Tuesday, July 23, 2013

What Not To Say In Your Adoption Profile Book

As a writer and type-A lady, I spent a lot of time reading online profiles (written by prospective adoptive parents) and deciding what NOT to write.  For one, I wanted to stand out, to show who we truly were as a couple.  For another, I didn't want to be cliche.

So, after reading hundreds (probably...) of profiles, here's what not to put in your profile and why (in no particular order):

"Dear Birth Mother"      A woman isn't a birth mother unless she is a woman who has placed a child for adoption.     ("Dear Expectant Mother" is most appropriate, or simply "hello.")

"Dear Friend"    You don't know the woman looking at your profile book.   Why are you calling her friend?

"Thank you for choosing life for your baby."   Ug.  Cliche.   Annoying.  And assumes that abortion was an option she considered.  She may have.  She may not have.  Just don't.

"Your child will be a gift from God."  Don't throw in God into every single sentence, especially when you don't believe in God but think saying God will make the expectant mommy swoon. 

"We love baking cookies on Saturday afternoons."   Ok, unless you own a bakery, come on.   Details are great.  Saying something about visualizing sharing your favorite Scottish shortbread with your little one, that's nice and authentic, but trying to sound like you and spouse having nothing to do but bake cookies on Saturday afternoon....really?!?

"We experienced so much loss and pain..."   You do realize that a woman placing her child for adoption will experience tremendous loss and pain, right?  (Please say you get this!)    Put down the verbal violin and stop sounding so desperate.   Every person wanting to adopt has a story.  Telling it honestly and without desperation is admirable, even desirable.  But if your profile book includes a pop-up box of tissues...your are going overboard.

"We can't wait to meet the child God has for us."  And then your openness is only for a healthy, White infant (preferably twins!!!  one boy, one girl!  two for one deal!) who hopefully has your blue eyes and hopefully has your husband's sandy blond hair and tall stature...and, and, and.  

"We promise to..."  Alright. Hold up.  Don't make promises you aren't going to keep.  Think long and hard about what you write in this book as far as promises.     Promises should be kept. 

______ (overused Bible verse)    Try to be original.  What verse inspires you?  What verse might encourage the expectant mother?   Don't, please don't, share a verse about adoption or pain.  Dime a dozen.  

I'd love to hear from you!  What are you tired of reading in profile books?  What makes your skin crawl?   What's insulting? 


  1. I love this! I am currently working on my profile book and I have to say that I agree with all of your points!

  2. I agree! Glad I didn't do any of that! My husband and I are waiting for a match on our first private adoption. We are open to any gender or race. I would love to pick your brain as experienced as you are!


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