Considering Adoption: Questions, Myths, and Truths Revealed

All paths to parenthood are significant with their own challenges and rewards. Choosing to adopt a child is just one unique journey to building your family. There are many reasons someone may feel called to adoption. If you are curious as to whether adoption is right for you, here are some things you might like to consider.

Why Do You Want to Adopt?

In the same way your child may one day be interested in learning about their family of origin and the circumstances that led to them being adopted, they will most likely have questions about what led you to the process of adopting them. It can be helpful, before you begin the process, to deeply consider why you are interested in adoption. 

Be truly honest with yourself and recognize that your desire to adopt is not the only thing necessary for a child’s ability to thrive in your home. Alternatively, if you are feeling ill-equipped to adopt a child, but have a strong desire, you may have more to offer than you realize!

Some things adopted parents can offer a child:

  • Unconditional Love and Support
  • Necessary Resources (Medical Care, Clothing, Food, etc.)
  • Education
  • Social Opportunities (Sports, Extracurriculars, Playdates, etc.)
  • Your Family’s Traditions and Culture
  • Shared Gratitude
  • Life Experiences
  • Examples of Empathy and Compassion
  • Legal Recognition and Security
  • Sibling/Pet/Extended Family relationships

What Are Your Current Family Dynamics?

There are many things to consider before adding a child to your family. This is true whether you are adopting, deciding to get pregnant, or looking to foster. Adding a child to your family will not and cannot solve pre-existing problems, and will most likely add additional stress you hadn’t previously accounted for. In the case of adopted children who may or may not already have their own trauma to heal from, it is important to not place on them the pressure of being the “golden fix” for your family’s woes.

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Factors that may cause individuals to reconsider adoption:

  • Strained relationship with spouse or partner
  • Poor finances that are already at capacity
  • Unsupportive spouse or partner who isn’t completely on-board
  • Current child(ren) who requires significant attention/resources
  • You or your spouse/partner struggle to form strong connections with others
  • Unaddressed mental health issues for you or a current family member
  • Unhealed trauma, especially related to parenthood
  • Insufficient time and energy to devote to a child

Are You Prepared for What Your Adopted Child Will Need?

While in some ways adopting a child can be similar to giving birth to a biological child, including the love that can bloom, there are also many things you should consider about the unique needs of your adopted child. It’s critical to recognize that adoption is not a moment in time; it is a lifetime commitment to love and support your child throughout their life – even into their eventual adulthood. 

No child is a “blank slate” for you to form however you would like. Children who are adopted in particular will come with their own personal history and story, even as babies. When you adopt, you are agreeing to love your child in the way they personally need to be loved, which may be different than you initially thought.

Factors to consider before adopting a child:

  • Are there specific medical needs you may need to be mindful of?
  • If you do not share their ethnicity do you have the cultural connections to provide them with the necessary support and community?
  • Have they experienced any known traumas that need to be addressed?

Myths and Truths About Adoption

Myth: Adoption is only in the case of infertility

Reality: There are many valid reasons to adopt.

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Myth: Adoption is only for married couples

Reality: While state rules vary on whether couples must be married to adopt together, single individuals can adopt in all fifty states.

Myth: Adoption is expensive

Reality: Because of the many different routes to adoption the price can vary drastically. There are paths to adoption for almost any budget.

Myth: Adoption takes a very long time

Reality: In most cases, adoption can be a timely process, however, there are circumstances where things can be streamlined faster than expected.

Myth: Birth parents don’t love their children

Reality: There are many loving reasons a birth parent may choose to allow their child to be adopted. 

Myth: Children who are adopted have lots of problems

Reality: The circumstances surrounding a child’s adoption may present some unique challenges that can affect a child’s emotional health and behavior, but there is no evidence that adopted children themselves are any more prone to having issues than their peers. There are also significant resources available for adoptive families.

Myth: LGBTQ+ individuals are ineligible to adopt

Reality: As long as someone meets their state's adoption requirements, their sexuality is not a factor for adoption eligibility. 

Myth: Adopting a child from outside of the country is easier and faster than adopting domestically

Reality: All countries have their own regulations and requirements for adoptions. The process can include challenges and delays regardless of which country you are adopting from. 


If you are unsure as to whether or not you’d like to pursue adoption, take your time to continue researching and soul-searching before making a final decision. This is a big life change and not something you should feel rushed or pressured into deciding. 

A great resource is an adoption counselor who can walk you through the process and give you an idea of whether you are a strong candidate for adopting a child or if another path may be a better option for you. You can also speak with those who have adopted or have been adopted, to gain some “real world” insight through their experience. 


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