home study. At some point after the home study period,
a child is identified who is or who might be available
for adoption. You'll then have to decide whether or
not to accept the child - it's finally your choice.
If you choose to adopt, there is a supervisory period
once the child arrives in your home, and this may range
from a few weeks to several years. After a specified
period, your child is legally adopted by an adoption
Adoption is not the answer
Infertile couples are often under tremendous pressure
to adopt - friends may tire of your problem and question
why you don't adopt if you want a baby so badly; and
others who have already adopted may enthusiastically
recommend the option to you. But you should never try
to force yourself to be comfortable with adoption if
the idea is disturbing - this is not a time for selflessness.
are no set guidelines to determine who should or should
not adopt. Remember, adoption does not mean trying to
find a baby now to take care of you in your old age;
neither is it a method to try to use to keep your marriage
together. Signs suggesting indecision could include
denial of your disappointment about infertility; persistent
fantasies about what life might have been with biological
children; and the desire to keep the adoption a secret.
Prospective parents may also have fears that an adoptive
child may not measure up to family standards. If you
have any doubts, it may be a good idea to temporarily
postpone your adoption plans and discuss your anxieties
before proceeding further.
Myth: If an adoptive family really loves the child and
does a good job of parenting, then an adopted child
will not be curious about his or her birth parents.
Fact: Children are often curious about those who play
major roles in their lives. Most, if not all, adoptive
children will want to know about their biological roots.
Myth: Adopted children are better off not knowing they
Fact: Adoptees almost always find out that they are
adopted. They then discover that their family has been
dishonest with them. Adopted children may build better
self-esteem when they have a clearer picture of personal
Myth: Once the process of adoption is over, it is the
same as having a biological child.
Fact: There are real differences in birth and adoptive
families. The adoptive child will have different questions
about adoption at each stage of development.
Myth: Adoptive parents make better parents because they
want a child so badly.
Fact: The degree of desire for a child does not necessarily
make for better parenting.
Myth: An adoptive child belongs to his new family forever
and owes them something more than ordinary offspring.
Fact: An adoptee child offers neither more nor less
to his parents than a birth child.
Myth: Once a couple has decided to adopt, it is more
likely they will become pregnant on their own.
Fact: It is neither more nor less likely that a couple
who has adopted will achieve pregnancy.
Myth: Once adoption has taken place, the pain of infertility
Fact: The pain of infertility often lingers after the
family has been established by adoption. Although happy
with their adoptive families, couples may still want
to pursue having a biological child. Adoption is not
a cure for infertility, but it can be a cure for childlessness.
Myth: Prospective parents should adopt only after all
possibilities of having a biological child have been
Fact: Because of rapid developments in infertility management,
there is no longer a clear stopping point for possible
is helpful for prospective parents to look into alternative
means for starting a family early in their infertility
work-up - remember, taking infertility treatment and
considering adoption are not mutually exclusive choices
! Just because you are taking treatment does not mean
that you are not "committed to adoption";
and just because you are considering adoption does not
mean that you are decreasing the chances of the infertility
treatment as a result of your "negative attitude".
Often, couples pursuing infertility treatment may actually
begin to see how an adopted child could be a good choice
Myth: It is extremely difficult to adopt.
Fact: Although the adoption process can be tedious,
adoption is possible for most couples.
A good book to read to find out more information about
adoption is Nilima Mehta's Ours By Choice, The full
text of this book is available at: