Understanding the Adoption Process
After you’ve made the decision to place your baby for adoption, it can be difficult to know where to start. In the beginning, there are often more questions than answers. How will you find a family that you can trust with your child’s future? After you find the right adoptive parents, do you want to stay in touch with them as your child grows up? The caring and knowledgeable staff at Advocates for Children and Families seeks to provide you with clarify in a time of uncertainty. We’ll walk you through every step of the adoption process – helping you make the best decisions possible for both you and your baby. Read on for a better understanding of how the adoption process works, and how ACF can simplify it.
Putting a Plan in Place
Every birth mom – and her circumstances – is unique. That’s why we work with you individually to determine what the best plan will be for you and your child. We can help you determine how much – if any – communication you desire to have with your child and his or her adoptive family after the adoption process is complete. ACF can also help you find the assistance and support you need – financially for pregnancy-related expenses, as well as emotionally through ongoing counseling.
Choosing an Adoptive Family
One of the most important decisions you will make as a birth mom is deciding who will raise your little one. As a licensed adoption agency, ACF can help you find a loving adoptive family that will care for your child as their own. We have a long list of prospective adoptive parents, who are all screened, pre-approved and anxiously waiting to start – or grow – their family.
So, no matter which adoptive parents you choose, you can rest-assured that you made the right decision for your child’s future.
When I Go Into Labor
As soon as you let us know that you are in labor, an ACF counselor will be available to give you all the support you may need. We can even help arrange transportation for you to and from the hospital. If you have an open adoption, you may choose to call the adoptive family directly, and arrange for them to visit with you and the baby while you are in the hospital.
At the Hospital
While you are in the hospital, you may see, feed and hold the baby. This is a personal decision and ACF adoption counselors will help sort out your thoughts on this as you make your adoption plan. You may also name your baby at the hospital. However, once the adoption process is complete, it is up to the adoptive parents whether or not they wish to give the baby a new name. If you opted for an open adoption, you can always share the name you gave the baby with the adoptive parents, so that they may share it with the child in the future.
After Giving Birth
You do not make the final decision about placing your child for adoption until after the birth. Under Florida law, you may sign a final legal consent for adoption any time after 48 hours following the birth of your baby, or sooner if you were medically discharged.
Until you sign the adoption consent forms, you have the right to change your mind about placing your baby for adoption. If you decide to parent your child, ACF will help you find community resources that may be available to you.
Your Child's Homecoming
If you choose to still sign the legal consent for adoption and upon the baby’s discharge from the hospital, the baby will immediately go home with the adoptive parents. As ACF is a private adoption agency, your child will not have to go through the foster care system. In addition, you will not be required to appear in court.
Coping with Adoption
You are not alone. Many women have faced this difficult decision of what is best for them and their children. ACF’s caring counselors will help you throughout the pregnancy, after the adoption, and at any time in the future. If you decided to place your baby for adoption, we are here to support you throughout the entire process.
If you’ve decided that adoption is right for you and your baby, ACF can help you get the adoption process started. Contact one of our experienced, caring counselors today.