Adopting a baby in North Carolina — or anywhere else — is a big step. It’s an amazing journey, but there’s a lot to think about when it comes to making the decision to adopt a baby. If you and your family are currently thinking about pursuing a baby adoption in North Carolina, here are some things to know about the process. Sometimes, knowing how to adopt a baby in the U.S. helps couples decide that they do in fact want to adopt a baby!
Chances are that if you’ve come to this article, you’ve already made the decision to adopt an infant in North Carolina. If you aren’t sure, though, that’s okay. This decision is not always an easy one, and it’s certainly not one to be taken lightly. If you’ve struggled with infertility or are unable to have a child biologically, you aren’t alone. Many couples attempt to have a child the “natural” way for years before deciding to adopt a baby. There’s nothing wrong with this, but it is important that you have fully grieved infertility before choosing to grow your family through adoption. You should be just as excited about adopting a baby in North Carolina as you would have been to conceive on your own.
Once you’ve decided to adopt a newborn baby in North Carolina, it’s time to choose an adoption agency to help you do so. Cost, of course, is important when you research different professionals, but you should also look for an agency that offers:
Advertising to pregnant women who may be considering adoption as an option for their babies
Short and accurate wait times for the families it works with
Round-the-clock counseling and support for women who are experiencing an unplanned pregnancy and unsure about what to do
Help with facilitating communication between adoptive parents and birth parents, both before the baby is born and after the baby is placed with the adoptive family
American Adoptions offers all of these services and more to adoptive parents in North Carolina. If you speak with another adoption professional who claims to provide the same, make sure to ask whether everything is included in their total cost estimate. Unfortunately, there are hidden fees associated with some agencies; you don’t want to budget for your adoption opportunity and encounter a financial surprise along the way.
Once you choose to work with American Adoptions, we will work with you to complete three steps before you can match with a prospective birth mother.
Complete a home study. A home study is an assessment of your readiness for adoption that’s comprised of three phases: the documentation phase, a home inspection, and interviews with every family member living in your home.
Complete an Adoption Planning Questionnaire. Otherwise known as an APQ, your adoption specialist will help you answer this series of questions about your adoption preferences. Your APQ will let us know what you’re comfortable with in your potential child, such as medical conditions, cultural backgrounds, contact with birth parents and more. This information will be used to connect you with a prospective birth mother, so remember: the more open you are, the greater the chance that you’ll be presented with an adoption opportunity within the estimated wait time.
Complete an adoption profile. One of the biggest advantages American Adoptions offers is that all adoptive families who work with us get not one but two adoption profiles. These allow pregnant women considering adoption to learn more about your family and think about what her child’s life might be like if placed with you. The first type of adoption profile is in print; it’s a brochure of sorts that serves to let her know a bit about your family. If she’s interested, she can get to know you further through a video profile. She’ll be able to watch you interact in your own environment and get a feel for who you are — all before meeting you in person!
Once you’ve completed all of the above steps, you’ll officially go “active” With American Adoptions. This means that your adoption profiles will be shown to prospective mothers. When a pregnant woman is interested in learning more about you, she’ll have her adoption specialist arrange a phone call or meeting with you. If that goes well, you’ll have found your adoption opportunity!
This waiting game can be stressful for many adoptive parents; you’ve been scrambling to get everything together for the previous steps in the adoption journey, and now there’s nothing for you to do but wait. We recommend that you try to stick to your regular routine during this time. We promise you’ll get that call eventually!
Once you’ve connected with a pregnant woman considering adoption, it’s time to form a bond with her. At American Adoptions, we recommend at least some degree of openness, or communication, in all adoptions. Before your baby is born is a great opportunity to get to know his or her birth parents. Not only will you begin to form a relationship, but they will feel more comfortable following through with their adoption plan as well.
After your baby has been placed with you, there’s still one more step in the adoption process: finalizing your baby adoption in North Carolina. You’ll see a judge in your county who, after hearing your adoption case and verifying that everything was completed ethically and legally, will grant you a final decree of adoption.
Once this hearing is over, congratulations! Your child is legally and officially yours. This doesn’t mean that you can close the door on adoption, however. Be sure to keep lines of communication open with your child; they should know their adoption story is something to be proud of!
For more information about adopting a baby in North Carolina, call 1-800-ADOPTION, or request free information here.
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