Extended Travel for Nicaragua Adoption Benefits Children

26
Sep

Nicaragua Adoption There are a variety of reasons that parents may choose a specific country from which to adopt. Length of travel, characteristics of the children, eligibility requirements for parents and the structure of the country’s legal process must all be taken into consideration which country program fits your family best.

All children deserve a family, and the adoption process is always about the child. However, the adoption process and travel requirements for Nicaragua make this program a bit more child focused than other country programs. While some may find the three to five month stay in Nicaragua to be difficult on parents, at the same time it allows the child to adjust to his or her new family without the stress of international travel and adjustment to a new country and culture. All the changes the child experiences in the midst of adoption can be stressful and overwhelming. Spending additional time in country is one way parents can take some of the stress on themselves rather than placing the majority of it on their child. Travel and adjusting to their new home will be easier for most children if they are familiar with and already learning to trust their new parents. In addition, visiting a country for a week or even a few weeks may give adoptive parents a greater knowledge of the culture of origin of their parents, however, 12-18 weeks or even longer can give parents a much deeper understanding and prepare them more to provide the cultural socialization their child needs. A longer stay encourages families to venture into local groceries and markets, make connections with local people, and experience public transportation.

When a family adopts from Nicaragua, they must be prepared to travel shortly after receiving the potential match. While this may make packing a bit frenzied, it can benefit both parents and children. For most adoptive parents, the wait and longing become more intense once their child has been identified and they have seen a photo of the child they intend to adopt. This longing increases the stress of the adoption process for parents. Parents adopting from Nicaragua are able to avoid this added pressure, generally arriving in Nicaragua less stressed and with fewer expectations which is not then unconsciously placed on their new children.

No doubt, the adoption process can vary greatly from country to country and each family must choose the program that works best for them, however, I would encourage you to consider all of the pros and cons before making a final decision. As we see with Nicaragua travel, program requirements that at first seem negative might actually be more positive than you think!

Photo Credit: CraigClouiter

If you would like more information on adopting from Nicaragua, please contact us.

Brooke Randolph, LMHC, is a parent, therapist, and founding team member of MLJ Adoptions, Inc. with more than 20 years of experience working with children and families. She is the mental health expert contributor at DietsInReview.com, a national diet and fitness column; a private practice counselor in Indianapolis, Indiana; and the Vice President of PR, Outreach, and Communications at KidsFirst. She is a single adoptive mother who has authored adoption education materials and presented at numerous conferences and workshops throughout North America. Brooke is primarily motivated to encourage, equip, and empower parents and individuals to make changes that strengthen their lives, their careers, and their families.