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Then and Now (Part One)

A Look Back on Adoption Circa 1998

· Adoption Stories

In October, we featured a couple’s adoption story from Colorado and shared their recent adoption experience. We discussed what it was like getting started with their agency, placement, and how they interact with their birth mother. The article was rather comprehensive, but we realized it had one minor flaw, it chronicled a modern adoption.

Ashley and her husband used our profile creation service, and though their agency did not use Parentfinder’s expectant mother marketing tools, they still placed within a year. There are a number of factors that could have led to them placing quicker, but the common trend is that hopeful adoptive parents are placing much faster as a result of new technology in the adoption industry.

The current process of today, as compared to a decade ago, shines a light on how effective technology has been for adoption. Take Paul and Jenny’s experience; they started the adoption process in 1998 with an Indiana law firm. Even before our technology came along their law firm, Kirsh & Kirsh, was well known for being industry leaders not only around the state but the entire Midwest.

Although the process is not entirely different today compared to how it was in the early 2000s, there are unique distinctions in how the process has evolved. I met up with Paul and Jenny, who like most people adopted due to infertility complications, to figure out what their process was like in a time where technology had yet to impact the industry significantly.

Paul, Jenny, thank you so much for sitting down with me today. To start, I’d like to know how you found your agency?

P: Well, I went to a medical conference and ran into a colleague I had not seen since the last conference I attended. The first thing I couldn’t help but notice was the small child sitting on her lap; I did not remember her being pregnant the last time I saw her. She informed me that she was going through the adoption process the last time we saw each other and right then I knew I needed to talk to Jenny about this.

J: To be fair, we always knew adoption was an option but what I remembered from my aunt’s adoption experience back in the 1970s was that it was an arduous process compared to what it was in the late 90s. For example, adoptions were always closed, birth records could be opened by the court, but only once the child was 18, and the information was not always accurate. My adopted cousin tried to look for her birth mother, and it was almost impossible.

So, were the two of you skeptical at first?

J: Not necessarily, I have always been a pro-adoption cheerleader because of my aunt and her adoption experience. If we did have any apprehension at all, it was quelled once we talked to Paul’s colleague about her agency and what the process was like.

Did the two of you use her agency based on her feedback?

P: Yes, the agency she used was Kirsh & Kirsh, an Indianapolis based law office who specializes in adoption. She had nothing but good things to say about them, and they were professional and courteous to us throughout our adoption journey.

When did you officially sign on with them?

J: We met with Kirsh & Kirsh in October of 1998 and officially retained them in February 1999.

This was part one of our four-part “Then and Now” blog. Stay tuned for our next three installments.

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