Adoption is a big decision. Whether you are pregnant and considering adoption, have just given birth, or are looking to adopt an infant and grow your family, you may be wondering how to get started.
In Massachusetts, the infant adoption process begins with the expectant/birth mother. Infant adoption means that an expectant/birth mother chooses to place her baby for adoption with a permanent adoptive family. She has the option to select the family that she feels is the best match for her baby. In Massachusetts, infant adoption must be carried out through a licensed adoption agency. Therefore, choosing a reputable adoption agency in Massachusetts is an important step in the process. This agency can provide you with the services and support you need, as well as ensure your adoption is safe and legal.
Are you ready to learn more about infant adoption in Massachusetts? Read on, as we explore the basic steps to take, for both expectant/birth parents and prospective adoptive families.
Expectant/Birth Parents: How to Place Your Baby for Adoption in Massachusetts
The decision to place your child for adoption is not easy; it is the most difficult decision you will make in your life. While adoption is a positive, selfless, and loving choice, it is also one that can bring a range of emotions over the years. With the help of a trustworthy adoption agency, you do not need to go through the process on your own. If you are considering infant adoption in Massachusetts, read on, as we share the steps to take when placing your baby for adoption.
- Choose a Massachusetts Adoption Agency
Finding the right adoption agency in Massachusetts is the first step of the infant adoption process. This is required to finalize a legal adoption in the Commonwealth.
As you search for the right adoption agency, look for one that offers a full-range of services and specifically assists with private, domestic, infant adoptions. Find an agency that is licensed in Massachusetts and reputable within the community. The right agency will also be compassionate, understanding, and care about your individual needs.
In your search for an adoption agency in MA, you must also consider your needs. Are you looking for an agency that can offer counseling services and free legal support? At Adoptions With Love, expectant/birth mothers never pay for any part of the adoption process. In fact, there are financial support services offered along with free counseling, legal support, and adoption plan assistance. Adoptions With Love has been helping expectant/birth parents for over 36 years and has the reputation of being the best private adoption agency in Massachusetts. Contact the adoption agency that checks all your boxes and make a connection with one of the staff members to see if it is a good match for you.
- Understand Adoption Laws in Massachusetts
Adoption laws vary by state. It is important to work with an adoption professional that is experienced and knowledgeable about the infant adoption laws in Massachusetts.
In the Bay State, for example, you cannot sign legal adoption documents until four days following the baby’s birth. This gives you time to consider and ensure you are confident with your decision. Once the consent forms are signed in Massachusetts, birth parents cannot change their minds.
At Adoptions With Love, our adoption social workers and attorneys are highly trained and well-versed in the adoption laws of Massachusetts. They will help you understand the laws and keep you informed of your rights as an expectant/birth parent. You can have confidence that everything will be done correctly to protect your plan for adoption.
- Consider the Adoption Plan
With the help of a Massachusetts infant adoption agency, you will have the option of designing your own adoption plan. You can choose between:
- An open adoption, meaning you will have direct contact with the adoptive family
- A semi-open adoption, meaning you will have mediated contact with the family and receive pictures and updates via the agency
- A closed adoption plan, in which no identifying information will be shared with the adoptive family
The form and frequency of an adoption plan can vary, and it is completely up to you. Whether you want to stay connected via email, phone calls, text messages or in-person visits, you and your child’s adoptive family can find a method of contact that works for everyone.
- Find an Adoptive Family
If you wish, you can also choose the adoptive family for your baby. Your adoption agency can show you the profiles of families in Massachusetts ready to adopt. You can browse through these profiles, ask questions, and contact families directly, if you wish, before making your decision. In Massachusetts, every prospective adoptive family must complete a Home Study including background checks, before adopting an infant, to prove that their home is a safe, stable, and loving environment.
- Prepare for Birth
Once you have found an adoptive family for your child, you can begin to prepare for the birth. With the help of your adoption agency, you can create a birth plan that details how you would like the birth experience to go. Would you like the adoptive family in the delivery room? Would you like some time alone with the baby? Should the adoptive parents be prepared to be the first to hold the baby? All of these questions can be addressed in your hospital plan. You can also prepare yourself – mentally, physically, and emotionally – for the day you give birth.
- Create an Open Adoption Agreement
The open adoption agreement is a legal and binding agreement that is part of the adoption regulations in Massachusetts. This agreement is signed by the birth parent(s) and adoptive parent(s) and submitted to the family and probate court at the time of adoption finalization. This is the plan that details your adoption arrangement. As the years go by, this plan may be tweaked to accommodate a growing child. Your adoption agency can help you navigate any changes needed over the years.
- Continue with Adoption Support
After the baby’s birth and adoption, it is important to seek ongoing support. A reputable Massachusetts adoption agency can offer support groups and one-on-one meetings with a licensed counselor. The support does not end once the paperwork is complete. Your recovery, grief, and need for help continue after birth and Adoptions With Love can help meet your needs as you look ahead to the future.
- Pursue Personal & Professional Goals
Once the adoption is complete and you have had some time to process the experience, you can begin to heal and re-prioritize yourself. You can begin to think about your future and work toward your own personal and professional goals. Placing your baby for adoption is a selfless and positive decision made with love. When the adoption is complete, you may want to spend some time showing yourself love and working towards a better tomorrow.
Are you ready to place your baby for adoption in Massachusetts? Contact us below.
Adoptive Parents: How to Adopt an Infant in Massachusetts
If you are looking to grow your family through adoption, you may be looking for an overall guide on how it all works. Infant adoption in Massachusetts can seem intimidating, but it is a process made more manageable when you engage a private adoption agency.
Adoptions With Love is the premier private adoption agency in Massachusetts that works with expectant/birth mothers around the country, and primarily places children with families that live in Massachusetts. This creates a larger pool of infants in need of good homes, thus creating a shorter wait period for hopeful adoptive parents. Here is how to start the process:
- Contact an Adoption Agency
The first step to take, when beginning the adoption journey, is to choose your adoption agency. There are many kinds of organizations to choose from – so first determine which one will meet your needs. If you are looking to pursue a domestic adoption, you will want to find a national or local agency. A full-service, all-inclusive, non-profit organization like Adoptions With Love can work with you every step of the way and ensure smooth, successful adoption.
- Figure Out the Finances
When it comes to growing your family, the finances must be in order. This is true for any family growing their family in any way – whether it is through conception, IVF, surrogacy, or adoption. Examine the costs of raising a child and how your income will help support a growing child. (See 10 ways to save for adoption.) Once you have thought about your financial situation, and made sure you can cover the costs, you are ready for the next step in the adoption journey.
- Prepare for the Home Study
The Massachusetts Home Study can take several months to complete. This process involves multiple home visits, interviews, and the review of several personal and professional documents. While required by law, Adoptions With Love makes certain this step is covered to ensure that every child is going to a safe, healthy, and loving home. Preparing for the Home Study entails more than just dusting and organizing your house. Gather up any important documentation that your adoption professional may need, such as medical records, proof of insurance, tax returns, etc. This will help make the process a little easier for both your family and the adoption agency.
- Create Your Family Profile
Here is a fun part of the infant adoption process: building your adoptive family profile book. This packet typically includes letters, photos, stories, and information about you and your family. This is what expectant/birth parents look through when choosing their child’s adoptive parent(s). You can share your family’s story, photos of family vacations and holidays, tidbits on your favorite hobbies and passions – ever and anything that you think makes your family special. Your adoption professional can help you build this family profile to make sure you make the best impression possible.
Adoptions With Love also has a video program included in the fee, which has been found to be an exceptional tool for expectant/birthparents to view the adoptive family and get a feel for them. This special program is part of what makes Adoptions With Love the best private adoption agency in Massachusetts.
- Prepare for Parenthood
Once you have completed the Home Study and finished your adoptive family profile, the wait really begins. If this is your first child, you will want to spend some time preparing with infant and parenting classes. If you have other children at home, you can take this time to prepare them for the new sibling that is coming, depending on their age(s). If you need baby items, you will want to register and/or prepare baby’s nursery. Enjoy this time, and, if you can, take a “babymoon” before baby’s big arrival.
- Meet Baby’s Birth Parent(s)
Once your child’s expectant mother has chosen you, she may want to speak on the phone or meet in person. This will give you both the chance to get to know one another. Since many adoptions today are open adoptions, this will help form your bond early. Your adoption agency can help guide you through this step and help arrange the meeting, as well. This meeting will give your child’s biological parent a better sense of who you are, how you will raise the child, and some much-needed peace of mind, knowing they are making a positive decision. It will also give you the chance to ask some questions, as well, and give you an idea of your child’s background.
- Finalize the Adoption Plan
The adoption plan is an outline of your adoption arrangement between you and your child’s birth parent(s). With an open adoption plan, there is ongoing communication between adoptive and birth parents. Your child’s birth parent will determine whether they would like an open, semi-open, or closed adoption. Once you work out the form and frequency of communication, you will sign the contract. You can lean on your adoption agency for guidance with any changes needed with the adoption plan over the years, as needed.
- Continue Learning
Adoption is a lifelong, ever-evolving journey. Once you bring the baby home, you will be just beginning your new life as adoptive parents. You can help your child understand their adoption story as they grow, and you can start the conversations as early as day one. There are plenty of books and reliable resources to help you navigate this experience.
Whether you are looking to adopt an infant in Massachusetts, or you need help placing your baby for adoption, contact Adoptions With Love today. Our 35+ years of experience can help guide you through this journey. Call us at 800-722-7731 or contact us online.