No one that knows us has actually asked us this question as it’s basically always been on the cards for us. However we thought there may be biological children in our family as well as adopted children, but I’ll get back to that in a minute. Since Secondary School I’ve wanted to adopt, I remember reading about baby girls in China being abandoned on streets. I read a couple of books about it during this time and it’s basically been a given ever since that I’d be adopting! So I met my husband and early on we discussed how we would like to complete our family, me expressing that I saw adoption in my future. We are both of the opinion that a child does not have to look like us or have to have our DNA to be our child. We agree that families are made up in many different ways. I can’t remember a time when adoption wasn’t discussed in our family.
So after we got married we decided to try to conceive. Nothing happened after 2 years. We approached the HSE (this department is now known as Tusla) about starting the adoption process. As we were ‘young’ at the time, (mid to late 20’s, in the adoption world I guess this was young…) the senior social worker wanted us to explore the reason for our infertility. During this time we also did some research and realised that due to Hague ratified in 2010, Ireland was still working on re-establishing adoption agreements with countries such as; Vietnam. We decided to take some time to explore the infertility stuff. We spent just under 2 years with a clinic doing Ovulation Induction, lots of meds and month on month cycles etc. We decided at the end of 2014 that we were done with this route. We went to an IUI/IVF clinic open day during 2014 and decided this wasn’t a route we wanted to take at this time, but I am a fan of informed decisions and research.
So we contacted the Regional Adoption Services (Tusla) and got the ball rolling. I’ll get back to the actual adoption process in a further blog post.
Well as previously mentioned, it was the reality of what was happening in China at the time that caught my attention in the first instance, so my instinct was to adopt from abroad. There are cases of domestic adoption. However, these would mainly be foster parent adoption of their foster child/ren and step-parent adoption. Additionally though in 2014, there were 6 cases of ‘stranger’ adoption of babies being placed for adoption by their birth parents (I haven’t looked at these stats since). In these cases, the birth parents are given your profile along with other prospective adoptive parents to chose the adoptive parents for their child. Theoretically meaning you may never be chosen or you may only have been approved to adopt and could be chosen. Too much of a lottery for me to consider it. See the Tusla website for further information on domestic adoption.
Ireland has a population of 4.5 million. Vietnam, for example, has a population of 90 million. There are approximately 1.5 million children in Vietnam needing adoptive families (read it somewhere, no reference to back it up at the minute, sorry!)