Creating an online adoption profile doesn’t have to be a daunting task! The ideal adoption profile can be created with a few simple guidelines. Follow our list of do’s and don’ts to help you build a stress-free profile.
- DO: Pick your photos wisely.
There’s a reason why we say; a picture is worth a thousand words. Good photography helps create the tone for your entire profile. Knowing which photos not to share is a great start.
- No photos of you or your partner wearing sunglasses. We want to see you!
- Don’t share your entire session with a professional photographer. Mix it up!
- No photos without you in them. Yes, we want to see your surroundings, but it is more meaningful if you are in the photo.
You don’t have to be a professional photographer to take great photos.
- Lighting is important! Outdoor photos are easy to take with your phone and the natural light. If you want to take advantage of perfect lighting, take pictures approximately an hour after the sun rises and an hour before the sun sets.
- What’s in the background? You and your partner should be the key component in your photo, not the pile of unfolded laundry in the background. Be aware of what is in your photos, up close and behind you!
- Color balance. Use complementary colors in all of your photos! Complementary colors are directly opposite of each other on the color spectrum, such as red and green or blue and orange. Complementary colors, when used together, are more dynamic and pleasing to the eye.
2. Don’t: Expand on your infertility journey.
Though this may be a significant part of your story together, it is best not to include every detail about your infertility journey. You have to keep in mind who you are talking too and the sensitive matter of this birth parent’s situation. Unplanned pregnancies and infertility are both areas that are full of high emotions and grief. When you are discussing how you came to this path of adopting, share the positive moments that guided you to this point. Stay away from the heartache, though this may be very much a part of who you are, save the space in your profile for what is beautiful in your life now!
3. Do: Be yourself!
As a birth mother, I cannot stress this one enough. Being your authentic self can sound cliche, but if there is a golden rule for adoption profiles this is it! Be real, be honest, and let your true self shine. If you’re a total tech nerd, share that. If you love race cars and summer concerts, tell us about it. Hobbies, talents, and characteristics that feel common to you are the very details you should be sharing. That one sentence in your profile that doesn’t feel significant to you could be the one thing that stands out for a birth parent. Don’t try to be what you think a birth parent wants you to be. Don’t fake a life you don’t live. Authenticity is attractive and contagious, use your uniqueness to your advantage.
4. Don’t: Hold on a minute while I overthink this.
The simplicity in sharing who you are with confidence can be demolished by overthinking every sentence and photo. Your online adoption profile is a valuable tool in connecting you to a future birth parent. If you stress yourself out about what you’re doing wrong with your profile, you’ll do it wrong! Creating your online adoption profile can be fun for you and your partner. It’s a journal of your life together. Follow your internal direction on what to share and what to stay away from and be open to a professional opinion for minor changes. Don’t overthink and don’t stress yourself out. Have fun with it!
5. Do: Include each other.
You and your partner should be creating your profile together! Your profile is about the two of you, not the one who had time to throw it together over the weekend. Sit down together and pick out your photos, write your information, ask your spouse to write about you, and reminisce about the journey that brought you to this point. It is easy to remember who you are and what you have become with a partner next to you. What positive aspects of those memories do you want to share with a birth parent? Every idea should be discussed together to create a profile that showcases you both!
6. Don’t: Who are you talking to?
As a birth mother, who spends a lot of my time reading online adoption profiles, I can tell you the one thing that turns me away from a couple is when they forget who they are speaking to.
If you can stop for a minute, put yourself in an unplanned pregnancy situation, and visualize the fact that you have to pick a couple who will raise your son or daughter off of the information in your profile, I can guarantee you will set a tone of sincerity in your profile. If it’s difficult for you to put yourself in a birth parents’ shoes, go back to the heartache you felt with your infertility or any grief that you have experienced in life, what words have brought you comfort?
When I was looking at profiles as a pregnant teen, I was scared; I was lonely, I was in shock, I needed someone to say that one thing that made me feel confident and comfortable in my decision to pick them as parents for my child. There is real, raw heartache that is happening on the other side of your adoption journey and the more real and raw you can be the more your online adoption profile will stand out!