The phrase, “putting baby up for adoption” is outdated, but still used in our everyday language. Instead of saying “put baby up for adoption,” we prefer to say, “make an adoption plan.”
This is because adoption is a thoughtful act of love. It is not an easy decision for expectant/birth parents. Rather, it requires strength and selflessness. Those who choose to make an adoption plan choose to put their baby’s needs above their own. Choosing adoption means offering a child a future that is bright and full of opportunity.
Whether you are facing an unplanned pregnancy or have just given birth, you may be asking yourself: How to do I put my baby up for adoption? How does placing a baby for adoption work? Is adoption the right choice for my baby?
Adoption is not the right path for everyone, but it can be a very positive choice for expectant/birth mothers who are not ready to parent at this time. Remember, you always have a choice. No one can make this decision for you. However, if and when you are ready, you can find support and assistance in making an adoption plan.
Adoptions With Love is here for you. In this guide, we will explain the adoption process, considerations around “putting a baby up for adoption,” and how this choice can create a bright future for everyone involved.
How to Put Your Baby Up for Adoption
- Contact and Choose an Adoption Agency
As you consider making an adoption plan for your child, you will want to contact a reputable adoption agency. Their experience and knowledge can help you from the very beginning of this journey. The right adoption agency will offer support services at no cost to you. In fact, they can also offer you financial assistance as it relates to your pregnancy and adoption. Adoptions With Love offers the following services to expectant/birth mothers who choose adoption:
- Housing assistance. We can cover a deposit and several months of rent, if needed.
- Financial support with utilities, phone bills, and maternity clothes, as needed.
- Complete counseling services before and after adoption.
- Medical care. We can help you find a doctor or midwife and cover all uninsured medical expenses when you complete the adoption.
- Legal assistance with experienced attorneys who are familiar with the adoption laws in your state.
- Assistance designing an adoption plan.
- Ongoing contact through the years.
One of the many benefits of working with a private adoption agency like AWL is the ongoing, confidential, and compassionate support from our staff. Your experience and health is our top priority, and we care for our expectant/birth parents with the utmost respect. We understand that adoption is an emotional journey, and we are here to help you every step of the way.
- Choose the Adoptive Parents
Once you have chosen your adoption agency, you will want to begin to consider your child’s future adoptive parents. You can browse through the profiles of families hoping to adopt a child. The idea of finding the right family can be intimidating, but they are out there. Your adoption agency can show you profiles of these families, which offer photos, letters, stories, and background information to help you decide.
You can, if you wish, speak with the prospective adoptive parents before making your decision final. You can choose to speak with them over the phone, on a video call, or even meet face-to-face. Your adoption specialist can help arrange a call or meeting. If you do not wish to speak with them ahead of time, that is okay, too.
Every hopeful adoptive family at Adoptions With Love has been approved to adopt. They have completed a Home Study, which involves thorough background checks, screenings, at-home visits, and interviews to ensure that every child is going to a safe, stable, and loving home. If you do not wish to speak with the adoptive family ahead of time, you can take comfort in the fact that they are responsible, loving people who will care for your child as their own.
- Determine the Adoption Plan That is Right for You
No two pregnancies are like, just as no two people are alike. The same rule applies to adoption. Everyone who makes an adoption plan has unique needs. Think about what you need from an adoption arrangement, what you are comfortable with, and speak with your agency about the right adoption plan for you.
Open adoption is the most common type of adoption plan today, but there are other choices, too. When making an adoption plan, you should first consider which you would like to have:
- Open adoption
- Semi-open adoption
- Closed adoption
An open adoption means there is ongoing communication between birth and adoptive parents, sometimes before the birth and also after the placement. If, however, communication with the baby’s adoptive family sounds too difficult, then you may opt for a closed adoption. This means there is privacy and no direct contact between families.
You can choose whichever type of plan makes you most comfortable. If you would like to choose the baby’s adoptive parents and speak with them once before giving birth, then a semi-open adoption may be the right choice for you. Your adoption specialist can help advise you to help you decide which type of adoption plan will best meet your needs.
If you choose open adoption, you can also determine the form and frequency of communication. Would you like to stay connected through social media? Would you rather text or call a few times per year? Would occasional in-person visits make you happiest? These are just a few examples of the options available for you as the expectant/birth mother. At Adoptions With Love, all prospective adoptive parents agree to at least a semi-open adoption.
No matter which type of adoption plan you choose, you can also rest assured that your plan may be changed over time. If you start out with a closed adoption but decide later that you are ready to open it, your adoption professional will be ready. Adoptions With Love keeps photos and letter updates on file, should a birth mother change her mind down the road.
- Complete the Legal Process for Adoption
Putting a baby up for adoption can be overwhelming, which is why many adoption agencies offer free services to expectant/birth parents. For example, uninsured medical costs are often covered. Legal services are also provided at no cost.
If you choose adoption for your baby, there are legal processes involved. Once you have given birth, you must sign consent forms to terminate your parental rights. Depending on your state, you may have to wait a certain number of hours or days before signing this paperwork. This will give you some time to get to know your baby and consider your decision one last time.
Adoptions With Love has adoption attorneys in every state, ready to help you through the legal process of adoption. No matter where in the U.S. you live, we can send an attorney to meet with you, wherever is convenient, to make sure you are making an informed decision and know your rights as a birth parent. This professional can answer any questions you may have to help you better understand what is happening.
- Work on Your Recovery and Future
Once the adoption is complete, you may begin the journey towards healing. This will take some time, birth parents report experiencing feelings of loss and grief after putting baby up for adoption. These are completely normal feelings. Your free counseling services continue for up to a year following the adoption, so you can turn to your adoption agency for ongoing support during that time. It may help to join a support group for birth mothers. Connecting with those who have a similar experience can help with coping, acceptance, and closure.
As you recover, you can also begin to consider the next chapter of your life. While birth mothers experience grief after adoption, they also move forward to experience great joy. Open adoption gives expectant/birth parents a sense of security, knowing their child is well cared for and that the adoption does not mean “goodbye forever.” In fact, it is only the beginning. Adopted children who are in open adoptions get to learn about their background, meet their birth parent(s), and – best of all – grow up knowing they are loved by two families instead of one.
Adoption is Never “Giving Up”
While we often hear the phrases “putting baby up for adoption” and also “giving baby up for adoption,” you should keep in mind that adoption is anything but giving up.
You are certainly not giving up, as you are making a decision that is rooted in a deep love for your child. You are putting your own feelings aside and thinking about your baby’s future instead. This makes adoption a very brave, thoughtful, and selfless decision.
You should also keep in mind that, while you may be “putting baby up for adoption,” you are certainly not giving your child away. You are lovingly making an adoption plan that will provide your child with a life full of love and opportunity.
As the famous musician, Faith Hill, once said: “I know [my birth mother] must have had a lot of love for me to want to give me what she felt was a better chance.”
Learn More About Placing Your Child for Adoption
If you would like to learn even more about placing your child for adoption, contact Adoptions With Love today. We can give you the information you need – without pressure or judgment – to help you make an informed decision. We can also help support your needs and guide you through the adoption journey.
Call us 24/7 at 1-800-722-7731, text us confidentially at 617-777-0072, or contact us online.