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    Adoptive Parents: Separate Expectations From Reality

    Building Families through Adoption!

    Generally, most prospective adoptive parents (“PAPs”) are obsessed with the immediate desire to become parents.  After trying for many years to have a biological child, these PAPs are turning to adoption as their final option. By the time they reach an adoption professional, they have waited too long, spent too money, and are ready to parent right now – but are they??

    Education is the Key to Successful Adoption!

    The single most prominent impediment to the adoptive parents’ completion of an adoption plan is their inability to separate their expectations from their own reality. If a PAP has been properly educated, either through self-help or through an adoption counselor, there is an excellent chance the adoption plan will run smoother. On the other hand, if a PAP fails to properly prepare for an adoption plan, their expectations will greatly exceed any reality with regard to all aspects of the plan.

    Birth Mothers are Not Perfect!

    The biggest area of concern pertains to the PAP’s unrealistic expectations as to birth parents.  Because of negative stories in the press and on the Internet concerning the involvement of birth parents with money or drugs, PAPs have many negative preconceived notions about birth parents.  To the contrary, virtually all of the birth mothers that we work with, although not perfect, embody a strong ethical and moral principle – for them, adoption is all about finding the right family for their child!

    Appreciate the Birth Mother’s Perspective!

    Understanding the birth parents’ perspective plays a key role for a successful adoption plan. To gain insight into the birth parents’ viewpoint, open communication is essential. As most of our adoptions are semi-open, it is critical for PAPs to regularly communicate with birth parents during the pregnancy.

    Each communication should center on the birth parent – not the unborn child and not the adoptive parents.  Let the birth parent drive the conversation, if possible.  Birth parents are concerned about their living situation, their transportation, their employment, their relationship with family and friends.  They are consumed, and rightly so, with issues of self and it is such issues which must be the primary focus of all PAP communication.

    Adoptive Parents and Birth Mothers have similar Goals!

    The goal for birth parents and PAPs should be the same – successful completion of an adoption plan. The best way to achieve success for a PAP is to become as educated as possible about the adoption process and the perspective of the birth parent. This will enable the PAP to separate their expectations from their own reality.

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