A couple of weeks ago, a friend of mine wrote a guest post about the process of adoption. If you're hoping to adopt someday, I HIGHLY recommend you get in touch with Mandy. She can offer you so much assistance and support.
I wanted to write a follow-up post about adoption because I remember how overwhelmed I was when we first started talking about it. I guess I assumed there were so many things we needed to do, and I had no idea where to begin. For any of you who are thinking you want to adopt someday, I wanted to boil it down to two things. These are two things you must do if you want to adopt:
1. Have a homestudy done. We used a local attorney and were VERY pleased with both his prices and the final product. If you're local, contact me and I'd be happy to share his information. Homestudies are basically very in-depth interviews. The person performing the study will ask you and your spouse a lot of questions, walk through your house to make sure it's suitable for a child, and then probably request some additional information (like background checks, health records, income records, etc.) Homestudies (at least when we were looking) ranged in price from $600.00 to $2500.00. I'm sure these prices vary by location, so call around. Your best resources are local friends who have adopted.
2. Hire an attorney, contact an adoption agency, OR contact your local foster care system. Depending on how you want to adopt (through a private adoption, through an agency, or through foster care), you will need to contact one of these three options. Once you've contacted them, they pretty much walk you through whatever you need to do next. There are pros and cons to each of these types of adoptions. The least expensive options are doing a private adoption or going through foster care. However, if you go with one of these routes, there is more work on your shoulders. Going through an adoption agency can be pretty pricey, but they do take care of pretty much everything (maybe even the home study) for you.
I hope this makes the process a little less stressful. If you have any questions, I'd be happy to chat.