Archive for November, 2016

State-by-State: How to Place Your Baby for Adoption in Georgia

Are you considering adoption for your baby?  Adoption is one of the most loving decisions you can make for your child.  It is also one of the hardest decisions you will ever have to make.  At Adoptions With Love, we want you to know that you do not have to make this decision alone.  You do not have to walk this journey alone.  We are here to answer your questions, to educate you on adoption in Georgia, and to help you make the most positive, informed choice for you and your baby.  Whether you are facing an unplanned pregnancy or have already given birth to your baby, we extend our support to you.

Adoptions With Love is a licensed, non-profit adoption agency helping expectant/birth parents nationwide find the best possible homes for their children.  For over 30 years, we have been building life-long relationships with young women like you.  For the last three decades, Adoptions With Love has also been building relationships with expert adoption counselors licensed in your state.  If you need help placing your baby for adoption in Georgia, know that you can always contact us.  Our trusted Georgia adoption agency partner and attorney can help you explore your options, understand the adoption laws in your area, and design an adoption plan that is tailored to your needs.

To get you started, here are four steps you will need to take to place your baby for adoption in Georgia.

1. Choose and meet with an adoption agency that you trust.

Choosing the right agency support is crucial to your adoption journey.  There are so many adoption professionals out there today that it can be hard to know if you are making the right choice.  We recommend, above all, that you find an adoption agency you can trust.  Choose an adoption agency that will discuss all your options with you, listen to your needs, and respect any decision you make.

Your adoption agency should be available every hour of the day and every step of the way, offering the support you deserve.  Choose an adoption agency with expert, compassionate counselors who can meet with you regularly (at your convenience) to guide you through this unexpected journey.

2. Understand the adoption laws in Georgia.

Adoption laws vary state to state.  In Georgia, no mother can sign legal adoption documents until at least 24 hours after the baby is born.  This gives birth mothers a chance to meet their baby and additional time to think about their choice.  A birth father is allowed to sign legal papers prior to the baby’s birth.  At Adoptions With Love, we encourage you to take time to consider all of your options.  Adoption is a lifelong decision, and we want you to be comfortable and confident that the decision you make is the best one for your child.

If you choose to make an adoption plan, it is important that you also take time to understand the adoption process in your area.  An experienced agency can help with this.  If you choose to work with Adoptions With Love, you can meet with knowledgeable adoption attorneys who are specifically trained in Georgia adoptions.  They can meet with you – wherever you are – to help walk you through the legal process.

Rest assured that our legal services are always free of charge.  In fact, there is never any cost for expectant or birth parent services at our agency.  Georgia law allows licensed adoption agencies to provide financial assistance for any pregnancy-related expenses needed before, during, and after your baby’s adoption, such as:

  • Complete counseling
  • Help designing your adoption plan
  • Assistance finding quality medical care
  • Housing assistance 
  • Financial assistance
  • Legal assistance
  • Ongoing Contact

3. Select a loving adoptive family.

As an expectant/birth parent in Georgia, you will be given the option to choose a family for your baby.  This choice is yours to make.  Adoptions With Love will listen to your wants and needs to understand what qualities you are looking for in an adoptive family.  We will then show you several waiting families who may be a match for your child.

All of the families at Adoptions With Love have written letters and put together photo albums so that you can get to know them.  You can take as much time as you need in looking through these albums to find the perfect adoptive family.  If you would like, you can also meet them in person.

In Georgia, it is required that all potential adoptive families are thoroughly screened and evaluated by a licensed adoption agency.  At Adoptions With Love, we especially want to ensure your baby is placed in a loving family and stable home.  All our families, therefore, have gone through an extensive home study process and completed a series of background checks to ensure they are ready to raise a child.

4. Create a post-adoption plan.

Adoption is a lifelong experience.  It does not end after your child has been placed, and it surely does not have to end your relationship with your child.  If you choose to make an adoption plan with Adoptions With Love, you will have the option to design an open adoption plan.  This means that you can keep in touch with your child’s adoptive family and your child as the years go on.  We will establish this plan for contact in a post-adoption agreement and can facilitate any communication with your child and his or her family down the road.  If you are not comfortable with openness, you can always choose a semi-open or closed adoption plan.  Our trained counselors will help you as you explore all the potential options for post-adoption contact.

Because adoption is lifelong decision, we want you to know that we will also always be here for you – to help you navigate emotions or if you simply want to talk.  We encourage you to pursue our ongoing counseling and support services after your baby is placed.  These services are 100% confidential and available at no cost to you.

Whether you just discovered you are pregnant, are in your final trimester, or have already given birth, know that it is never too late to make an adoption plan.  Contact us today at 1-800-722-7731 for more information on adoption in Georgia.

This is our State by State Adoption blog series.  To learn about the different areas we service, or to find the specific steps of adoption in your state, please visit adoptionswithlove.org/areas-we-service.


Talking the Truth: Erica on Talking to Her Child About His Adoption Story

adoption story

 

In light of National Adoption Month, one birth mother contemplates the day her son will come to her and ask about his adoption story.  She wonders how she will stir up the strength to explain to him her choice.  What will she say?  She trusts that the truth will guide her.  She trusts that honesty will be the key to giving her son what he needs.  This is what Erica believes.

I often think of the day Aiden* comes to me and wants to hear his story…  When he wants to know exactly why I made the decision to choose adoption for him, and not raise him myself.  When he wants to know who his birthfather is and what our story together was.  Why things ended they way they did, and why his birthfather chose not to be involved in any of our lives.

I have had thousands of conversations with my mom asking for advice to prepare for this day, and she always says the same thing.

“You will tell him the truth. Trust yourself that will know the right thing to say.”

The difference from me and probably a lot of other people is that I want/need to know

E V E R Y T H I N G.  I always need all the details to feel like I have a solid understanding of my surroundings in life.  Part of my adjustment after this adoption is that for one of the first times in my life I actually do not know everything.  It has been a process for me; the biggest lesson I have been learning throughout this journey is how to accept the unknown and trust more in God’s plan than in my own.

A perfect example of my ‘sometimes’ unnecessary need to know everything is when my little brother comes back up north for the holidays, or visits for a long weekend and I bombard him with questions.

“How’s work?”

“Have you made any good friends at work?”

“Cool… What are their names?”

“You guys ever hang on the weekends?”

“Are you eating enough?”

“Okay good, but what do you make for dinner?”

“I don’t know- Erica!  Things are good. I’m good, and I’m eating. Why do you ask so many questions?”

That is a conversation I have had a million times with both my brothers.  Well, the truth is, I ask so many questions because I care.  I care so much and need to know that all the people I love are okay and doing well; I need to know that everyone is happy and if they are not then I am going to do whatever little, or big thing I can to change that.

With even an open adoption it is tough… there is SO much unknown.  Aside from the little things like,

“What are Aiden’s favorite foods?”

“What was his face like when he tried a lemon?”

“Does he like to sleep more on his back, or his belly?”

“Who are Aiden’s friends at daycare?”

“Is he towering over all the other little kids his age?”

…(clearly I can go on and on)

However, the biggest unknowns are in my future.  When my day ends and I am alone in my own thoughts and when all starts to settle down around me– this is when the unknowns of the future start to flood my head.

The biggest strength in myself I have come to find on my journey of this adoption has been my ability to take a step back and trust; to be honest and trust myself that maybe I do not always know all the little details, but I do know the bigger picture.  To trust that just like with my little brother, God is working his plan on all our lives and keeping Aiden happy, healthy, and in a good place– exactly where I always have known he is and exactly where I always know he will be.

I have nothing but the purest form of love for Aiden.  I know in our future there will be some difficult conversations and there will be some difficult questions he will ask me.

I want Aiden to always be happy.  I never want him to hurt and I, ESPECIALLY, do not want to be the reason he ever hurts.

When the day comes and Aiden wants to hear his story.  When he wants to know exactly why I made the decision to make an adoption plan for him, and not raise him myself.  When he wants to know who his birthfather is and what our story together was.  When he wants to know why things ended they way they did, and why his birthfather chose not to be involved in any of our lives.  If he wants/needs to know E V E R Y T H I N G.  If he needs all the details in order to feel like he has a solid understanding of all his surroundings in life…  I trust myself that I will know exactly what to say, and that I will tell him the truth.


This National Adoption Month, We’re Celebrating You

November is often thought of as a time of thanks. It is a time in which many of us take a step back and consider all that we are grateful for in life – friendships, family, the warmth of a loving home. In all our gratitude, in all our indulgences, we become aware of the things in life that matter most to us.

Just this year, Adoptions With Love celebrated our 30th anniversary as a licensed, Massachusetts adoption agency. This November, we are celebrating another big thirty: 30 days of love, gratitude, and adoption awareness. For those who do not know, November is also National Adoption Awareness Month.

The history of National Adoption Month started over two decades ago and continues to evolve each year. This year, National Adoption Month is all about family, permanency, and lifelong relationships. In fact, the Children’s Bureau named this year’s theme, “We Never Outgrow the Need for Family.” Throughout the month of November, communities, organizations, and individuals around the country will be celebrating adoption as a positive way to build permanent families for children. They will be focusing on the value of lifelong homes for children and youth nationwide – especially those in foster care who are still waiting for a forever family. Making a private adoption plan is one way to prevent children from entering foster care.

On the first day of November, we at Adoptions With Love have some particular thoughts resonating in our minds and hearts. We are thinking of all the courageous young women and men who have come to us over the last three decades to make an adoption plan for their child. We are thinking of all the incredible families built through adoption. We are also thinking of all the fervent adopted children who were placed through our agency, from thirty years ago to yesterday. Because November is a time of gratitude, we want to take a moment to thank all of you – all who have come to Adoptions With Love – for choosing adoption as a positive option for your family.

If you are a birth parent, we thank you for being brave. We thank you for being selfless and for finding the power to make such a loving and thoughtful choice. We acknowledge that your decision was made with overwhelming love, that you gave your child a life beyond what you felt you could provide. Making an adoption plan for your child is not easy. It is a deep sacrifice that very few can understand. There are so many fears and emotions that can arise during the adoption process. We know that it takes great strength for a loving parent like you to overcome them. This strength is truly incomparable, and it amazes us every single day. We thank you for putting your trust in us. We are honored to be a part of your adoption journey. We thank you for choosing Adoptions With Love.

If you are an adoptive parent, we thank you for being open-minded and open-hearted. There is no doubt that adoption is a challenging process, and we thank you for being such a devoted and compassionate support. We thank you for providing such a loving, stable and secure life for your child. We celebrate you for taking pride in your child’s adoption story and for empathizing with the selfless decision your child’s birth parents made. We thank you for choosing Adoptions With Love.

If you are an adoptee, we especially celebrate you. We thank you for filling our hearts and the hearts of your family members. We thank you for sharing your stories with us over the years and for spreading awareness on adoption. We know that adoption has impacted your life and identity in many ways. We want you to know that you can always reach out to us, whether to chat or to learn about our search and reunion program.

If you are considering adoption for your baby, we thank you for exploring your options and for thinking of your child’s best interest. Whether you just discovered you are pregnant, are in your final trimester, or have already given birth, we extend our support to you. It is never too late to make an adoption plan.

If you are a waiting family hoping to grow your family through adoption, we thank you for your perseverance. Your determination and devotion are truly admirable as you wait for your time to enjoy all that goes with being a parent. We are excited to see what is in store for your family and are always here to help you through the adoption process.

Let us celebrate these 30 days of love together.

This November, we invite you to celebrate adoption and all those who have been touched by adoption in some way. We ask you to celebrate the families who were created through this choice as well as honor the women who found the courage to make this inspirational choice. We ask you to embrace the love inherent in each aspect of adoption. We invite you to celebrate all the lifelong connections that have been made through open adoption.

National Adoption Awareness Month is a time to celebrate adoption as well as educate others on the adoption journey. It is about increasing awareness on the positive aspects of adoption. This month, we ask you to join us by sharing your own experience. We invite you to share your thoughts and stories in efforts to help others see the benefits of the adoption.

If you would like more information on National Adoption Awareness Month or how you can get involved, contact us directly at 1-800-722-7731, text us at 617-777-0072, or email our team at info@awlonline.org.

adoption awareness month 2016