An unexpected pregnancy may be one of life’s hardest experiences. None of the choices you make will be easy. But there are also no wrong choices, only ones that are right for you and your child. At Adoptions From The Heart, our mission is to help expecting parents make informed choices through in-person counseling services. This article is meant to highlight the benefits of personalized guidance, by taking you through the adoption process at Adoptions From The Heart.
1. Is Adoption Right For You?
We understand that every woman’s situation is different, and only you can decide what choices are right for you and your baby. Hundreds of pregnant women turn to the adoption professionals at Adoptions From The Heart each year to receive counseling and support helping them come closer to answering the often-difficult questions that arise in their particular situations. Primary among these questions is whether or not adoption is the right choice for you and your baby. We’ve developed several resources to help you start thinking about this question. For more information, please follow the links below.
- I’m Pregnant, What Are My Options?
- Parenting A Child: Questions For Pregnant Women
- How Do You Know When You’re Ready To Parent?
But no online checklist, no article, can answer these questions for you. Still have questions about your unplanned pregnancy, and what to do next? Not sure if adoption is the right choice for you, but want to learn more about it without any pressure? Adoptions From The Heart offers free, 24-hour a day, in-person counseling to pregnant women, whether or not you eventually decide to make an adoption plan.
Working with an out-of-state agency or adoption matching service won’t provide you with personalized support. How can they really hope to understand your situation, your needs, and those of your child if they haven’t met you in person? Adoptions From The Heart has a personal commitment to every pregnant woman we counsel. Moreover, Adoptions From The Heart has offices and staff in 6 states: Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Virginia, Connecticut, and New York. A compassionate adoption professional at an Adoptions From The Heart office is here for you.
2. Creating An Adoption Plan
At Adoptions From The Heart, we believe that you, as the child’s mother, should steer the adoption process. Our main concern is to support you in this complicated, often emotionally-trying time. An out-of-state service isn’t able to accompany you to doctor appointments and offer supportive counseling every step of the way. But that’s an adoption agency’s job, and we take it very seriously.
Creating an adoption plan involves specifying every aspect of your child’s adoption. It’s where your desires and feelings are built into the adoption process. You choose the family for your baby, you decide how much contact you want with the family before and after your child’s birth, how your hospital stay will go, and how many times a year you would like to visit your child. These are big decisions, and supporting you as you make the choices that are right for you is our first priority at Adoptions From The Heart.
If you haven’t yet told your family about your pregnancy, we can be there for you when you do. This is an important time to have the support of your family and friends; we can help you navigate telling them, as well as answer any questions they may have about the adoption process.
3. Selecting An Adoptive Family For Your Child (If You Choose)
Adoptions From The Heart believes that you should be able to choose the right adoptive family for your baby. Based on information you provide and data we have gathered from our waiting prospective adoptive parents, we will present you will all the families that are open to your specific situation. We will show you each and every family that fits your situation so you are able to decide what is best for you and your baby.
We have personally pre-screened every adoptive family that we represent. This screening process includes a home study and extensive background checks. To view our families, please visit our Meet Our Families page. Keep in mind that we have additional waiting families who are not currently on our website. We encourage you to contact us at 1-800-355-5500 to speak with a local social worker who can speak with you more about the process and show you a full list of available families.
4. Meeting Adoptive Families (If You Choose Open Adoption)
Adoptions From The Heart is proud to have been one of the first adoption agencies on the East Coast to offer “open” adoptions. An “open” adoption is one in which birth parents and adoptive parents meet, exchange information, and continue to communicate after placement. Open adoptions have been proven to be extremely beneficial to all those involved in the adoption process, including the child. Open adoption makes it possible for you to receive updates and even have visits with your child as they grow. It allows your child to know you and to be able to better understand why you choose to make an adoption plan.
If you would like to meet the family you choose before the baby is born, our counselors will accompany you and help you feel comfortable as well as help get answers to any questions you might have about the family. In addition, we can mediate phone calls, email communication, and interactions at the hospital. The level of contact you have with an adoptive family is entirely your choice. They are your decisions to make, on your own time. If any of the options listed above make you uncomfortable, for any reason, they won’t happen. We are here to help you.
But choosing Adoptions From The Heart doesn’t mean you have to choose open adoption. We will provide you with the same level of compassionate support whatever choice you ultimately make, open, semi-open, or closed (traditional) adoption.
5. Creating A Hospital Plan
Making a plan for your stay in the hospital is very similar to making an adoption plan, because every choice is yours to make. Who do you want in the delivery room? How much time would you like to spend with your baby? What are the prospective adoptive parents’ role during the delivery? Counselors from Adoptions From The Heart will make sure that the hospital and family understands the choices that you have made for you and your baby. Our counselors will be there for you during your hospital stay and will continue to offer support and counseling if you choose.
6. Navigating The Legal Process
Our adoption professionals will guide you through the legal process that adoption entails. Our counselors will meet with you and walk you through each and every step of the paperwork necessary to complete your adoption plan.
7. Support After Your Child’s Adoption
If you’ve chosen an open adoption, Adoptions From The Heart will facilitate the exchange of letters, photos, or email updates between you and your child’s adoptive family. We will help you schedule possible visits with your child, and our on-going personal counseling can help you sort out any of the many feelings you may have after your child’s adoption.
Many of our offices also have birthparent support groups or mentoring programs where you can connect with others who have made adoption plans as well. Adoptions From The Heart understands that the adoption journey doesn’t end with placement. We are here for you well after placement.
Adoptions From The Heart has been trusted by women facing unplanned pregnancies for 30 years. Our counselors understand that each woman has unique needs and our in-person service shows you that we are here for you. No matter where you are in your pregnancy, if you would like to find out more about adoption, contact us today to speak with a women who can understand what you are going through. You can call us at 1-800-355-5500 or visit our website at www.afth.org for more information.