily is a nurse who works three days a week – a great schedule for raising kids! And Rob is a graduate student in radiology. They have a large, extended family that lives close, so there are lots of family get-togethers and vacations. Rob and Emily are an active couple who enjoy traveling, fishing, hiking, and just spending time outdoors with their chocolate lab, Bailey! They are living their dream and want a child to share it with. A Big thank you to Rob & Emily for allowing us to tell their story! Do you have a story you’d like to tell? Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com. Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Adoption Comes Naturally!

Family comes first for Jim and Shannon.  They spend lots of time with their brothers and sisters, and their children, several of whom are adopted.   That’s why Shannon always knew she would adopt.  Family activities involve traveling, kayaking and horseback riding, and Jim’s mother is just waiting to make a quilt for their new baby.  Now all they need is the new baby! A big thank you to Jim & Shannon for allowing us to tell their story! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

It All Started As Friends!

This couple started out as friends soon after college, their relationship grew, and they were married in 1999.  Kristen and Dave love sports, travel, volunteer work, and they are dedicated to their friends and family.  Their five year old son Aidan will make an exceptional big brother. Among the things they plan to teach their children: that laughter and comfortable shoes are the secrets to happiness!  Dave, Kristen and Aidan live in a newly remodeled house with lots of room for kids to play, inside and out, and they hope to adopt a baby soon! A big thank you to Dave, Kristen and Aidan for allowing us to tell the story of their family! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Celebrating 275 Adoptive Placements!!

Every placement day in our office is a tug at your heart strings sort of day, but when we reach significant numbers here at the agency we are very proud and very happy! Last week baby Caroline was brought in to meet her adoptive parents for the first time.  She was  the 275th baby that our agency A Child’s Hope has placed for adoption. Each one has been and will always be very special. We are very proud to have played a part in uniting so many birthparents and waiting adoptive parents over the years.  Adoption is truly a loving way to build a family! Thank you to all 275 families that have allowed us to be a part of this very special time in their lives! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Afraid your baby will not know that he or she looks like you??

Adopted children want to know how they look like their birth parents, and adoptive families like to be able to tell them. There is no denying biology, and in adoption, any information that the adoptive parents can pass on give the adopted child a sense of identity. The child you place for adoption will always have your heart, and will also have some of your physical features. Whether your child inherits your eyes or the birth father’s height and long legs, this information is told the adoptive child with love and appreciation. Do you have a story you’d like to tell? Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com. Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

It’s all in the name!

Birth parents have every right to name the child during the pregnancy and to keep that name in their hearts.  And that name will be reflected on the birth mother’s copy of the birth certificate.  In fact, most birth mothers do choose a name and refer to the baby by that name. Although adoptive parents have a legal right to choose the name that will be on the final birth certificate, the trend now is for the birth parents and the adoptive parents to talk to each other about the baby’s name. Often the final name is something that everyone has discussed. We see many adoptive parents choose one of the birth mother’s names for the baby’s final name, and we also see a lot of babies that are given a name that honors the birth mother or birth father – such as using a birth parents’ name as part of the final name. I remember receiving my oldest son’s original birth certificate when he was three months old and realizing that his birthmother had chosen the name Joseph Anthony. How I wish I had known what she had chosen for him, because it would have been beautiful to give him that name! Sometimes when he looks at me, and I see her long eyelashes in his eyes and his full eyebrows, I think, “Joe Anthony, you are beautiful, just like she is!” Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Waiting to Adopt – Kirk & Andrea

Kirk and Andrea met through a mutual friend at a tailgating party before a local college football game and have been married since 2001.  Kirk is the love of Andrea’s life, and Andrea is Kirk’s best friend.  They are very active in their church and in their daughter Bailee’s life. Bailee enjoys in gymnastics, cheerleading, playing in her backyard, and swimming at the neighborhood pool.  And she’s anxious to share all she’s learned with a new brother or sister! Thanks to Kirk, Andrea and Bailee for sharing the story of their family with us! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Special Babies Deserve and Get Special Parents with Adoption!

Every woman about to give birth worries about whether the baby will be born safely and healthy! And most babies are born safely and healthy. When you are making a plan to place your baby for adoption, it is normal to worry that the adoptive parents you have chosen may not accept your baby if he or she is born with a defect. Do not worry! There s always a loving, caring home for your baby. Most adoptive parents bond with the baby before birth so any health problems are accepted. And because so many tests are now done before the baby is born, it is rare for a baby to be born with a serious health condition that doesn’t show up on the tests. But when there is a baby born with a serious health problem that the adoptive parents feel they cannot provide care for, there is always another great family ready to step in and love the child! Babies have been placed for adoption when they were born with severe brain damage, serious heart defects, and other birth defects that require years or sometimes a lifetime of special care. Regardless of your baby’s health at birth, he or she will be loved and cherished for life if placed for adoption! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Waiting to Adopt – Ike & Pam

Ike and Pam met and actually dated in high school but then went their separate ways for college.  Years later, though, they ended up at the same college – Pam for graduate work, Ike finishing his degree – in the same apartment complex, in the same apartment building, across the hall from each other.  It was fate! This time around the timing was right. They married and that was 14 years ago, and they’re still happy together!  Ike and Pam love spending time in the mountains and at the beaches in North Carolina.  They’re both athletic and enjoy playing and watching sports.  They love spending time with their friends and family and are proud godparents of their best friends’ daughter. Both their families live within a short drive, so holidays are eventful!  Between them, Ike and Pam have nine nieces and nephews, two of whom are adopted. They plan to tell their child as much about his or her birth mother and her family as she is open to, and about the love it took for her to make the adoption decision. Thanks to Ike and Pam for allowing us to tell the story! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Adoption Books for Kids – Little Miss Spider

It’s never too early to talk to your little one about being adopted, and there are some great children’s books out there to help. One of our favorites is Little Miss Spider by David Kirk. Little Miss Spider learns that family is about love, not what you look like.  The story is also available on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4_7oNLoOcYc. Some of the questions your child will ask may be difficult, but if you plan ahead, those difficult conversations will become incredible bonding experiences. Do you have a story you’d like to tell? Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com. Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Indiana Jones meets Ally McBeal – and Adoption Ensues!

It’s a war time love story! Sal and Kathy met in the Persian Gulf on board a ship.  Kathy was a Navy nurse, and Sal was a Merchant Marine.  It’s an old story – they fell in love during the war and have been together ever since! Sal is currently a professor at a private university and studied archeology and history, and Kathy is a lawyer with her own small practice.  They love swimming, spending time with family, and being outside.  But mostly they love parenting their adopted son, Christopher, now four years old. Christopher is not so patiently waiting for a brother or sister.   “I promise I will even share my toys with my new little brother or sister,” says Christopher.  Sal, Kathy and Christopher are anxiously waiting for the phone call to let them know that they have been chosen by a birthmother and a brother or sister for Christopher is on the way! Thanks to Sal, Kathy and Christopher for allowing us to tell their story! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Anxiously Waiting…

Janice and Leon met at work at a small software company in England. Janice was in accounting, Leon was a traveling software consultant, and they fell in love over Leon’s expense reports. When they were offered an opportunity to come to America, they jumped at it! Janice enjoys baking and photography, while Leon golfs every chance he gets. They travel – Janice’s family lives all over the world, and Leon’s five brothers and sisters are in England – hike, and relax around the house with their 15-year-old calico, Purdy. Even though they don’t have kids of their own…YET…they enjoy playing with their friends’ children and can’t wait to pass on their favorite traditions. Leon’s favorite: Waiting at the top of the stairs on Christmas morning while mom and dad go down to see what Santa and the reindeer had left.

A Bend In The Road

Jeff and Lisa have been married for about 14 years.  The first few years of their marriage, they just enjoyed being with each other.  They wanted to wait to have kids.   However, after numerous doctor visits and medical procedures, they accepted that they wouldn’t be able to conceive.  Jeff and Lisa started exploring adoption through friends who had been through similar issues.  Lisa says, “Our friends were so blessed with a beautiful baby through adoption.  We pray daily that God will answer our prayers.” Lisa and Jeff spend lots of time outdoors and with their extended families, and they’re very active with the youth group at church.  In addition to Easter egg hunts, Christmas plays and other events, Jeff and Lisa go to church camp at the beach with about 50 kids every year.  They look forward to the day when their own adopted child can go on the trip too! Thanks to Jeff and Lisa for allowing us to tell their story! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

The First Time…!

“One gets only a day or two in an entire lifetime as incredible as the day we saw your face!” The first time you see your child’s face is a memory that stays with you forever. As an adoptive mother, I’ve had the joy of seeing my two little boys both just hours after their birth.  I think of those first few moments so often and smile each time. No matter how many precious memories you gather in the year that follow, those first few moments of seeing your baby and knowing that “he is yours to raise” are, to me, frozen in time as if God reached his hand down and said “Stop, remember this moment!” My oldest son travelled with us when we first saw his brother in the neonatal unit of a Tennessee hospital. This photograph is the moment when they first saw each other. One boy, age four, meeting the newborn boy destined to be his brother. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Adoption Can Be Simply 1+1!

Sharon was 39 years old and wanted a child, but she just hadn’t met Mr. Right. “Well, I wasn’t sure I was meant to find Mr. Right, but I knew I was meant to be a mom, Sharon said. “People kept telling me I should adopt, but I was concerned I couldn’t do it on my own.” Sharon wanted to be a mom, so she followed her heart and signed with our adoption agency. She adopted Katelyn, an African American girl who was born in 2005. Sharon has faced challenges as a single woman adopting a child, and because Sharon is Caucasian, adopting an African American infant brought on complications.  But thanks to A Child’s Hope, these challenges have been met with love and humor. The result?  A little girl with a very devoted mother. “Katelyn is a part of me that will always be there,” said Sharon. “She is my daughter, and I am the only mother she has ever known. And she always comes first. Adopting Katelyn is the absolute best thing I have ever done, and I would absolutely do it again.” The pieces of Sharon’s puzzle have come together – the love she felt for Katelyn rushed into every facet of her life, and she married Mr. Right last year. Yes, Sharon does receive comments from strangers about Katelyn, but she has learned to handle it with humor. “My favorite comment is when I’m asked if her father was African American,” Sharon said. “I always respond, ‘Yes apparently he was.’” Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Are You Afraid?

There is no way around the fact that there is heartache when you place your child for adoption. You will grieve and over time the pain lessens, but you will not forget the loss. It takes courage and trust to place a baby. It’s important when placing a baby for adoption that you work with a trained adoption counselor before to learn about the grief you will experience and to prepare yourself.  Birthmothers often make keepsake boxes of the baby’s bracelet, by take pictures and writing a letter to the baby saying goodbye. What helps the most with the heartache is to know that you love your child so much that you have chosen to give him/her the best life possible – something that at the time you are not able to give. Parenting is the biggest challenge all of us face!

Adopting Again!

John and Nora already know what it’s like to adopt a child.  Cooper, three years old, joined John and Nora through an open adoption.  John and Nora still talk to and see Cooper’s Tummy Mummy regularly, and she’s been thrilled with their parenting.  John, Nora and Cooper have five family traditions – eating together every night as a family; breakfast in bed on your special birthday plate; going out for ice cream after the first and last day of school; a good luck meal on New Year’s Day, and during the summer, Friday night is pizza night at the pool!  John and Nora’s families live close enough to come by and spoil Cooper on a regular basis.  And everyone – especially Cooper – is looking forward to spoiling the next baby as well. Thanks to John, Nora and Cooper for allowing us to tell the story of their adoptive family. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Hoping to Share Their Love!

Bill and Priscila met in graduate school during Priscila’s second week in the United States as a visiting student from Brazil.  After dating for awhile, Bill tried to propose to Priscila in Portuguese.  He mangled the translation, but she understood the ring, and they’ve been happily married since 2004.  In 2008,  Bill and Priscila adopted their son, Thomas through A Child’s Hope. They like to play at parks and playgrounds, go to museums and swim at the nearby pool.  They also enjoy reading and listening to music together.  Thomas speaks both English and Portuguese and sometimes translates sentences into Portuguese if his Brazilian grandmother doesn’t understand! Bill and Priscila can’t wait to add one more member to the family, and Thomas is ready to share his parents with a brother or sister who will join his forever family through adoption.  They will also be our featured waiting adoptive family of the week this Saturday. Click here to see their complete web site. Thanks to Bill, Priscila and Thomas for allowing us to tell the story of their adoptive family. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Celebrating an Angel!

Today we give thanks to our own angel who for 8 years helped us care for our babies! Last year Anne Heath, MSW, retired as a respite care provider after 8 years of working with our agency, providing in home care for newborns for the seven (7) day period when the baby left the hospital and then was placed a week later with adoptive parents. Anne, who worked her day job at Catholic Charities while caring for babies, loved the job, despite the sleepless nights, feedings, and diaper changes. Anne’s presence was always welcomed. We always received photos where she had spent time with the baby with stuffed animal and she lovingly gave a photo scrapbook to the family on placement day, as well as a detailed log of feedings and events during the waiting period. Anne would come to placement and talk to the adopting parents about the baby’s schedule, likes and dislikes. She would come to placements, hand over the baby and then safely adjust car seats, give a hands on lesson in diapering, feeding and swaddling. Anne has and continues to touch the lives of  so many, as a Nun with the Catholic church, as a social worker and all of the families that she helped create with her volunteer work as a respite care provider. She cared for over 79 babies during her time as a respite care provider over 16 years, and each child is remembered with love by her.  And when a baby stayed with Ann, there was always a quiet visit to church while Anne attends Mass! A big thank you to Anne for letting us share her story! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Sometimes Even Older Children Need a Forever Home!

A Child’s Hope received a call from a 24-year old birth mother in North Carolina who was not able to parent her three-year-old twins – a boy and a girl.  Chris and Devon were bouncing back from a match earlier in the year in which the birth mother decided to parent.  But they were beyond excited about this possible placement and worked with us to take the twins into their home within a very short period of time!  Since they did not have any children, the three-year-old twins were a great match! Amir and Alanna are getting ready to celebrate their 4th birthday, and they are still each other’s best friend! When A Child’s Hope places an older child, the birth parents are usually in crisis.  The placements happen quickly. In a short amount of time the Agency arranges a match meeting, obtains medical records, and helps transition the child to the adoptive parents.  And in the case of this family, the transition was a spectacular success! Thanks to Chris, Devon, Amir and Alana for allowing us to tell the story of their adoptive family. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Jack and Nora Want Another Sibling!

Nick and Kate met in college at a dance marathon to raise money for children with cancer.  Their bond formed immediately, and they ultimately married in 2003 in the church where Kate’s parents and grandparents were married.  Kate is an attorney; Nick works for a computer company; and they both love playing and spending time with their biological son, Jack, who is two, and their adopted daughter Nora, who is 12 months old.   The family loves to hike with their two dogs, carve pumpkins at their annual Halloween party, swim, play, and ride their bikes together. What’s missing?  Another child to share in the fun!  Nick and Kate always wanted to expand their family through adoption.  They adopted Nora in Florida and loved doing it so much they can’t wait to do it again!  Nick and Kate look forward to sharing their love with a new son or daughter.   And Jack is looking forward to teaching Nora and a new brother or sister everything there is to know about how to play on the awesome swing set and tree-house fort in the back yard.  Click here to learn more about Nick, Kate, Jack and Nora and their quest to grow their family through adoption. Thanks to Nick, Kate and their kids for allowing us to tell the story of their adoptive family. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Birth Mothers Can Receive Free Prenatal Care!

Prenatal care is important but expensive. We know this. But you need to take care of yourself and your unborn child.  Did you know that many of our birth mothers automatically qualify for Pregnancy Medicaid?! We will help you apply and walk you through the process. Women making adoption plans for their baby can also receive payment of insurance co-payments, as well as any medical expenses that result when Medicaid doesn’t apply and you don’t have insurance. Once prenatal care is set up, your adoption counselor can help you schedule and attend your appointments. If you have any questions about how to get medical care while you are pregnant, call us. 1-877-890-4673 (HOPE). Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

The Birth Plan

Many women making an adoption plan are worried about how hospital staff and physicians will treat them, and whether or not their time in the hospital will be stressful. Our adoption counselors help a birth mother think through her options about her hospital stay and encourage her to put her thoughts into a formal written birth plan that she takes to the hospital. If there is enough time, our adoption counselors actually place a copy of the birth plan in the hospital chart. Some birth mothers choose to check into the hospital under an assumed name and to be on a floor separate from the floor where the baby is in the nursery. Other birth mothers choose to stay on the floor where the nursery is located and have the baby kept in the nursery. Still other birth mothers choose to have the baby stay in the room for part or all of the time. It’s totally the birth mother’s choice, based on her preferences. Our adoption counselors work with the hospital social worker ahead of time to introduce the birth mother to the hospital staff in order to reduce inadvertent pressure from “well-meaning” staff. Another way that a birthmother’s wishes can be respected is by placing a letter into her chart asking the hospital staff to respect and not question her choice. Birth mothers are counseled on how to respond if a hospital staffer says something inappropriate, and our adoption counselors are always available to the birth mother if she needs them. Pleasant experiences at the hospital are the norm, not the exception. Photos are taken and often the adoptive parents send flowers and gifts. After all, the birth mother has just given the adoptive parents the greatest gift in the world! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

My Adoption Finance Coach Radio Show – Saturday, June 16th

Families waiting to adopt face challenges. Among the biggest challenges are financing the adoption and finding a baby to adopt. Learn about how to meet these challenges in a one hour radio show on Saturday, June 16th – just in time for Father’s Day! Your Adoption Coach Radio Show Networking and Advertising Your Adoption June 16, 2012 Voice America Radio 12:00 pm PST 2:00 pm CST 3:00 pm EST Your Adoption Coach, is a weekly, one-hour radio show designed to inspire and educate families on adoption.  Each week the show features adoptive professionals, celebrities, authors, and feature an adoptive family’s story of adoption. The show dispels the myths of adoption, and provides resources for where to go to get the support and services needed to adopt or support adoption. Tune in this week for Networking and Advertising Your Adoption with Hal Kaufman of My Adoption Advisor. The landscape of domestic has changed dramatically with the availability of the internet and social media at our fingertips. My Adoption Advisor is a leading provider of on-demand adoption training courses and consulting services that help families seeking a domestic adoption to target their efforts on the strategies that really make a difference. We explore how you can make a difference in an effective adoption profile and website and how to best network and advertise your profile to birth families. Hal Kaufman is the CEO of My Adoption Advisor who started this company out of his own experience with adoption. Hal has worked with over 200 families to help them find the right match in the birth family and bring their family together forever. We hope you’ll tune into this great show! Kelly Ellison is a fund raising professional with over twenty-five years of experience raising money for many causes from the arts to the environment. After returning home from China in 2007 with their daughter, she realized how few resources there were for helping adoptive families raise the money they needed to bring their family together. In 2009, after personally coaching several families, Ms Ellison created a simple five-step system to help families […]

Deployment and Adoption Do Mix!

Since Sean was deployed to Kuwait July 2006 when the opportunity to adopt Anna came along, adoptive mom  Maryellen enlisted the help of two good friends when it was time for placement day since Dad couldn’t be there to meet his baby girl for the first time!  The placement was videotaped for Sean. Federal express and the military’s JAG were used to get Sean’s signature there in Kuwait on the legal placement documents. Although Anna was 5 months old before Sean got to see her in person, there were plenty of pictures, emails and phone calls before then. It was a great homecoming when he was able to get leave in January 2007 for a visit! It’s 2012, and Sean, Maryellen and Anna are ready to add another member to their family.  Is the birth mother of their next baby reading this blog? Thanks to Sean, Maryelle and Anna  for allowing us to tell the story of their adoptive family. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

They Always Talked About Adoption….

Mike and Hannah met in college and have been married for 20 years! They always wanted children, whether biologically or through adoption. They were not successful at fertility treatments, but they took that as a sign that God has a child He wants them to adopt and raise as their own. They both work as accountants and enjoy traveling, biking and doing home repairs.  Mike and Hannah have the stability and love for a child and hope to match with the right birth parents soon! Thanks to Mike and Hannah for allowing us to tell their story. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Financial Help is Available to Birth Mothers!

One of the questions we often hear at A Child’s Hope:  “Is financial assistance available for me while I’m pregnant?” The law in most states allows adoptive families to provide reasonable support for a birth mother to help with expenses related to the pregnancy and delivery. Some birth mothers do not need assistance, while others find themselves in a situation where they cannot take care of themselves or the baby they are carrying without financial help.  Adoptive families can provide that help. Help with expenses can come in many forms: Gift cards can be provided for grocery stores,  gas stations and stores that carry other supplies and clothing, such as Wal-mart and Target. Some bills, like utilities, can be paid directly to the provider. Birth mothers can also receive support in the form of medical care.  At A Child’s Hope, we help you determine if you qualify for Medicaid and help you find a clinic that is convenient. Our adoption counselors will advise you about the types of expenses covered and help you set a budget so assistance can be given to you regularly, instead of waiting for a crisis. Our adoption counselors also educate you about resources that are available from other sources – resources that can continue after you deliver – so you can build a more secure future for yourself. And you’ll never need to feel uncomfortable about asking for help, because your adoption counselor will work with A Child’s Hope to communicate your needs to the adoptive parents. A Child’s Hope is here to help! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

A Time for Gratitude!

Great things are happening here at A Child’s Hope.  Our new website is up and generating positive interest.  Our Facebook page is perking along and generating lots of likes.  Our blog is gaining followers.  And best news of all, one of our waiting families has been contacted by a potential birth mother through their website created by Hal Kaufman at My Adoption Advisor.  None of this would be possible without you all.  So: Thank you Hal Kaufman and his team at My Adoption Advisor for creating our waiting parents’ websites, and for advising us on our new marketing plan! Thank you Joanna Ivey at Our Chosen Child for creating our waiting parents’ profiles, you never disappoint! Thank you Sarah Shehata and her team at SMC Pros for building our Facebook page and working with us on our advertising campaign! Thank you Leigh Silverstein of TWTH Consulting for designing our new website and for working with us as we learn to maintain it ourselves! Thank you to Jenny Halasz of JLH Marketing and her team of optimizers who generated the awesome list of keywords that is getting us found in searches! Thank you to our adoption counselors for staying in touch with birth mothers and waiting families.  The adoption process is hard, but your presence and support makes it easier on everyone! Thank you to our past placed families for letting us tell your stories on our blog and Facebook page.  Your stories provide such encouragement to our waiting families.  Our program works, and YOU ARE PROOF! Thank you to our currently waiting families for your courage and bravery as we step out onto the World “WILD” Web to help you build the family you long for. A Child’s Hope is a community with the goal of matching children with adoptive families.  Each one of you is a vital member of our community, and we thank you for your involvement! Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can […]

Filled With Love!

Tony and Mary Kay had suffered some significant losses before adoption brought Joel into their lives. Their daughter Maria was just 3.5 months old when a drunk driver slammed into Mary Kay’s car, injuring her and killing their daughter who was in a car seat in the back.   The accident left a big hole in their hearts, and they grieved immensely. To cope with her loss, Mary Kay started creating jeweled mobiles for gifts. Each mobile was a hand-crafted jeweled star connected to two other stars, symbolizing Maria as the bright start that she was. Tony and Mary Kay didn’t want their daughter, Nora, to grow up without a sibling.  So in 2005, Tony and Mary Kay signed with A Child’s Hope to adopt another child. They were very open about race and gender and special needs, and they had a brief wait before a birth mother chose them to parent her child.  In 2005, a newborn boy was placed with them for adoption, and they named him Joel. Today Joel is 6 years old, active and spirited, and he loves to dance.  Although the family will never forget the child they lost so suddenly, giving unconditional love to Joel has helped them heal and grow as a family. Thanks to Tony, Mary Kay, Nora and Joel for allowing us to tell the story of their adoptive family. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

When Do I Tell My Child?

One of the questions we hear at lot at A Child’s Hope is, “When do I tell my child he or she is adopted?”  It’s a question that deserves serious consideration.  For the most part, gone are the days when adoptees reach adulthood before being told they are adopted. Nowadays adoptive parents are encouraged to talk to a child from the start about being adopted. There is a story well known in adoption circles about an adoptive family leaving the agency office with a beautiful baby on placement day. The adoptive parents turn to the adoption social worker and ask “When should we tell him he’s adopted?” The social worker laughs and says, “On the way home!” At A Child’s Hope, we believe in open adoption.  The birth parents know who the adoptive parents are; the adoptive parents know who the birth parents are.  And most importantly, the child knows who the birth parents are as well.  Most adoptive parents use some of the popular adoption children’s books to explain the adoption connection. Actress Jamie Lee Curtis penned one of the most famous books, “Tell Me Again About the Night I Was Born.”   Birth mothers are encouraged to write letters to the child they are placing and to also consider doing a Lifebook, which is a scrapbook telling the child about his/her biological roots. We’re here to help at A Child’s Hope.  Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Room for One More!

Mike and Jonna had always planned to have a traditional Catholic family with at least three children, but Mother Nature wouldn’t cooperate. They turned to adoption to give their son Caleb and daughter Aubrey a sibling. Jonna is a stay-at-home mom who teachers Sunday school and volunteers in Scouts, and Mike is a Director with a major manufacturing firm who spends his of- work hours doing activities with his family.  Adoption is a loving way to grow a family, and Mike, Jonna, Caleb and Aubrey are patiently waiting and saving room for one more! Thanks to Mike, Jonna and their kids for allowing us to tell the story of their adoptive family. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Adoption in a Flash!

Angi and Hunter received the call that changed their lives in the fall of 2007.   A 19-year-old woman with an unplanned pregnancy called the birth mother hotline the day before she gave birth.  The adoption counselor planned to meet with the girl and her boyfriend the next day, but before they could meet, the girl went to the hospital to be induced due to high blood pressure.  The birth parents looked at profiles in the hospital and chose Angi and Hunter to parent the baby girl.  The birth parents wanted to wait until later to have a formal meeting, and they were not sure when they would be ready to do that.  But would Angi and Hunter be able to accept placement without meeting the birth parents?  The answer was YES! After three weeks , the birth parents and adoptive parents finally met, and they immediately bonded. Initially all parties said that they didn’t want to stay in contact, but now they have a fully open adoption and have met  six times.  Addie is  four and loves to hear the story of how her parents had less than a week’s notice before taking her home!  Addie loves to hear the story about how she was in her birth mother’s tummy and that her birth parents chose Angie and Hunter to be her forever family.  When Addie sees her birth parents she always greets them with a big hug and kiss and immediately begins telling them about everything she has done since their last visit.  Angi and Hunter consider Addie’s birth parents as part of the family and are so thankful to have an open adoption. Thanks to Angi, Hunter and Addie for allowing us to tell the story of their adoptive family. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.  

Open Adoption Is In!

I have written before about how much I prefer the idea open adoption over the old adoption model (Who Likes Unanswered Questions, October, 2011).  Apparently, I’m not the only one.  According to Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute, “closed” adoptions have decreased to about 5%, and adoptive parents report positive experiences with more openness in the process. All of our waiting couples have agreed to participate in an open or semi-open adoption.  Hats off to all our waiting families for being open to this exciting concept! Thanks to the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute for publishing their findings. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

It’s Strawberry Picking Time!

Its Strawberry Picking Time! Neva and Marco (soon to be four and five and a half) had a blast this month at a local Strawberry Picking farm! Sam and Kendra were thrilled when a 40-year-old woman with an unplanned pregnancy chose them to parent her newborn son, whom they named Marco. Sam and Kendra sent a dozen yellow roses to the hospital for the birth mother. And then 20 months later, they travelled to Texas to adopt another newborn, whom they named Neva. Although Neva and Marco do not have a biological connection, they are in every other sense of the word, true brother and sister. Thanks to Sam, Kendra, Neva and Marco for allowing us to tell the story of their adoptive family. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

Adoption Overload – Triplets!

In 2001, Ken and Melinda took a leap of faith and travelled to upstate New York for the birth of triplets.  The babies were carried by a beautiful 20-year-old woman of Italian descent who contacted A Child’s Hope because she had not been able to find an adoptive family for all three boys in one home. The healthy babies were born at 36 weeks and only had a brief hospital stay. The boys’ middle names were chosen to honor their uncles and grandfather.  Melinda, captain of her college swim team, now has her own “relay team”! The boys, who turned 11 in April, are happy, healthy, and thriving! Thanks to Ken, Melinda and the boys for allowing us to tell the story of their adoptive family. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email us at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

We Have a New Website!

The new website is live for A Child’s Hope – https://achildshope.com/ , as is the new Facebook app – http://on.fb.me/JBqJK1 . Exciting! Also check out Rebecca’s Open Adoption Story – http://bit.ly/JPmzRC . We’ve been working hard on our marketing, but the results are awesome. Enjoy!

New Study – “Openness in Adoption”

New study entitled “Openness in Adoption” – read about it in the Washington Times! http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/mar/21/study-families-trending-toward-open-adoptions/

There’s Always a Plan

One of the things I keep seeing demonstrated since I’ve become more active with A Child’s Hope is that there’s a plan for every adoptive family.  Whether you believe in the Christian God, Allah, a conscious Universe – whatever you call to choose that force out there that ties seemingly random events into a unified whole – there is a plan, and it is AWESOME!! Take Birth Mother Donna (name changed for privacy).  She had chosen adoptive parents out of North Carolina, but that situation fell through.  We were peripherally involved in her case, so she chose our agency to help her.  In the past week, she had a match meeting with one set of parents, who decided against going forward with her.  She’s very close to term…VERY close.  In fact, the doctors “stripped her membranes” on Monday, so she really should have given birth already.  But she didn’t. Donna reviewed more profiles and chose another couple.  They had a match meeting yesterday, and it went beautifully!  Now it’s Friday morning, and she’s gone into labor.  Apparently that baby was just waiting to meet his or her adoptive parents. Random events?  Maybe.  But I don’t think so, and you’ll never convince me otherwise. Do you have a story you’d like to tell?  Email me at blog.ach@foryourlife.com.  Visit us at www.AChildsHope.com, or call our Birth Mother Hotline at 1-877-890-HOPE (4976) so one of our adoption counselors can answer your questions confidentially. Please remember that this is a public site open to anyone; therefore, anything you post can be seen by anyone.

I Love Placement Days!

I absolutely love placement day, especially when it’s in the office.  The new parents leave with their baby, and everyone is smiling and happy.  I imagine things can be more difficult with the placement of older children, but yesterday’s placement of three-year-old twins seemed to go as perfectly as anything possibly can. Our Adoption Counselor said, “After placement, [the birth mother] was all smiles and said she just feels very comfortable with her decision, and is so thankful [the adoptive parents] are open-minded about taking older children and they all seem so happy. ” Life is hard in different ways for everyone, but good things do happen…like they did yesterday! Congratulations to our latest new family!

Matchy Matchy

I love it! I just saw a picture from a match meeting between a birth mother and her boyfriend and adoptive parents. The women look very similar, and the men as well…even down to the plaid shirts they’re both wearing. It looks like a happy beginning is on the horizon!

Who Likes Unanswered Questions? (Part 2)

In my last piece we determined that I don’t like unanswered questions.  I’m still operating on the assumption that you don’t either.  So let’s talk about the reasons to consider open or semi-open adoption. There are so many good reasons to consider open or semi-open adoption.  In a study called “Bridging the Divide: Openness in Adoption and Post-Adoption Psychsocial Adjustment Among Birth and Adoptive Parents” published in the 2008 Journal of Family Psychology (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18729667), researchers found that “the degree of openness in adoption was significantly and positively associated with satisfaction with the adoption process shortly after the adoptive placement.  Increased openness was also significantly related to better post-placement adjustment of birth mothers.”  And in a study called “Open Adoption of Infants: Adoptive Parents’ Feelings Seven Years Later” published in Social Work, Vol. 48, number 3, July 2003 (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12899288), researchers found that, “Every respondent (100 percent) agreed that ‘my child is better off because she or he has access to her or his birth parent.’” You can see other studies listed on the right of the above pages under “Related citations,” but to summarize, birth mothers who participate in adoption planning for placement in open situations are more likely to seek support, utilize counseling resources, and to establish and follow through with prenatal care and often feel a stronger sense of commitment toward their adoption plan.  The continued opportunity to hear that a child is doing well impacts a birth parent’s ability to feel reassured about and at peace with their adoption decision.  And in the genuine form of open adoption, birth parents are permitted to have direct contact with the child and have the opportunity to speak for themselves in answering any questions the child has about their adoption, their ethnic background or their health background. For the adoptive parents, having been chosen by the birthparents helps them feel entitled to parent, which helps insure attachment and bonding with the child. Having established a relationship with the birth parents can help reduce fears, guilt or insecurities felt by the adoptive parents related to the adoption. The advantages for the adoptive […]

Who Likes Unanswered Questions? (Part 1)

Who likes unanswered questions? Not me!! Back in the day, adoption was a deep, dark secret. It was treated like something to be ashamed of, a family skeleton. Adoption wasn’t usually a positive experience for the birth mother, and in the stories I remember from way back when, I don’t remember any mention of a birth father. Thank heavens, all that has changed! Adoption is a great way to build a family, and it’s a way that has been embraced and experienced by some very interesting people. Adoption.Com has a list of hundreds of famous adoptees. Check it out sometime…you may be surprised. The best thing about adoption today is that the birth mother has choices about the handling of the adoption that weren’t available to her just a few years ago. Gone are the days where the baby is whisked away from the birth mother in the delivery room, never to be seen or heard from again! One of the most important choices is how much she’ll know about the child after he or she is born, which leads us to a brief discussion of the three types of adoption: closed adoption, open adoption, and semi-open adoption. The most well-known type of adoption is the closed adoption. The birth mother knows nothing (or next to nothing) about the adoptive parents, and the only thing they know about her are a few medical facts. All records are sealed, and it’s next to impossible to get the records unsealed if either the mother or the child wants details later on. Closed adoption is still a choice, but it’s not the only one, and, in many cases, it’s not the best one. Open and semi-open adoptions are becoming more prevalent. In fact, at A Child’s Hope, we only handle open and semi-open adoptions. In an open adoption, the birth mother and adoptive parents meet and continue to have a relationship after the adoption is finalized. The terms of that relationship vary according to the wishes of the parties. Open adoption is NOT co-parenting. The adoptive parents are the child’s parents, period. Their child, […]

A Child’s Hope

Webster’s online dictionary defines the word “adopt” as “to take by choice into a relationship; especially: to take voluntarily (a child of other parents) as one’s own child.”  That’s a nice definition, as far as it goes.  However, it’s so much more! Three months ago, I didn’t know.  Oh, what I didn’t know!  I’m a mom.  I know the joy of giving birth, holding my baby for the first time, watching him learn to roll over, sit up, and all the other wonderful childhood milestones.  I knew that adoptive parents would love their adopted child, but I didn’t get it. I didn’t understand that they would be just as excited as I was the first time I held my son.  He was premature and in intensive care right after he was born, so I couldn’t hold him for a few days.  Adoptive parents can’t hold their child until after a waiting period either.  It’s kind of the same, but I didn’t get it. My son lost his first tooth and was afraid of the tooth fairy – a stranger – coming into our house at night.  We wrote the tooth fairy a letter and asked her to leave the tooth in an envelope on the front door this time.  I knew adoptive parents would experience their version of the tooth fairy, but I didn’t understand. My son didn’t like the idea of Santa coming to leave presents at Christmas because, again, he was a stranger coming into our house at night.  He was okay after I explained that I knew Santa, and that he wasn’t really a stranger.  Again, I knew adoptive parents would have their Santa experience, but I didn’t understand.  I didn’t get it. I didn’t get it until I saw a family – parents with one adopted son – on their way to meet their second adopted son.  They were glowing!  The little boy was so excited about being a big brother.  He was looking forward to teaching his new brother all about football (soccer for him), and teaching him how to ride a bike and throw a baseball […]

Birthmother Hotline: (877) 890-4673

Envia Un Texto: (919) 218-6270

Text: Pregnant to (919) 971-4396