When a birth mother chooses to pursue adoption, she has a lot of decisions to make for her child, and one of the most difficult can be choosing the right family. She will likely spend countless hours choosing the family that her baby will call his or her parents.
She will receive a selection of print profiles, each one outlining a potential family – and one of them might be yours.
An adoptive family print profile is a written introduction to your family and home. All prospective families looking for a birth mother must complete an adoptive family profile to show to women considering adoption.
If you are working with an adoption agency, they will help you create your profile either with their media department or will outsource it to a media company. If you are not working with an agency, there are several websites that can help you create your own adoptive family profile.
Your profile will include:
- A summary of your family
- A description of your house and neighborhood
- An introduction to extended family members
- A letter to prospective birth parents
- Pictures of your home, environment, and activities
- Additional content that makes your family unique
The value of a quality print profile cannot be overstated. Most likely, it will be the very first impression of you that a birth mother gets, and you want that impression to count. It should capture your personality, interests, lifestyle, and – most importantly – your excitement to adopt a child.
Every profile is unique and reflects the qualities of that particular family, but there are certain guidelines that every profile should follow to be successful.
- Include a variety of pictures – Be sure to vary your activities, select multiple nice outfits and move to different settings as you take photos for your profile.
- Be descriptive – While you don’t have to write a novel, you do want to be as detailed as you can. The more information you give about your family, the easier it will be for a woman to envision her child as a part of it.
- Talk about your feelings on adoption – There is no need to be formal or hide your feelings; birth parents want to see the emotional side of your story and connect with you.
- Respect the birth mother – She is making a difficult and emotional decision, and it will mean a lot to her to know that you are compassionate and thankful for the choice she may make.
- Use spell check – You want to make the best impression you can in your profile, and that should include going over your content. If your writing is filled with mistakes, it could slow down the process of getting it out to birth mothers.
- Pick old or low-quality pictures – That picture of your cross-country road trip might be special to you, but if it’s several years old or you can’t see your face in it, it’s not helpful to a birth mother. Your pictures should help your profile look clean and give readers an idea of what you’re like right now.
- Dress up – Birth parents often report that overdressed families look stuffy or distant. Dress in your everyday clothes to give an honest reflection of your daily life.
- Talk about money – You may be tempted to assure birth parents that you can provide financially for their child, but this can often come off in a way that drives them away.
- Assume the reader has decided anything – A woman doesn’t have to commit to adoption in order to view profiles. If you applaud her for her decision or talk about your excitement to raise her child, you could potentially put unwanted pressure on her.
- Be gender-specific – While you can state in your adoption plan that you want a boy or a girl, the language in your profile should remain neutral. Gender-specific language can be unappealing to birth parents, even if their child is your preferred gender.
- Overthink it – It’s easy to feel like your profile has to be perfectly polished or to compare yourself to others, but the truth is that there is no secret formula for a successful profile. Just be yourself—your personality and passion to start a family are what will make it shine.
Remember, the goal of your print profile is to help birth mothers envision their child as a member of your family. The adoption process takes a lot of time, consideration, and hard work, but your love for the child you haven’t yet met makes it worth it; let that love show, and your profile will shine!