Tuesday's Child: A judge's perspective on the adoption process
COLORADO SPRINGS -
The adoption process can be a long one. While a child is in custody of the Department of Human Services, many adults do all they can to make the best decisions possible for that child.
In some cases, Judge Tim Schutz gets to see children through their hardest days to adoption day. He says it's easily one of the most celebratory occasions to happen in a courtroom.
"Those cases where you've been in touch with the family and the child for an extended period of time are often special," Schutz said. "You have seen what the child has been through, see how long they wait for a sense of permanency in their life, which adoption can give to them."
In order to get to the high point of adoption day, a child has walked through the lowest of lows. "When I'm sitting on the bench and I have to enter an order that says your rights as a parent to your child are forever terminated, it's a very difficult thing," he said. "It's very emotional for everybody in the courtroom."
Judge Schutz handled 16-year-old Jewel's case for the past nine years. He says presiding over cases like hers is a privilege. "Adoption brings that full cycle. It takes you from a very difficult emotional place, to a place that's more uplifting and you have a sense of hope and stability for the child going forward."
While every child's circumstances are different, they all leave an impression.
"There are special kids too," Judge Schutz said. "Kids that just for whatever reason, whether it be their unique circumstances or unique personalities, or just the way they connect with you as individual, that leave an impression on you."