When faced with an unplanned pregnancy, the natural first step is to consider your pregnancy options (parenting, adoption, and abortion) and which one is right for you and your child. Of these three, the two that are highlighted the most in today’s society are abortion and parenting. These two have become the foundation of a charged debate that takes up the majority of the focus of the media, leaving information about adoption and the adoption process less visible to the public.
However, it’s important that adoption is considered just as strongly as your other pregnancy options when it comes to making an informed choice about your pregnancy. In today’s blog, we take a look at the different types of adoption and how it is truly one of the most loving and brave choices an expectant parent can make for their child. If you are considering adoption or simply want to discuss your pregnancy options in a safe place, contact First Choice Pregnancy Center today by calling 207-872-5070 to schedule a free appointment.
Who is Adoption For?
Adoption may be a consideration for you if:
- You don’t feel comfortable with the idea of an abortion but you feel you’re not at a place in your life where you’re ready or capable of raising a child.
- Your home life is complicated at the moment and you want your child to grow up in a home that can provide emotional and financial stability that you currently can’t provide.
- The father of your child is no longer in your life and you want your child to be raised by a two-parent family.
There’s a stigma in society today that often makes women feel ashamed to consider adoption. They’re told it means they’re not capable of raising a child themselves and they’re passing it off to someone else. That if they couldn’t handle the responsibility of parenting, they never should’ve put yourself in a situation where that could occur. However, the reality of unplanned pregnancies is much more complicated than that. Each woman’s situation is different and no one but you can make the decision of how you choose to proceed with your pregnancy options.
This stigma also robs women of a valuable truth: that it takes a tremendous deal of courage to choose adoption for your child. It means proceeding with a pregnancy when you weren’t prepared for it and making the decision to part with your child. There’s a dignity in this, as you are gifting another family with the ability to raise and care for a child they possibly could not otherwise have. This has given rise to the term adoption being referred to as “alternative parenting.” Also, if you choose to make an adoption plan, it doesn’t mean you won’t be able to have contact with your child as is commonly believed.
What are the Different Types of Adoption?
There are three main types of adoption: open, semi-open, and closed. Each refers to the level of contact you want to have with the adoptive parents during and after the adoption process. This gives you a greater amount of say in the matter than you may think; it’s not putting your baby in the ‘system’ but placing them in a loving family of your choice.
In this type of adoption, you typically won’t have any contact with the adoptive parents and vice versa. Instead, you’ll each have an adoption representative that handles the communication between both parties. Your advocate will meet with you and you’ll be able to discuss any questions or concerns you may have. You will then choose an adoptive family that you believe is the best match for you and your child but will not exchange information or have contact.
This type of adoption allows you a greater amount of say in the adoption process and some communication with the adoptive parents. You’ll be able to view profiles of potential adoptive families and have some say in the final decision your adoption representative makes. During the adoption process, you may have some direct contact with the adoptive family, but once the process is finalized, all contact is typically handed over to the adoption agency. However, a benefit of semi-open adoption is the chance to get updates on your child, as you can request pictures and/or letters from the adoptive family. This request is given to your adoption agency, who will act as the middleman between both parties and pass along any pictures and letters the adoptive family sends to you.
This option provides you with the most communication and involvement with the adoptive parents, both throughout the adoption process and after the adoption is finalized. You can meet with them and discuss the life you want your child to have and if they are a good fit for your wishes. In addition, you are able to describe to your adoption advocate what contact with your child will look like and what level of involvement you’d like to have in your child’s life.
Your advocate will then bring you families who match your wishes for you to choose from and you pick the family. Many birth mothers are able to develop a healthy and loving bond with their child and be present in their life as they grow up in an environment you know they’ll thrive in. This option also gives birth mothers a sense of peace, as they are able to see first hand how their child is doing and don’t have to wonder what kind of life they are leading.
Making a Loving Choice
If there’s one piece of advice we could leave you with, it’s this: trust your intuition as a mom. Don’t let others pressure you into a decision, but instead know that you as the mom knows what’s best for your child’s future. Also, don’t be afraid to ask for help or resources along the way. There’s so many avenues of support available to you; you simply have to ask. At First Choice Pregnancy Center, we provide information on the adoption process and free referrals to local adoption agencies that best fit your needs, as well as counseling on your other pregnancy options. Call us today at 207-872-5070 or visit us online to get connected. All of our services are free and confidential.