Things to consider when adopting
Reasons for adopting
The decision to adopt a child is unique for each and every couple. For many, thinking about or commencing adoption procedures often comes after many months (or years) of trying to conceive a baby (either naturally and/or through fertility treatments).
For some, the decision to adopt is made after careful planning, because one or both partners are aware of physical conditions that prevent them from having a child of their own. Occasionally, a couple will consider adoption if they are aware of carrying a debilitating genetic condition that may be passed on to a potential biological child.
A few people will make a conscious decision to adopt children even if the are able to have healthy children of their own. This may be motivated by the desire to give another child a more positive life or to adopt the child of a relative. Other couples may already have their own children, but decide to adopt a child into their existing family.
For most couples, considering adoption involves a great deal of introspection and talking at length with each other and perhaps close friends and family and/or others who have adopted. Issues such as what adoption means to you, both as an individual and as a couple, and how you feel about adopting a child that is not biologically yours, can create mixed emotions. Coming to terms with not being able to have children usually means acknowledging and accepting an enormous loss. Parenting a child born to someone else usually involves making peace with the grief associated with infertility. Therefore, understanding and being clear about your motives for wanting to adopt a child is important, because adoption is not the answer to unresolved feelings about infertility.
Prospective adopting parents are individually assessed in relation to their suitability to adopt. They are asked many questions and have background searches performed on them. They undergo numerous assessment processes, which can seem intrusive and arduous. While this process is designed to ensure that what's best for the child is the key criteria the experience of being 'investigated' and placed under a microscope can feel intimidating and frustrating.