Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on April 29, 2019, and has since been updated.
Many hopeful adoptive parents wonder, “What are birth mothers looking for in a profile?” and “What do birth mothers want in an adoptive family for their child?” The answer seems pretty simple: a loving family that can provide countless opportunities for their child.
Even though that may be true, the details on makes a birth mom choose one family over the other are not obvious. It’s actually quite challenging to pinpoint one specific quality that will set your profile apart from the others in a birth mom’s eyes.
The ingredients of an adoption profile aren’t an exact science. Every birth mom is different and has unique expectations and preferences for the adoptive family who will love and raise her baby. For some women, choosing a couple who lives nearby is important. Others want a couple who have children already, so their baby will have siblings. Because every birth mother’s preferences differ, what she wants to see in profiles will too.
With that said, here are three major items that most birth mothers seek in adoption profiles:
1. A Genuine Connection
When we’ve asked birth mothers why they chose the particular adoptive couple that she did, most of them share that they just had a “gut feeling” about the family. Sometimes, birth mothers know the exact attributes they want to see in an adoptive family. Others might not know what they want and then something just “clicks” when they look at an adoptive family profile.
Usually, the thing that makes her feel an immediate connection is a small, unique trait. As an example, a birth mother that had a particular breed of a dog growing up might see a family with that same breed and then decide they’re right for her. It might also be that the adoptive mom shares their interests or hobbies.
The things that allow a birth mother to feel a connection are usually things that an adoptive family can’t control. That’s why it’s important to be yourself in your adoption profile. It seems to be the unique things about a family that causes a birth mother to choose them. If you’re true to yourself in your profile, you’ll have a better chance of the right birth mother choosing you.
2. Happy, Candid Photos
While birth mothers do read an adoptive family’s profile, the text usually comes second to the pictures. Like most people today, birth mothers often prefer looking at photos over reading text. Having quality, current, photos in your adoption profile will give her a better idea of what your family is really like. Naturally, a birth mother would be more comfortable choosing an adoptive couple who looks happy and candid in their photos over one with staged, stiff photos.
3. A Positive View of Adoption
Adoption is a difficult decision to make. So, birth mothers want to feel reassured that the family they select for their baby respects and celebrates adoption. Most birth mothers want their baby to grow up knowing about his or her adoption and their birth family. Seeing an adoptive family focus on that commitment in their profile is crucial.
Put yourself in a birth mother’s shoes, and try to imagine what she’s going through. Make sure to share how you’ll celebrate adoption and your child’s birth mother in your family. If you emphasize your excitement for the adoption in your profile, a birth mother will notice it.
If you’re a hopeful adoptive family, make sure to represent yourselves honestly, and the right birth mother will find you! Staying true to yourself is the best way to ensure you have an excellent adoption profile.
At Lifetime Adoption, each adoptive couple receives one-on-one guidance and tips from their own dedicated Profile Coordinator. If you’re wondering, “What are birth mothers looking for in a profile?”, we recommend contacting your Profile Coordinator. She can answer all the questions you have about improving your adoptive family profile.
Do you have questions about adopting through Lifetime or how we can help you create an effective adoption profile?
Mardie Caldwell, C.O.A.P., is a nationally-recognized adoption expert and the Founder of Lifetime Adoption Agency. She has been working in adoption since 1986 and is also an award-winning author and speaker.
Mardie knows the sorrow of coping with infertility, and is an adoptive parent who experienced many of the challenges adoptive families might face. In various media appearances worldwide, publications, and her podcast, Mardie important steps that must be taken to complete a safe and secure adoption. Having adopted her son, Mardie knows firsthand the joys of raising an adopted child.
Mardie’s life mission is to help adoptive parents and birth parents find each other. With Lifetime Adoption Agency, she seeks to build happy families and provide precious infants and children with a loving and secure future.