Misconceptions About Adoption
It can be difficult to absorb the amount of information available addressing the complexities of adoption. Below, we have shed light on some common misconceptions (or myths) as you navigate these first steps.
Click the plus sign next to each myth to reveal its truth.
TRUTH: There are thousands of children in need of the permanency of a loving family in the U.S. In fact, each year there are more than 20,000 infants born in the U.S. who are placed for adoption, and more than 125,000 children in foster care have had parental rights terminated and are waiting to enter a family through adoption.
TRUTH: All adoption processes are unique, even among established programs, so it depends upon the specific parameters involved in the adoption.
TRUTH: While there are a number of variables that can contribute to adoption costs, families of varying socio-economic status welcome children home each year through adoption. In light of adoption-related expenses, there are many resources available that can help bridge the financial gap families may experience in the adoption process. See our Costs and Financing section to learn more.
TRUTH: While the goal of foster care is family reunification, it is sometimes possible to adopt a child who has been cared for in your home through foster care when family reunification is not possible.
TRUTH: Relatives of children who have had parental rights terminated are often considered a preferred placement for adoption or foster care in an effort to preserve the child’s relationship with his/her biological family—so long as they are able to provide for the child’s safety and well-being.
TRUTH: When the court system has determined it to be beneficial and safe, children can have continued relationships with their biological families.
TRUTH: Placing siblings together is generally the optimal outcome after being separated from biological parents. It helps provide continuity and alleviates the trauma of additional loss.
TRUTH: Currently, there are more than 125,000 children in foster care who have had parental rights terminated and are waiting for placement into a loving and permanent family. Often, children will be adopted by a family who lives in a different state. These adoptions may take longer but are not uncommon.
TRUTH: If the parents' rights have been legally terminated, they cannot regain custody following the child’s adoption. Adoption is a legally binding agreement that is not finalized until both birth parents have had parental rights legally terminated by a court of law. It is rare that an adoption is challenged in court.
TRUTH: While it is true that requirements differ based on the type of adoption being pursued, parents over the age of 40 are often among those who qualify to adopt.