There’s a lot of preparation that goes with every adoption journey—especially with intercountry adoption journeys. Even with all of the preparation required, thousands of children have found loving homes.
As much as possible, do your research, hear about other adoptive parents’ stories, and ready your resources.
The current landscape of intercountry adoption has changed over time, especially when the pandemic started. RainbowKids has collated key information to help you decide. Here are ten facts you should know about intercountry adoption nowadays:
1 - Fewer people are opting for intercountry adoption, but STILL more children need homes.
There are several reasons international adoption rates have decreased in the United States. One reason is that there have been many scandals in international adoption over the past few years, involving corruption, baby trafficking, and other unethical practices. Adopting internationally can be expensive and time-consuming, so many families are choosing to adopt domestically instead.
Aside from the negatives, intercountry adoption is worth considering. Many children are waiting to be adopted internationally, and every child deserves a loving family.
2 - Adoption laws differ from one country to another.
Most countries that allow international adoptions have very strict requirements for adoptive parents.
To be eligible to adopt from another country, you must meet the requirements of both your own country and the country from which you are adopting. Not everyone can adopt internationally. You must meet certain qualifications, such as being married and between the ages of 25 and 55. Some even check your gender identity and religion. Whatever the case is, learn to respect the agency’s/countrie's requirements. With lots of resources out there, you will find an overseas adoption program that’s well-suited to your needs and preferences!
3 - Adopting parents want infants/toddlers rather than older children.
Most international adoptions are of infants, but older children are also available in some countries. There are many reasons for this. One is that international adoption agencies like to place children of the same age as each other in adoptive families (for example, two brothers or sisters). Another reason is that parents simply prefer adopting children who are close to their age and they don’t want to deal with pre-teen behaviors after having their own large family through natural birth.
4 - International adoption is more costly than domestic adoption.
Adopting a child from another country can be expensive - you can expect to pay anywhere from $15,000 to $50,000. There are many costs involved aside from just the adoption fee. There are legal costs, medical expenses for the child, and the travel fees.
But, when there’s a will, there’s a way—for real. Many families admit that the costs of international adoption made them think twice if they’re going to push through with it. Luckily, however, there are adoption financing options that may help you offset the costs. There are adoption grants, adoption loans, adoption tax credits, and you may even do adoption fundraising!
5 - The paperowrk is out of this world.
Adopting a child from another country can be a rewarding experience, but it’s not without challenges. It’s important to consider your motivation for wanting to adopt internationally before beginning the process. One of the few things that may need all of your energy and time is the legal paperwork required to complete an adoption process.
It is difficult to finish the legal paperwork process during international adoption due to complex international laws and procedures. However, with the help of an experienced international adoption lawyer, it is possible. Licensed social workers can assist you in the completion of your home study and the like. Rainbowkids is available to help you with some information on trusted professional adoption agencies near your area.
6 - There’s not much medical information about the child.
In international adoption, past medical reports may not be available from the child’s home country. Some countries require adoptive parents to travel back and forth to get a complete health history of the child. Take into mind that social workers cannot guarantee medical records will be available before you adopt an infant or a toddler.
Countries also vary in their respective requirements for whether they preserve medical records following international adoption placements. Yet all seem to agree upon the need for a medical evaluation soon after placement to document any health difficulties existing. This will also help treat or curtail any complications.
7 - You might adopt with a child with a history of past trauma and abuse.
One of the most common fears for adoptive parents is that their adopted child will be greatly effected by his or her experience of abuse or neglect before coming to them. This fear is understandable, but it is also based on some misconceptions about adoption. While all children who have been abused or neglected face challenges, many of these children thrive in loving adoptive homes.
The reason adopted children often struggle with trauma has more to do with their prior experiences than with the fact that they were adopted. Research has shown that most adopted children do not have more psychological problems than non-adopted children do. Rather, they are more likely to experience difficulties if they have experienced neglect, physical abuse, or emotional abandonment prior.
As a parent, it is your job to make them feel welcomed and safe. Try not to force them to be comfortable with you as soon as you’ve welcomed them in your own home; have some patience during the change period.
8 - You have to be engaged as an adoptive parent during the post-adoption adjustment period.
There are a lot of things you can do to help the adopted child adjust to your home, post-adoption process. One of the most important things is to create a sense of stability and continuity for them. Try to keep their daily routine as normal as possible and make sure they have plenty of time to bond with you and any other siblings they may have. Be patient and understanding, and be prepared for some bumps along the way. It’s important to remember that every child adjusts differently, so there’s no one-size-fits-all.
9 - Say hello to the culture of the adopted child!
The international adoption process has the potential to be emotionally challenging for international adoptees because their past is so nuanced and layered. You want to make sure you are respectful of their culture, tradition, society’s norms, and let them take ownership over how they introduce themselves.
10 - The current landscape of international adoption is constantly changing because of the pandemic.
It’s important to stay up-to-date on the latest information if you’re considering international adoption. Every international adoption is different, so it’s important to do your research and talk to other adoptive parents. There are many resources available for those considering international adoption, including books, websites, and support groups.
RainbowKids is here to help you get started!
Whatever your reasons for wanting to adopt a child from another country, it’s important to educate yourself about the process before you get started. These ten facts should give you a good starting point! RainbowKids is committed to finding forever families for all children. For more detailed information, please consult our website or contact us for advice. We would be happy to help in any way we can!