All too often, society thinks of a Birth Mother’s adoption decision as a woman “giving up” her child for adoption. This language can cause Birth Mothers to feel as if they’re doing something wrong by creating an adoption plan. By making an effort to use positive adoption language, we can help stop spread misconceptions like this and hopefully influence others so that this positive language becomes the norm in our society.
If you are considering adoption for your baby, it is important that you feel confident in your decision and it is also important to know that you are not “giving up” your baby. Your decision to make an adoption plan is a strong and selfless choice that puts the needs of your child above your own. This decision will provide your baby with the ultimate gift of life and will also fulfill the dreams of hopeful Adoptive Parents who might not otherwise be able to parent.
Why You Aren’t Giving Up
Whatever your unique life situation is, you are making the decision to create an adoption plan because you are either not ready to or are unable to parent at this time. For a woman facing this decision, hearing that she is “giving up” her baby can be hurtful as it can imply a lack of care or concern, when in reality, she is searching for the right family who can provide her baby with the life that she is not able to.
Rather than thinking you are “giving up” your baby for adoption, try to recognize what your decision really means.
- Creating an adoption plan is a loving decision: Adoption Network Law Center Birth Mothers who have already placed, share how much love was behind their decisions to create an adoption plan.
“To me, adoption is the most unselfish expression of love there is. When I thought about my son, I knew that I loved him and because of that, I knew that I had to give him everything he deserved.”
“My advice to a Birth Mother would be to stay focused on the gift that you are giving to this child…giving the adoptive child more than you can at that time and giving them the gift of life, basically twice.”
Understanding The Steps To An Adoption
Step 1: Choosing Adoption for Your Baby
Choosing to place your baby for adoption is a difficult decision to consider. Make sure to research all your options before making the decision that is right for you and your baby.
Step 2: Making an Adoption Plan
If you have made the decision to place your baby or child for adoption, you will need to reach out to an adoption professional such as an adoption agency, attorney, consultant and/or other adoption facilitator. Your adoption professional will help you in creating the right adoption plan for you and your baby.
At Adoption Network Law Center, we support you in every step of the adoption process, and help you create the right adoption plan for you and your baby. An Adoption Advisor will work closely with you to personalize your adoption plan according to your needs and wants. Your Advisor will help you find the right family for your baby according to your desired preferences, discuss your financial support needs, if any, help you prepare for your hospital stay and more.
Step 3: Finding an Adoptive Family
Choosing the perfect adoptive family for your baby may seem like an overwhelming task, but all of Adoption Network Law Center clients are carefully screened so that you, the Birth Mother, can have the peace of mind that you chose the right family for your baby. All of our Adoptive Families are required to complete a state home study as well as a background check. The ANLC team has helped numerous Birth Mothers find the family of their dreams, who will love, nurture and support their baby.
Step 4: Getting to Know the Adoptive Family
Adoption has changed over the last couple decades and “open adoption” is a term we are hearing more often. Open adoption allows for the Birth Mother and/or Birth Parents to have contact during and after birth. The degree and type of “openness,” of course, is dependent upon each situation, but contact can include sharing photos, phone calls, video calls, texts, and sometimes even visits. Most adoption experts and adoption professionals believe that open adoption is the healthiest choice for all parties involved, but they also highlight that the level of openness should be contingent on what is best for the child.
Step 5: Creating a Hospital Plan
Your Adoption Advisor or adoption professional will work with you to create the right hospital plan for you depending on your needs and wants. Some questions your advisor or professional will ask are:
- Do you want contact with the adoptive family at the hospital?
- How much time do you want to spend with your baby after birth?
- Who do you want to change diapers, clothe and feed your baby, etc.?
Step 6: Post-Adoption Recovery
After leaving the hospital, you will experience highs and lows, as you recover from giving birth and placing your child for adoption. It is important to allow yourself time and space to heal physically and emotionally. Your body needs to heal, so be sure to slowly ease back into your routine. It may take 6-12 weeks to physically recover, depending on the type of delivery you had.
Although you have made a courageous and selfless decision to place your child for adoption, grieving is a natural reaction. Allow yourself the time and space to grieve your loss. Know that you are not alone. There are Birth Mother support groups, mentors and counselors ready to speak with you about your experience and how their experience can help you through yours. Your Adoption Advisor or professional will help connect you with the resources you need.
Step 7: Communicating with the Adoptive Parents
The form of communication you will have with the Adoptive Parents will be determined by the level of openness in your adoption. Today, many Birth Mothers are in an open adoption situation, where they receive photos and letters. Some also have contact with the adoptive family through texts, social media, email, video calling and even regular face-to-face visits. Again, this type of contact depends on the openness of your adoption.
Remember, You Are Not “Giving Up” Your Baby For Adoption
Every Birth Mother’s circumstances and reasons for choosing adoption are unique. For some women, abortion is not an option and they need to choose between parenting or adoption. Some Birth Mothers choose adoption because they do not have the financial resources or support to parent, some are not mentally or emotionally ready to parent and others do not want to raise a child in the environment he/she will be born into.
For those considering adoption, the decision will be a difficult and emotional one. If you have family or friends that are open and will be supportive of whatever decision you make, it will be helpful to discuss your options with them. If not, reach out to an adoption professional who can also discuss all of your options and help guide you through the adoption process if you decide that is the right choice for you and your baby.
Choosing adoption is not “giving up.” It is a powerful act of love.