Know who you are, whom you want, and what you can handle.This may
seem self-evident, but giving thought to these questions early in
the process will save you time and disappointment. For instance,
you may think you know the characteristics of the child you want,
but are you sure you know how your partner feels? If you
disagree, how will you work this out? Would you both be OK with a
trans-racial adoption? Do you know what racial identity issues
can arise as your child grows up, and how you would handle them?
Do you prefer an infant or an older child? Boy or girl? Sibling
group? Could you handle a special needs child? What inner
resources and strength do you have to love and nurture a child
who turns out to have special needs years after the adoption? Do
you have a faith, family, and friends to sustain you? Do you have
the financial resources to handle any post-adoption medical,
developmental, behavioral, or learning issues? Do you have other
children whose needs must be considered? Can you appreciate the
culture of your child's birth country and seek out ways to help
your child learn and value the culture?
Discuss ahead of time with your spouse and family what you can
handle and when you would turn away a referral. Knowing this in
advance will make it much easier to handle your decisions when
you are in your referral meeting in Kyiv.
If you or someone you love want to welcome a child into their
lives and families, as my husband and I did, we can help.