Follow me on the crazy, hopeful, discouraging, funny, and ultimately successful (one way or another) path to parenthood while facing infertility.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Profile Call Information Sheet

I knew it would be a good idea to have a fill-in sheet available for when we received profile opportunity calls. I spoke with a friend who adopted her son last year, and she had great advice for putting together a list of categories so that you could just fill in the information for each call.

Somehow, despite having this information since the summer, I just haven't gotten around to it.

It makes no sense. I should be prepared and ready for these calls! I should have my little notebooks/hand-folded-and-stapled cheat sheets already in my car and my purse and Bryce's car!

But I don't.

I don't know if I was just so consumed with all the other adoption action items, or getting ready for another school year...but I just didn't get it together. And then we didn't receive any calls whatsoever, so I didn't feel a sense of urgency.

But then, I had my mock profile opportunity call, and the seriousness of needing a clear system for writing down the information was apparent:

scribble scribble scribble in my favorite purple pen
It was all out of order. There's things scribbled in margins next to categories I forgot to ask more detailed questions about. I didn't leave nearly enough space for family medical history and background info on both the expectant mother and father (although in the fake case, the baby was born yesterday, so they were actually birth parents). I went to find the list of questions my friend sent me...and they have mysteriously disappeared from all my electronic forms of communication.

So, here is my own list of fill-in categories that would be helpful for a profile call, in case it is helpful to any of you. It is fairly exhaustive, but I think better that than to be writing feverishly in the margins only to struggle to put it all together cohesively later. Here it is, based on all the information I received on our fake call. I realize we may not get this much information on any given call, or there might actually be more info out there, so it's a fluid document and by no means meant to be exhaustive or the end-all-be-all. Also, obviously some info is more important than others, but I was amazed at the breadth of information I was given in such a relatively short period of time.

Profile Opportunity Cheat Sheet

Date: 
Name Expectant/Birth Mother: 
Age: 
Race: 
Height & Weight: 
Physical Appearance (hair color, eye color, etc.):
Education:
Employment: 
Reason for Placement: 
Confidence Level: 
Family Support: 
Location: 
Baby due date or birth date: 
Medical Insurance: 
Prenatal Care: 
Exposures: (cigarettes, caffeine, alcohol, drugs)
Expectant/Birth Mother Health History: 
Expectant/Birth Mother Family Health History: 
Expectant/Birth Father Info: 
Health of Baby at Birth: 
Openness Preference: 
Fees: (total, placement, birth parent expenses, birth parent legal, agency legal, professional support, professional expenses, post-placement support, post-placement visits & how many)
Miscellaneous Info/Notes: 

WHEW. It's a lot of info. In my Word document, some areas have longer notes lines than others. In our fake call, there was very little info on the birth father. I suspect that may be more frequent than not, but I don't really know. So there's a lot of lines there, but that info came up surprisingly late in the call.

If you have any suggestions on things that I may have overlooked that came up in your calls, please feel free to comment! I want to be writing as little categorically as possible, just the facts about the individual situation. So much to sift through on these calls. I hope we get a real one sooner than later, even one that's not right, so that we can put my little form to the test and feel a little bit more prepared...even though the "fake call" was quite the educational experience.

FutureBaby, every day we're a little more ready for you and the unveiling of your mystery.

6 comments:

  1. Wow, that's a lot. Looking over this, everything makes sense. The only thing I wonder about is if you can ask the "why us" question? What attracted this birth mother to your profile? Course I have never gone through this, so I would certainly ask if such a question is acceptable.

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    1. I definitely want to know "Why us?" because it's such an interesting thing -- it could be something significant or it could be something we didn't really think about at all as being attractive. We may not necessarily get a call where we've already been chosen though, that's only if we get a blind profile where it's last minute. Most calls are the option to be profiled, so it's letting you know that you would be in the mix unless you decline. Then you might get chosen. Definitely "Why us" for a blind profile (or after getting chosen out of a group of books, should we be so lucky) would be interesting info to have for sure!

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  2. This is so different than our agency! Do you know if most agencies function like this? Providing information in a call rather than written? It seems super challenging to ensure that you both know everything. I hope your notes guide works well!

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    1. I'm not sure what the "norm" is, actually... So do you get a written information sheet? Does your agency function through email? I am so curious what differences are out there. The other thing I left out is that you can be given as little as 45 minutes to get back to the agency, or as much as a day. So a lot of information to parse through and discuss and decide about in a relatively short period of time! Hopefully we get a call soon so that we can put the sheet to the test.

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  3. HI Jess-- In my experience, when our agency calls you to tell you about a profiling opportunity, everything is done verbally over the phone, so yes Jess, you will need to ask all these questions and copy down the answers as best you can. When the agency interviews the expectant parent, they DO have their own detailed form that the social worker has filled in with all the answers and info. (I think there is a blank copy of one included in the classes you took) You absolutely get a copy of this paperwork once you are chosen by the birthparents. But many times, there is not time to mail the paperwork out to adoptive parent, wait a few more days until you contemplate it, and THEN get back to them with your decision. I think the 45 minutes to 24 hour time frame is correct for how our agency seems to operate. Some matches are made early in the pregnancy, but I'd say many matches are made later, after the birthmom has received some counseling at the agency, or even after the baby has been born, so time is of the essence!

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    1. Thank you so much! I DO remember the form from the training now, but it's so scary to have to write down all that information so quickly so that you can make a good decision. So interesting...it's quite the process!

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