Embracing the Unexpected: Niki & Paul’s Adoption Story

Life After Adoption, Adoption, Families

Hearing real adoption stories from real families is both inspiring and educational. Expecting parents and hopeful adoptive parents who are exploring adoption are eager to hear stories that may help them in their own adoption journey. There is much that can be learned from the experiences of others, and we’re grateful for the willingness of our Adoption & Beyond families to share their stories. We asked Niki and Paul to share their experience, and although it wasn’t what they expected, it’s better than they ever imagined. Here is their story. 

Our Journey Was Definitely Not What We Expected

We started the private route through Adoption & Beyond and had every hope that we would take that path. One of the things we learned through Adoption & Beyond was to really network and get our story out there, which was something that was honestly hard for us. It can be hard to be vulnerable, but we did it, and that is how our story came to be. 

A hospital administrator working in a hospital near the Iowa border went to work one day, and in talking to coworkers, she said she needed to find an adoptive family for her great nephew who was about to be born. One of those co-workers was a friend of ours who happened to have our adoption story book. We got a call the day before our son was born and a new journey began. He was being born into state custody, so for us to even be considered for placement, we had to become respite providers and we had to go through multiple weeks of training to be foster parents. We were assigned caseworkers in two counties: ours and the county of residence for him. 

We never wanted to be foster parents, as that was not our chosen path, but we saw him and fell in love and knew he was our son at that moment. After a lot of trials and tribulations, we got respite placement with us when he was 3 months, final perm placement at nearly 8 months and adoption final at a year and half. He is now 5. 🙂 

Thank you,
Niki and Paul Allen

Interested In Learning More About Adoption? 

If you have any questions about the adoption process, or if you’d like to know more, you can easily contact us and we will be happy to help.

Interested in learning more about The Ultimate Guide to Adopting a Child? Check out our entire guide here.

Interested in learning more about The Ultimate Guide to Family Life After Adoption? Check out our entire guide here.

Steffany ave

Founder & Director


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Meet Steffany Aye, the heart behind Adoption & Beyond since its inception in 1998. Fueled by a deep passion for supporting both birth and adoptive parents, Steffany's journey as an adoptive parent has continued the foundation for this non-profit adoption agency.

Drawing from more than 25 years of dedicated experience, Steffany and her team are committed to crafting warm, thriving families through child-centered adoptions. Their inclusive services, free from any form of discrimination, reflect Steffany's unwavering dedication to the beautiful tapestry of adoption.

We’d love to help you reach your goals.


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