The most difficult part of a parental placement adoption is the search. How do you find the birth mother? How does she find you? Second to this problem is the need to present yourselves in such a manner that the birth mother will want to choose you, instead of the many other couples also searching for a child. These two problems must be addressed together, because your presentation is part of your search. You cannot wait until you find a birth mother to figure out what you want to say to her. The information you prepare about yourselves will most likely be viewed by the birthmother without your even knowing it is happening.
The first thing you should do is to try to put yourself in the birthmother’s shoes. Look at things from her point of view. She is a young woman in crisis. She is trying to do the right thing. She wants as much useful information about you as she can get, so that she may have confidence that she has made the right choice before she goes on with the rest of her life.
Many couples want to hide information about themselves. They don’t want anyone to know where they live or how much money they make. It is important to be clear about the fact that all of this information will ultimately have to be revealed. Much more personal information than this will be contained in the Home Study. The birth mother has the right to review the report, although most do not choose to do so. The law specifically requires the exchange of substantial infomation between the birth parents and the adoptive parents, and there will be a few face to face meetings. So it must be clearly understood that if you want to adopt by parental placement, you must be prepared to reveal much personal information about yourselves to the birth parents.
This does not mean, however, that everything must be revealed at once. You must reveal enough about yourselves to enable the birth mother to make an intelligent and well informed decision. The rest can be revealed when the birth mother has already made a decision to choose you. However, failure to reveal enough information in an open and honest manner may convey to the birth mother the impression that you are hiding something. this may be enough to prevent her from seriously considering you any further.
Birth mothers are not all cut from the same cloth. The very thing which causes one to choose a family may cause another to reject the same family. Therefore, you should not think you have to present yourselves in any particular way. Your goal is to present yourselves as you really are. The birth mother wants to know what is distinct or different about you. For this reason, the profile you prepare should not look like everyone else’s. People approach the preparation of the profile in their own unique ways. This is good, as it helps the birth mother make her choice. Remember, she is choosing you. You are not choosing her.