The Role of Technology in Adoption
There is so much going on in the world of adoption today as it pertains to the internet, technology, social media and online marketing. The internet as it pertains to adoption has been described as “the wild west,” “a war zone” and a “feeding frenzy.” All of these are true due to the amount of unlicensed and unregulated adoption entities, consultants, facilitators and unethical websites that list children available for adoption with a hefty price tag, and no adoption professional involved.
Technology, when used the right way, has the potential to increase ability, access and affordability in adoption. PairTree has made it their goal to advance adoption while maintaining ethical standards and doing their best to educate and protect all members of the adoption constellation.
Utilizing technology in adoption increases everyone’s abilities – the ability for expectant parents to find the family they want, whether they’re across the street or across the county.
Technology increases the ability to foster better open adoption relationships. Gone are the days of faxing updates to your agency for them to mail to your child’s birth parents. The internet allows for birth parents and adoptive parents, and adoptees, to keep in touch via email, social media, video calls and build better, more consistent relationships. Extending beyond the birth parent – adoptive parent relationship, the internet has also created a space for birth siblings to find each other, and keep in touch. As a birth mother who recently moved 1200 miles away from her daughter, being able to utilize technology to keep in touch and still be present in each other’s lives is priceless.
Through the use of technology, and the internet, the ability for adoptive parents, birth parents and adoptees to find community has grown exponentially. The internet, and more specifically social media, has allowed all members of the constellation to find education, resources, support and community. Don’t get me wrong – the Instagram adoption community can be a dark and scary place at times, but personally, it has connected me to a team of incredible women to learn from, lean on and call my friends. Social media has also allowed me to learn from adoptees, and educate myself on other perspectives, which is so important in our community.
Expectant mothers deserve access to the best – the best adoption professionals and an expansive list of prospective adoptive parents for them to choose from. Expectant moms used to have to choose a family from a binder of family profiles or a stack of profile books, a group of ten, twenty at most. Twenty profiles to view to choose a family for her child that would last her lifetime, and theirs.
Technology has the power to offer expectant mothers a new perspective and a vast list of educated, ethical, qualified prospective adoptive parents all across the country that could meet any expectations or wishes she has. By utilizing the internet and social media, an expectant mom can find a family from where she is comfortable – an attorney’s office, a pregnancy center, Church, or the comfort of her own home.
Without technology and the internet an expectant mom or prospective adoptive parents will have to work with whatever adoption professional is in town. But by embracing technology and all that it has to offer, prospective adoptive parents have access to a wide range of vetted, ethical adoption professionals to find a professional that fits their beliefs, lifestyle and budget.
Traditional routes to adoption cost upwards of $50,000. Adoption shouldn’t cost $50,000 and shouldn’t be reserved for the wealthy. Technology offers the ability for adoption to be affordable and accessible for all. Through the use of the internet and technology, prospective adoptive parents are able to research and educate themselves and find a professional that fits their means.
Adoption is complex; technology, the internet and social media can make it even more complex…but it can also open doors we never thought were possible. While the internet can be home to adoption scams, predatory practices, and fraud, PairTree embraces the best that technology can offer and leverages it to make adoption equitable and accessible. By utilizing unique personality matching software, location and behavior tracking markers for expectant mothers, and building relationships with ethical adoption professionals, PairTree is truly modernizing the adoption process.