Saturday, November 21, 2020 is National Adoption Day. Adoption days are often called “the happiest day in court.” Most of us know people who have been adopted or who are adoptive parents. Step parent adoption, kinship adoption, baby adoption, international adoption, public, private; we have all heard these terms, but many people still have questions and misconceptions about adoption.
What you might not know about adoption
But there are some things that are not widely known about adoptions.
- The structure of the American family is changing. It’s no longer the norm for adoptive parents to be only a dad and mom dynamic. According to a 2014 Per Research poll over half of adoptions take place in nontraditional households. It is now quite common for children to be adopted by single parents, same-sex parents, and even older parents over age 55.
- While private adoptions can cost more, it actually does not cost much, or in some cases anything, to adopt. Foster parents who adopt their foster child or children and can still collect a monthly stipend during the process. Some states continue to help these foster-to-adopt parents with medical and mental health care for the adopted children even after the adoption is complete.
- Adoption is an intense psychological transition for both the child and the parent. More and more resources are available to make this transition as smooth and emotionally aware as possible. Some parents even join a pre-adoption support group.
According to Adoption Network just about 135,000 children are adopted in the United States every year. The network also states that at any given time there are roughly 428,000 children in foster care in our nation; over half of these children are over 6. Additionally, most children, over 60%, spend between two and five years in foster care before being adopted.
If you are considering adopting a child there are many resources available. The guidance of a family law attorney can provide extra support and legal counsel to reduce the stress and uncertainty of such a major life event.