Different Paths to Adoptions- Jennifer’s Story
There are different paths to adoption through the foster care system. You can choose to solely foster, provide respite care, or even adopt. For some, like Jennifer Olsen and her wife Jolene, the decision isn’t set in stone. The couple became registered foster parents in March of 2017. They initially only intended to be foster parents but never ruled out adoption.
Over the years they received different placements which all lasted different amounts of time. The 3 different placements lasted 1 week, 4 weeks, and 4 months. The difference between all of them taught the couple how unpredictable the foster care system can be. But, they understood that fostering meant that their placements could leave at any time.
The moment that made them open up to the idea of adoption happened when they received a call to foster a 3 and a half-month-old baby boy. Once they met him they instantly fell in love. As soon as he saw his new parents he could not stop smiling. Jennifer and Jolene could not have been happier to be caring for him.
After two years of the placement, the boy’s biological parents surrendered their parental rights. Jennifer and Jolene finally solidified their different paths to adoption with their 2 and a half-year-old son. They wasted no time and set a date for adoption on March 25th, 2020.
Unfortunately, the Covid-19 pandemic disrupted their plans. They still had permission to go to court and officially adopt their son, but only essential people could be in the courtroom. That meant that they couldn’t take family or friends with them. The judge gave the boy a balloon once the adoption hearing finished and told the family that he didn’t want to let that moment go to waste. He wanted to recreate the moment with their friends and family once everything subsided because they deserved the celebration!
Lessons in Love
The entire experience taught Jennifer and Jolene to be open to change. They will continue to foster and help children in need. They learnt that supporting the kids and their families is important. Sometimes reunification with bio parents is the healthiest option and all you can do is be supportive.
In conclusion, we want to thank Jennifer and Jolene for sharing their experience with different paths to adoption. For those interested in adoption, Foster Love - Together We Rise created an adoption calculator to help inform on cost and type. Check out the adoption calculator here.