John Romano’s Tampa Bay Times June 7, 2015 Column: Adoption was in the cards for Foster teen beautifully illustrates the adoption journey of precious Mariah Boyd, and how Mariah and her soon-to-be adoptive mom, Amy Foster, came into one another’s orbit. Exquisite outcome and a testament to perseverance and belief, never lose hope.
Mr. Romano’s column also shines a welcome light on adult adoption, a lawful-in-Florida and long-on-the-books statutory mechanism for establishing one’s “forever family”, the exact path, in fact, now embarked upon by Mariah and Amy.
Under Florida law, Mariah, like many foster kids who “age out” of the system, may still be adopted, just as adults. It is a relatively straight-forward court proceeding with due deference given to the wishes of the adult adoptee. No home study is required and no legal parent of the adult adoptee has veto authority over the adult adoption. All that Florida law requires is that notice of the final adoption hearing be provided to any legal parent(s).
Adult adoption is a viable and very much alive mechanism by which “forever families” are made. Your readers should be mindful of this option. Precious young people like Mariah Boyd and Davion Only are waking up in our state each day, still filled with hopes and dreams of finding a “forever family to call her/his own. Even after “aging out,” those hopes and dreams remain, be it a flicker or a flame.
Let Mariah and Amy’s poignant story be inspiration and motivation for each of us, everyone. Adopt a child, adopt a young adult, be enriched, be ennobled, be that special adoptee’s “forever family” for time immemorial.