Keep in mind these numbers are before tax credits, employer benefits, or grants. You may have a small heart attack while looking at these, but thousands of regular people (like us) adopt every year. It can be done. There are many programs out there that help with costs.
While it seems like a small fortune, these costs keep things legal, legit, and according to Holt International, include but are not limited to: "costs for personnel, administrative overhead, training, education, legal services and communications, working with government and agency authorities, legal fees, and passport and U.S. visa fees in the child's country. The fees also cover costs related to the care of your child prior to adoption, including - but not limited to - costs for food, clothing, shelter, medical care, foster care, orphanage care, and any other services provided directly to your child. It also includes any mandatory donations required by child welfare authorities. This fee may also cover child welfare projects in your child's country of origin."
Each country varies in fees, but this should give you a good idea. Whether you're preparing to adopt or just curious about how the process works, here are some facts to get you started: