By Brad and Justin
To be completely honest, the excitement after our trip to Dollywood and our desire to grow our family was quickly overshadowed with a million and one questions. Where do we even begin? How much will it cost us? What would other people say about us and more importantly, our child? Brad and I would randomly ask each other these questions and never could come up with answers.
We were lucky, you could say, in two ways. First, our very dear friends, Matt and Trey were growing their family just like we wanted to and had matched with a birth mother, so they were well versed in the entire process. Secondly, Brad and I quickly got a case of the “I don’t cares,” but in a good way. We didn’t care what people would say about us raising a child and we vowed to teach our child to be open and accepting of everyone. We didn’t care how much it would cost us, it was too important to us to let that stop us. And we didn’t care what we had to do to make it happen.
At this point in our journey, we had heard a fair amount from Matt and Trey about their adoption process, why they chose open adoption, their thoughts on the agency they chose and how roughly much it cost them, so you could say there was already a slight lean toward adoption from Brad and me. We were encouraged to do our own research, which we did, but for us the choice of open adoption came easily.
Surrogacy was quickly crossed off of our list as a choice. Who ever knew that buying an egg was so expensive!?! Then came the discussion of who would the sperm come from? Both of us and see who the fastest swimmer is? Flip a coin? What sealed our decision to exclude surrogacy was that neither one of us were comfortable being the biological father and “excluding” the other one, something about that just didn’t sit well with us.
Fostering to adopt was initially kept on our list, but then was also crossed off. We had our hearts set on a newborn. And we wanted to experience being dads from the very beginning.
We easily kept returning to adoption. Matt and Trey spoiled us in that they are very detailed oriented and thorough couple. We knew that they chose open adoption for a reason. We knew that their decisions were not made with haste or carelessness, instead, they were well thought out and planned. Even with the knowledge they gave us, we still did more research into different agencies along with choosing an open versus closed adoption, which went hand in hand with what agency we chose.
Open adoption was the winner. Brad and I are very good friends with a few people who are adopted through closed adoption. They know nothing about their biological parents or their early childhood before they were adopted. We want the exact opposite. We want our child to know their story, the love that their biological parents have for them and we want his or her parents to be a part of their life as they grow up.
Two things really sold us on choosing our agency. First, Matt and Trey chose them and spoke very highly of working with them and secondly, their advocacy of same-sex couples, helping them adopt and grow families. We were honestly shocked at the number of agencies who mentioned nothing about same-sex couples adopting or who encouraged us to look elsewhere when we contacted them.
We reached out to our agency and was welcomed with open arms. We quickly knew we had made the correct choice. Our agency called us to discuss the process as a whole, what we could expect and how to begin preparing for the road ahead. To say we were excited is an understatement! Brad and I travelled to Raleigh, NC two months later to attend our Adoption Workshop and truly begin the process. It was surreal. Two exciting and emotional days later we were “pregnant” and heading home.