What are the most important adoption questions to ask adoptive parents?
When choosing an adoptive family, no question is off-limits. When getting to know waiting adoptive families, don't be shy or worry about offending them by asking personal questions. Sure, you may be interested in an adoptive couples’ hobbies or favorite sports teams, but there are other, more important topics that you also need to cover.
So, feel free to get personal. Most waiting adoptive families are very willing to to be open and honest with expectant mothers, so don't be afraid to ask questions about the things that really matter to you.
To help get you started, here's a suggested list of questions to ask adoptive parents at your initial interview:
Background – Demographics
- What is your ethnicity?
- How old are you?
- Have you ever been divorced?
- What level of education do you have?
- Where do you live? Is this somewhere you plan to live for years to come?
- Are you financially stable? Do you have any savings (though you probably don’t need to ask how much =)).
- What are your feelings about private school v. public school v. home school?
- What will homework routines look like in your home? What role will you play, if any?
- How important is it that your child attend college? Will you help pay for college? Even if he/she wants to study ________?!
- To what degree will you emphasize academic achievement in your home?
- What was your high school/college experience like?
- Did your parents attend college?
- How long have you been married? (or, why have you chosen single parenting?)
- For single parents, who is your support system and who can you call in the middle of the night?
- What was the moment you knew you had found “the one?’
- What are two of the qualities you appreciate most in your spouse?
- How do you resolve conflict in your marriage?
- What are the things you fight about most? (FYI – most couples fight about money, sex, and kids – in that order)
- Was your own parents’ marriage was a positive role model for you growing up?
- What are your feelings/views on divorce?
- How do you divide up housework and other household tasks?
- What are your love languages?
- In a few sentences, describe your faith.
- How important is your faith to you?
- Do you and your spouse pray together?
- Are you involved in a local church?
- What faith-based values do you plan to teach your children with, if any?
- What kind of work do you do?
- What drew you to that profession?
- How important is your work to you? What role does it play in your life?
- How many hours do you work in a typical week?
- Who will be the caregiver if you are both working?
- How close are you to your extended family?
- How often do you see and spend time with members of your extended family? Where do they live?
- How does your extended family feel about your adoption?
- What role will extended family members play in the child’s life, if any at all?
- What do you like to do for fun?
- How do you spend your free time? Describe a typical weekend.
- What are some things you look forward to doing with your kids?
- Do you have any important and/or fun family traditions? Or holiday traditions?
- What are your interests and hobbies (both individually and as a couple)?
- Do you plan to share these with your children?
- Do you have close friends living near you? If so, do you see them regularly?
- Are you involved with your community? Do you do anything to “give back” to your local community?
- What does your community look like? What kind of people is it comprised of?
- What kinds of people are you drawn to for friends?
- How often do you spend time with friends?
- Do many of your friends have small children?
- Do you have any pets?
- If so, what kinds and what are their names?
- Would your pets be a good mix with a child? Explain how.
- Do you like to travel?
- If so, where are some of your favorite places?
- How often do you imagine yourselves traveling as a family?
- What are some of the destinations on your bucket list?
- Why do you want to be a parent?
- Do you have other children, or do you plan to have any more?
- What are some examples of things you are looking forward to teaching your child?
- Do you have any preferences for after-school care (nanny, daycare, stay-at-home mom, etc.)?
- What do you think your parenting style will look like (or what is it like with your current children)?
- How will/do you encourage your children when they are sad/get a bad grade/get in a fight with friend/etc.?
Health and Wellness
- On a scale of 1-10, how important is health and wellness to you in your everyday life?
- What kind of physical activities do you participate in, if any?
- What role does nutrition play in your life?
- Does either of you like to cook?
Open Adoption/Post-Placement Contact
- How do you feel about open adoption and why?
- What would your ideal relationship with a birth family look like?
- What forms of communication would you be open to? Options include phone calls/texting, email, regular mail, social media, video chatting, and in-person visits.
- How frequently would you like communication to occur?
- Are you open to visitation? If so, how often would you be comfortable with it?
- Do you have any friends/family who are currently in an open adoption?
- How will you refer to me? By my first name, Aunt ______, etc?
- Why did you choose adoption?
- How do you plan on talking to the child about his/her adoption?
- How do you plan to address adoption-related issues when they arise with the child? How about with friends, family, or strangers you meet at the mall?!
If you're pregnant and considering adoption, it's important that you understand the process for yourself before choosing adoptive parents. As always, AdoptMatch is here to help you on your adoption journey.