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In the adoption context, a written description of a prospective adoptive family, usually written by the couple or single person wishing to adopt; also known as a "profile." Agency staff and attorneys that offer birthmothers choices in adoption often use resum?s of prospective adoptive parents to assist the birthmothers in their selection of adoptive parents. A caseworker or attorney will generally review the resum? to offer suggestions for changes and improvements before showing it to a birthmother.

Some couples who wish to locate their own birthmothers will independently circulate hundreds or even thousands of resum?s nationwide to obstetricians, lawyers, adoption agencies, crisis pregnancy centers and other professionals who come in contact with pregnant women considering adoption for their babies. Increasingly, resum?s are posted on the Internet, often as part of a family's home page. Couples who succeed with this method swear by it.

It is difficult to impossible to maintain confidentiality when sending out resum?s to people throughout the United States; therefore, couples who do not want to take part in an open adoption may wish to use more traditional means to succeed at adopting their child.

Supporters of using resum?s, whether in INDEPENDENT ADOPTION or agency adoption, see them as very effective and speedy while opponents believe they are costly, inefficient and risky, and they contend that physicians and others are most interested in assisting people they already know. People can be easily targeted by confidence artists.

After the prospective parents have completed the HOME STUDY process, they may prepare their resum?. This document, sometimes accompanied by photographs of the prospective parents, will be shown with other resum?s to pregnant women considering adoption. The social worker will usually show the pregnant woman three or four resum?s of couples who seem most appropriate to parent the child, although some agencies open their entire file of resum?s to pregnant women.

The pregnant woman will then select the family she feels most closely resembles the type of family she is seeking for her child. Some pregnant women seek childless couples while a lesser number hope to place their child with a family who already has siblings or who intend to adopt other children after this child.

In some cases, the religion of the adoptive family is important, and in other cases, it is their lifestyle that matters most, for example, if they are active, outdoorsy people, literary people or some other pattern the pregnant woman sees as desirable.

If the prospective adoptive family has no children but has a dog or cat or other pets, this information is often included because the couple may be perceived as nurturing by the pregnant woman.

Sometimes the agency may use resum?s to help the birthmother choose the adoptive parents but wait until after the birthmother has delivered to show her any of the resum?s. These agencies believe it would be a form of pressure to show the woman resum?s before she has her baby. The agencies that show the pregnant woman resum?s, usually in her last trimester, believe it will ease her mind to know something about the adoptive family and will give her a feeling of control over a crisis situation.

Adoptive parent resum?s differ from job resum?s in that prospective parents believe, based on advice from adoption provides, that they need to convey both information and emotion. They have been counseled that they need to describe themselves factually as well as explain why they want to adopt a child.

Resum?s usually include such information as a physical description of the couple, their hobbies and interests, whether they live in the city, country or suburbia, whether or not they have children already and other general information.

If the prospective adoptive mother plans to stop working outside the home in order to stay at home to provide care for the child, this information is often included. If the prospective grandparents greatly anticipate the adoption, this information is seen as valuable as well.

Many women who are considering an adoption are very concerned about how the child will be accepted by the adoptive parents' own parents and relatives; therefore, if the future extended family is very eager and anxious for the child, adoption providers say this information should be included in the resum?.

A critical portion of the resum? is why the couple or single person wishes to adopt-beyond any information about infertility. In fact, detailed information on infertility is usually unnecessary. Most pregnant women presume a couple who wishes to adopt is infertile and are not interested in details of the infertility or expenses related to infertility testing. Instead, they are most interested in why the adopting couple wants a child and what kind of home they will provide for that child.

Adoption providers advise that resum?s should be no more than a page or two in length. Although resum?s can be difficult to write, most social workers or attorneys provide assistance.

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