Saturday, April 26, 2014

Interpreting Medical History Records, Psych and Educational Evaluations

After all the paperwork, apostilling, translating, and then waiting, we soon received lots of pictures of a 7 year old girl from Poland. She had brown hair and bright blue eyes. She was so beautiful in those pictures. A couple of days later, we received psych and education evaluations on this beautiful girl. We did not receive hardly any medical history information because she was there wasn't any. After reading those reports, which can make things a whole lot scarier, we were very skeptical of adopting this precious little girl. Is this too much for our family? How could any orphan be too much? Are the reports accurate? Do we have enough money to support her with everything she could possibly need? These questions and more flooded our minds. We didn't want to turn down someone who doesn't have a family-not her choice, but we do want to be able to provide everything she could possibly need.

In my undergrad, I have read dozens of education evaluation and with all of the training I received, I was still unsure about all of the information that we were given about this little girl. I talked with our future pediatricians and let them read all the information that we received. They gave us lots of encouragement and a list of potential problems we could face with this little girl. Armed with all this information, we ultimately had to get on our knees and ask Dad for guidance. We got our answer very quickly-yes, adopt her, it will be challenging but she has no one. Within 2 months, we were off to Poland to go get her.

A couple of weeks ago, I was researching about how to read international psych and educational evaluations and even international medical histories. I came across these websites (see below for the link). Some of the information is for adopted children from Russia, but you could use this as a guide for some Eastern European countries.

Children's of Alabama has a great International Adoption Clinic with lots of resources. They even have seminars for you to take, like how to prepare yourself for international adoption travel. You may have to pay for some of them, but it might be worth the knowledge that you will gain. They can even review your referral information and give you feed back that will help you make the tough decision to adopt a particular child or sibling set.

Blog followers and/or readers, do you have a good website or online article that can help future adoptive parents with interpreting international medical records, psych, or educational evals?

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