After much prayer and struggle, we have made a difficult decision. We have decided not to renew our homstudy, which probably doesn’t mean much to some of you. We’ve already renewed our homestudy once, and we really don’t want to go through it again. The homestudy is a collection of documents including criminal background checks, medical history, drug tests, police clearances, 911 records, and home visits from a social worker. Most of the process is just paperwork and time consuming. The biggest issue we have with renewing it again is the cost. It runs about $1,300 for each renewal plus the processing of the background checks, etc. This is money we really need to pay for the trip to Thailand.
The part that is most frustrating for us, is that the paperwork we need from Thailand is probably sitting on someone’s desk, just being ignored. We feel that, as adoptive parents, we get no respect whatsoever, from Thailand. Who cares if the family has to spent thousands of extra dollars… Who cares if it takes years until we get the paperwork together fo the family to travel. After all, we’re giving them a child, right? Well, I’m fed up with the total disregard that the DSDW has for us and our feelings.
The bottom line is this.. Our USCIS I-800A approval expires in November. In order to renew it, we would need an updated homestudy. If we receive our “To Whom It May Concern Letter” and updated background, we can apply for our I-800 and we won’t need to update our homestudy. If we don’t receive those documents, and we don’t update our homestudy, our I-800A will expire. The bottom line is that we have waited 14 months for this paperwork, and if it doesn’t show up by the time our I-800A is due to expire, we are going to let it expire.
We have invested so much time, money, and emotional energy into this adoption, and it breaks my heart to think that it might end this way. However, we can’t and won’t keep going indefinitely. What was supposed to be a short process has turned into a nightmare. If God is in this, and if it is His will, then He will make it happen before the paperwork expires.
We are praying that God will open doors that no man can close, and close doors no man can open. It’s in God’s hands now. What a nightmare this process has been!! If I could say one thing to couples thinking of entering the Thai program, I would say…RUN!! Don’t do it!! Adopt from a country that actually wants to see the kids get into their adoptive homes. Either way, the journey will come to an end by the end of the year.