Thursday, May 27, 2010

Quick Survey!

For those of you who have already completed your adoption (hooray) or are closing in on uniting with your child permanently, I was wondering if you take a few seconds to vote?   Since I have such a "planner" personality, it's been hard to have an abstract time frame and no real sense of what to expect time- wise.  We've told family/friends that it will probably take a year to bring our child (or children) home, but now I'm beginning to wonder if that's realistic?   Most of the other blogs I've seen, it looks like 18 seems to be the average.   We intend to go as fast as possible, but I know many variables are beyond our control.  Could you share how long it took (or you expect it to take)?   I'm praying for patience and trusting that God will bring us to our child (or children) at the exact moment he ordains, so I know I just need to trust and relax!  Any insight you could offer I would appreciate greatly. 

**The poll located in the right margin** :)


  1. We are still waiting but I would say that the time seems to differ wildly in terms of wait times. And there is no rhyme or reason to it- individuals requesting older child do not necessarily end up with a referral sooner than families whose homestudies were written for a toddler, and one agency does not seem to have families receive referrals that they accept any sooner than another. It seems like Poland really does focus on matching families as they see fit. On top of all of this, it seems like at least half of the families I know used a separate homestudy agency, which adds a new layer of complexity. Then everyone ends up with different thing that may slow them down, like my fingerprints not being approved by the FBI twice slowed us down by three months. I also noticed some families do not have to finish their education requirements until after their homestudy is done, where we had to have everything done prior. All that being said, I am interested to see the results of the poll!!!!!!

  2. I'm interested too. We've been waiting 8 months and were told to expect 10 - 12 months, but it could take up to 2 years!

    I agree with everything Tom and Kara said, there is no pattern to placement.

    Does everyone have to do 2 sets of education? We had to finish a set of courses before the homestudy was complete, and then we just finished up another course that was specifically for international adoption. We were told we had to finish that before going to Poland.

    Everyone seems to do everything a little different. It probably has a lot to do with what state you are in and what agency you are using. I've written my agency a few times to ask if we missed something I read someone had to do that we didn't.

    Waiting is tough, and I wish I could give a better idea on times, but it's really impossible to say when it will happen.

  3. We are still in process. Our homestudy was sent to St. Mary's yesterday for review. I wish I had a good idea as to how long it would take. We sent our application to St. Mary's on March 4 so we are just under 3 months into the process. So far everything seems to be going quickly. However, it can apparently take up to 4 weeks for our homestudy agency to hear back from St. Mary's about the homestudy review plus that can have a lot of back and forth to get everything worded just right after that. I agree with the others that it seems to vary widely. Each state has their own requirements. Ours had some requirements some others have not had to do and some others have had to do things we have not had to do depending on state adoption laws. It also varies depending on how long it takes to get paperwork done, especially the paperwork from the government can take awhile. We were told the FBI clearance could take 12 weeks. We applied for that in the beginning of April and are still waiting so I don't know how long it actually will be. Another family just recently received theirs after 7 weeks.

    I like your survey idea. I too am wondering how long it will take. I am already anxious to get our little boy home. I keep reminding myself that God's timing is better than my own timing.

    Sherry, both St. Mary's and our homestudy agency required adoption education classes to be completed. St. Mary's required completion before we send in our dossier and the homestudy agency obviously required it before the homestudy was finished. Luckily both accept courses through Adoption Education, so the 10 hours worth of courses through there counted for both requirements. Various states and homestudy agencies have differing requirements for education. With our daughter's adoption in 2003 none was required.

  4. Are you asking for the time frame from beginning the adoption process or from the time your Dossier is sent to Poland?

  5. Julie-I am asking from the beginning of the process to "Gotcha Day"!:)

    Sherry- I had not heard 2 years...oh my goodness! I am praying it doesn't take that long, my heart might burst! Lol :) You mentioned you are currently at 8 months, do you think it will be under a year? I hope so for you!:)

    Heidi-I keep hearing about the FBI fingerprinting too (like what Kara mentioned), I wonder how common delays are? It seems to happen quite a bit. Ugh. Thankfully you have that under your belt though, and hopefully you won't hit any more speed bumps. How long ago did you start the process?

    Kara, Julie, Heidi, Sherry, thanks for your input!:)

  6. Hi - we are also in the waiting stage. I think it might be best to look at the time of wait after dossier is complete. I say this because the initial application and homestudy process can take varying lengths depending on how fast or slow you want to go. But, once the completed dossier is in Poland and translated, then it's out of your hands . . . so, for us, ours has been there about 2 months now. We started the entire process a little over a year ago.

  7. Brooke, we are two months three weeks into the process. We are in a waiting pattern right now. Waiting on the FBI clearance and waiting on St. Mary's to review our homestudy.

  8. It's just amazing at the different time lines! I went back to review my blog and realized it was almost 1 year to the mark from when we finally mailed in our I-800A with the completed Home Study to when we got back home with Adam and Aggie. It does seem like a long time, however, Poland is getting use to the new rules about the Hague and other families seem to be having a much quicker turn around. We were among the first few familes through the "new" Hague rules and regulations. YOUR timing will be perfect and everything will fall into place!

  9. Yes, two years seems like forever. For us it's been a little over a year since we started. We were a little slow with our paperwork last summer. A few various things delayed us. I thought we would have our homestudy done and dossier completed by July, but it turned out to be September.

    It would be nice to get a referral before the year mark of the dossier being in Poland. I do still think there is a chance of that.

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  11. It was a 2 1/2 year long process for us. We started in January 2006 (got the paperwork done in about 7 months) and brought out little guy home in August of 2008. We did decline a referral prior to getting our son's because it was questioned if the child had FAS. Our little guy was born with a cleft palate/lip and will need ongoing attention/surgeries as a result, but it was something that we felt we could deal with better than an FAS child. Just remember that however long it takes, you will be glad that it took as long as it did to get what you received. I feel so blessed to be the one who was picked to take our son home. You will feel the same when you meet your child too regardless of however long it takes. Remember it's god's pick.

  12. We began paperwork June 2006, dossier ready & in Poland Jan 10, 2007. (7.5 months) Then waited for our son's referral almost 10 months (Jan 10 until Nov 29). We were in Poland Dec 19th and had court Jan 10, 2008. We arrived home Feb 13th, 2008.

    So from the time we began paperwork it was about 20 months. I consider our waiting time to be 10 months, and we had court exactly 1 year to the day that Poland accepted our dossier!

    Our biggest delays were that my husband was born in Germany, so we had to wait 6 weeks for his "birth certificate" and 4 more for it to be appostilled in D.C. Then, once we were in Warsaw for our appeal time, a friend read our mail & we discovered that my prints weren't approved thru USCIS!!!! So that added about 5 days at the end of our time in Warsaw. It all worked out & we have the perfect child for our family. We were also a pre-Hauge, 1 trip family. Good luck & be patient with yourself:-)

  13. I voted in the 12-18 mo category, because I can't really give you a good timeline for doing the paperwork - to coming home, since we first submitted paperwork to Ukraine. However, once our application was transitioned over to Poland we were home in apx 1 year. Once we accepted the referral the timing seemed to stop for me. So it was apx a 6 mo referral process and we declined the first referral and a 6 mo process after saying yes to being home. My guess is once you have a referral you have accepted the timeframes are apx equal - give or take a month. We were pre-hague two trips, but I think our timeframes were roughly the same as post-hague because they were testing out their Hague requirements since we were in that transition phase.
    Good luck - with your timeframes and decisions.

    As for your other question on numbers, We chose to adopt only one child since we had one bio child at home. We didn't want one child to feel "left out". Since you already have three at home, you may feel you have the opposite issue. I think the decision is such a personal one based on so many different things.

    As for organization - don't over organize or over document. Remember only what you need to remember and forget everything else. Put everything in one folder - so you can find it in date order and move on. I did use an excel spreadsheet to track all required docs for the homestudy, dossier, and the level of "certification" each required. The spreadsheet went into the folder for easy reference.

    Good luck