Adoption is Frightening, Exciting, Heart-Pounding…

adoption diaries sam as a toddlerAdoption terrifies me. The disappointments and challenges along the route can be cruel. In my quest to demystify it and understand the ethics of adoption, I am interviewing so many of you lucky parents who’ve adopted not only once but twice!

Losing your shot at adopting a child for any number of reasons — birth mother changes her mind, another family has dibs — sucks. Although we are within the first few months of planning and collecting our adoption paperwork, I can already feel the anticipation rise in torrents before I bat it back down again.

Straff Adoption Recap: In the last six months, my husband Darrin and I have interviewed three international adoption agencies via telephone.

I’ve attended two international adoption online webinars, which proved immediately helpful since you type in very specific questions (in real time) during an easy-to-follow Power Point Presentation. You receive immediate responses.


“The Straff family owns two 100-pound dogs. Will this prevent our family from fostering or adopting a baby?”

And the adoption agency sponsoring the webinar quickly writes back blindly. Two international adoption agencies also emailed back more detailed answers once the webinar ended.

I recommend quick webinars for weeding out agencies you don’t want to work with in the future too. Darrin, biological son Sam (5) and I have attended two different “adoption days” where we met other parents who were in the adoption process. There’s always a newly adopted success story in the room too.

On the last occasion, Sam was bored of the toys and markers we brought, and my hazel-eyed boy began pulling out batches of petunias framing the agency door.

Gritting my teeth, I kept thinking: “What am I doing? Am I mad?”

Darrin wants to adopt a child is to shower her with love, basketball skills and a college fund. He believes our family is relatively balanced and healthy and he thinks a sibling would enrich Sam’s life fundamentally.

I’d like to adopt a toddler is to, yes, rescue a child but also to sign up for life. When Sam was 18 months old, he made me giggle so thoroughly every day; I love that developmental age. More importantly, a child that age really needs a mommy for comfort, so many reasons.

We offer this house and a clean bedroom to share with Sam that’s lined with old books that I’d like to read to another child again.

Tell me a great adoption story that will inspire other families to read my blog and also help a child in need.

Add a Comment
Back To The Adoption Diaries, by Nicole Dorsey-Straff
  1. by Nikki

    On July 22, 2011 at 11:09 am

    My son was adopted domestically. I am linking a letter I wrote to him on his one year Gotcha Day. Hope this encourages you :)

  2. by Nicole Dorsey

    On July 26, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    This is sooo beautiful and Joshua is gorgeous! WoOuld you like to post about your own multi-racial adoption? You can email me directly to

    Please also send a family JPG (small but high quality) and I will post about it on PArents??? Congrats so exciting!

  3. by timberland laarzen

    On January 9, 2012 at 10:32 pm

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