In the cover story, the 51-year-old star opens up about the process she went through to finalize Laila's adoption. When she first set out to grow her family, her biggest concern was to maintain Laila's privacy—but this proved to be no easy task for Bullock. "You feel it's very much like witness protection," she tells People of her process of first fostering and then adopting Laila (pronounced Lila).
At one point, Bullock says she feared that the adoption process would be jeopardized after a photographer snapped a photo of Laila during an emergency room visit. “Unbeknownst to me, a photographer had followed us and taken a photo of us in line,” says the actress, who adopted 5-year-old son Louis in 2010.
Despite the incident, Bullock, with the help of her lawyers, managed to keep the photo and news of Laila's adoption under wraps, a promise she had legally agreed to when starting the adoption process. “Most foster children are in foster care because they were taken from their birth homes under tragic circumstances—and the last thing I wanted was to bring more harm to her because of the nature of my job,” she says in the People story.
As a result, Bullock says she realized the need to create the most safe and secure home environment possible for her new daughter, which is difficult considering her level of stardom.
Read the full story in this week's issue of People when it hits newsstands Friday.