Parenthood is one of the most joyous experiences in life, and adoption is a very positive path towards parenthood. Many people interested in adoption desire a baby to love and raise from the beginning, for the rest of their lives. Perhaps that is why you are here. Perhaps becoming a parent is one of your biggest dreams in life, and adopting an infant is how you hope to officially become ‘mom’ or ‘dad.’
Right now, you may have many questions about infant adoption – what it is, what you should expect, how you can prepare for the process. As a non-profit, domestic adoption agency, Adoptions With Love is here to guide you. Below, we explore the ins and outs of infant adoption, so you can feel prepared for this incredible lifelong journey.
What is Infant Adoption?
Infant adoption is the legal process by which a baby, who cannot be raised by his or her birth parents, is placed with another loving, forever family. Adoptive parents voluntarily commit to providing security, permanency, and love for this baby for the rest of his or her life. The most common way to adopt an infant in the United States is through a licensed, private adoption agency.
In most states, a family can adopt a baby as young as 24-hours to 3-days-old. Typically, the infant is discharged directly from the hospital to the adoptive family. However, this is not always the case. Some birth mothers may take longer to make a decision. Some states require “temporary cradle care” before placing the baby with his or her adoptive family. Cradle Care refers to licensed caregivers who provide interim care between birth and adoption. Once you have been matched with a birth mother, it is easy to learn about the placement requirements in her state. The supportive staff at Adoptions With Love will educate you regarding these details with you as you move forward in the process.
Infant adoption is a wonderful choice for many families because they are matched right from the start of the child’s life. Adoptive parents get to enjoy all of those precious newborn snuggles (and struggles!). It is also a positive decision for many as events like skin-to-skin contact and feedings can help promote attachment and build trust between parents and the baby.
What to Expect When You Are Adopting an Infant
Just as birth parents need to prepare for the arrival of baby, adoptive parents must carefully plan and prepare for their bundle of joy. It is an exciting time that can – at times – feel very long. There are many steps prospective families must take in the infant adoption process. Use this time to prepare your home and loved ones for all the adventure ahead. Take time for yourself to prepare emotionally, mentally, and physically, too. You deserve as much personal time as you can get prior to your baby’s arrival.
If you are a prospective adoptive parent, do your research, carefully select a reputable adoption agency, get ready for the home study process, and wait to be matched with a birth mother. Once you have been matched and the terms of adoption have been agreed upon, you may choose to share the news with family and friends. This is an exciting part of the wait. You may choose to register for baby items, host a baby shower, and prepare the baby’s nursery. It is also important to attend parenting classes ahead of baby’s big arrival and select a pediatrician. Here are some more ideas for what to do while waiting!
How to Adopt an Infant in Massachusetts
When you are ready to take the first steps toward adopting your baby, feel free to contact Adoptions With Love. We are a fully licensed, private, non-profit domestic adoption agency who, for more than 32 years, has been placing children with families in Massachusetts. We work with birth mothers across every state, as to broaden the search and help find children forever families faster. It is our mission to help you grow your family through the wonderful journey that is adoption.
Our staff has all of the resources you need for completing the infant adoption process. After meeting with one of our social workers in a free, private consultation, completing the application and filing proper documents, we will help you prepare for the home study process. This part of the process is mandatory in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and important for us to get to know you. It also can help expectant mothers get to know you better, as they carefully research and select the right family for their baby. Our staff will help you reach these expectant mothers by working with you to create vibrant, family albums and personal ‘dear expectant / birth mother’ letters, in which you can share your story and background.
As part of the infant adoption process, you will also join other prospective adoptive parents in two group sessions. These meetings offer support and information about:
- The infant adoption process
- Meeting with expectant/birth parents
- Traveling to pick up your baby
- Sharing your joyous adoption news
- How to talk to friends and family about adoption
- How to tell your child about his/her adoption story
Once you have adopted your baby, Adoptions With Love will coordinate and send the Interstate Compact for the Placement of Children (ICPC) if the baby is born out of state, continue all post-placement meetings, and finalize your adoption with our attorneys – enabling you to officially become legal parents. For more information about the adoption process in Massachusetts, or Adoptions With Love’s services, be sure to check out our free “Guide to the Massachusetts Adoption Process.”
Infant adoption is an incredible way to grow a family. Let us help you in fulfilling your dreams of becoming a parent. Contact us anytime at 617-964-4357 or contact us here.