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Before You Adopt a Child

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    You or you and your spouse are unable to have children of your own, but you are very fortunate to have found a baby to adopt. You are both “over the moon.” You are fixing up the nursery, you have had the baby bed delivered and you bought a car seat.

    Background Information

    It is a wonderful time when you bring home a baby, and of course you should enjoy those moments, but remember, prior to the adoption, gather as much background information on your child as possible, especially medical information. A lack of medical information can become an issue for both parents and child.

    You should ask about:

    • Any illnesses the child has had and the medications and treatment provided.
    • Record of immunizations
    • Developmental history
    • The health history of his or her parents

    International Adoption

    When you adopt a child from another country, there may be additional health issues to consider, including developmental issues. Attachment issues can also be present. Children who have resided in institutions have to learn the social connections and intimacies of family life in order to become a part of the family unit. Lack of self-discipline may also be a problem. Institutionalized youngsters have never had anyone listen to them as an individual. Orienting a child to family life often involves making them understand that it’s all right to ask for help. Many health issues are temporary and will disappear within a few months, but developmental issues can have long-term effects on the lives of children. Developmental delays can include such issues as poor growth and a lack of expressive language; being unable to express themselves, even in their native language. This can lead to a lack of self-esteem and behavioral problems.

    Challenges of Adoption

    If a youngster has behavioral difficulties in childhood, parents may wonder if they are ‘normal’ problems or adoption-related problems. Normal, age-appropriate challenges may be enhanced by your child’s adoption. Adoption can be difficult, and there are emotional issues that can cause behaviors and that are incredibly challenging. You need to know that before you sign on the dotted line. If your child needs a level of support that you cannot provide by yourself, it is your job to find the necessary resources and continue to support the child as a parent should.

    To resolve the question:

    • Ask the child what he is upset about. What are the issues he is that are concerning him
    • Acknowledge the child’s feelings and let him know his feelings are normal.
    • Be supportive. Give the child time to process his feelings.
    • If you adopt internationally, make sure people are waiting to welcome you at that airport.
    • Make sure there are people who will come by to visit and celebrate with you over you’re the new addition to your family.


    Be sure you are aware of the level of commitment it takes to raise a child. Do you or you and your spouse work outside the home?

    Preparing to Adopt

    Here are some other things that will help you prepare for adoption:

    • Put back some money. There are often unexpected expenses associated with adoption.
    • If you are adopting internationally, learn as much as you can about your child’s place of birth.
    • Give homage to traditional rites. Make sure that somebody is there to greet your family when you bring your child home.
    • Shop for baby items, including a car seat, but don’t go overboard. *(See Baby on a Budget).

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    Before You Adopt a Child. (2022, Mar 24). Retrieved from

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