June 16: We knew it was too good to be true when our caseworker said the agency was able to run our background check with the DSHS fingerprints. June 14 she emailed me requesting we go in ASAP for more fingerprinting because we needed an FBI background check and not just the WSP check. We were able to get our prints taken and processed Friday, June 15. Unfortunately, our caseworker has to be able to access the file directly and not have us email them to her and we are having problems getting her access. I have to contact the processing company Monday to find out how they can send her the results. The results state we have never been arrested and are in PDF so they are not edited, but the caseworker has to receive them directly from the company. Still, we are making progress.
June 20: Found out the company cannot send our results directly to the caseworker, but we have to provide our agency with our logins, passwords and secure access codes for the company's website. We tried that today and discovered our results were purged from the system after we saved them last Friday! Now we have to schedule new appointments and have the process repeated. We are waiting for the fingerprinting company to send the confirmation email that we are allowed to schedule new appointments. I wish there was an easier way to get our background checks processed. We might be able to get our appointments for Thursday afternoon or Friday. There is a chance we have to wait until next week.
After a conversation on Facebook with other adoptive parents about fingerprinting, someone suggested we needed a support group. I think it is time for a letter to my Senators. My Congressman is retiring, but my Senators need to know there has got to be a better way nationally for processing background checks. One central database so the different state foster care agencies and private adoption agencies can pull from the database. Right now, depending on who you are adopting from determines the fingerprinting process and not all states even require fingerprints even be taken.
Unlike the fingerprints with DSHS, these prints cost us money each time they are taken - $48/person - so $96 each time we schedule an appointment. Plus there is the fuel because the closest office is not within our county. It is an hour round trip plus I have to take time off from work during a very busy week. It seems "our" office is not as user friendly as the other offices our agency is use to dealing with for background checks. It is enough to increase my blood pressure and make me scream.
Adoptive parents tell me these roadblocks are worth in the end when our child is in our home and arms. Will the frustrations of parenting really be worth all this? Will we be willing to endure this again for a second adoption in the future when my fingerprints will be more worn and harder to scan; when the laws will have changed possibly to make it even more complicated? I pray parenthood will be worth all the tears, frustration, aggravation, anger, impatience and heartache I have already encountered. A tiny voice in the back of my mind started asking today, "What if parenting is not worth all this anguish? What if the child placed with us grieves us more than enthralls us?" If that is the case, we will have just the one child and deal with our life as it is with God as our refuge.
June 21: Fingerprinting completed for the 5th time! Got the results to our agency untainted via a befuddled phone call and email. Now our home study should be finalized next week.