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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Someone Else's Kid

Deciding to adopt can be a very difficult process for a couple. It is quite common for one partner to be more eager than the other.  In the 2011 Adoption Guide Magazine, Jill Smolowe recounts her adoption experience with her husband.  She tells readers that when the topic came up he would often refer to their prospective child as "someone else's kid."  Thoughts like this, among factors such as; age, money, time, and family, can lead one partner in a relationship to be reluctant about adopting. Adoption Guide lists "7 Tips to Help Ease a Spouse's Reluctance."

1. Acknowledge your spouse's concerns and fears; try to listen with interest, not judgement.

2. Air and discuss the differences between you, rather than try to cover them up or smooth them over.

3. Don't take a spouse's initial reaction as the final word.  When a subject is emotionally charged, people often say things they don't really mean.

4. Give a spouse time and space to consider issues as they arise; recognize that people approach change at different speeds.

5. Find a support group of other couples considering adoption.  Hearing that they, too, have reservations may help both of you.

6. If your spouse isn't providing the support and encouragement you need to cope with the rocky adoption process, seek out a sympathetic friend or relative.

7.  See a marriage counselor if you have trouble navigating any of these issues.  A reluctant spouse may hear questions and advice better from a neutral observer. 

Deciding to adopt is a very emotional process.  It is important to remember that some people may take a bit longer to warm up to the idea.  If you or your spouse are currently facing this issue in your adoption process, keep in mind that it is very normal to feel this way. 

ABSA is here to support families through every stage of the adoption process.  We strive to create happy families and are here to assist in any way that we can.  :)