Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Profile Key

As Duffy alluded to, our next big step is filling out the profile key. Well, I guess the profile page (which I thank all that is holy that I have a very creative wife to do, as she has turned out a tremendous page in a bare minimum of time, with a minimal amount of cursing) is actually bigger - but we're partly looking forward to that.

So, what are we willing to "accept" in a baby? While we have no questions of race, there are questions about alcohol / drug abuse, imprisonment, etc. We'll be contacting many of you directly, but if you're reading this and can offer any advice, please let us know (you have our email addresses and/or can leave a comment).

We're not entirely sure how we're going to fill out everything, but we're leaning toward excluding a child if:

  • There was a "serious" medical condition that would place the child into the "special needs" category (and, in the event that this happened, it doesn't necessarily exclude us from accepting the child - but we cannot legally back out of an adoption if we said that we would take a child in this category only to find out that the child needed care that we simply couldn't provide)
  • The birthmother engaged in alcohol abuse, cocaine, crack, herion, PCP, or LSD, or Ecstacy at any point during the pregnancy
  • The birthmother socially drank for the last two trimesters of the pregnancy
  • The child was conceived through incest
  • The birthmother was HIV-positive (see first bullet point)

This leaves on the "accept" list:

  • The birthmother socially drank during the first trimester of the pregnancy (in theory, this is the "before she knew she was pregnant" option, but there is no way to specify this on the form)
  • The birthmother smoked marijuana or received Methadone during the pregnancy
  • The child, pre-birth, is known to have a minor/correctable medical condition (e.g. cleft pallet)
  • The birthfather was HIV positive / drug user / mentally ill / violent criminal (basically, we don't care too much about the father in this -- which sucks from some point of view writing this as a male - but there are only genetic markers that he can give the child, and the birthmother's behavior during pregnancy is really the only issue)
  • The child was conceived through stranger or acquaintance rape
  • The birthmother was imprisoned for either a non-violent or violent offense

There are still tons things that we're still determining (how premature a child if the child is born prematurely, whether we want to be considered if the birthmother is being treated for mental illness, etc). These are straight-forward questions, but it's the truth of adoption. Duffy said things well in her post, in that if we got pregnant on our own, we wouldn't have to be worry about any of this (she would take care of things medically so questions of drug or alcohol abuse wouldn't come up -- then, any complications are just the work of a higher power), but we're not in that situation. We'll see how the next few days turn out as we complete our research.

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