We started our adoption journey 4+ years ago & I feel like I have researched just about every option available. While waiting to adopt internationally, our first son was born & it was a “picture perfect” adoption that happened by word of mouth. Our second adoption also happened by word of mouth but turned out to be an absolute nightmare, ultimately losing our son to his birth father after 9 months…needless to say, we were very cautious to start the process again.
I talked with our local agency & they suggested two different options, an agency or a facilitator. I talked with Jim and got a good vibe, but I wanted to make sure that we were making the best decision for us. I also talked with an agency & got a pretty good vibe the first time, but I was concerned with the large amount of waiting families on their website. After talking with the agency for a second time, we decided that Jim & Cindy with A Loving Alternative was a better fit along with the fact that they only work with a certain number of couples at one time.
I will say that working with a facilitator is more hands on. If a couple is looking for a resource to handle everything from A-Z, then an agency might be a better fit. We had utilized our resources previously & we felt comfortable going that route again. Both our local attorney & Cindy have contacts across the country.
Jim worked with us to get our profile setup, which took about a month. He was very nice & responsive.
Once we were all set, Cindy contacted us & said she would be in touch.
About six months later we got out first call, which ended up not going anywhere. Two weeks later Cindy called & had two birth mothers that wanted to talk with us. The birth mother that we went with ended up changing her mind when the baby was born. Cindy seemed determined to find us a birth mother with a much shorter timeframe than the previous one that had 3 months to go.
The first week in August Cindy called with another birth mother & our beautiful daughter was born three weeks later on August 25th, 2013.
I kept Cindy in the loop, however once we moved forward with our birth mother more of the contact occurred between us, the social worker & the attorney in that specific state. Cindy did keep in touch with both of our birth mothers & she was able to assist when needed. I think the birth mothers felt that she was their advocate in the process. Both of our birth mothers also commented that Cindy was very nice & they did not feel like she was judging them.
Overall we had a great experience & I have already told Cindy that she will hear from us again!!
Christy & Scott
Very good experience–twice
We worked with Cindy for two adoptions three years apart. As an adoptee and adoptive parent, I found her thoughtful, considerate and very responsive. Before each engagement, we had some long discussions about how she advertises to find birth mothers looking to place their children for adoption and about hte matching process. She was as professional, analytical, thoughtful and considerate as any of the best adoption professionals we’ve worked with and many in other fields.
In the search process, each time we had a questionable situation–a birth mother who’s representations seemed suspect. Cindy was transparent, gave us the full lay of the land, let us do an interview, and did some intial homework. Both were good, collaborative efforts where we agreed the situations weren’t for us.
Both of our matches worked well. Cindy was readily accesible during the process and a positive support, and the subsequent adoptions went extremely smoothly.
Erin & James
Our daughter is now five years old and she is a happy, kind hearted bundle of joy who loves to draw and paint and do gymnastics. She is a whirlwind of energy with an infectious laugh and our family would not be complete without her. Cindy and A Loving Alternative Adoption helped make it all possible by matching us with a birth mother looking to place her newborn. Cindy provided informative, sensitive and reassuring guidance throughout the process. It is worth noting that our birth mother did not contact Cindy until she went into labor and we were not matched until the morning our daughter was born. During that very busy day arranging flights and accommodations, Cindy took the initiative to contact a local attorney on our behalf who began the preliminary adoption process before we even arrived to the hospital. Cindy provides an invaluable service to her clients and we would whole-heartedly recommend her to any parents looking to add to their family.
Gary & Janice
Made our Dream Come True
My husband I put alot of time and effort into finding an adoption professional to assist us in completing our family. Cindy and her staff impressed us from the first “Hello”. With so many options out there it was hard to find the right one. We spoke to many agencies and other facilitators. ALAA impressed us because 1) they are one of the few licensed by the state of California 2) they provided many references for us to check and 3) they provided services for both the adoptive family and the expectant mom. Our adoption was rough at times but Cindy’s calm, reassuring manner and well as her understanding of adoption as both a professional and as an adoptive parent were invaluable. She was able to refer us to a lawyer in the state where our son was born who was also top notch. The absolute best decision we made when we decided to adopt was to utilize A Loving Alternative.
If we decide to adopt again we will absolutely be using A Loving Alternative.
Heather & Kurt
Very Happy with A Loving Alternative
My husband and I got in touch with Cindy at the beginning of 2010 after I heard about her from a friend. We got things going soon after meeting with her. Cindy is very businesslike and takes her job very seriously. Our first birth mother fell through and we were quite devastated. It seemed Cindy was even more determined to find the right birth mother for us. Within a couple months, we were chosen by a woman out of state and we moved cautiously ahead.
I am thrilled to say that our baby was born in September of 2010 and everything went very smoothly. She is the greatest addition to our family (we have two other children) and we cannot imagine our life without her. My husband and I will always be very grateful to Cindy and Jim for making our dream of a third child come true.
I would highly recommend A Loving Alternative to anyone looking to adopt a child.
Julie & Juan
A Loving Alternative was recommended to us by our social worker when we started the adoption process. From the very first phone call Cindy was professional, honest, friendly and easy to work with. We have a biological daughter and we were told it might take 6 months or so to be matched, but amazingly it only took 2 months. We began working with her in October and in early December we were holding our new born son! I still can’t believe it! He is a beautiful healthy little guy!
When we got the call from Cindy about a possible match she had all of the birth mothers medical history and proof of pregnancy. She read everything over before sending us the information, and went through it with us. My husband and I had a chance to sit together and go over everything before we made a decision.
We got to meet our sons birth mother and she had wonderful things to say about Cindy. She mentioned she felt she could talk to her, and she was very caring.
Cindy is amazing and made our dreams come true! We highly recommend Cindy at A Loving Alternative!!!
Laura & Joseph
We adopted our son through Cindy and Jim at A Loving Alternative and we would recommend them. We weren’t sure how the process worked and Cindy was very willing to take the time to speak to us and walk us through the process. We had monthly check ins with her and she was always very open and friendly. Cindy also spends a lot of time working with birthmothers. I always felt that she was ethical, and that she truly cared about the families. We are very happy that our lives have been forever changed since the adoption of our son!
Liz & Dan
A good experience
We adopted our daughter two years ago through A Loving Alternative and had a good experience. We were matched with a birth mom after about 9 months of waiting who changed her mind. Three months later we were matched with a second birth mom and had a successful adoption. We felt Cindy & Jim were supportive and responded very timely to us. We referred a friend to A Loving Alternative who also had a successful adoption (and quick!). We are currently in the process of adopting our second child through A Loving Alternative. Through our research, we have found they are the best value and treated us, and the birth mothers, with honesty and respect.
Mary & Andrew
Working Hard to bring families together
A year and two months after bringing our daughter home in October 2013, I remain grateful every day for the hard work that Cindy and Jim put in our behalf. Like many of the other couples that have posted, my husband and I had tried for several years to have a child on our own (IVF, miscarriages, etc.). Coming to Cindy and Jim who have a deep understanding of how this feels made us know we were in the right hands. They turned their own difficult learning experience into helping others, and yes, making a successful business for themselves. Nothing wrong with that.
We made several initial connections from very early in our process, and then one 5 month committed connection that tore our hearts out when it failed. Cindy knew how painful this was and worked to make other connections for us quickly (we told them we were ready to make more connections right away, as a way of healing and having hope). 5 weeks after our failed adoption we became parents to the most wonderful baby girl we could have ever dreamed of.
My only suggestion for improving their business/service would be to hire someone with a little more computer expertise. Maybe as their business grows and evolves they can do that.
Forever grateful. Thank you Cindy and Jim.
Maureen & Alan
My husband and I interviewed a number of different agencies and facilitators in the early stages of our decision to start a family through adoption. What struck me about A Loving Alternative was the immediate connection I felt to both Cindy and Jim in early conversations. They were both patient and informative and willing to offer advice and guidance as needed. After weeks of talking to various adoption professionals, we settled on A Loving Alternative and I am so thankful we did.
Our Dear Birthmother Letter was completed in January 2013, a few weeks after we signed up. By April, we had been matched with a birthmom and our daughter was born in June. We were amazed at how quickly things came together and how responsive both Cindy and Jim were throughout both the matching and the entire adoption process. They were quick to answer questions, easily available by phone/email and continued to follow up with us through the birth of our child; I felt like we were in very good hands!
I also think that it’s important to note that our birthmom was also immediately drawn to Cindy. She told me that she had contacted several agencies and was not impressed at all. In fact, she hadn’t even made up her mind about adoption until she met Cindy and finally felt like she would get the support she needed to make such a huge decision.
The fact that A Loving Alternative can connect equally well with both adoptive parents and birthparents shows that they are in the business for the right reason… Helping families make an adoption plan based out of love and what is best for the child! I don’t think you could ask for anything more out of an adoption facilitator.
Shauna & Chris
Exceptional Service; Highly Recommended
Overall, we could not have asked for any better service (or outcome!) from A Loving Alternative. From day one, Cindy was always responsive, understanding, and genuinely wanted the best for all parties involved. She is down to earth, knowledgeable, and friendly. It was clear she had a high level of integrity, and the fact that she is adoptive mom herself really comforted us. A Loving Alternative engages in aggressive advertising, and this helped to bring our new son to us quite quickly.
We began working with A Loving Alternative in March 2013 as we were wrapping up our Home Study with our adoption agency in MA. Cindy and Jim provided great advice and tips in putting together our profile. The profile is one of the most important steps in the process, and they made sure we ended up with a great product. Our Home Study was approved in April 2013, and we officially became “on the market” as potential adoptive parents at that point.
In June of 2013, we were notified by Cindy that a birth mother had chosen us. After a month or so of pursuing the opportunity to find more information on the situation, my husband and I decided it was not the right fit for us. Cindy worked hard to find more information, was fully supportive of our decision to decline the match, and reassured us that she would find the right match for us.
And, indeed, she did! We were notified by her just shortly after that in September 2013 of another birth family that had selected us. We initially thought the birth mom was due in one month, but it turned out she gave birth to a healthy baby boy just days later! It was a complete whirlwind and surprise, but Cindy calmly guided us all the way through and helped us coordinate all the last minute details in a hurry. We are now the proud parents of a happy, healthy son that we can’t imagine our lives without now. If you are considering using the services of A Loving Alternative, I would very highly recommend them.
Tracy & Dave
The best Adoption Agency out there!
My husband and I struggled for 7 years to start a family, so when we came to Cindy and Jim for help, we were emotionally defeated. They were kind and understood our struggle as they have also adopted their child. They knew exactly how I felt and that’s why I know without a shadow of a doubt that the review above is false and probably the result of another competitive agency trying to make them look bad. If you have every gone through the struggle to start a family, you could never exploit the process.
I was matched with a birthmother a few months after posting my profile. The birthmother and I formed a great relationship and Cindy and Jim were great about making sure we had “proof of pregnancy” and all the documention we needed in order for the process to move forward. Once I connected with the birthmother, Cindy was great about letting our relationship develop without trying to get in the middle of the process. I kept her up to date on how things were going between us. I had a tough time with one of the lawyers who was helping me with the adoption paperwork once my daughter was born and Cindy was kind enough to be a good ear to vent to.
We adopted our beautiful, happy, wonderful daughter on October 12, 2011. We are going to start the process all over again to get baby #2 at the end of this month. Now, would I use the same agency if they were terrible and just worried about financial gain? No! So the negative comment is so far out of left field. I wouldn’t think of using any other agency but A Loving Alternative. In fact, they were referred to me by my girlfriend, who successfully adopted her two children through them.
Victoria & Lance