Same-sex couples in Illinois who want to start a family must understand the unique obstacles standing between them and successful adoption. According to The Chicago Tribune, nonprofit adoption and foster care advocacy groups encourage more same-sex couples to adopt, which could give LGBT couples the confidence needed to become parents.
To better their chances of successful adoption, same-sex couples need proper tips and information. While public opinion shifted for the better regarding lesbian and gay couples adopting, prejudice and challenges unique to the LGBT community remain.
Understand the latest laws
While all 50 states allow same-sex couples to legally adopt, aspiring parents must research the latest laws for their specific area. For instance, Equality Illinois notes that birth mothers cannot sign adoption consenting documents before 72 hours after birthing the baby, but they can take more than 72 hours to decide at their discretion. Understanding the law is especially vital in stepparent and joint adoption.
Research all adoption methods
Just as there are different families, there are also different ways to start a family. Besides public domestic adoption, there is also private domestic adoption. Some parents may feel more comfortable adopting an older child rather than an infant. Same-sex aspiring parents should also consider the child’s race and whether to remain in contact with the child’s birth family.
Choose the right adoption agency
LGBT couples must do their due diligence regarding the adoption agencies they want to work with. Not all agencies are friendly, open and supportive of gay couples. Examining the agency’s mission statement for anti-discrimination clauses regarding placing kids with same-sex people is a good starting point, as is studying brochures, sites and other agency material for images of same-sex couples.
While adopting can be a long and complicated process, with timelines difficult to predict, it can be a satisfying and fulfilling journey for same-sex couples.