How Can Adoption Be Good For My Baby and Me?
If you are not ready for the responsibilities and commitments of parenting, you can still be a good mom by providing adoptive parents to your baby. Adoption agencies will work with you to select a stable, loving family to care for your baby. After birth, you can see your baby, name your baby, and spend time with your baby. Depending upon the type of adoption you choose, you can even get updates on your child’s progress or have ongoing visits throughout your child’s life.
10 Most Asked Questions About Adoption
Yes. Most agencies have couples from a variety of backgrounds that have been screened for approval. There are also additional options; such as, choosing a friend, an acquaintance, a relative, or someone who has been recommended to you to become the adoptive parents. Your agency will discuss these options with you.
You may have as much contact with your baby at the hospital as you desire. When planning for your child’s adoption, you can choose an open adoption plan that allows ongoing visits with your child, or you can choose a less open adoption that keeps you informed about your child’s progress through letters and pictures. Adoptive families respect your need to know that your child is loved and happy. If you prefer not to have any ongoing contact with your child and adoptive family, confidential adoption plans are also available.
The timing of your baby’s placement with his/her new family depends upon three factors: (1) your preference for the timing of placement, (2) legal aspects of the adoption, which can vary from state to state, and (3) the cooperation of the birthfather.
Many birthmothers want their baby placed with the adoptive family directly from the hospital. Some others prefer to place their baby in temporary care while they consider their adoption decision.
That depends upon what type of adoption plan you choose: open, semi-open, or confidential. Your agency will encourage you to provide your complete medical and social history to your child, no matter what type of adoption plan you make. You may choose to share your identity and where you live with the adoptive family. If you’ve made an open adoption plan, you can have ongoing, direct contact with your child and the adoptive family.
Both you and the birthfather have rights. If you disagree about adoption or you no longer have a relationship with him, your adoption agency will work with the birthfather and/or the courts to determine if his rights can be terminated.
Hopefully, yes. This will depend on the birthfather’s cooperation with you and the staff of your adoption agency. Most birthfathers give their complete medical and social history, recognizing how important it is for the child. At other times, only the information you provide will be available.
The laws in your state determine when and how your child may have access to information in the adoption file. Your caseworker will explain the current laws as they apply to your adoption plan.
Adoptive families approved by your agency must meet standards that are shared with you. Adoption agencies make every attempt to complete a thorough assessment of potential adoptive families. Prior to finalizing the adoption, the agency will make home visits to ensure the child’s well-being. In an open adoption, you will see for yourself how much your child is loved.
You do not need an attorney, and there are no costs to you in an adoption. The adoption agency will handle all the legal details for you and the birthfather.
So what’s next? Want some more personal information? There are knowledgeable people just a click or phone call away who know the facts about the specific adoption agencies and laws in your own area.
It’s all confidential and without cost.
- Because they’re not ready for the responsibilities of parenting.
- Because they want to finish high school or college.
- Because they want to be “unpregnant” and free to be a teenager.
- Because they want to be a good person and “do what’s right.”
Benefits Of Adoption For Birth Mothers
A Columbia University study of pregnant teens checked them six months and four years after giving birth. The study revealed that those who placed their babies for adoption:
- Were more likely to complete high school, more likely to attend college, more likely to have higher educational aspirations, and more likely to be employed.
- Were less likely to be on welfare, less likely to be “living together” but not married, and less likely to have another out-of-wedlock pregnancy.
- Were more likely to have greater overall satisfaction with their lives – with their work, their finances, and their relationships.
- Were more likely to be optimistic about their own future.
Benefits Of Adoption For Adoptees
The Search Institute did a study of adopted children twelve to eighteen years after they were born. The study revealed that:
- Adopted adolescents’ self-esteem was as high or higher than their peers.
- Adopted adolescents are as deeply attached to their adoptive parents as their siblings who were not adopted.
- Adopted adolescents report having as much support from family and friends as their non-adopted siblings have.
- Adopted adolescents do extremely well in school and attend college more often that the general population.
- Adopted adolescents experience lower rates of crime and drug abuse.
How Do Adoptive Parents Fare Compared To Natural Parents?
Now and then you hear of an adoptive parents horror story; so here’s what a national survey found when comparing adoptive parents with biological parents: – Both adoptive and biological parents attach similar levels of importance to encouraging good behavior in children. These included following rules, doing well in school, being independent, and assuming responsibilities. Having a mother at home with children under age five was very important to both types of families.
- Both adoptive and biological parents agreed that marriage should be for life and that divorce should enter the picture only under the most extreme circumstances.
- Both adoptive and biological parents used a considerable amount of time praising and hugging, and they criticized and spanked very infrequently.
- Both groups spent similar amounts of time with the kids and helped with reading and with homework from school.
Types Of Adoptions
Because different people want different choices in planning for an adoption, there are several ways to set up an adoption plan. These descriptions will help you think about what you might prefer in an adoption situation.
Open adoption includes sharing identifying information, including names and addresses, and the potential for ongoing direct contact between birth families and adoptive families.
In a semi-open adoption the birth parent(s) may be allowed to select the adoptive parent(s) for their child. This includes actually choosing and possibly meeting the adoptive couple personally. There may be an exchange of pictures, gifts, and non-identifying letters through the first year or longer.
If the birth parent(s) knows of someone who wishes to adopt their child, the adoptive couple may be referred to the proper agency to help with the adoption plan.
In a confidential adoption privacy is ensured for both the birth parent(s) and the adoptive parents. If adoptees wish to meet their birth parent(s) when they become adults and the birth parent(s) also want to meet, arrangements may be made through mutual consent adoption registries.