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Q&A: Domestic Or International Adoption?

We've been in infertility treatment for over two years and my husband has agreed to consider adoption. We don't know whether we should adopt domestically or internationally. Which one is best?

International and domestic adoption appeal to different people for different reasons. Neither is inherently better than the other, although one or the other may be better for you. I hate the competition that sometimes surfaces between proponents of either domestic or international adoption, with each side attempting to scare prospective families away from the other choice.  Anytime a family finds a child and a child finds a family, regardless if that child is from Beijing or Boston, the world is a better place.

In my experience, most people will instinctively feel more comfortable with one type of adoption depending on their priorities. The top priority for parents who are drawn to domestic private adoption is getting a child as young as possible with as much health information as possible. The top priority for parents who are drawn to the public foster care system is providing a home for a child who really needs them at virtually no cost. The top priorities for parents who are drawn to international adoption are the predictability of knowing that they will get a baby or toddler within a set period of time and a discomfort with the domestic adoption process (for example, the amount of time a birth parent has to revoke their consent to adopt or open adoption post placement).

By Dawn Davenport