By Leah Sheldon
Who will love my baby as much as I do? Many pregnant women considering adoption find themselves asking this question.
Finding an adoptive family can be a life-changing experience. It can also bring doubts and insecurities to the surface, even if you are sure that adoption is the best choice for you.
Christina, a birthmother who placed her daughter with an adoptive couple at birth, says that deciding to go forward with an adoption was soul-searching. After she gave birth and the adoption took place, she found comfort in knowing that the adoptive family whom she chose for her daughter would always welcome her into their lives and consider her a part of their family.
In an open adoption, birth parents have many different choices regarding contact before and after the baby is in the adoptive home. Some birth families choose to have very little contact with the adoptive family, while others write letters, text, exchange pictures, and visit each other. Remember, you have many options, and there are many happy and loving families ready and waiting to become parents.
Although it may bring up strong emotions, it is important to consider your choices for future contact before the baby is born so that you find an adoptive family with the same expectations about staying in touch.
When looking for an adoptive family, take some time to think about what is important to you.
Below are some common questions to consider. You may find some questions very meaningful and others not so much.
Are there any talents, parenting styles, or religious traditions I want to pass on to my child?
Do I want the adoptive family to live close to me or farther away?
Would I prefer that the adoptive family already have a child or that my child be the first in their home?
Has the adoptive family gotten ready to adopt by completing all the legal requirements necessary, and have they been approved to adopt by a licensed agency?
How much contact do I envision with the family before the birth and after the baby is placed in the care of the adoptive family?
Choosing a few different families is always a good idea when beginning your search to get various perspectives on personality and parenting styles. Read more stories about how birth parents made their decision here.
Some common questions to ask adoptive families as you get to know each other are:
How did you decide on adoption as a way to grow your family?
How long have you been together, and when did you know you wanted to be parents?
If you are already parenting, what is your favorite part and what are the challenges?
How do you resolve conflicts when you disagree?
What are your dreams for your child?
How does your family feel about your plans to adopt?
Can you tell me about your community and your home?
What are your hobbies and interests?
At Adoption Connection, we have found that many birthmothers know they have found the right adoptive family when “it just feels right.” They somehow know that their adoptive family was meant to raise their baby.
Having an adoption counselor to talk to can be a great help as you look to find the right adoptive family.
It is normal for you and the adoptive family to feel nervous when you first connect. Each will be excited and curious to learn about each other, and forming such a special relationship can also bring anxiety and insecurities to the surface. Having an adoption professional available to soothe nerves and give advice can make all the difference in achieving the connection that you want.
Once you and the adoptive family have decided you would like to plan an adoption together, Adoption Connection will begin helping you plan for the birth of your baby. You will be deciding on what you would like to happen in the hospital during and after the birth, and the adoptive family will be preparing to welcome a new baby into their home.