There are many reasons why people, both married and single, choose to adopt kids. It may be to build or expand their family, or they want to have children but can’t reproduce due to infertility or other medical conditions. Some may even be single and would simply want to have kids. In these instances, adoption may be the way to go.
However, as much as it’s a rewarding experience, adopting and raising a child requires commitment, time, and effort. Before you make this huge decision, you must first know whether you’re prepared to adopt a child. The following are signs that you’re ready:
1. There’s Acceptance
Before deciding to adopt a child, it’s important to first accept your situation, whatever it is that has led you to want to adopt. If you’re adopting because of a medical condition like infertility, you must make sure that you’ve accepted your condition and won’t project your frustrations onto your child, whether consciously or otherwise.
If you have a partner, you should also be on the same page with them, and you should both be supportive of this decision to adopt. You and your partner must be willing to take care of a kid or else this will become a problem in the future. Unless you’ve both accepted this decision, the child might end up feeling unwanted in the long run.
2. You’re Financially Prepared
Financial preparedness is essential when you’re considering adoption. After all, raising a kid comes with various expenses, not to mention that the adoption process itself will cost money. In fact, according to AFTH, insufficient finances is one of the obstacles that prospective parents face when wanting to adopt.
To determine whether you’re financially prepared for this decision, ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you earn more than you spend?
- Do you have enough money to support a child’s basic needs such as food, shelter, and clothing?
- Can you support a child’s educational and medical needs?
- Do you have enough savings to support long-term plans?
- Can you change your current lifestyle to accommodate an additional family member?
If you answered yes to these questions, then you’re ready to consider adoption. Aside from these, take note of the adoption fees you need to shell out. If you have the finances to cover them, then it’s likely the right time to adopt.
3. You’re Emotionally Prepared
Aside from financial preparedness, your emotions also matter when considering adoption. You must be emotionally ready and stable before you even consider adopting. After all, a child isn’t a toy or a shirt you can return to the store when you’re not happy with them anymore. You’ll be responsible for the child’s life until such time that they’re old enough to take care of themselves—which means that you need to make significant adjustments in your life as well, and not all people are ready for this.
A few questions that you can ask yourself to see if you’re emotionally prepared to adopt are the following:
- Can you love a child who’s not yours biologically?
- Do you not mind having a kid who doesn’t look like you?
- Can you handle taking care of a child?
- Are you willing to make sacrifices in your lifestyle for the child’s well-being?
Having a child, whether adopted or not, is a rollercoaster of emotions, so it would be wise to first reflect upon whether you can emotionally cope with this kind of change.
4. You’re Healthy Enough To Take Care Of Children
In adopting and taking care of a child, you must also consider your health as childcare requires a lot of time, patience, effort, and endurance. Depending on the age of the child you’ll be adopting, parenting means having to lose sleep, making changes in your lifestyle, not having time for yourself or for the things you used to do, or even making adjustments at work. These can all take a toll on your health if you’re not ready.
If you’re unsure of how healthy you are, check in with your doctor so they can assess whether or not your current health levels can support raising a child.
Adoption is a complicated and costly process. If you’re truly invested in having a child, make sure that you’re entirely ready to commit to and take care of them for the rest of your life. Keep these tips in mind to help you decide if you’re ready for adoption.