Thanks to the counsel of a good adoption attorney, an Ohio couple realized their dream of adopting a child by posting a page on Facebook.
The Daily Mail is reporting that John and Kristen Juth from Gahanna, Ohio realized their dream on June 30 of this year when they brought home a newborn baby girl named Madison Ellen.
The child’s birth mother found the couple via the Facebook page the Juths posted after their attorney advised them about how effective social media is becoming in helping couples find babies to adopt.
According to Tommy Taneff, the couple’s adoption attorney, using social media to find available children has cut the waiting time for an adoption from two to three years to six to 12 months.
This was certainly the case with the Juths who had several leads within six months of posting their page on Facebook.
Taneff advises his clients to make it clear on their personal Facebook page that they’re looking to adopt, or set up a special page announcing their intentions to adopt. Keep the page up to date with regular postings of photos and info about their lives, interests, pets, extended family and even where they like to go on vacation.
They should also change their posts about adoption on a regular basis, using search terms such as “looking for a baby” or “help us find a birth mother.”
“No adoption agency or lawyer, who can be looking after hundreds of people, will ever be as vested in finding a baby for a couple as the couple themselves,” Taneff said. “My advice is don’t wait for the lawyers or agencies – network with your family, friends, co-workers. It is faster and its cheaper when you’re proactive.”
Thus far, 75 of his clients have found babies using Facebook.
The National Adoption Foundation also advocates the use of social media. Just last month, a priest from Virginia saved the life of a baby diagnosed with Down Syndrome when he convinced the parents to let him try to find a couple willing to adopt it rather than go through with a planned abortion. He posted a plea on Facebook and within 24 hours, had 900 responses from families willing to raise the child. The offers came from all over the U.S. as well as England, Puerto Rico and the Netherlands.
The baby was saved and the couple is in the process of interviewing potential adoptive parents.
However, there are some risks to using social media, and Taneff has some good advice for couples.
“I tell prospective parents that if someone approaches you and the first thing they say is ‘money’, then don’t walk away – run,” he said.
“The same thing if someone claiming to be a birth mother approaches and says ‘I don’t want to talk to your lawyer’.”
Couples still need to go through all the necessary paperwork to make the adoption legal.
The Juths could not be happier with the way things worked out for them. They say their beautiful little girl is “literally the love of our life” and are looking forward to sharing the rest of their lives together.
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