He Chooses Not to Participate in Adoption
As you try to learn more about the birth father’s rights in adoption, there are some key questions you may need to answer:
Has the birth father expressed interest in parenting? Is he capable of supporting a family?
Being a dad is more than simply being listed on a birth certificate and showing up for birthdays and weekends. Children need a consistent father figure in their lives. If he has shown interest in parenting, speak with him about what that looks like, financially, emotionally, and from a commitment standpoint. Sometimes being a great dad is understanding that you cannot provide everything you want for your child and letting someone else do it through adoption.
Can the birth father be identified? Can he be located?
If there is more than one potential father of the baby, that is an issue that will need to be addressed. Similarly, if he cannot be physically located, an attorney will need to follow the particular state’s laws to terminate the rights. State laws also address terminating the rights of an unknown birth father in the case where a woman does not know the possible identity of the father, in a case such as a one-night stand or rape. These may sound like complicated situations but Lifetime can help you find the answers you need in an easy and private way.
Will the father consent to an adoption?
This is an important question. If he will not, it may be because he feels like the situation is out of control or does not know that he can play an active role in adoption. Many times, like the story with Manny, a father just needs to be acknowledged and included in the choices. Remember it is his child too. If the situation is a violent or dangerous one, it may not be advisable to speak directly with him. Lifetime can help by providing an attorney who can speak with him directly.
Is he getting pressure from family members or friends?
Often a birth father’s mother will pressure him to “step up” and be a man by objecting to an adoption placement. Usually, the only people who have parental rights are the mother and the father of the baby. Working together for the best interest of the baby is the job of the child’s mother and father. Ultimately, grandparents, friends, aunts, and others are not going to be the ones who are there every day as parents. The two of you need to come to the best decision for the baby, completely free from outside influences. Especially because often the grandmothers of the baby or others offer a lot of help in parenting, but they are not able to follow through 24 hours a day, 7 days a week like children need.
Does he deny paternity?
Married men who fathered a baby with someone other than their wives may just deny that the baby is theirs. They don’t want their marriages disrupted. An attorney will handle this privately and confidentially, whether or not he is willing to sign the papers.
There are many questions about adoption in regards to birth fathers and their adoption legal rights. Lifetime Adoption is here to help you find the answers you need as you consider adoption. The best way to get answers is by calling or our 24 hour adoption answer line at 1-800-923-6784.
Remember, we are here to help you and any information you share with us is completely private and confidential.
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