Our Adoption Story: Highs and Lows

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Our Adoption Story: Highs and Lows



First thing’s first….April is Child Abuse Prevention Month! All across Texas, there will be events and things you can do to become more aware of how to help prevent child abuse and how you can help protect children involved. If you would like to find events in your area (I only have the list for Texas), check out the EVENTS PAGE on HelpAndHope.org.

I have waited a while to do this update because my husband and I have been trying to sort out our feelings. Since my last write up, we have gotten a lot accomplished and have been getting more excited about our journey. On the other side of that, we have run into a few snags and are trying to work them out the best we can. So I want to start with the good stuff. We have completed all of our classes! It was five weeks of Saturday classes that were 5 and 6 hours each. Our children were surprised (as were we) that we got homework and took tests during “school” and had to do some online at home. We also got our fingerprints done, background checks complete, First Aid and CPR class completed, all of our paperwork turned in and all four of us had TB tests done. This was all good stuff!

On our very last class, the teacher said we could go ahead and schedule our fire and health inspections for our home. I asked how much longer she thought it would take for us to be approved, and she thought we could have it all done by the end of the month. That was exciting! For the most part, all of that was good stuff. We were getting things done and getting closer to being certified and able to start the foster-to-adopt program.

Now on to the lows…..the week after we finished classes, we got the call to schedule our home study. We set a date and were told that it would take about 5 to 6 hours. Basically, they would spend the whole day with my husband and I asking us all sorts of questions. It included things about our childhood, how our family worked when we were growing up, how we are now as parents, how we problem solve, how we discipline our kids, are we involved at school. There was nothing off limits and we talked and talked for hours. Once our kids got out of school, I left to pick them up so they could also talk to the staff. They basically just asked the kids how they feel about getting a new sibling or possibly siblings, what were the rules of the house, could they share toys and things like that. After six hours, we thought, YEAH, we’re done with the home study! Not so much. We were told there was about another hour to an hour and a half of questioning that my husband and I had to still complete. We figured out the date that we could do it and that was that.

Now don’t get me wrong. The Home Study was not a low. It was exciting for us to be that much further into the process. But the email I received after our home study was definitely not a high. It seemed our home study had brought up some concerns about how our household is now. Basically, they were worried because my husband travels for work. Some weeks he may only travel for 2 days, but some weeks he may travel for 5 days. It varies from week to week. My husband is self-employed and even though he travels out of town for work, that also gives him a lot of flexibility that most people don’t have within their jobs. Plus, in the summer, we get to go on trips with him. Last summer, his “work trip” turned into a 12 day family road trip. My kids got to visit 18 new states and we all got to see things we had never seen before. This lifestyle works for us, and we have been doing it for so long that it didn’t occur to us that it may be a problem. Our agency, that we are going through, knows that it works for us and they are okay with it. But they do not decide what child or children gets placed in our home. Caseworkers decide, and caseworkers will not get to know us as much as our agency has. So him traveling the way he does may not look so great on paper.

The other thing we were told is that caseworkers prefer a family where both parents can take off a decent amount of time when children are placed in your home. Keep in mind, we want this to end in adoption, so we understand there needs to be bonding and settling in time. But the suggested amount of time is a month!This doesn’t seem normal to me. After all, the main goal is to get the child used to daily life. Both parents being home every day for 1 month is not regular daily life for any family I know. Plus, since my husband is self-employed a month is just not possible for us. He did agree to take off up to 2 weeks, but that didn’t seem to give them the comfort they were looking for.

So that’s where our dilemma is. We understand that our agency is trying to put us in the best situation possible to make sure this works out for the long haul. But these two issues are things that we can’t change. This is how we survive, pay bills and take care of our family. I thought that being a stay-at-home mom would compensate for his travel and not being able to take off so much time, but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

We have decided to meet with our agency again (our meeting is next week) and talk about our options. We have come to the conclusion that our situation is our situation. We feel like we should just be put in the mix and see what happens. Our agency is trying to protect us from heartbreak by being passed over by caseworkers, but we feel like we still have to try.

If you have been through this process and have any advice, I am open to it. I’m trying to still keep my kids hopes high, but also know in the back of my mind that this may not happen like we had hoped.


If adoption is something you are interested in or maybe your just curious to see what our journey is like, please check back for updates. I will be writing new parts to our story as they happen.

Helpful Websites:


TARE – Texas Adoption Resource Exchange

Childwelfare.gov – Adoption websites listed by state

Things you may not know about adoption:

  1. Did you know that Texas has an official Adoption Day? Well, we do and it is the Saturday before Thanksgiving, each year.
  2. Did you know that the average age of a child in foster care is 9 years old?
  3. Did you know that families who adopt a child from foster care may qualify for a federal tax credit even though they may not have had adoption expenses?
  4. Did you know that the average time that a child waits for a forever home is almost 2 years? And the older a child gets, the longer they may wait.
  5. Did you know that there are Adoption Assistance Resources on a state and national level?

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