When my husband and I first started our adoption journey we didn’t know anyone else that was currently adopting. We knew a few people that had adopted previously, but no one we could easily relate to at the time.
Of course we had each other to talk to, but neither of us knew exactly what we were doing. We were learning and figuring things out as we went. We often used the phrase “fake it till you make it”, as we tried to be confident in answering other’s questions about how the adoption world works.
Over time we heard of a couple others we knew who were in the adoption process. An adoption support group was started in our area and we went to activities that they held. There we got to see a variety of different families. Those who had adopted, were currently working towards adoption, and birth mothers who had placed a baby.
Now we definitely aren’t the kind of people who love getting out and meeting new people, but as we went to the adoption support group activities we found it was comforting. It was comforting to see that the adoption process actually does work. As it can be hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel through endless paper work and months of waiting for your own adoption to go through.
The adoption support group has done a few different get togethers so far. They did a dessert night for mother’s day, where birth moms and adoptive moms could get together. In the summer they had a potluck dinner for families, where anyone could come socialize and play games. The most recent activity was an information day where they had speakers and question/answer sessions, along with lunch.
I would encourage you to do some research and see where the nearest support group is for you. Ours has a Facebook page that posts events and keeps everyone up to date about adoption news. If you search for “adoption support group” on Facebook it will pull up a few groups you can join.
If you don’t know of any support groups currently in your area it is never too late to start one yourself! It can be a very simple idea. Find other families who have a connection to adoption and get together every once in awhile. Or you can even have a support group on some form of social media, like Facebook. You can create a private group and invite others to have a safe place to share concerns, ask questions and celebrate good news together.
There are also online adoption support groups you could look into.
For example Adoptive Families Circle has different interest groups you can join. Some of their groups include: “Waiting to Adopt”, “Trans-racial Families”, “Open Adoption Families”, “U.S. Foster Adoptive Families”, etc. When you join a group you can post questions or comment on other’s posts.
I strongly believe that having support throughout your adoption is a very valuable thing to have. Of course you can always look to family members and friends, but if you don’t have that resource you can always find support in other ways. Never feel like you are alone in the emotional roller coaster that adoption brings to your life.