Adoption Adventures

Follow Cory and Rebecca on their quest to adopt!

Bouncing back, and a little money talk

on February 10, 2012

Last week was a tough one, but we’ve had some very promising conversations with social workers since then and are feeling much better about our options for adding to our family. We’re learning to take individuals’ comments in stride and keep our focus on learning as much as we can about adopting and parenting rather than getting bogged down in the details. One of our goals for this blog is to add to the positive side of the adoption discussion and, although there will be some setbacks, it’s still entirely worth it to pursue adoption.

 

In addition to calls from a social worker who saw our home study and thinks we may make a good fit for a child she’s trying to place in a permanent home (it’s nice to feel wanted!), I spoke with a representative from the agency we went through for our home study to talk about possible options with them. The latter social worker reminded me how financially feasible adoption truly is–even infant adoption. While adoption from foster care is free or very low-cost, domestic infant adoption through independent agencies can run in the $15,000-$30,000 range. Now those are big numbers! However, there is tax credit available in the US ($13,360 per child in 2011, though that can go up or down in future years), there are grants available, some agencies offer a sliding scale for their fees, and many employers offer some amount of financial reimbursement for adoption expenses.

 

It’s also easy to forget that biological children don’t come cheap. We’re paying over $200 per month for the privilege of having a maternity rider on my health insurance policy, and the hospital bills for women who give birth without excellent insurance can quickly run into the multiple-thousands of dollars. One round of IVF paid for out of pocket can be the same cost as an infant adoption through a private agency. So just looking at an adoption agency’s fee for services can be overwhelming when you don’t consider the big picture: babies can be super expensive no matter where they come from!

 

While we’re talking money, it’s an especially big pet peeve of mine when people group all forms of adoption together and write them off in a single, broad stroke by saying, “Adoption is way too expensive to even consider.” Adoption’s not for everyone and there are plenty of good reasons why folks may not want to or may not be in a good position to adopt. But to imply that every form of adoption is financially out of reach for most people is completely untrue. Again, adopting a child from foster care is, in many circumstances, absolutely free. And if that child is considered to have “special needs” (if they are slightly older, part of a sibling group adopted together, or are a child of color, for example), they often qualify for ongoing financial support and Medicaid even after they are adopted. They may even qualify for educational grants depending on their age. In these regards, adopting a child from foster care can mean that child costs less money your biological child.

 

So next time you hear someone say that any form of adoption will bankrupt a family, set ’em straight!

 


2 Responses to “Bouncing back, and a little money talk”

  1. Kev says:

    This picture is freakin’ perfect.

  2. Laurel Shire says:

    Yay! Glad to hear you’re bouncing back. Your last post was actually really inspirational for me – thinking about the girls who might benefit from a household headed by women… so far we’ve got our hands full with one infant. But maybe someday…!

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