Resources to help with your adoption
If you are interested in becoming the parent of an adopted child, there is a wide range of adoption services and resources that can help answer your questions and match you with a suitable boy or girl. You'll have a complex and potentially lengthy journey ahead of you, so it's important that you take full advantage of adoption resources as you make your way through the process.
Official Adoption Services
Any legal adoption must be arranged and approved by an adoption agency. You can choose a public or a private agency; public agencies don't usually charge any fees, but your wait time is usually longer. Private agencies can be expensive, but offer reduced wait times. Also, public adoption agencies always act in the best interests of the child, whereas private alternatives tend to focus more on matching parents with an infant or child that best fits their desired profile.
An adoption registry is a bureaucratic institution that offers services including information on the parents and siblings of adopted children from around the world as well as birth parent search capabilities. They are of great value to adopted children who want to reconnect with their birth families later in life.
Informal Adoption Resources
If you want to connect with other couples trying to adopt children or families who have already adopted children, check out adoption sites that offer forums, networks and message boards. In an adoption forum, you can interact with people from around the country and around the world who are going through or have been through the process, and you can gain valuable tips and insights from them.
You can also use adoption message boards, which are available through many adoption networks. These resources allow you to make postings that all members of the network can see and respond to, and you can also contact other members anonymously and confidentially if you would like to initiate a private discussion.
When using adoption sites, be aware that the information you get will be anecdotal and unofficial (unless the site is owned and maintained by a registered public or private adoption agency). You should use these websites to supplement your knowledge of the adoption process, rather than as a primary educational resource.