AdoptionChild Adoptions can be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life. A child is God's gift. No matter how a child enters a family, each must be loved and valued for who he or she is. Children come into the world with different talents, abilities, and characteristics. But for a mother her child is the best. By adopting a child you not only give a homeless child love and support but you also give yourself the honour of being a mother. However, the adoption process can be emotionally trying, tedious, time consuming, and frustrating. This article provides some general information about adoption and its procedure.

Getting Started
It happens almost all the times that if you want to adopt a child then maybe your husband or in-laws are not comfortable with the idea. Families, friends, and even your spouse can have misconceptions about adoption and your decision may require some explaining. People normally shun adoption because they think that if they adopt they may be bringing home some deformed or a sick child or a child who may grow up to be a criminal or thug since the child's parent might be having such a background. That is not true. A child is not born with criminal instincts or nature. It is very important that before adopting a child one has to understand the meaning of adoption and the fact that you will be bringing up a child who is not your own but who is going to come into your life and family and shower you with all the love and respect that you are entitled to and as that child's parent you have to take up entire responsibility and love her as your own. It is also important to make your family understand this so that the child gets all the love, caring and respect from everyone. You and your family should be ready to accept the child with all your heart and should have all your misconceptions clear before you adopt since that will be beneficial for the child, for you as well as for the entire family.

How To Adopt

The traditional eligibility requirements for adoptive parents are changing now a days with more and more relaxing rules and requirements but still what is most importantly required is that adoptive parents should be able to give the child a healthy and secure future and adoption agencies are seeking families or single adults who can love, care for, and raise these children with total dedication and responsibility. However, for many infant adoptions, agencies will only consider couples married at least once or divorced or single parent, between the ages of 25 and 40, and with stable employment income. There are a few agencies that accept applicants who are older than 40; you just have to look a little harder for them. Some agencies require that the couple have no other children and be unable to bear children. Some require that at least one parent should not work outside the home for at least 6 months after the adoption so that total care can be taken of the adoptive child. Whatever be the adoption agency be it private or public there are steps you have to follow before you can adopt and these agencies will discuss the various eligibility regulations and possibilities with you depending upon your particular needs and those of the child and the birth parents.

Adoption Agency
There are both private and public adoption agencies. A private adoption agency is supported by private funds and should be licensed or approved by the State in which it operates. A public agency is the local branch of your State social service agency and is funded through State or Central Government. To obtain the names of local private agencies, look under "Social Services" or "Adoption Agencies" in the Yellow Pages. Also, ask adoptive parents and your public agency for their recommendations. Regarding public agencies each State organizes its agencies somewhat differently. In general, public agencies will accept adoption applications from families wanting to adopt older children, infants, or children with special physical or psychological needs. Generally children in the custody of
a public agency are abused, neglected, or abandoned by their birth parents. Abuse and neglect can normally leave physical and emotional scars upon the minds of the child, which has to be very carefully healed after adoption, or before you adopt. It is important to discuss all aspects of a child's history with the agency social workers so that later on you don't have to face complications and also discuss the availability of counseling or other services, just in case the child might need it, before deciding to adopt such a child.

Home study and other formalities
After you contact any agency and after you have decided to go ahead with the adoption you will first learn about the agency's procedures, parents requirements and available children and receive the application forms. The agency will review your completed application to determine whether to accept you as a client or intended adoptive parent. If accepted at a private agency, you will probably have to pay a registration fee at that time. The next step is the "home study" Which is most important since it gives the agency an opportunity to evaluate your economical status as well as find out whether you are eligible to adopt and take care of the child.
The home study is thus an evaluation of you as a prospective adoptive family and the physical and emotional environment into which the child would be placed. It consists of a series of interviews and meetings with a social worker, including at least one interview in your home where not only you will be interviewed but also all the family members will be questioned as to whether they want to adopt a child and give it love and compassion. During this process, you will, with the social worker's assistance, consider all aspects of adoptive parenthood and identify the type of child you wish to adopt. Please note that many of the questions asked in the home study are personal. Some of the questions are about your income, assets, and health and the stability of the marriage (if married) and/or family relationships. Physical exams to ensure that you are healthy may also be required. A home study is usually completed in a few months, depending upon the agency's requirements and the number of other clients.

Be prepared to wait

Adopting a child always requires a waiting period. After making up your mind and selecting the child you want to adopt you will have to wait to for at least 6 months to a year to finish all the formalities like home study and other legal formalities. For any type of adoption, even after a child is found, you may have to wait weeks or months while final arrangements are made.

Complete the legal formalities
Normally completing all the legal formalities is provided by the adoptive agencies itself and you need not worry about anything. First of all permission is taken from Indian Child Welfare Association for the purpose of adoption, which is provided to you by the agencies. Usually legal formality of adopting the child is completed during the waiting period when you have decided upon which child to adopt and all the other formalities regarding interview is over. An application is made to the Court for adoption which is granted and there after you can take the child home. If suppose the child is above 3 years old then in that case a child lives with the adoptive family for a few months in foster care before the adoption is finalized legally, the agency will then submit a written recommendation of approval of the adoption to the court, and you or your attorney can then file with the court to complete the adoption.


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