Considering adoption? That is awesome! Adoption is one of the most self-sacrificial things a person could do. A good first step would be to use a photolisting website. A photolisting site is a web page that shows photos of children who are available for adoption to an adoptive family. These children/youths are usually older, are sibling groups, or have physical or developmental disparities. Adoption agencies list these children with a court-ordered release.
So why use a photolisting website?
1. A visual connection with the child
There is something about the visual that connects us to people. That’s why Facebook and Match.com have been such a success! We, as humans, are more drawn to people if we can see their faces or see them in their natural environment. A photolisting is your first connection to a child that you wish to adopt. You can tell a lot about a child through one simple photo: the eyes, the smile. If an adoption agency is creative enough, they will use a variety of different backgrounds with the children engaging in a variety of different activities. The photo is supposed to help you get an idea of what the child likes or dislikes and may give you a taste of his or her personality.
2. Taking the next step
After you narrow down the 2-3 children or sibling groups that you are interested in, the next step is finding out more about the child. Photolisting web pages only provide a small profile on the child such as what the child likes to eat, what extracurricular activities he or she enjoys, etc. You will need more detailed information and will need to ask questions like the following: what are his special needs? Will she do well with younger children in the home? Does he have behaviors that you need to be aware of? Was there any prior abuse or neglect? This information will not be listed in the profile. You will need to contact the child’s social worker for more detailed information. Your adoption agency or your attorney can assist in this area. Click here for a list of agencies and attorneys by state.
3. A good way to promote your own family
Lastly, a photolisting website is a great way to promote your own family! If it is a good website, they will help you create your own Parent Profile. On your page, you can post family photos, videos, and a short profile of your family. The purpose of promoting your family is to give the birth mother the power to be actively involved in placing her child in the family of her choice. This is incredibly empowering and takes away the fear of “giving up” a child to a total stranger. That barrier is removed with Parent Profiles.
A photolisting search can be fun. It can also be frustrating if there are unrealistic expectations. But with the right guidance and with the correct information disclosed upfront, this process can turn from a simple photo to a placement in a forever family for a child.