Adoption for LGBTQ Couples: Navigating the LGBTQ Adoption Process
Over the past several decades, more same LGBT couples are choosing adoption to grow their families. The United States Census reports that between 2 and 3.7 million children under the age of 18 have an LGBTQ parent, that same-sex parents are more than 6 times as likely to become foster parents and more than 4 times more likely to pursue adoption as a path to parenthood. So how can adoption professionals and LGBTQ families navigate the adoption process thoughtfully?
Choosing the type of adoption that’s right for your family
When it’s time to decide what kind of adoption is right for your family, LGBTQ couples have a lot to consider. There are three main types of adoption to pursue: domestic infant adoption, international adoption, and foster care adoption. Let’s explore all three.
Domestic Infant Adoption for LGBTQ Families
In the United States, LGBTQ couples may pursue domestic infant adoptions in all 50 states. However, some states have recently passed faith-based adoption legislation which makes adoption more challenging for LGBTQ individuals. If you are considering a domestic infant adoption, it is important to choose an adoption agency or professional who is welcoming to LGBTQ families and understands the legal framework in your state.
International Adoption for LGBTQ Families
Once considered the most convenient type of adoption available to American families, international adoptions have become more complex in recent years. Adoption agencies completing international adoptions are bound by the Hague Adoption Convention, which guides adoption ethics and principles. Under these conventions, agencies must respect laws and standards put into place by the countries in which children are born. For LGBTQ couples pursuing international adoption, this can present unique challenges. LGBTQ couples and individuals interested in pursuing an international adoption should inquire with their placement agency about specific country restrictions related to LGBTQ adoption because guidelines vary greatly. Adoptions Together welcomes to opportunity to complete international home studies for LGBTQ couples and individuals if you meet inter-country eligibility requirements.
Foster Care Adoption for LGBTQ Families
Adopting from foster care has many benefits. It is one of the most affordable ways to adopt a child, and local departments of social services make adoption through foster care readily accessible for families from all backgrounds. LGBTQ families may adopt children from foster care as long as they pass the required home study and training. At Adoptions Together, we work with dozens of LGBTQ couples each year who choose adoption from foster care to expand their families.
Choosing an LGBTQ-Friendly Adoption Agency
Choosing an agency with a proven track record is important for any family pursuing adoption. For LGBTQ couples who want to adopt, finding an LGBTQ-friendly adoption agency is paramount. Since its inception, Adoptions Together has served on the advisory board of the Human Rights Campaign’s All Children, All Families project, which connects LGBTQ families with agencies seeking to provide comprehensive adoption services to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender adoptive families. As a Gold Seal-recognized agency, we are well-prepared to serve all families, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender with compassionate adoption service.
To find an All Children, All Families approved agency near you, visit the HRC’s website.