Once you make the decision to pursue adoption, one of the fun tasks you’ll need to complete is preparing an adoptive family profile. Whether this is physical, digital or both, it will be completely unique to your family.
There are a few things that can help your profile stand out.
Before we get to the tips, let me clarify what an adoption profile is, why it’s used and what to expect.
When a birth mother chooses to pursue adoption, she has so many decisions to make. Most likely, the biggest and most difficult decision is choosing the right family. To help her make this decision, she will receive a selection of family profiles.
An adoptive family profile is basically an introduction to your family, home and life. When your family is a potential fit for a specific birth mom (based on your preferences, etc.), your profile may be one that she views. This is how the birth parent/s may initially decide if you might be a good fit to adopt their child.
We created a physical profile book (cover pictured above) but you could also create an online or video profile. This may increase your reach to potential birth mothers. If you’re working with an adoption agency, they can likely help with this and show you some examples.
Here are 5 tips you can follow to help yours stand out.
Adoption Profile Tips
Speak directly to the birth parent/s.
Write a letter at the beginning of your profile. Acknowledge that what she is going through is more difficult than you could ever understand. Remember that what will be a very joyous day for you will likely be one of the hardest of her life, if not the hardest. Explain to her that she is loved and respected.
Realize that when she reads this, the baby is still hers and she’s trying to decide what is best and who is best to raise her child. When writing about her, use phrasing like “considering adoption” instead of “choosing adoption.” And always refer to the unborn child as her baby, not yours. Write this letter from a place of sincerity expressing that you want what is best for her and her child. Let that come through in your letter. Be real and genuine. Show love.
Paint a picture.
Show her what life with you will be like for her child. This woman, or possibly a couple, who is in the process of making the hardest decision of her life, wants to know that her child will be well-loved and taken care of. But, she likely wants even more than that. She wants to picture the life her child will have with you. Let her in on what life will be like. What traditions are you excited to continue or start? What kind of parents will you be? Are there certain activities you are excited to participate in with your child? Give her a peek into what she will not physically be there to experience.
Be descriptive. Help her really imagine your life. Instead of something vague like, “we like to garden” say something like “We spend Saturday afternoons picking flowers from our garden to enjoy for the week. We’re excited to share our love of gardening.”
Use great photos.
This does not mean you need Instagram perfect pictures for all of your images. Start by looking through your photos. Find fun ones that show special occasions, vacations and holidays. Instead of just picking the prettiest ones, choose ones that show real-life, fun and demonstrate hobbies you love and show your personality. Birth mom is more concerned with the kind of person you are and the type of parent you’ll be than how perfect looking you are.
Think about your day-to-day life and activities. Give her an idea of what it’s like. Talk to your spouse about your hobbies and activities and choose some you’d like to share. If you have actual pictures, use them. Or, if needed, get some new ones taken. Again, these don’t have to be perfect so having a friend take them can work just fine. Use captions for your pictures.
Having photos pulled together in a file before you start your profile will be a big help.
Just like you want to use real pictures, you should also show the real you. Don’t feel like you have to portray your family in a particular way based on what you think the birth mom would prefer. You don’t know what she’s thinking. This is not the time to be fake. Keep it real.
Birth moms choose certain families for all types of reasons. For example, one birth mom chose her family because of the type of dog they had. Our birth mom was attracted to the fact that she saw us as “hippieish” and she liked that vibe 🙂 True story! And, she liked that my husband is a horticulturist, and we used real pictures to show that. You never know what will attract the birth parent/s that choose you, so just be real.
Make your profile attractive.
Even though you want to keep your profile real, it should be put together well. If you’re creating a profile book on your own, I suggest using a company like Mixbook or Shutterfly.
Once you have it all laid out you can review a digital proof and maybe even have a friend look over it. We used Mixbook and were very happy with the result. Don’t let this step hold you back but take some time to put it together in a way that makes you excited for it to be shared.
Remember, there’s no one “right way” to make an adoptive family profile. What you decide to include in your profile depends on what you think is most important for a prospective birth parent to know about you. But, remember to keep it real.
If you are just starting your adoption journey, check out this post on 10 things to know before you adopt.
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