Adoption 101: Starting Your Adoption Journey as a Birth Mother in Kansas
One of the beautiful things about adoption is that there is no one single way to approach it. As a birth mother, you are in complete control over choosing how the adoption process unfolds and the adoptive parents who end up raising your child. If you find yourself unexpectedly pregnant and considering adoption, you have many available options — unlike how it used to be. Gone are the days when you and your baby are separated at birth and you are left in the dark about what happens to him or her afterwards.
In today’s adoption world, starting your adoption journey as a birth mother is full of opportunities to be a part of the process and knowing how your child does once the adoption is legally finalized. You get to ensure that your child finds a safe, happy and healthy home, and that he or she is able to have a fulfilling future.
That said, you may be wondering just how all of this works. Don’t worry! You are in good hands. Adoption Choices of Kansas is here to provide you with all you need to know to get you started and to help you have the most positive and empowering adoption journey possible.
Placing your child into adoption can be an overwhelming and difficult experience especially when you are coming to terms with relinquishing your parental rights and allowing another family to raise your child. This is why getting in touch with your local adoption center in Kansas and creating an adoption plan is important. It can help ease your stress and anxiety levels. Remember that you are in complete control of your adoption journey, and you have the freedom to tailor everything according to your needs and wants for your child.
While there is no singular type of adoption plan, there are some general things that you will need to carefully consider to ensure that the process goes as smoothly as possible.
- Deciding on an Adoption Service Provider
One of the first things you will need to determine is what adoption agency you want to work with. It’s important to think about what you want out of your adoption journey, so do your research and find an agency that keeps your best interests at heart. Be mindful of those that are only out for themselves and don’t seem legitimate. If you can’t trust or don’t feel comfortable at a particular location, these are huge red flags telling you this is not the right place.
Adoption Choices of Kansas is a private, licensed adoption agency that offers birth mothers free counseling, financial assistance and legal representation. Our adoption specialists are all very compassionate and highly-trained individuals who will support and encourage you throughout your entire adoption process. You will be treated with the utmost respect and will not be charged a penny when placing your baby for adoption through our agency.
- Choosing the Type of Adoption
The second thing you’ll want to do is talk to an adoption caseworker about the type of adoption you are looking for. There are three types to choose from:
- Open Adoption
- Semi-Open Adoption
- Closed Adoption
Each type of adoption has its own set of benefits and disadvantages which you’ll want to carefully consider and look into. To help you make the decision, think about how much involvement you want to have with your child and your child’s adoptive parents before, during and after the adoption. Do you want to get to know your child’s adoptive parents after choosing them? To build a relationship with them? Do you want to know how your child is doing as he or she grows up? Or would you prefer only occasional updates from a safe distance?
The choice is completely up to you! There is no right or wrong way to go about your adoption journey, and no judgment in your decision either. Don’t hesitate to consult with your adoption caseworker if you aren’t sure or have questions. They will walk you through what each type entails and assist you in choosing the path that fits best for you and your baby.
- Selecting the Adoptive Family
Another crucial decision you will make is picking an adoptive family to raise your child. The following questions are among many you’ll want to take into consideration when choosing a prospective adoptive family:
- Do I want the adoptive parents to have experience raising adoptees?
- What type of community do I want my child to grow up in?
- What values do I want the adoptive parents to instill in my child?
- Do I want the adoptive parents to have a more relaxed or structured parenting style?
- Should one of the parents stay at home full-time?
- Am I open to single parent, LGBT, or transracial households?
- Creating a Birth Plan
Making thorough preparations for your baby’s delivery ahead of time can help ease some of your stress. It is important to establish what the logistics will be, such as: transportation to and from the hospital, who needs to be contacted once labor has begun, whether the delivery should be vaginal or via C-section, or if any pictures should be taken.
During this pivotal moment, you can find comfort in having your family, friends, your child’s birth father, and/or the adoptive parents present at the hospital. You may also want the opportunity to hold your baby and have some one-on-one time to help you healthfully grieve and move forward with your life once your child leaves with his or her new adoptive family.
Starting Your Adoption Journey as a Birth Mother
Regardless of how you decide to tailor your adoption journey, you have several options to choose from along the way that can help you feel empowered and confident about your decision. It’s amazing and encouraging to know that your path does have to be narrow or limited.
As you explore your options, know that you are putting yourself in a position where you can make a truly informed decision so that you have control over how your adoption journey looks and what future your child will have long after you leave the delivery room.
Meet the Author: Mary DeStefano is an Ohio native currently living in northern Virginia and works in the litigation consulting industry where she has experience in antitrust, product liability, and mass torts matters. She holds a B.A. in Economics (‘15) and an M.A. in Applied Economics (‘16) from the University of Cincinnati.
Mary finds great meaning in wielding the written word to develop impactful narratives and to help people stay informed. In her spare time, Mary can be found beachcombing and going on other adventures with her dog along the shores of the Chesapeake Bay. She also has an affinity for antiquing and loves a good 80’s movie marathon.