Adoption is an incredible way to grow your family. It is also a selfless and loving decision for those who are not yet ready to become parents. Whether you are a hopeful parent looking to adopt, or an expectant mother considering adoption, you may be wondering how to start the process.
In general, there are three primary types of adoption today. These include:
- Foster care adoption, in which a child is adopted through the Child Welfare System
- International adoption, in which a child is adopted from overseas (vs. domestically)
- Private adoption, which involves adopting a baby in the U.S., using an agency that has closely worked with a birth mother to create an adoption plan
For the purpose of this article, we will focus on private adoption.
What is Private Adoption?
A private adoption is an adoption in which the expectant/birth parent(s) choose to make an adoption plan for their baby. In other words, they voluntarily place their baby for adoption, often with a family of their choosing. This is different from foster care and international adoption, where many children are placed due to difficult circumstances that are out of the birth family’s control.
Private adoptions are most always domestic, infant adoptions – and are therefore the most common path to adopting a baby in the United States today.
While some private adoptions are independent, most expectant/birth parents will work with a licensed agency to find an adoptive family for their baby. This ensures the baby is placed in a safe and loving home. Private adoption agencies also provide the birth mother with important services, like counseling, throughout her pregnancy and beyond.
A family hoping to adopt a baby in the United States will typically go through a private adoption agency, as well. This ensures that the adoption is both legal and safe, and that the birth mother has been supported every step of the way. In Massachusetts, it is required that prospective parents looking to adopt a baby privately work with an adoption agency licensed by the Commonwealth.
What is a Private Adoption Agency?
A private adoption agency, simply put, facilitates private infant adoptions. These agencies work closely with expectant/birth mothers to create loving, thoughtful adoption plans and to find the best possible family for their baby. Private adoption agencies also work directly with families hoping to adopt.
What are the Benefits of Working with a Private Adoption Agency?
When a woman chooses to work with a private adoption agency, she gets to make many choices throughout the process. After choosing the adoption path, she can choose the type of adoption plan she desires. She also has the opportunity to choose the family to raise her baby. All hopeful families that work with private adoption agencies are carefully screened, with interviews and background checks, before they are approved to adopt. For an expectant/birth mother, this can provide great peace of mind in knowing her child will be raised in a safe and stable home.
Private adoption agencies also provide many services to expectant/birth mothers making an adoption plan. These include education about adoption, financial assistance, and counseling before, during, and after the adoption plan. You can learn more about the role of a private agency for birth mothers here.
When a hopeful family chooses to work with a private adoption agency, they can ensure their adoption is carried out safely and legally. In many states, working with a licensed adoption agency is mandatory for private adoption. Otherwise, an adoption cannot be made “official.” In addition to legal security, private agency adoptions also protect families financially. For example, if an adoption falls through at Adoptions With Love, any fees paid will be put towards a future adoption. Finally, adoptive families can rest assured that the birth mother has been educated, prepared for, and guided throughout the adoption journey.
When an adoption is finalized, the work of a private adoption agency does not end. Many agencies, such as Adoptions With Love, will offer an array of services to the families long after the adoption is finalized. This includes, but is not limited to, Search and Reunion Services, Open Adoption Communications, Post-Adoption Counseling, and Letter and Picture Programs.
Private adoption agencies support all members of the adoption triad – birth parents, adoptive parents, and the child.
Is Private Adoption Right for You?
Private adoption is perfect for families considering adopting a newborn, as newborn adoptions are uncommon through public agencies. Private adoption is also perfect for expectant/birth mothers who want what is best for their baby, and want to have a say in their adoption plan. Private adoption gives women who are not ready parent the opportunity to make a thoughtful plan for their baby’s life.
By working with a private adoption agency, you can expect personal guidance and support at every stage of the adoption journey. At Adoptions With Love, your adoption counselor will always be just one call away. We are available 24/7 to help you through this incredible journey.
Adoptions With Love is a licensed, non-profit, private adoption agency offering a full range of services to expectant/birth parents and adoptive families. For over 34 years, we have provided personal, trustworthy, and professional services to the entire adoption triad. We are here for you, if and when you are ready.