For Friends and Relatives of Potential Adoptive Parents: How To Help

The road to adoption is often a very long and tortuous one. Many times, infertility is what moves your loved one to consider adoption. Infertility causes emotional and psychological crises, and often leads to feelings of inadequacy, guilt, remorse and even hostility. The adoption process is, by it's nature, invasive and intrusive.

When your loved ones are trying to adopt, the most important role you have is that of emotional support person. Be there for them. Listen to them. Be empathetic when they are not feeling so positive. Provide encouragement. Read and learn all that you can about adoption. Offer to help them in any way that you can.

Validate your loved ones as wonderful parents-to-be. Ensure them that you will welcome their child by adoption with open arms. Be positive and upbeat!

Most pre-adoptive couples will welcome your interest in their adoption process. Don't be afraid to ask how it's going and what you can do to help. Perhaps you can assist them in writing and organizing a presentation book to be shown to birth mothers. If they are pursuing a private adoption and trying to locate a birth mother, perhaps you can help by placing a notice in your church bulletin or by spreading the word that you know a wonderful couple who is trying to adopt. If you learn of a "lead", by all means tell them about it!