Note: This is the second part in a series of posts chronicling our home study process. The purpose of this series is to give you an idea of what the home study process is like so you can know what to expect. Just keep in mind that not everyone conducts the home study exactly the same way, so your experience may vary.
Today was the second session of our home study. As you may recall, in our first session Courtney and I sat down with our social worker for the initial interview. This interview was basically a “getting to know you” kind of interview. Today’s session continued on that, but instead of getting to know us as a couple, this session focused on getting to know us individually.
At first, we thought these interviews would be conducted at her office, but it turned out they would be conducted at our home instead. This meant we ended up spending much of the last week scrambling to get the house cleaned up. Even though she was only coming to interview us and not do the inspection, we still wanted the place to look presentable. (We probably wasted our time getting everything spotless, but oh well. At least it will be less work for us to do for the actual inspection!)
When our social worker arrived, she first talked with Courtney while I went in the other room. Then I came out and talked to her while Courtney went in the other room. In all it took a little over an hour to conduct both interviews. Like the first interview, these interviews were pretty easy.
In this interview, I was asked about the following:
- Information about myself: just basic information like birthdate, hometown, ethnic background, etc.
- Information about my parents and my family, including siblings, grandparents, and other relatives (aunts, uncles, and cousins). I was asked to talk about my relationship with them and what my family life was like.
- What my childhood was like: What were my interests as a child and what some of my favorite childhood memories were.
- How my parents raised me, what kinds of values did they teach me, and how did they discipline me when I misbehaved.
- How my parents and family feel about our plans to adopt.
- My Catholic upbringing and the role of my faith in my life growing up and my life now.
- What school was like for me (elementary, high school, and college), including what kind of activities I was involved in.
- What my current job is like and why I chose my profession.
- How I met Courtney, and what attracted me to her in the first place.
- What our marriage has been like: what kinds of values we share, how we support each other, how we handle conflict, etc.
- How we’ve dealt with infertility.
- What are some of my hobbies and interests.
- Why I want to be a father and what are my feelings about fatherhood.
As with the first interview, my best advice is to relax and answer each question honestly. There really are no right or wrong answers.
Our next session will be the home inspection. This is where our case worker comes to our house and makes sure everything is safe and suitable for a new child. We should receive a list of things she is looking for within the next week. I will be sure to write a blog post about this when it is done.
In the meantime, we are slowly but surely getting everything else together. We’ve got our fingerprints and medical exams taken care of and are now trying to get some required reading and online training done.
Questions: For those of you who have gone through the home study already: how did your interviews go? Were there any significant differences from ours? What’s your best advice to those about to go through this for the first time? For those of you who have yet to begin your home study: Do you have any additional questions? Feel free to comment below.