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Old 04-12-2011, 09:41 PM   #1
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why is it so hard?!?!? aka Ingrids giant list of questions!

seriously with so many kiddos needing families why is it so hard to adopt?!?!?

this is partially a vent and partially a true question. i don't understand, aside from the legal fees why is it so expensive? and i understand why there must be investigation into families looking to adopt and that must cost money too...but $25,000?!? how can the average family afford that?

my husband and i have finally come to an agreement after 3 years of discussion and we both want to adopt but i am a sahm of a special needs daughter and we do not have an entertainment/clothing/"fun money" budget, we are very frugal and do not have much wiggle room let alone thousands and thousands of dollars to spend on adoption fees. how is this possible unless a family has a large income? is there some way to get financial assistance of some kind? also i have seen agencies who require documentation of infertility. wth?

i know that sadly, the requirements for adopting special needs and older kids through foster care are much more lenient (and free/much less costly) which is crap considering that they are much more at risk for abuse and its like saying they aren't worthy of the same protection a typically developing/younger child deserves. i also understand why it needs to be easier. i have always considered adopting a special needs child since i have worked with kiddos of varying abilities since i was in school, but when god blessed us with a special needs miracle of our own my opinion changed. i am slightly open to it, with some restrictions, but dh is dead set against walking into a situation like that. its always a risk, with a biological child or an adoptive child, but he doesn't want to seek it out which i totally understand. though i think we would be open to the unknown, as a safe haven baby or international adoption.

i just want to expand our family and provide a child with a loving home. any race, either gender, international or domestic. how does anyone afford it?!? i hate that it really comes down to a financial obstacle, but it is THE absolute deciding factor.

does any of this make sense? i just need to vent and i don't think anyone IRL would understand, everyone is pressuring me to get pregnant which is NOT an option and i don't see adoption as an alternative to bio kids or a "last resort" in case of infertility. it would be such a blessing and an honor, that is how i see it, not a tragedy.

sorry if this isn't PC or appropriate language or whatnot. i'm still learning so please forgive me, i plead ignorance but i really do want to learn.

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Old 04-12-2011, 10:06 PM   #2
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Re: why is it so hard?!?!?

I wish I could be of more help, but have you considered fostering a child? I don't know for sure, but Ive heard that it can make it slightly easier to later adopt them. HTH
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Old 04-12-2011, 11:14 PM   #3
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Re: why is it so hard?!?!?

A few things but I'm off to bed. There aren't as many kids as perceived. Many advertised are not legally free and at risk or have other major issues which is why they are hard to place and being shown online/advertised. Any "healthy" young child is snapped up quick and there are far more families than kids. The prices are high as from what I've been told - its supply and demand. You want a child badly enough, you find the money to compete. A big part of the fee increase is due to the adoption tax credit - agency's advertise how great it is but forget all the minor details and you have to pay the money upfront, which is tuff.

Many adoptions are lower than $25,000, many are higher. Some depends on if you do agency/attorney or private. We blew tons of money just trying to search through rotten agency's/rotten attorney's/rotten facilitator who all took our money, made promises and no child. Our actual adoption/not including all the 5 years of craziness) was about $12,000 but if the attorney didn't screw up and we stayed in the home state and extra week and had to change attorney's it would have been far cheaper. How do you afford it? I had savings remarriage - we hardly touched it but what we did was basically take my entire salary except putting into my retirement & spending money post taxes at one point toward it into an account when we finally got to a point where my husband could handle the rent/major bills. It sucked... we live in a crummy house/drive ok cars, etc. as we sunk everything into adopting. (which is why we are reluctant to do #2). Other people get family money or loans.

Documented infertility is relative to the agency - some are flexible, some aren't. No one gave us a second look at our situation.
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Old 04-13-2011, 12:26 AM   #4
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Re: why is it so hard?!?!?

I don't understand all the ins and outs of the cost, but for us its definately going to be a stretch, and our adoption will be subsidized by our church when we get there. Every spare penny we have is being saved towards it.

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Old 04-13-2011, 06:35 AM   #5
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Re: why is it so hard?!?!?

Hugs mama! I'm so sorry you're frustrated - I know what you're saying (since our PM convos) and just wanted to say that I know how you feel and am praying for your DH and you!
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Old 04-13-2011, 07:23 AM   #6
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Re: why is it so hard?!?!?

Thanks so much jen! And thanks to the other mamas also. I would definitely be able to put all my salary away when i go back to work in savings for adoption, but that cant happen until dd is in school full time which defeats the purpose of adopting now so the kids are close in age. its such a bummer cause we own literally nothing of value and we have even gone so far as to considered selling the house (and getting rid of our 1200 morgage payment!!!) to rent cheaper and save money that way, but we are upside down in the mortgage anyway so that would be pointless.

Im surprised to hear that there are more families than kids...especially internationally and with minority/biracial children here in the us. I know it is still a risk healthwise, jen shared with me a story about a family whho was told they were getting a healthy AA girl who ended up having health issues. But to be honest RAD scares me much more than all but the most severe health issues, that is a big part of why we want a baby.

Also, every spare penny here is going towards replacing one of our 14 year old vehicles...however, we still have hope...we are only looking at vehicles that seat 5+!
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:15 AM   #7
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Re: why is it so hard?!?!?

You can foster to adopt a baby, you may wait longer but it's an option. Our caseworker told us that just last month she placed a baby that was mom's eighth child and all previous siblings had already been adopted out. It happens. I'm sure you've been told that adopting through foster care is free. You could even be open to up to age 2 and if you were to receive a child with severe attachment issues or other things you couldn't handle you always have the option of letting them know it's not working for your family. Don't give up hope!
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Old 04-13-2011, 11:09 AM   #8
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Re: why is it so hard?!?!?

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Originally Posted by newmommy13 View Post
seriously with so many kiddos needing families why is it so hard to adopt?!?!?
As pps have said, domestic infants are not in need of homes. That's why you hear of families waiting years to adopt.

For international it gets expensive because of agency fees, paperwork, travel, etc. As long as you meet each country's requirements, it's not "hard" to adopt. It can take a while for all the paperwork and whatnot, but not necessarily "hard." These kids truly do need a home.

If you adopt through foster care, you are also adopting kids who actually need a home. It's free and many kids actually get monthly subsidies as well as medicaid, WIC and other financial assistance. You do still have to prove that you can support the child on your own. You should be able to support any child you adopt or give birth to, imo.

Not all kids adopted through fc have rad. The kid has to live with you for at least 6 months before an adoption could be finalized, so it's not like you wouldn't know the kid's issues before you adopt anyway. My dd and her five sisters were in fc. None of them have rad.

You can adopt newborns via fc, but it can take a while. I've heard of it only taking four months, but that's probably not typical. It's easier if you are fostering, but you don't have to (that four month wait was a family NOT fostering). I've had dd since she was 6 months old. We were initially just fostering her. Her biomom had a baby while the others were in care and that baby went right into care. Those of us who had her sisters had the first choice to take the baby- that's how people often end up with newborns- they have the older siblings already.
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Old 04-13-2011, 12:09 PM   #9
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Re: why is it so hard?!?!?

thanks so much for the support and the info! It is encouraging. Though i have talked to a few people with experience with the foster care system in my county and i don't think they would give a newborn to just anyone. Maybe Jen can correct me if i am wrong, but i get the impression that you have to foster for the sake of fostering for some time before they would consider placement of a newborn. i've heard of a woman getting a newborn 2 months after beginning the process of getting licensed for foster care, but i doubt thats the norm. i don't even know if i we would get any placements at all if we were honest with our intentions of fostering to adopt an infant.

i would feel comfortable financially with more children because i know that kids really don't need much. honestly all the baby crap my dd got for our shower went unused and even now we don't buy toys and clothes between birthdays, chistmas and two sets of granparents. we have an arms reach cosleeper, a wrap, and prefolds so i'm set for a newborn LOL! especially if by some miracle from god i was able to relactate and nurse for an adopted baby. that is my ultimate dream since my dd was unable to nurse. i know obviously there are other costs associated with children but i am not concerned at all about that. we were responsible in waiting till the right time to have our bio dd just the same as we are choosing to wait to add to the family now that dd's medical condition is improved so much, she is needing less therapies and fewer doctors visits.

i would be TOTALLY open to a sib set! i actually saw a toddler and newborn set on rainbow kids and melted but they were in africa and like a pp mentioned, international adoption is pretty cost prohibitive. i see many benefits to adopting a sib set and would be THRILLED if we were blessed with 2 related children. i think our housing situation would have to change in that case, since we only have a 2 bedroom house but i would dump this house in an instant for a toddler/newborn set. seriously. peace out house.


as an aside, does anyone know if you can be licensed for foster care for other counties? i think racine county has a foster to adopt program AND a safe haven program (thats where a newborn was placed 2 months after the parents finished the licensing process), but i don't think kenosha does...
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Old 04-13-2011, 12:27 PM   #10
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Re: why is it so hard?!?!?

Here you absolutely can only foster for the county you live in, but it's not necessarily that way everywhere. For what you're open to, sounds like fostering with the possibility to adopt would work well for you, IMO.

And just wanted to add, babies and young children are cheap! It's once they get older that they become expensive. Activities, food, ect. I spend five times as much on my older two than I do on my younger two.
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