- Begin researching the differences between using an adoption agency versus pursuing a private/independent adoption. Agencies are state licensed facilities that do all of the legal legwork for you. A private or independent adoption means prospective adoptive parents have found their own birth mom. They use adoption attorneys for the legalization process.
- Research domestic, international, foster care adoption, or adoption of children with special needs. Domestic adoption means adopting a baby born the U.S. International or intercountry adoption means adopting a child born in a different and then legally bringing them to your home country. Adopting from foster care means adopting children who are in the care of the state where you live. Special needs adoption involves adopting a baby or child that has identifiable physical or psychological needs.
- Research open, semi-open or closed adoption. Open adoption involves an open level of contact between the adoptive family and birth family. Semi-open adoption means identifying information is not disclosed between the families, and usually involves communication with a third party, like an agency. Closed adoption simply means there is no communication or identifying information between either family.
I’d recommend starting a Word document, journal, or folder where you can type things up or write feelings down or print out information that you’ve found helpful. Being organized in this situation will help ease feelings of anxiety and becoming overwhelmed. Even though this time of year is stressful with work parties, school recitals, shopping for presents, or seeing those pregnancy announcements on social media, building or continuing to build your family through adoption doesn’t have to be daunting.