How Roe v. Wade Has Changed Adoption in Texas
It has been a year since the Supreme Court drastically overturned Roe v. Wade, removing women’s abortion rights. But you may wonder how this law change has impacted adoption in Texas. You may especially be curious if you are facing an unplanned pregnancy, whether you are considering giving up your baby for adoption in Texas or fearing it’s what you have to do. Adoption Choices of Texas’ local adoption agencies are here to share what adoption looks like after Roe v. Wade. Our Texas adoption centers are here to help provide you with information, services, and support.
What is Roe v. Wade?
Roe v. Wade is a Supreme Court case decided in 1973. Roe v. Wade confronted the delicate topic of abortion. It questioned whether or not a woman has the right to abortion in the United States. Half a century later, the supreme court overturned federal abortion rights for all women.
Since protecting the right to abortion, in the 70s, the conversation about abortion has been an ongoing debate in the country. Many question the morality of legalizing abortion. People wonder if termination should not be allowed at a certain point in pregnancy. This question of morality often coincides with religion and politics. While we live in a country of separation of church and state, there are some topics where the lines are blurred. Abortion is one of them. Nevertheless, of religious belief, the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, taking away a 50-year-long right for women to choose to have an abortion. Since changing the law, women’s reproductive rights have been left vulnerable.
Abortion is illegal in 13 states where there are no abortion providers. Seven states regulate abortions based on the number of weeks a woman is pregnant. For example, Texas bans abortion after six weeks of pregnancy. More than 28 million women live in states where abortion is prohibited or restricted, and two million live in states where abortion is available.
Texas Adoption is Not a Substitute for Abortion
By overturning Roe v. Wade, many anti-abortion activists believed that women facing unwanted pregnancies would choose adoption. “Adoption, not abortion!” was their rallying cry, but adoption in Texas is not the new abortion. Protestors hope adoption will be the first choice for expecting mothers, especially since abortion is banned.
In 2021, Texas state law banned abortion for pregnancies beyond six weeks. Despite this, there has been no effect on adoption rates in Texas. According to Jennifer Morrison, executive director at Adoption Choices of Texas, most people who choose adoption are four to five weeks pregnant. They decide to pursue adoption on their own time and not due to the abortion ban. When Madelynn Ballenger, Texas birth mother, was faced with an unplanned pregnancy, she opted to carry the baby to term. After delivery, she made the difficult decision to choose adoption. Ballenger is grateful for her adoption, and to the loving home her son is in. However, there is nuance to everything.
Ballenger said she suffered from post-partum depression. She expresses remembering the days in the hospital “burned” in her memory. Just because a birth mother cannot choose an abortion does not mean they will choose adoption. The adoption process is a sensitive journey, and decisions to consider for the adoption plan can be difficult. Adoption is an emotionally difficult decision that can deter some from placing a baby for adoption.
While most adoption agencies do not see a change in adoption rates, they predict an increase in abandonment. Jenny Womack, an outside counsel for Adoption Choices of Texas, believes there will be a dramatic increase in Child Protective Service cases. Without the right to abortion, women will have unwanted pregnancies and raise children they never intended to have. This will result in more cases of neglect and abandonment.
Adoption Choices is Here to Support Your Needs
If you are considering adoption in Austin, Dallas, Houston, or San Antonio, Adoption Choices of Texas is here to help. Our adoption centers provide you with information about the adoption process in Texas. We can inform you about the different types of adoption to determine which is best for you. While we focus on adoption, we can present you with all your options for unexpected pregnancies.
If you need adoption help, we have resources like counseling, support groups, and financial aid. Adoption Choices of Texas is here for your best interest and your baby’s best interest. We are here to support you through your entire adoption journey.
- “Adoption, not abortion? How the Dobbs decision is affecting adoption in the U.S.” https://www.nbcnews.com/health/parenting/adoption-abortion-dobbs-decision-impact-rcna92104
- “Adoption After Roe v. Wade in New York” https://www.adoptionchoicesofnewyork.org/adoption-after-roe-v-wade-in-new-york/
- “Abortion v. Adoption: The Texas Showdown New Laws” https://marketingchoices.com/2023/01/12/abortion-v-adoption/