What to Know About Adoption
Adoption is a legal agreement where your child is placed in the permanent care of another family. There are many reasons to choose adoption. You might not be ready to be a parent. You might feel too young to have a child. You might not be able to afford to raise a child. Choosing adoption does not mean you don’t love your child. Adoption lets you give your child a life that you cannot or are not ready to give.
What are the different types of adoption?
There are three types of adoption.
Open adoption allows you to know the adoptive parents of your child. You can meet and exchange contact information with them. After the adoption, the relationship can continue with phone calls and letters. You may be able to schedule visits with your child and their new family.
Semi-open adoption lets you choose your child’s parents. No identifying information is exchanged, so both you and the new parents will remain confidential. After the adoption, you can receive letters from your child’s family, but the adoption agency will send them to maintain privacy.
Confidential adoption keeps you anonymous to your child’s new family. The adoption agency will choose a family based on your wishes. After the adoption, you will still remain anonymous.
How do I find an adoption agency?
Every adoption agency offers different services, so it is important to know what services are important to you. Ask adoption agencies questions to find out if they are a good fit for you.
Things to consider when choosing an adoption agency:
- Do they offer counseling services?
- What financial help do they offer?
- How do they screen adoptive parents?
- What types of adoptive parents do they serve?
- How do they handle adoption for children of different ethnicity?
How much does adoption cost?
As a birthparent, you will not be charged for the adoption or for creating an adoption plan. You can ask your adoption agency for assistance with pregnancy related costs.
Can I visit my child?
In an open adoption, you may be able to schedule visits with your child and their family. In semi-open and closed adoptions, you will not be able to visit your child.
Can I change my mind?
You can change your mind about adoption at any time before your parental rights have ended. Laws vary in every state as to when parental rights end.