Adoption 101: Where to Start? It is difficult to know where or how to start if you have never been involved in the adoption process before. It can feel overwhelming. We believe knowledge is key, and therefore learning the basic process is the best first step to a future forever family. You need to consider the type of adoption, interaction with the biological family, and your own eligibility requirements from the outset.
Type: (1) domestic; (2) international; (3) agency; or (4) private. A domestic adoption will include an adoptive family and a biological family all residing within the United States. Each State has its own laws and procedures, and some federal laws may apply. It is very important to be aware of this. An international adoption obviously includes one party not living within the United States. Typically the biological family is from some other country. The laws of the country where the biological family will apply and control, and each country will have particular requirements that will vary. These include a marriage requirement, ethnic and religion tests, age limits, and income. An agency adoption typically means that you as the adoptive couple will pay an adoption agency to facilitate locating a biological family and pairing you with them, as well as tons of paperwork and preparation in the interim. A private adoption usually means you have found a biological family on your own and you need an attorney to facilitate the process, or some service in Arkansas or an Arkansas attorney will help you find a biological family in one of various ways.
You ultimately have to decide whether adoption is for you! Arming yourself with information will help, but it boils down to something much more personal, intimate, and simple between you and your currently family. While we may be able to help you “talk it out,” the decision is one you will have to make.