I got a random message on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/HannahandEthanadoption) yesterday from the Adoption Center in Utah that was on Birthmom’s (A show on TLC). The message read about them having 8 birthmoms and needing adoptive families. He left me a phone number and said please call.
So, on my lunch break I called. As the phone rang I was somewhat hopeful that they would be a great place since they are only a state away but felt this feeling of uncertainty.
As I spoke with him he explained their set up and then he jumped to the fees. Without taking a breath he said our fees are 33-55 THOUSAND!!! Then as his run on sentence continued he said “of course that doesn’t include medical and your fee that you pay directly to the marketing firm.” He then explained that the fees vary depending on the length of their stay, includes money for them to buy groceries each week, go out to the show (isn’t that old speak for the movies?) and then sending money with them as they go home so they don’t have to work for a few months after the adoption.
Okay, so I was soaking this all in and I was okay with it. Then I asked about the cost of the marketing $9800!!!! yes, you read right. I couldn’t believe it.
So, I definitely knew this wasn’t the place for us but he was still explaining things and then he put it over the top. He was telling me that there is a woman who is due in early September, a girl. As he told me that this baby is black and if we sign up for ______, I missed that part we will get a discount and the charge will only be $28,000 (plus medical and marketing, etc.) Disregard the money I was SHOCKED at the idea that a baby could be “discounted”. I could not believe the way he was speaking to me.
I asked about the show Birthmom’s and he said yes, they were the agency from the show. I then asked about them living there and said not most agencies have that situation. Once I heard the next statistical sentence I had to work extremely hard not to hang up.
I was told that they bring them to Utah to live at the agency because there is a better chance they will place if not in their home state. He then goes on to explain the stats something like 35% more than if they stay home place their infants for adoption. All I could think was COERCION.
I just felt like whatever was happening down there was morally wrong. How could I be okay with adopting a baby from a place that felt that way? My hope is that this isn’t the standard but just this person but in my heart I just don’t feel like it is.
It was hard to bring up A New Beginning – a wonderful local agency here in Boise that truly cares for their birthmoms and adoptive parents. When I said they charge only 10,000 he came back with that if a birthmom doesn’t place then we can apply the 30-50 K to another adoption. I couldn’t resist asking if it meant that the adoption has to go through them and he said yes. A New Beginning (http://www.adoptanewbeginning.org/) has never, EVER given me that feeling and hands down I would recommend them to anyone.
We clearly cannot afford such a large sum for an adoption but I just would not feel right about adopting from them. I’m sure there are others who feel differently but I just felt like there was racism and a sense of selling in his voice and I am not okay with that.
So, I let him know that I have some concerns after watching the show and so I don’t think we will be using their agency. Before saying goodbye he made sure I was aware that other agencies would like to be in their position with too many birthmom’s and not enough families.
My heart breaks to see that this isn’t about helping expectant mothers through to make the decision that is right for them and their baby, I just don’t think that is what adoption is all about and even though my wait may be longer than others, I am okay with the decision we made to pass on this opportunity and wait because we know that ~ Our Day Will Come ~