Saturday, June 13, 2009

When One Door Closes...

Everyone's heard the phrase, "When one door closes, God opens another."

My Canadian friend and politician, Serge, often says that in order to be ready for that door to open, you first have to be in the hallway. Well, Kurt and I are in the hallway waiting for the next door to open.

The door to adopting from Russia has closed permanently and apparently has deadbolts on it. We sent in our application - and non-refundable $250 application fee - to America World Adoption Association early in May. There were a number of things that drew us to this organization but one of the biggest things is that I had a positive conversation with a representative about my previous diagnosis of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. She felt that the diagnosis would probably not be an issue even though we wanted to adopt from Russia, a country that will not consider anyone with a history of "mental health issues" such as depression, etc.

A few days after sending in the application (and our non-refundable $250 application fee), we received a call from another young lady from the agency. After going back and forth with them for about a week, we received word from them: We would not be considered as adoptive parents in Russia. Final answer.

I expressed my frustration with the young woman and told her that we felt deceived. They now had our $250 non-refundable fee but we never made it past the application process. (I am curious to know what they did with that $250 - aside of just telling us that we can't adopt from Russia after they told that we probably would be able to adopt from Russia.) She recommended we go through the Grievance Procedure to see if we could get our money back. I'm not holding my breath.

Kurt and I are incredibly disappointed but it has become clear that God doesn't want us to adopt from Russia, and we're learning to accept that. This experience has also shown us the tremendous risk in adopting. We specifically chose to go with international adoption because there seemed to be less risk than domestic adoption, where a birth-mother could easily change her mind. But if you look at it from the international perspective, it may not be the birth-mother changing her mind. It could just be the country that changes its mind for one reason or another.

My mom was pretty ticked off when I told her the news. And a few others have made similar comments: "They'd rather leave a child alone in an orphan without the love of Godly parents..." But I'm trying to remember that in this process, it's not about finding a child for a family. It is about finding a family for the child.

We did our due diligence and checked with some other agencies about this issue. The response was always the same. In some ways I feel responsible - like I'm some sort of freak of nature because of my diagnosis. But I can't change what happened to me. And I am proud of the person I have become despite those obstacles.

A new path is being forged. We are now moving forward with domestic adoption and have chosen MLJ Adoptions as our agency of choice. We hope to have a profile completed very soon so birth-mother's can start to consider us as possible choices to raise their child(ren). It's all in God's Hands; and they're mighty Hands indeed!


  1. I totally agree with your mom! It's a horrible process when it's looked at that way. This type of issue was one of the reasons that Angie and I decided to go domestic from the get go. The good news: domestic ususally takes WAY less time than international. There's less red tape when you're not crossing international waters. We had an unbelieveably smooth expereince! We'll be praying the same for you! If you ever have questions, we're compeltely available!

    God Bless.

  2. You're right! God's hands are mighty! We are praying for God to guide and encourage you every step of the way!
    Glad you found an agency! It seems like a good one!

  3. We went domestic and had a great experience. We still talk regularly with the birth mother. We were at the hospital and got to spend some time with Libby the night she was born. It wasn't an easy decision for the birth mother, but I would have been concerned if it was. Good luck!