If there’s one thing adoption participants know a thing or two about, it’s persevering in adoption.
Because adoption just isn’t simple– whether you’ve been adopted, are adopting, have placed, are giving up a child for adoption, have adopted, or work in adoption.
Adoption has just never been something that anyone does “just for fun.”
It’s emotionally exhausting. It’s stressful. There’s lots of paperwork involved. The process can be costly. Adoption feels like a thankless pursuit, lots of times.
So why bother, anyway? Because on some deeper level, adoption is an universal acknowledgement that all children deserve safe homes and ready families.
Believing in Kids means Persevering in Adoption
All too often, love isn’t enough. It cannot fix an abusive partner, it doesn’t feed a hungry baby, it won’t heal infertility and it can’t forever repair the ravages of poverty.
Ask the anti-adoption crowd and they’ll tell you “foster care or guardianship is just as good.” (The year Abrazo opened, American politician Newt Gingrich advocated for rebuilding orphanages, remember?)
But ask most kids waiting in foster care or who aged out without ever having had a family of their own and they’ll tell you this just isn’t true.
Ask couples who got scared off from adopting if befriending the neighbor’s kids or rescuing a pet ever fully replaced their dream of becoming parents, and they’ll look at you like you’re crazy.
Ask most parents who got bullied into abandoning a placement plan then lost custody to Child Protective Services if adoption might have been the best choice after all, and they’ll say oh, heck, yes.
Adoption isn’t a perfect solution, of course. But all things considered, it’s still way better than any of the possible alternatives when kids can’t grow up safely in their families of origin.
Persevering Requires Preserving Hope
At present, three returning Abrazo families can definitely testify to the hardships of persevering in adoption. The first time that Clint & Amanda, Bryan & Clorissa and Derek & Cristabel adopted here, they were childless couples in high demand. Now, they’re experienced parents already, so this time, their wait is longer. That’s frustrating, when they so long to grow their families, of course. But persevering in adoption means having faith that the right situation will come your way when the time is truly right. (And they know this.)
For expectant moms who long to find the right family for the child they’re carrying or for seemingly-forgotten birthparents anxiously waiting to reunite with a child already adopted, persevering in adoption means trusting in what one cannot yet see. Adoptees who wait to reconnect with their first families likewise know all too well the agonizing trials of perseverance.(Especially those who feel obligated to wait until their parents pass to pursue that dream.) Loyal adoptive families who faithfully continue to provide loving updates for or seek open adoption contacts with birthparents who don’t respond also know the trials of persevering in adoption all too well.
Adoption professionals aren’t exempt, either. During the recent Texas snowstorm, a pipe in Abrazo’s new office burst, flooding the entire adoption agency. When we first got the news, our staff was overwhelmed at the thought of all the repairs to be made (and the costs of making them.) Coming on the heels of the coronavirus pandemic and during a global drop in the world’s birth rate, it would be easy to just throw in the proverbial towel. Yet Abrazo’s staff truly loves the children we serve and the parents that love them, so persevering in adoption means carrying on and regrouping, when necessary. (Click here if you want to help.)
We are all persevering in adoption because we want a brighter future for everyone’s child/ren, so we wait out any challenges and then move forward– with faith, with trust and with love.