Back in March of 2007 when we adopted our daughter, I was so excited to finally be a dad. My wife and I had waited so long to start our family. The infertility treatments weren’t working and we knew that most of all we just wanted to be parents.
In our adoption research we figured out that we wanted to adopt a newborn. In 2007 we were blessed to have adopted our daughter. Now that we’ve adopted our son in 2012 I’ve had time to reflect, so I want to share some things I’ve learned as an adoptive daddy.
√ How the general public is mislead by the media. In the movies, on TV, or even on the evening news I’ve heard many stories about adoption get sensationalized.
Many times they simply just explain adoption in a negative light or use the wrong words such as, “that couple couldn’t have their own baby, so they had to buy one.” UGH. It makes me cringe hearing those words.
I may be sensitive towards adoption now that I’m an adoptive dad. In my opinion the media needs to accurately show what adoption is.
√ It is so important to talk to your child about adoption and their own adoption story. I’ve learned that it is a good and healthy thing to tell and re-tell our daughter about how we adopted her. She loves hearing it too. Every night at bedtime she asks to hear her story.
I tell her a simple version because of her age, but I continue to add more as she gets older. As she asks more questions about adoption, I know that talking openly will help her and help us as a family.
√ Attachment issues weren’t a problem with me. In our research before we adopted, it seemed that it could be a problem “attaching” to an adopted child. My wife and I talked about it, but we couldn’t see how there would be a problem especially if we adopted a newborn – which was our preference.
After we arrived at the hospital to see our birthmother and our daughter for the first time – and we got to hold the tiny little baby – it was clear to us there would be no attachment issues. God had brought us together as a family, no doubt about it.
√ I’m more open to open adoption. I remember that before we adopted, my wife and I talked about open adoption and how comfortable we were with it. Wouldn’t it be much more simple to be a family without anyone else there to complicate things?
How would we be able to go visit a birthmother every few months? I’ve learned that open adoption is a very broad term.
It can mean anything from simply sharing contact information to spending Thanksgiving together – and anything in between. You never know how much contact your child’s birthmother will want over the years.
I know that you can and should do everything you can to let your child’s birthparents know their baby is cared for and loved.
√ Waiting still sucks. Due to infertility, we waited 12 years of our marriage until we started the adoption process. We waited 9 months before our daughter was placed with us – and waited another 8 months to finalize the adoption.
We waited 2 years to adopt our son. The waiting wasn’t any easier on our second adoption. You can get help and benefit from my experience by checking out 10 things to do while you wait - a FREE download that will help you get through the adoption wait.