Thursday, October 3, 2013

So...This Happened: Vol. II: The Home Study - by Will

So, you saw all those documents on our kitchen table in our previous post, right? If not, the picture is to the right there. We gathered all of that background-checking, health-screening, and weird stuff we didn't even know existed detailing all the intimate parts of our lives all in an effort to set up our home study. Yes – THE HOME STUDY. This is where a social worker comes to your house to make sure you aren't crazy people living in filth. I mean they verify that you are a stable loving couple with a healthy home that can support the addition of a child. The Home Study is technically the only state-mandated legal process a family must go through in order to adopt - so everyone, no matter if you are with an agency, law firm, or going independent, has to have a home study!

I believe we have already told you about the questionnaires that we had to fill out before this could happen. We had to write about our relationship, our childhoods, our anticipated parenting style, and our feelings about adoption. So, as it turns out, the social worker who performs the home study receives those answers and then uses that information to plan their in-home interview with you.

But before that, THERE WAS THE CLEANING. Oh yes, they say don't worry about your house being perfect, BUT come on, we wanted our house to be as perfect as we could make it. Why not try to look really great, and spotless, and fresh, and Martha Stewarty (pre-jail) for the social worker who is deciding whether or not you are fit to bring home a baby? There are also things the agency said we needed to have in place LIKE: a fire extinguisher on each level and a carbon monoxide detector. Also guns had to be locked up (we have none, check) and absolutely no torture dungeons (we walled that up, check). Here's the sweet part about doing a massive clean like that – we are still riding that wave 60 days-ish later. Nice! My office hasn't looked cleaner. My office's closet has...before I moved all the clutter that was in my office into it for the big clean. Sorry closet, you hide dark terrible clutter secrets inside you better.
Terrible clutter closet!

So, the big day came for the in-home social worker interview on SATURDAY AUGUST 3rd. And it was totally casual and cool. Our social worker's name was Pam, and she couldn't have been more chill. We all sat down at our kitchen table and essentially talked for half an hour rehashing the questions from our questionnaires. It was actually kind of fun. Super easy, no sweat. Pam basically said that they like to watch you answer the questions in person and with each other to make sure no one is giving off any weird vibes (paraphrased). Weird vibes like: “crazy liars,” “uncomfortable relationship,” “terrible people,” etc... I also made up all of those categories. The social worker is just there to make sure that all of the information and answers you offered in your questionnaires lines up and that you can interact positively with people. The last thing she did was take a brief tour of our house. She did look in every room (except for you terrible clutter secret office closet, SHWEW). It was fun for us to show her the room that will become the nursery! It already had a few baby things in it that we might have swiped from our own garage sale donations. Don't judge us. And, Pam did notice our new fire extinguishers and carbon monoxide detector. Oh yeah! We have the safest house what I imagine she was thinking the entire time. Totally.

Nursery room with stolen baby donations. :)
So she left telling us that it would take her two weeks to write her report, two weeks for the agency to review, and another week or two for the state to approve it. If you're doing that math, that is several weeks. By SATURDAY AUGUST 31st, we received a certificate of home study approval for Andrew Joplin and Will Jenkins – a very awesome gay couple who are also with the IAC who we were very happy to see also had an approved home study. But yeah, not the right certificate for us obviously. They put the wrong one in our packet – the rest of the study was our information. We just got a corrected certificate a couple of weeks later. The certificate is really just a memento – nothing official official. So, it only took 4ish weeks to totally complete our home study! We are officially approved to receive a child into our home legally and everything! Now we are on the clock too. Your home study only lasts a year. Tick Tock. Time to find a birthmother... but alas, more work to be done before we can officially “be found.”

We gotta get our “Dear  Birthmother Letter” finished! (Our next post will be ALL ABOUT THAT...)


  1. Congrats! Looks like you headed in the right directions! Good things will be just around the corner!