Types of Adoption: Foster and Kinship Adoption

We continue our education about different types of adoption in our world today.  Two types of adoption that we will focus on here, which many individuals consider, include foster adoption and kinship adoption. The two are similar in that a relationship may have already been developed between the adult and the child but the title of mother/father and child is not yet established. Adopting as a foster parent or adopting a relative can, yet again, yield opportunity for the parents and the child.

Foster adoption

Foster adoption is the act of a foster parent, a person who has taken care of the child for a period of time (but is not necessarily related by blood), actively inviting that child to become an official part of their family.

This kind of adoption occurs when the adult feels a connection with the child they have been temporarily caring for and wishes for them to be a permanent member of the family and to be acknowledged as the parent of that child.

Of course, this implies the responsibility of being able to care for (in a variety of different ways) the child long term.  Despite having previously lived separate lives by different last names, the child and his experiences become a significant part of the foster parents’ lives.  Adoption agencies usually consider if the foster parents have developed a connection through their recent experience caring for the child, and if it is possible to continue with a comfortable environment where the child will feel safe and loved.

Kinship adoption

Kinship adoption is often confused with “stepparent adoption.” The difference (aside from the relative being legally less formal) is that the child is not a spouse’s child, but another family member’s child.

Perhaps the situation of the birth parents is hindering the child’s development or psyche, or perhaps there are other obstacles preventing the birth parents from properly caring for that child.

In this case, kinship adoption can be an effective way for the child to settle into another family unit smoothly.  Since the child and the potential parent are most likely already familiarized, the only major adjustment will be the new roles that the adopting parents take on, as an official full-time caregiver for that child. This adoption process requires time and patience, yet can be a rewarding transition for the child.  In some cases, the child may already be very close emotionally to the family member and be more comfortable accepting them as a full-time parent.

Adopting a child is an important decision that requires much careful consideration. Are you contemplating adoption or are you already planning to adopt a child? Do you have any idea about how or where to start? Methodist Mission Home has made the adoption process simpler for parents who are considering adoption. Methodist Mission Home offers adoption services for birth mothers, birth fathers, adoptive families for children, and adoptees. They also provide other helpful services like supportive services, post adoption services, and much more. Methodist Mission Home is a national leader in open adoptions.  Visit provplace.org today to learn more about adopting a child.

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