Imagine that a friend or family member comes to you with the surprise that they are adopting. What wonderful, exciting news! What can you do to support them as they take their first steps towards adoption near Lafayette? And what can you do to help alleviate stress where you can? At St. Elizabeth Foundation, we know what the adopting family must face on their adoption journey. Let us give you a few tips to help take care of your loved ones, engage with them, and support them through the ups and downs.
1. Ask Questions!
One of the best ways to encourage your friends or family is with questions about their adoption near Lafayette! Show them that you are engaged and interested in the process. But, make sure your questions are balanced. Keep stressful or repeated questions to a minimum, and don’t overload the couple with questions. A few questions we suggest are:
- What agency are you adopting through, and what is their process?
- How long can you expect the process to take?
- What has been the most exciting part of the process so far?
- How are you feeling?
The adoption process can have many hurdles to overcome, and these may draw out the timeframe of the couple’s adoption. Avoid more negatively driven questions such as “What’s taking so long?” or “What if something goes wrong?” While these are valid questions, they do little to help the adopting couple. Keep your questions on the positive end of the spectrum.
2. Learn About the Chosen Type of Adoption
At St. Elizabeth Foundation, we offer three forms of adoption: open, semi-open, and closed. The type of adoption is chosen by the birth mother and determines how much contact remains after the completion of the adoption. If your loved ones already know the type of their adoption, take time to research it online. Not only does this give you insight into the process, but it also shows your loved one how willing you are to take research into your own hands.
3. Listen, Even During the Tough Stretches
While adoption is a beautiful and exciting journey, it is not without its challenges. This can result in long stretches of waiting, completing home studies and education, and grappling with the wide range of emotions that come with adoption. Be the listening ear your loved ones need. This may mean you allow the couple to vent their frustrations and worries or encourage them to pursue St. Elizabeth’s counseling services. Or, this may be as simple as offering a hug, a shoulder to rest or cry on, or other aid when the couple is too stressed to focus on themselves. Giving your time to listen and support the couple is invaluable as they work their way closer to finalizing their adoption near Lafayette.
4. Offer Encouraging Stories Rather Than Horror Stories
As with any major decision in life, you’ll find many shining success stories—and heart-wrenching horror stories, too. While it is realistic to consider all possibilities that the adopting couple could face, don’t bog them down with the harrowing what-ifs. When you can, replace worry with encouragement. Share exciting stories of adoption, especially if you know of any personal success stories from other friends or family. Remember that hardships are inevitable. However, it is better to focus on the positive adoption aspects to help keep the adopting couple in a strong forward motion.
5. Do Your Research!
Aside from researching the types of adoption available, research the adoption process as a whole! At St. Elizabeth Foundation, our adoption process follows seven main steps: qualifying for adoption, applying, completing a home study, finishing our education program, being chosen by a birth mother, learning your legal rights and responsibilities, and finalizing the adoption. Take time to research each step to discover ways you can help. Consider helping clean the couple’s home and organizing their items before the home study. You can monetarily support the adoption by donating towards the overall cost, purchasing diapers, or buying toys and clothes for when the baby arrives. When you understand the complexities of the adoption process, you can discover better ways to offer assistance.
6. Ask the Best Ways to Help and Support
When in doubt, communicate with the adopting couple. Ask them outright how you can best support them during their adoption. This can be direct assistance including being a good listener or helping with tasks around their home. Or, this could be as simple as inviting the couple over for a home-cooked dinner to talk about their experience. Your willingness to help and listen can do wonders for the couple as they prepare to welcome their new child!
Pursue Adoption Near Lafayette Through St. Elizabeth Foundation
If you or a loved one are interested in adoption near Lafayette, reach out to St. Elizabeth Foundation to learn more! We would love to share details about the adoption process, the approach our local adoption agency takes, and how you can take your first steps. Give us a call at 225-769-8888 or send us a message. Our staff looks forward to offering support, as well.