6 Qualities to Look for in Adoptive Parents as a Birth Mother
As a birth mother, it’s your absolute right to ensure that your child is in the best possible care, even if that means it won’t be with you. This is especially true if you are considering placing your baby for adoption. Finding the right adoptive parent(s) for your child is, quite possibly, the most intricate and hardest decisions you may ever make.
There are a lot of questions that go into finding just the right adoptive parent(s) for your little one. So, there is no harm in putting together ideas on what you’re ideal adoptive parents are like. Since there is no “one size fits all” on adoptive parents, the idea of selecting your child’s adoptive parent(s) can be overwhelming.
If you’re not really sure where to start in terms of what to look for in an adoptive family, that’s okay. If you’re working with an adoption agency, you can talk it out with a counselor to begin figuring out those ideas. To help you get started, here are a few qualities to look for in adoptive parents.
- They have similar values and beliefs
Your adoption caseworker will provide profile books that match the most important qualities you want when looking for your child’s adoptive parent(s). This includes finding potential matches who share your or have similar values and beliefs. If you are able to, open a dialogue with the adoptive parents and help them to understand what environment you are looking for.
Do you prefer that he or she grows up in a diverse neighborhood? How do the adoptive parents feel about education? Is the option of college in your child’s future? Are they involved in a church, or are they non-religious? Do they value openness and honesty in the home?
- They are equipped to handle change
The adjustment period after the adoption has been finalized can be a challenge for both your child and the adoptive parent(s). They will all be settling into a new normal, and your baby may experience a time of grief being separated from you. But, knowing that your child’s adoptive parents have a plan and are equipped to handle this can be a great comfort.
Rolling with the changes is one of the biggest parts of parenting. Ask questions to see how the adoptive parents anticipate handling these situations, and how they will explain your child’s adoption story to them. Your child will experience many changes as they grow up, and their adoptive parents need to be prepared and ready to change with them.
- They use laughter as medicine
Sometimes there are situations where we can’t help but laugh, whether good or bad. Having a child definitely makes this concept come to life. Laughter can make all the difference in the world. It’s important to make sure kids have a place to feel free to be silly (at the right times). It’s important for adoptive parents to provide such a place for your child. No one says parents have to be comedians, but just a smile can change your child’s whole day.
- They want to have a strong and healthy relationship with your child
Each and every adoptee is unique and has their own way of processing the reality of their adoption. If an adoptee came from a closed adoption, they may struggle with self-esteem or identities issues. If an adoptee came from a semi-open or open adoption, they have access to their birth history and are able to get answers, but some may still need space to process. This is completely natural, and why it is so important for adoptive parents to have open lines of communication with your child early on in life. This helps the adoptee know that there is nothing shameful about being adopted, that he or she is free to talk about their adoption story whenever they want to and that their adoptive parents are trying to form an honest and trusting relationship with them.
- They can keep their word
Commitment. When you’ve committed to doing something, even if you don’t want to do it, you still do it. Why? Because you said you would. When you don’t, people begin to lose trust in you. This is no different with birth parents, adoptive parents and adoptees. Growing up in a supportive environment is important. Your child will want to feel like their adoptive parents are interested in what they are doing, whether it’s a dance recital or a sport’s game. So, it’s imperative that your child’s adoptive parents keep their commitment, not only to your child, but also to you. ,
- Good Communication Skills
Good communication is important in any relationship. The parent-to-child relationship is no different. In fact, it’s probably the most important. Spending as much time with your child as possible, and getting to know them, can really make an impact on who they become as they get older. Walking them or driving them to and from school, eating meals together — all of that can lead to open dialogue between parents and children. Ask your child’s adoptive parents what their plan is on having open communication with your child.
Qualities to Look for in Adoptive Parents
While these are not the only things to think about in terms of what to look for in adoptive parents for your child, they certainly are a good start. Don’t hesitate to reach out to the adoptive parents and communicate what you would like to see them do. After all, as a birth mother, it’s your absolute right to ensure that your child is in the best possible care. Even if that means it won’t be with you.
Meet the Author: Gabrielle Willis is a lover of writing and knowledge, which shows in her everyday life. She graduated with a Bachelors in English in 2013, and recently graduated with a Masters in Creative Writing. She has also worked in the education sector for over 10 years, recently becoming a Literacy Tutor. At her core, her passion is reading and writing, and she loves sharing that with others.
She enjoys helping those considering adoption or going through the adoption process any way she can. This internship opportunity truly resonated with her and she hopes that her words will connect and inspire everyone who reads them.