Question: I noticed that on Lifetime Adoption Center’s Facebook page, you posted about multiple drop in the lap adoption situations that happened over the weekend. Why weren’t we contacted about these?
Answer: It’s normal to feel left out (and a bit jealous) when hearing about other adoptive families becoming matched. Many waiting couples think, “I hope we get the call!” or “Why wasn’t this our adoption?”
In domestic infant adoption, it’s important that you’re aware of aspects such as adoption preferences and other behind-the-scenes scenarios that adoption professionals handle.
Just as adoptive parents have preferences in adoption, so do birth mothers. With adoption preferences, you are able to choose which ethnicities you’re open to, as well as the age of the child and gender. Birth mothers have a wide array of choices in open adoption: they may prefer a couple who lives in a certain area, one with a stay-at-home mom, a devoutly Christian couple, an adoptive family of a particular race; the list goes on. When a potential birth mother contacts Lifetime, we talk with her about what she’s hoping for in adoptive parents for her child. Then, she is sent a variety of adoption profiles from families that not only match HER preferences, but also match YOUR adoption preferences. The point is, when you see Lifetime post about drop-in-the-lap adoption situations, you may not know about all of the intricate adoption preferences that are in play.
Once a birth mother chooses a few of her top picks in adoptive families, Lifetime presents her adoption situation to the families. If the adoptive couple decides this sounds like what they’re looking for, we’ll give your 800 number to her and set up a time to talk. Remember, you don’t always know confidential details behind the scenes, such as drug use, race of child, the birth mom’s criteria for an adoptive family, and state laws.
While you wait to be chosen by a birth mother, there are many things you can be doing to get ready. Here are a few:
- Make sure your home study is up to date
- Contact house sitters and pet sitters so they’ll be taken care of when you travel for your adoption
- Find the closest airports
- Prepare your home for a child: assemble the nursery and shop for baby equipment
- Prepare your life for a child: look into a leave of absence at work, attend childcare classes, read parenting books
- Practice “what if” situations (example: we call you about a situation across the country and you need to be there by 5 pm. How will you make that happen?)
- Attend our FREE adoption webinars…held a few times every month! Participate and learn by visiting AdoptionWebinar.com.
As Vice President of Lifetime Adoption, Heather Featherston holds an MBA and is passionate about working with those facing adoption, pregnancy, and parenting issues. Heather has conducted training for birth parent advocates, spoken to professional groups, and has appeared on television and radio to discuss the multiple aspects of adoption. She has provided one-on-one support to women and hopeful adoptive parents working through adoption decisions.
Since 2002, she has been helping pregnant women and others in crisis to learn more about adoption. Heather also trains and speaks nationwide to pregnancy clinics to effectively meet the needs of women who want to explore adoption for their child. Today, she continues to address the concerns women have about adoption and supports the needs of women who choose adoption for their child.
As a published author of the book Called to Adoption, Featherston loves to see God’s hand at work every day as she helps children and families come together through adoption.