Many older adults become concerned about their ability to adopt children after a certain age. However, age restrictions have been lifted at most adoption agencies within the last 20 years. Now more than ever, older couples are choosing to share their homes and their lives with small children. And many assert that age is not an important factor in figuring out if someone is capable of adopting a young boy or girl who needs a new home.
The average lifespan continues to grow and baby boomers are staying healthier than ever. While it is true that no federal organization exists to track the ages of prospective parents, the number of older adults seeking adoption continues to increase. As adults approach retirement age, most are considering a new hobby or an extended vacation. Others have discovered that adoption can be an extremely rewarding experience.
Many older adults are parents that have become empty nesters, but others simply didn’t have the opportunity to raise a family in their early years. While many older adults are adopting young children or infants, others are adopting older children who have special needs.
As a general rule, all prospective parents must undergo a background check before their application is accepted. Additionally, they will need to complete a home study experience. During this time, an assigned caseworker will observe the family to determine if the living situation is suitable. The health of prospective parents is a crucial element in determining their fitness to adopt. Seniors must exhibit the necessary mental and physical strength to show that they are capable of raising a child. Admittedly, some older adults do not always have the required energy to care for an infant or young child. Other older adults counter with the argument that they bring a lifetime of wisdom to the table.
Regardless of a prospective parent’s age, pursuing an infant adoption is a challenging process. However, older adults may experience more luck by adopting children from other countries. Many social workers recommend India, Korea, Bulgaria and Russia as potential countries for adoption. African countries are generally flexible with the ages of prospective adopters. China desires applicants who are 30 or older, with preference towards those in the lower portion of that range.
To inquire about adoption services, try contacting the nearest support organization. Many of these organizations have websites and may be able to connect interested parties with an inter-country adopting program.
Think about creating a plan with close friends or a relative to assume responsibility for the child in case of illness or death. As an additional step in the adoption process, contact a financial planner who can provide advice regarding the difficult financial demands of raising a child. Once the right strategy is put into place, qualified older prospective parents may have the opportunity to experience a newfound joy and purpose as they raise a child.