I haven’t been talking much about adoption lately. But that’s not because we’ve been procrastinating. In fact, since our last meetings for the adoption process, I’ve been doing quite a lot of work in trying to figure out international adoption and countries where we could potentially adopt.
I have started from a long list of countries, i.e. a list of around 180 countries provided by the adoption services as possibilities for us. Some are countries that signed The Hague Adoption Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Inter-Country Adoption. In these countries adoption takes place through a certified agency. In order to apply to the agency, possible future adoptive parents need to send some documents together with the results from their national adoption process. If their application is accepted, then a round of interviews starts with the agency: some psychological checks and some preparatory meetings. There are also some countries that have not signed The Hague’s convention and in which adoption is done directly or through the help of a lawyer. I still haven’t figured out how to proceed in this case.
I started with checking the countries that we preferred, that made us dream the most: Vietnam and Peru. Vietnam is for a silly reason. My sister looked Asian (and angry – dad called her “our little Vietcong”) when she was little, so somehow the baby would look like a member of my family. But Vietnam has closed international adoption for an undetermined amount of time. And so have neighboring countries like Cambodia and Laos.
As for Peru, I have a special link to this country, even if I’ve never been there. And I I also thought I could do with the help I would get from the friends I have there. But Peru, as well as its neighbors Chile and Brazil, does not give for adoption children younger than 6 years of age. We requested 3 max and really want a young child. So that won’t do. Argentina does not give babies for adoption abroad.
So I basically started with a reversed process and began to check on restrictions. Where can we actually adopt if we cannot adopt where we want to?
Looking at restrictions, I deleted more and more counties from the list. I deleted those that have ended international adoptions for a while (e.g. Colombia), those that ask for us to be home owners (China), those where it is required that adoptive parents have been married for five or ten years (most of Africa), those that only give babies to people who are originally from that country (e.g. India and Mexico), those with religion restrictions (e.g. Tunisia), those that only give grown up kids and others for various reasons that make it impossible for us to adopt.
I am now left with a tiny list of countries and I have started to find out more about some specific countries. But it’s not an easy task.
I wonder if I’ve done something wrong or missed something to end up with such a short list. But then the other day I was reading of a couple who wrote to 20 agencies and was refused by most of them because of various restrictions. So I may not be wrong after all…