Ahggg. Feeling a bit frustrated. It's that nagging feeling you get when something isn't settled. And this adoption process can certainly be unsettling!
Here's the issue: We are working with two agencies--one in the US (Lifelink) and a larger one based in Korea (Eastern). Eastern has run into some troubled times and one huge concern to us is the time frame from referral to placement. It is currently 7-9 months and was recently announced that it will not be decreasing.
This is a change from the previous 4-6 month range.
And there is reason to think that the wait times will continue to increase. The problem is with the Emigration Permits (EPs) that are required to bring children home. Korea issues a limited number to Eastern. From what we can gather, last year Lifelink (or Eastern...this part is unclear) had more adoptions than they did EPs. Families who received referrals in Sept. 2009 finally traveled to Korea and bring home their children in April 2010. Supposedly that means less permits available for 2010, which will affect other families later in the year.
A few other things to consider: Eastern announced a 10% decrease in the the amount of passports they are issuing per year. And they are difficulty keeping foster mothers.
Obviously this is not good news.
So although we like Lifelink, the fact that they only work with Eastern is a problem. I feel like we are at about the 3rd date phase of a new relationship. And do you remember that "uh oh" feeling you got about the 3rd date with someone who wasn't right for you?
Oh sure, they were nice, they took you out to dinner, they made polite conversation. But you just felt like you weren't a match.
We have that feeling--it's starting to be a bit awkward. We love our social worker J. She's been super helpful and enthusiastic. But we aren't so sure about the team behind her.
We just don't have a lot of confidence that things are going to go smoothly. It's a matter of trust. And we don't have a super great foundation on that front yet.
So it's unsettling. We are wondering if staying with our current agency is the right move for us or not. We aren't that far into this relationship. Should we cut our losses and move on?
Doing more research. Stay tuned.