The Adoption Process
1. I am pregnant. Now what?
While the positive result on that pregnancy test has you asking yourself why or how this could happen, a growing life is forming and developing daily that will force some tough decisions to be made, affecting the lives of many people in the process.
The first step is to seek medical care for your own health. A doctor will determine the due date.
Also, it is very important to stop any alcohol or drug use as the effects can easily cross through the placenta and have negative, life-long consequences for a developing child.
2. Next Steps
Once you have secured medical care, begin preparing for the next step. You may ask yourself:
• Am I ready for the changes this pregnancy will bring to my current plans for the weekend? The summer? The next 18 years?
• What were my goals for my life before I found out I was pregnant? What are they now?
• How can I plan to support myself and a child? How much do diapers cost? Baby formula? Other baby items?
• Can I handle a child and a job and/or school at the same time?
• What is the father’s role going to be? Can I depend on him to provide me with financial and emotional support and care for the baby?
• What are my parents and friends going to say?
• How can I finish school? Go to college? Start my career?
• Would I be able to physically and emotionally provide the stability, love, and support my child needs and deserves?
3. Choosing Adoption
Adoption is chosen for many reasons. Some want their child to have a more stable or financially secure home; others don’t want school or career opportunities to be lost by raising a child; and many don’t feel ready for the lifelong commitment of parenting. Whatever your reason for thinking about adoption, learning about all your options will help you make the best choice for you and your child.
4. Making your adoption plan.
Adoption Choices can help you understand your options and make a plan that meets your needs. You’ll want to consider whether you’re prepared to parent a child for the next 18 years, and what resources you’ll have if you choose to raise your child. Our professional staff will help you think through your feelings, concerns, and questions without any pressure.
5. Involving the father of the baby
The baby’s father has parental rights, but what happens with those rights depends on your situation. Whether you are married, and how active the birth father is in your life will affect how his parental rights are handled before the adoption is final. Our staff can take care of all the necessary paperwork.
6. Choosing the adoptive family.
You decide how active you want to be in choosing and getting to know an adoptive family. Some of the women we help want to have a lot of contact, even inviting adoptive families to doctor visits. Some of the women we help don’t want contact and have the agency choose a loving family that matches their wishes.
7. Staying safe and healthy
During your pregnancy, it is very important that you are able to stay safe and healthy – for your own wellbeing and for the wellbeing of your baby. We will make sure that you are not worried about stable housing, healthy groceries, reliable transportation, and uninterrupted phone service. Your adoption counselor will also make sure that you are receiving the counseling and guidance you need to have a positive and healthy adoption experience.
8. Signing adoption paperwork
In Texas, you may sign the adoption papers 48 hours after giving birth. Your decision only becomes final when you sign that paperwork. It’s a good idea to make important decisions as early in your pregnancy as possible, so you’re not in a hurry to choose a family and make your adoption plan.
9. Contact after adoption
You will have the ongoing support of your adoption counselor as long as you need after the adoption, and your financial support will continue for about a month after birth. We will arrange the contact that you want to have with the adoptive family, if you want any, and we will always be available whenever you need our help.