John and Stephen
Hi, we are John and Stephen from Rhode Island. When we stop and really think about it, it’s incredible how many millions of tiny, ordinary, everyday decisions brought the two of us together at the right place and time. This is how we think about our adoption journey, too. Every day, we’re taking another step toward meeting the child who is meant to join our family. We’ve built our life together around our shared dream of being parents and we’re excited and committed to finally make it happen.
Adoption has always been our plan and we’re thankful that you’ve taken this step in considering us to be part of your own plan.
Our Story: We met while attending the same university. We were so busy with school, we usually only got to see each other once a week: on Thursday nights we’d eat chicken wings in bed, watch “30 Rock”, and then study until we fell asleep. Twelve years later, it’s still how we celebrate our anniversary!
We both work in the arts and in education: Stephen is a college dance professor, and John is a classically trained actor and now works as a university administrator. Because of our interests and professions, our daily lives are filled with creativity. We both love to cook and bake, and we love to experiment with new recipes or try new restaurants in our neighborhood. We spend every weekend either exploring our city or relaxing at the lake with our friends (all artists, actors, photographers, chefs) and their kids. We love to travel and learn as much as we can about art and culture all over the world.
Art and culture are hugely important in our house. Most of our free time is spent seeing plays or dance, visiting new art exhibits, museums, and seeing as many movies as we can. Since most of our friends work in the arts, we look forward to not only taking our child to their first Broadway show, but letting them run around on stage afterward. They can learn to play any instrument they want (but the family band really could use a brass section). And maybe this child will grow up to not be interested in any of those things—and that’s okay! Our #1 goal is that our child will develop their own curiosity about the world and a passion to explore everything.
About Stephen by John: When I met Stephen, I knew he could do absolutely anything he wanted to and I wanted to be along for the ride. He’s a rare combination of creative and expressive, but also whip-smart and he cares a lot about other people: Stephen sees the good in everyone and it’s the first thing he sees. I’m surprised over and over again by how open and trusting he is, and how easily he can talk with anyone. He’s that guy to whom everyone says,
“You’re going to be a great dad one day.” I realized early on that he’d be a terrific father and it’s one of the big reasons I fell in love with him. I can’t wait to watch how he’ll teach our child to believe in themselves and to see the best in everyone around them.
Fun Facts About Stephen:
- Can’t live without: Yoga
- Children’s movie: The Lion King
- Dessert: Pumpkin Pie
- Hobby: Gardening
- Place to take a child: Aquarium
- Children’s Book: The Giving Tree
- TV show: Parks & Rec
- Animal: Otter
About John by Stephen: John has an infectious sense of humor, and he always finds something to laugh about. He’s witty and quick and always makes me smile. No matter where we are or who we’re with, he’s always finding ways to crack me up. When we are visiting family, his #1 focus is entertaining our nieces and making them feel heard, important, and special. I know that he will fill our child’s days with joy and amazement. Beyond his sense of humor, he’s also incredibly smart, thoughtful, and a fiercely loyal friend. No matter what’s going on in his day, he takes time to ask me about mine and is always there to help me work through complicated issues.
He’s an incredible artist, teacher, and partner and I know he’s going to be the world’s best dad!
Fun Facts About John:
- Can’t live without: Black coffee
- Children’s movie: Monsters Inc.
- Dessert: Birthday cake
- Hobby: Travel planning
- Place to take a child: Library
- Children’s book: Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs
- TV show: Parks & Rec
- Animal: Elephant
We live in a small city in Rhode Island, and our house sits on a quiet hill overlooking the town. We’re a short walk to the children’s library, the Puerto Rican bakery, Jewish deli, and our favorite Indian takeout place. Our favorite part about where we live is just how friendly and welcoming it is. It feels like a small town, where kids play ball in the street and neighbors look out for each other. We really love our home and truly can’t wait to raise our family here.
Our local theater performs bilingual plays for families. In summer, there’s a Native American Powwow held in our neighborhood. And we love our Caribbean restaurant without a menu—we just call them up and say, “We’ll take two of whatever you’ve got today!”
No matter what racial and ethnic background our child comes from, we are prepared to teach them to value diversity and what it adds to our lives.
Meet Melvin: Melvin’s been making us laugh since we first saw a photo of him. He came to us through a rescue agency while recovering from surgery and in need of a family that could give him special care. We knew immediately we were meant to be his family. Melvin is instinctively protective of all babies and he’s ready to have a tiny human of his own to look out for.
Our Family: Stephen is the youngest of three sons and everyone lives nearby. Actually, his parents live just two houses away from us—so our child will have two yards! We make a point of getting everyone together for Sunday dinner, and holidays together tend to last a whole week. Everyone (except John!) plays an instrument, so guitars are brought along on every vacation. Skiing is also a big deal in the family and Stephen’s dad is already talking about which slopes our child will try first.
John comes from a family of people who really enjoy carefully planning every detail. (John and his dad plan vacations by moving toy soldiers around on a map.) John’s parents just moved to Florida, but they’ve already planned out the annual “grandkid camp” they’ll run every summer for our child and their cousins. There’ll be swim lessons, trips to Disney World, and way, way too many cookies—but all on a schedule!
There’ll be lots of cousins around the same age to play with: we have three nieces under the age of three and many more planned.
We are prepared with all the patience and support it takes to raise a child. Still, we know that sometimes we’ll stay up all night worrying, and there’ll be mornings when we wonder if we ever closed our eyes. And as much as we dream about beach vacations and trick-or-treating, we know sometimes the best memories will be made when we’re too exhausted to do anything other than order pizza and watch the same Disney movie for the 38th time.
We also want this child to know about you and your love for them, so you will be part of the story we tell them from Day 1. And if you’re not sure yet what level of contact you are most comfortable with, we can find it together. We take pride in our decision to build our family through adoption, and we can’t wait to learn more about you and become part of each other’s stories.
In Closing: Thank you so much for taking this time to get to know us. We hope you take comfort in something we’ve written here and know that we want the best for you and your child, whatever you decide that may be. We can only imagine what you’re feeling, but we have incredible respect for those feelings and your bravery in just reading this.
We feel it will be our most important role as parents to gently guide a child and support them in discovering the world. We will try everything together and we look forward to our horizons expanding right alongside your child’s. They already have unlimited potential and we’re so excited to help them figure out what they want to do with it. We’ll ask ourselves every day what we can do to help them to learn, to grow, and to feel respected and safe. No matter what, this child will be so, so loved.