All parents are born, of course– but only some get to become chosen parents at Abrazo.
Being chosen parents here usually takes 6-12 months or less for childless couples. (For couples who already have kids, the wait is generally twelve months or more.) They’ve undergone federal fingerprinting and background checks, passed homestudies and learned all they can about adopting.
At Abrazo, our chosen parents are people with documented infertility who have made a careful decision to adopt. For most, that choice is made after years of unsuccessful fertility treatments. They come to realize what matters most is not having a baby but rather, being a parent.
Typically, Abrazo’s parents-in-waiting are couples over the age of 25. They have to have been married more than a year and be both financially-sound and emotionally-stable.
Most importantly, though: Abrazo works only with adopting parents who are committed to the concept of open adoption.
Why is open adoption so important?
Sometimes, prospective adopters call us and say “we’re wanting to adopt a baby, not a birthfamily.” Some not have resolved their infertility issues. Others may be scared of open adoption. Regardless, folks aren’t ready for the realities of adoptive parenting if they can’t embrace the truth of an adopted child’s origins– and those who gave each child life.
Those who resist open adoption may still become great parents, someday. Yet to be a great adoptive parent requires understanding adoptees’ needs, rights and losses and never denying these, even if the adoptee sometimes might do so. (Google “primal wound” if you’re wondering why adoptees may have deep-seated issues that even they don’t always understand.)
And yes, Abrazo does sometimes work with placing parents who don’t want open adoption. But their children still go home with parents who fully understand the importance of open adoption. Because open adoption is ultimately about honesty. And children need to grow up with parents who have the courage to embrace honesty and transparency their kids’ whole lives long.
What makes those chosen parents at Abrazo better?
Our adopting parents at Abrazo understand that adoptions need to be child-centered. This means they happen for the best interests of the child, not to satisfy the whims of the adults.
Abrazo’s chosen parents welcome the chance to truly get to know the placing parents personally. Hopeful adopters here don’t use baby lines (ie., 800 numbers) to hide their phone numbers. Our adoptive parents willingly share identifying information about who they are and where they live.
Abrazo’s parents-in-waiting make every effort to come meet the placing parents before birth and placement. This enables prospective birthparents to be absolutely sure whether or not they feel at ease with the possibility of becoming relatives by adoption.
They are happy to be present in the delivery room if the placing parents want them there, but they don’t room in at the hospital with the baby until and unless placement is complete. They know the baby they are adopting needs all the time with and access to the first mom that’s possible. And they respect the mother’s right to privacy– and to change her mind before relinquishment, if needed.
Even after placement, the chosen parents who adopt through Abrazo go the extra miles to see and spend time with their child’s birthparents. They bring their child/ren back together with their birthparents each year, often at fun events like Camp Abrazo. These are things they do because they want the child they adopt to know, love and respect the birthfamily just as they do.
What makes adoptions at Abrazo better?
Abrazo has been a Texas-licensed nonprofit agency for 27 years. Unlike unlicensed adoption facilitators and baby brokers who charge huge advertising fees just to set birthparents and adoptive parents up with agencies or attorneys, people who come to Abrazo can get full placement services right here.
Those who need to give up a child for adoption or place their baby can receive a wide range of support and services here at Abrazo. Need to get on Medicaid or find a doctor or choose a family or get some counseling or housing or financial assistance with living expenses? Abrazo can help. Want to join our birthparent support group or get help with your open adoption relationship or finding resources after placement? Abrazo is still here for you and will be, as long as you need us.
And for those who want to adopt, Abrazo helps them learn about open adoption and why it’s important for an adoptee’s health across the lifespan. Our agency guides them through the process of preparing a profile, passing a homestudy, and considering their match options. Abrazo gets adopting couples ready for placement, supports them throughout the process, then offers continued post-adoption services, as needed.
Being chosen to adopt is a great honor and a lifelong responsibility. Chosen parents at Abrazo find our adoption community a valuable resource as they negotiate the challenges of parenthood and the joys of open adoption. Adoptions at Abrazo are better because they’re based on truth and built with love.
If you’re waiting to become chosen parents in an open adoption or if you need to choose new parents for your child, let Abrazo help you with an adoption that will truly make you and your child proud.