Dear Expectant Parents,
It is difficult to express the many emotions we have as we sit down to write to you. We know that adoption is a choice that you are considering with much thought and deep reflection We can imagine some of the challenges this decision might hold for you while also considering the joy it would bring to the adoptive family you choose. It is impossible to describe the gratitude we will feel when we are given the precious gift of a child, especially after the grief of infertility. Thank you for reading our letter. At the outset, we’d like you to know that, depending upon your wishes, we are very comfortable with having an open adoption relationship with you. We would be glad for the opportunity for you and your child to know each other as he or she is growing up. If this is something that you would like, we would like to learn more about what you feel might meet your needs. We like the idea of your child knowing the love of all those who love him or her, particularly including you. We want nothing but the best for you and for you to be able to have a connection with your child over the years, if this is something you might want as well. And if now is not the right time, but later is, please know we want to honor your wishes.
Although young, we’ve been together for many years. We were fortunate enough to meet each other in high school and fall in love; we’ve been in a stable, committed relationship for over a decade. We became close friends our junior year in high school when we were lab partners in Chemistry class and began dating senior year. We were lucky enough to share experiences like our senior prom, graduations and many other important milestones. Each year we share birthday parties as well since we are only seven days apart in age.
Through the years we have grown together and formed a marriage based on mutual respect, trust, and a shared sense of humor. After seven years of dating, we were married by Sarah’s great uncle who urged us to kiss twice at the altar after he thought the first kiss was too tame. All of our friends and family laughed when Sarah fixed Jon’s crooked bow tie after the conclusion of the vows and they all cheered us on as we showed off the moves we learned at our dance lessons.
Although it is cliché, we are best friends. We both look forward to Friday movies nights curled up on the couch with McFlurries. On most weekend mornings, Sarah makes a big breakfast after we come home from the gym. We play in the same Fantasy Football league in the Fall (Sarah is the defending champ) and we enjoy spending time outdoors hiking. Our favorite place in the world is the beach on a hot summer day, Sarah with a good book and Jon enjoying one of his thousands of records on his i-Pod.
Last year we built a new home on a quiet, dead end street near a large conservation area. We have accomplished many goals together thus far, and we are excited to become parents together as well. We knew early on in our relationship that we were both committed to being parents and raising children. One of the things that drew us together was our similar goals and hopes for our future family.
One year into our marriage we decided we were ready to begin that next, exciting step in our lives together. After a year and a half without conceiving, we learned that we have infertility, and would not be able to conceive a child without extensive medical intervention. After multiple medical appointments, exhaustive research, and much soul searching, we chose to forego medical intervention, which may not even be successful for us, and focus all of our efforts and resources on growing our family through adoption. We built a new home close to family and friends and began preparing to become parents.
As we dealt with our infertility, we realized that what we ultimately want is to raise children and expand our family and that we can love a child regardless of biological connection. Parenting is a process and we hope to grow and adapt to the child’s needs through each stage of development. We understand that adoptive children can face unique challenges as they grow up and we hope to be able to meet those challenges with empathy and grace by educating ourselves and speaking with other adult parents and adoptees. We’ve already undertaken a lot of education about adoption and feel confident of our ability to help a child grow up with a strong sense of self and feel positive about their adoption story.
Our lives have been blessed and we are grateful to you for considering us as potential parents for your expected child. As future parents, what we want most for a child is that he or she grows to be a happy, healthy and independent adult. Education is very important to both of us. We want to reassure you that we’ll be able to provide for our child’s college or vocational education –whatever he or she would like to pursue. We’re excited to support our child’s exploration of sports, music and all of his or her dreams. When building our new home, we were particularly excited about the miles of nearby paths where we can someday hike with our child and teach him or her how to ride a bike. We each look forward to sharing the hobbies we love most.
As a child, Sarah vacationed with extended family each year on a private beach in Canada. She is excited to share the same family getaway with her child who would be much loved by dozens of cousins, aunts and uncles. Sarah also looks forward to staying home with a child and sharing the quiet moments – a morning walk, fingerprinting and quiet cuddles after a nap. Sarah looks forward to reading many of her favorite childhood stories for a child and teaching a child how to garden and bake. She will be thrilled to bring a child to church and help him or her to know the joys and responsibilities of feeling a part of a caring community of faith.
Jonathan particularly looks forward to the holidays with our children and whatever family members we spend them with. Both sides of our family are fun to be with during the holidays and typically we see both sides of the family in the same day. Jonathan’s family usually has lots of cookouts in the summer. His father grills steak and chicken while Sarah and his mother make potato salad from his grandmother’s recipe and decorate our favorite summer dessert, “flagcake” which is really just an excuse to eat fruit in buttercream frosting. We go out to a fun restaurant for each family member’s birthday and then eat cake and share presents. For big family parties at Sarah’s parents’ home, we have a nice outdoor seating area with a fire pit where there is always s’mores and laughter.
If our child enjoys sports, Jonathan also looks forward to learning which ones capture our child’s interest and sharing those experiences with her or him. We both like to hike and go camping which was always a yearly family trip for Jonathan and his family. Jonathan would also like to give our child the experience of learning a musical instrument. If they have an interest in drums, Jonathan is ready to give our child his or her first lessons. He is also excited to help with homework, especially math problems
Although we have been a happy family of 2, we both feel with have so much to share with a child. As a teacher, Sarah mothers children in a way every day, but only for a small portion of their lives before they move on the next grade or the next class. She yearns to know and love a child from the time of infancy to adulthood and appreciate all the rewards and challenges of each stage. Sarah is excited to support and cheer our child on at recitals, school plays and sporting events as a mom, in addition to her professional role as a supportive teacher to other children. We would both love to have a child for our nephew to play with and our parents and siblings to dote upon.
We built a home in 2014 on a quiet dead end street surrounded by conservation land and wildlife preserves. We always wanted to live in a rural area similar to those we grew up in. There are miles of paths near our home where we can walk, hike and bike as a family. There are many young families in our neighborhood and we are less than 8 minutes from all of the excellent community schools. Although our home is in a rural area, we are only 5 minutes from the closest highway and less than 15 minutes from the downtown areas of the neighboring cities.
We live less than 20 minutes from both our sets of parents and all of our siblings (5 sisters between the two of us); this makes it easy to get together on Sundays or meet for ice cream weekly. Our children will be able to see their cousins regularly and will be welcomed by dozens of aunts, uncles and extended family members. We get together with Sarah’s family for big Sunday dinners a couple times each month, eating and laughing together until we’re ready to walk it off in her parent’s rural neighborhood. Sarah’s father enjoys taking his grandchildren for 4-Wheeler rides around the yard and is excited to share that with a child who joins our family once he or she is old enough. Jon’s family loves to Bar-b-que in the summer and get together for football games in the fall. We relax in front of their fireplace with spiced cider and cheer on our favorite teams, although sometimes they are on opposing sides. Jon’s mother has saved his favorite childhood stuffed animals and is very excited to dote on a grandchild for the first time. We spend time with our nephew Sebastien once a week and look forward to seeing him interact with any child we are lucky enough to have the opportunity to parent.
Sarah’s cousin has adopted two infants within the last 6 years and has provided a great example for our family. Sarah also has a great uncle who was adopted and two cousins who were adopted in the 80s. Our family has been warm and accepting in each case, celebrating the new families that could not have been created otherwise. Both of Sarah’s adoptive cousins have great relationships with their birth families and spend time with them or invite them to important events in their adult lives like weddings and baby showers. Friends of the family have very recently adopted infants as well, and it is our hope that a child we adopt will have the opportunity to make lifelong friendships with those new additions based on their shared experiences as adoptees.
About Jon (by Sarah)
Jon is the best friend and partner I could ask for. He is full of enthusiasm for life and can get excited about almost anything. Our friends and relatives often mention his “joie de vivre” and his easy sense of humor. He is the life of the party, initiating games or activities and laughing contagiously, so contagiously that he won “best laugh” in middle school and high school. While he is responsible, he doesn’t take himself too seriously. He is always willing to compromise and work towards being a better husband, a skill which I think will transfer well to fatherhood. Jon is ambitious in his career. He has a bachelor’s degree in Physics and both a Bachelors and a Masters in Math. He works very hard, currently as a Data Analyst, to support our family and to make it possible for me to stay home with young children, a dream I have always had for our family.
Jon shows his love in a wide variety of ways. He is very affectionate, and many members of our family look forward to his bear hugs. Each year, on our anniversary, he purchases a small coconut flavored cake from the shop that made our wedding cake. Jon does little things to show me he has been thinking about me throughout the day from doing the dishes when I have a lot of other work to bringing home desserts and candies he knows I really like. He is always up for whatever new adventure I want to try, but he is also just as happy to walk the same wooded paths for the 20th time.
Jon is eager to learn and participate when we babysit my young nephew once a week. Our friends’ children love when he comes to visit and they can’t wait to ask him to play monster trucks or catch. Jon fits so easily into their world, adding new elements to their games and playing right along with them. My nephew recently started to enjoy peek-a-boo and their combined enjoyment is amazing to watch. Based on his interactions with children and his personality in general, I have no doubt that he will be a compassionate, loving and involved father. And a lot of fun.
Jonathan is a Data Analyst for a software company and because most of his work can be done remotely via computer, he has the flexibility to work from home and stay with the children occasionally if there is a need. Jonathan does not have to travel for his job so we will have family dinners each night and time, together for story time and bedtime routine.
About Sarah by Jon
Sarah is very funny and knows how to always make me laugh. She is very caring, loving, and nurturing. She continuously makes me be a better person and challenges me to work hard and succeed. She is probably the most patient person I have ever met. Sarah is responsible, trustworthy, and extremely easy to talk to. Family and friends love being with her, but even strangers will just start talking with her when we go out. She is extremely smart but very humble. Sarah has always wanted to be a teacher because she loves being with children and has a great ability to explain concepts and ideas. As a plus she is the best cook.
Every morning before Sarah goes to work she hugs me and kisses me goodbye while I’m still in bed. For Valentine’s Day, we get a couple’s massage and then Sarah always makes me a homemade cheesecake which is my favorite present. We go on “dates” either out to breakfast or out to dinner every weekend.
I’ve seen my wife spend time with many babies including her god daughter and our nephew. She is very nurturing and responsive to the child’s needs. She is very good at soothing the children when they are upset and seems to always know how to calm them down. She has a very soft, warm, and soothing demeanor. She’s going to be a great mom and I look forward to being parents together.
Sarah has worked in education for 6 years and feels her experience as both a teacher and a special education assistant has expanded her understanding of children at many developmental stages and has helped shape who she wants to be as a parent. Sarah has worked with children at all ability levels, from gifted students in her Honors history classes to children with learning challenges ranging from ADHD and Autism as well as a variety of behavioral and emotional issues. Although her teaching career is both rewarding and challenging, she also looks forward to being a full time at home parent. Sarah plans on staying home with our child during the early years of their life. Once our child is ready to attend school, Sarah will also return to work. Since she’s a teacher, she will still have the ability to be home with our son or daughter after school and during school vacations. We hope to provide a safe, loving home where a child can grow to reach his or her full potential.
Children have a special kind of love that you cannot find elsewhere in life. There is something special about raising a family and trying to give your children more than you yourself had growing up. It must be an incredible journey to watch a child grow up from a baby to adulthood. Of course we can’t know exactly what it will be like, but we imagine taking the child to sports practice, teaching them how to catch a ball and how to read their favorite books, over and over again. Family has always been very important to us and we can imagine that there is nothing more rewarding than watching a child grow and develop and showcase his or her own personality. Like all new parents, our lives would undergo a profound change, but it is one we anticipate with great excitement. After 11 years of growing together, we can’t wait to share our lives, our home, and our love with a child.
We admire your courage and strength as you plan the future of your baby. We understand that life does not always the way you planned or expected, as this is true for us as well. Sometimes life can lead to difficulties and choices you never imagined. We deeply respect and admire your willingness to consider adoption despite the personal sacrifices involved. We hope that building an adoption plan brings you peace and hope for your expected child.
It is our hope to be as open with our child as possible.
We hope that by being open and honest from the beginning in age appropriate ways, we will be able to support your child’s love and respect for you while also welcoming him or her fully into our family. You are one of the most important people in your child’s life, and it is important that your child knows as much about you as you would like to share. The relationship you already share with your child is one we would like for you to continue in whatever way you choose and feel comfortable with. If you would like, we would love to meet you in person and remain in regular contact with you as your child grows. If you would prefer, we would also be happy to provide you with letters are pictures as your child grows or to communicate with you electronically, whichever you find the most convenient.
Thank you for taking the time to consider our family for your child. The opportunity to parent your child would be an immeasurable blessing to us. We cannot promise that we will be perfect parents, but we can promise to love your child unconditionally and provide everything it needs to grow and thrive. Like you, we want to do everything possible to ensure that your child grows up happy and healthy, with the love and support necessary to thrive. As in our own relationship, we hope to handle the tough times with humor, patience and respect. We will also make sure to honor you so that your child grows up knowing the love you showed for him or her and how you considered his or her best interests even before birth.
We wish you well in whatever choice you make and we hope that the rest of your journey brings you peace. Please know that you are in our hearts and prayers.
With love and respect,
Sarah and Jonathan