Here at Lifetime, we understand that first phone call, text, or message can be nerve wracking for women who are considering adoption for a child. When women contact us, it’s common to hear “I’m not sure yet, but I just want to know how adoption works.” As she shares more about her situation, each mother starts to find words for the questions that have been going through their minds, usually for weeks before reaching out for information.
There are many adoption services available for women facing unplanned pregnancy, or who may be struggling to continue providing for a baby or young child. Deciding who helps her, and when she gets that help, is part of a woman’s choices with adoption.
Today, there are still some outdated ideas about how or when a woman can place a baby for adoption. Let’s clear up the top three myths that may limit a woman’s options when she’s thinking about adoption:
1. Myth: Adoptions have to be local to where you live.
TRUTH: You can choose to work with an adoption professional who is local or out-of-area. It’s up to you! Some mothers are more comfortable with a local adoption coordinator, who can meet in person throughout the adoption process. However, many women today prefer services from an adoption professional out of town, or even out of state, especially when they consider the possibility of running into someone so closely connected to the adoption. Privacy and confidentiality are important in any adoption, so make sure you choose help that will support you through the process, at your comfort level.
2. Myth: Open adoption is only possible with a local adoptive family.
TRUTH: Modern communication, convenient travel, and social media have greatly changed how open adoption looks fr birth mothers and adoptive parents. Again, similar to choosing the right adoption help, you have a choice in who adopts your baby, AND where that family lives. If you prefer a local adoptive family, you can share that with your adoption professional (at Lifetime, we have families to choose from in nearly every state!). If other factors are more important to you than where the adoptive parents live, that’s good too! The important thing is to place your baby into an adoptive family who YOU have chosen, and that you are given opportunities to get to know that adoptive family before the adoption happens.
Modern adoption means you can have just as close a connection with an adoptive family out of state as you can with one who lives in your hometown. You can meet the adoptive parents of your choice BEFORE the adoption, even if they are not local to you. And, adoptive parents today are gladly sharing ongoing contact with a child’s birth family, even when they live miles or states apart.
3. Myth: If you don’t have an adoption plan in place before you give birth, it’s too late.
TRUTH: It’s NEVER too late! Mothers can research or choose adoption at any time before or after they give birth. Some women feel more comfortable getting information and then waiting to make a decision from the hospital, or after they are home with their baby. Others prefer to have a plan in place weeks or months before they give birth. Every mother we assist will move at her own pace, having the say in every step of the process. At Lifetime, we have 24/7 adoption services, which means we can answer questions, or help mothers move through the process, any day, any time, even when it’s last minute, or for an older baby, toddler, or young child.
It’s important to us that every mother who wants to place a child for adoption find the right help, for the right reasons. She should never feel as though there’s a specific timeline or deadline by which she needs to make her adoption decision. And she should always know that help is available when SHE needs it, at her comfort level, with no pressure. Mothers considering adoption today have many choices about who helps them, and how the process will go.
To learn more about the choices available as you consider adoption for your baby, call or text anytime to speak with someone: 1-800-923-6784.
Our caring adoption coordinators will answer any questions and help you get the information you need as you decide what you want to do.
As Vice President of Lifetime Adoption, Heather Featherston holds an MBA and is passionate about working with those facing adoption, pregnancy, and parenting issues. Heather has conducted training for birth parent advocates, spoken to professional groups, and has appeared on television and radio to discuss the multiple aspects of adoption. She has provided one-on-one support to women and hopeful adoptive parents working through adoption decisions.
Since 2002, she has been helping pregnant women and others in crisis to learn more about adoption. Heather also trains and speaks nationwide to pregnancy clinics to effectively meet the needs of women who want to explore adoption for their child. Today, she continues to address the concerns women have about adoption and supports the needs of women who choose adoption for their child.
As a published author of the book Called to Adoption, Featherston loves to see God’s hand at work every day as she helps children and families come together through adoption.