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What are My Pregnancy Options at 20?

6 Questions to Ask When Considering Adoption in Your 20s

An unplanned pregnancy at 20 years old can leave you unsure of what options are available. If parenting isn’t possible, adoption might be the best option for you and your child. Call us now at 1-800-ADOPTION to get more information.

  • Hopeful adoptive families are waiting for the opportunity to love and care for your child. 

  • Adoption can help keep your career and educational goals on track. 

  • Financial assistance for pregnancy-related living expenses is available. 

  • Create a better future for everyone involved, especially the child, through adoption. 

If you're a woman in your 20s experiencing an unplanned pregnancy, scared and unsure of what to do, it’s OK! The first thing to know is that you aren’t alone. You aren’t the first woman to feel unsure about an unplanned pregnancy, and you won’t be the last. 

The second thing to know is that there are many resources out there dedicated to helping you in various ways. If you’re unsure of how to proceed with your pregnancy, there is an abundance of information to help you get more informed about your options.

If parenting simply isn’t an option for you, adoption can be an amazing way to find your child a loving home, create a better future for you and give an adoptive couple the chance to see their dreams of growing a family come to life. 

At American Adoptions, we have professionals that have their own first-hand adoption experiences. Because of those experiences, we can provide you with the support you need, as we understand where you’re coming from. 

Take it from our founder, Scott Mars, who knows personally what positive impact adoption has. 

“My mom and dad were a couple who weren’t able to become a mom and dad without adoption. Of all the people in this world, my mom and dad deserve to be parents. And without adoption, they would not have been able to share their love, share their life, and give someone the life that I had.    

“Because of adoption, my life was filled with love and opportunity.”  

You can watch Scott’s video to see his entire adoption story.   

We are here to provide you with the information you need for your unplanned pregnancy in your 20s, as well as provide you with services and support for an adoption experience filled with love and hope for everyone involved. 

If you’re ready to start the adoption process with our agency, or if you want more information on adoption, call us today at 1-800-ADOPTION, or visit our online contact forms for prospective birth mothers and prospective adoptive parents. 

6 Common Questions You Might be Asking When Pregnant in Your 20s [Adoption Can be the Answer You’re Looking For] 

As a woman in your 20s experiencing an unplanned pregnancy, your goals and plans for your life may seem up in the air. But you have options, and you are in control of deciding which of those options is best for you.

To decide, many women in a similar situation commonly asking themselves questions such as: 

1. Am I ready to raise this baby at this point in my life?

  • "Am I ready to be a parent?" 

  • “I’m 20. Should I keep my baby?” 

  • “I’m 24. Am I ready to be a mom?”

  • "I’m 29. Is parenting right for me?”

Whatever your age, if the answer to this question is yes, you may not need to consider adoption as an option.

No one should ever try to convince you not to parent if you feel that you are ready to do so, even if you are only in your 20s. This is your decision and your decision alone.

However, if you aren’t sure that you’re ready to be a mother, or if you’re already raising children and aren‘t sure you're ready for another baby, then there are some additional questions you may want to consider. 

2. Am I financially prepared to raise this child? 

In 2013, raising a child until the age of 18 costs an average of $245,340. Given our modern economic trends, that’s a number that will continue to increase as time passes. You don’t have to be rich to be a parent — plenty of amazing parents aren’t wealthy. However, as a woman in your 20s, you may not have had a chance to build up your savings accounts to the point that raising a child is something you feel you can take on financially.

Many individuals in their 20s are still relying on their parents for some form of financial support, or they have just recently become independent from their parents. Parenting may be financially infeasible for women in these situations. For many young women, this is a determining factor when asking, “I’m 20 years old and pregnant; what should I do?” 

Adoption, on the other hand, is completely free to prospective birth mothers like you, and you may even be eligible for financial assistance with pregnancy-related expenses. For more information on how we can help you begin creating an adoption plan, call us for free at 1-800-ADOPTION, or visit us online

3. What kind of support system will I have if I raise this baby? 

They say it takes a village, and this isn’t entirely an exaggeration. What is your relationship with the baby’s father? Will he be around, and is he ready to take on the responsibilities that come with parenthood?

Of course, it’s entirely possible to give your child an amazing life as a single mother, but in that instance, it’s important that you have people in your corner for help.

Are your friends likely to be supportive of your decision to parent, and will they be responsible enough to help should you need a favor or simply someone to talk to? Are your parents or other family members supportive of you having a child at this point in your life?

A strong support network can go a long way when raising a child. 

4. Will raising a child affect my goals for the future? 

Julia, aspiring to graduate college, found herself experiencing an unplanned pregnancy in her 20s. She knew adoption was the right choice for her because she had goals in life that made parenting difficult, if not impossible. 

“I knew I wanted my daughter to have a stable home as well as two parents that could love and nurture her into the young woman that I hope she will become,” she says. “I knew my life did not stop after adoption. It gave me a second chance to pursue my goals and dreams so that I can be a better version of myself and help people along the way. I wanted to show my daughter that I didn’t give up on myself and, more importantly, her.” 

Many women in their 20s are pursuing education or working at the beginning stages of a career, such as completing internships or fellowships. While not impossible, it’s undeniable that reaching these goals will be more difficult while raising a baby. 

5. Do I want to become a mother at this point? 

Not all women want to raise children, and that’s completely OK. Even if you want to raise children at some point, though, it’s also OK to feel that you don’t wish to do so quite yet.

Your 20s are a very formative point in your life, and if you don’t wish to spend those years as a mother, that’s OK to realize. Remember, you don’t have to become a parent until you are ready.  

If you are focused on finishing your education or starting a career that doesn’t leave room for raising a child, adoption can be the perfect answer to not only keeping you on track to reaching your goals, but finding a loving and nurturing home for your child with the perfect adoptive family.  

6. Is abortion an option for me? 

If you are 20, pregnant and don’t want the baby, you can consider abortion as an unplanned pregnancy option.

Some women are strongly against this unplanned pregnancy option, but if this is something you would consider, it’s important to know your state’s laws about the procedure. Naturally, this is an unplanned pregnancy option that has a time limit, while you can always choose between adoption or parenting at any point during or after your pregnancy

How to Begin Your Adoption Journey [Experience the Joy and Hope Adoption Brings] 

Being pregnant in your 20s doesn’t mean you can’t continue to experience this important time in your life. Putting your child up for adoption in your 20s is an incredibly loving sacrifice you are making for the good of your child, yourself and a hopeful adoptive family.  

Some of the benefits of choosing adoption for your child include: 

  • Choosing an open adoption means you get to watch your child grow up with their adoptive family and live the life they deserve. 

  • Adopted children are more likely to participate in extracurricular activities or pursue secondary education, since they are raised in a home that was financially prepared for them. 

  • Adopted kids are raised in a home with parents who were ready for them in every sense, in addition to knowing they have birth parents who loved them enough to put their interests above everything else. 

American Adoptions’ size and national scope means you have a better chance of finding the perfect adoptive family that fits your hopes and dreams for the type of parents you want for your child. 24/7 support, financial assistance for pregnancy-related expenses and caring, supportive and ethical adoption professionals working for you are just a few of our services provided for you during your adoption journey. 

Michelle, a birth parent specialist and a birth parent herself, is ready to answer any questions you have about adoption.      

I am available to answer any questions that arise, particularly from birth moms, as I have been in your shoes and know how you are feeling,” Michelle says. “It was most helpful to me when I had someone to talk to who would just listen to me without making any judgments or conclusions about who I was as a person.”      

You can ask Michelle questions about putting up a child for adoption in your 20s online. You can also call us for free at 1-800-ADOPTION, or get free information with our online contact form for prospective birth mothers considering adoption here. Adoptive families wanting more information on adopting a child can click here to get more information.  

Information available through these links is the sole property of the companies and organizations listed therein. American Adoptions provides this information as a courtesy and is in no way responsible for its content or accuracy.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why is American Adoptions the right adoption agency choice for many birth mothers?

American Adoptions is one of the largest licensed adoption agencies in the United States. Each year, we work with thousands of women who are facing an unplanned pregnancy and offer assistance to these women. Our large, caring staff is able to assist you seven days a week and provide you with one-on-one counseling about your pregnancy and available options.

You should choose an adoption agency where you feel completely comfortable with their services and staff. With American Adoptions, you will work with an Adoption Specialist who is on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The Adoption Specialist will be your advocate and will provide support and guidance as you create an adoption plan that is right for you.

How will the family tell my child about me and the adoption when my child is older?

Each family has their own style of introducing adoption to the child. When you are matched with an adoptive family, you can ask them this question. If you would like your Adoption Specialist to discuss it for you, just let her know. He or she can share your wishes or provide good ideas from other adoptive families.

You will also be able to share what you want your baby to know about you. You can complete a keepsake booklet to share hobbies, stories, photos of you and your family and a letter to your baby. The adoptive family can provide this to your child as he or she grows older. Be as creative as you like! Some birth mothers have even knitted a special blanket as a gift to their baby or given a similar symbol of their love.

The father of your baby can fill out the birth father's keepsake booklet or write a letter too. You may have other family members who would also like to share photos or a letter to the baby. This is your opportunity to pass on your and your family's love and to share your personality, history and reasons for choosing adoption. The adoptive family will treasure whatever information you provide and will share it with the baby at an appropriate age. In most adoptive homes, the word adoption is in the child's vocabulary early on, and adoption is celebrated in their lives.

Additional Resources

Teen Pregnancy - Information for Young Women

While not every woman who chooses adoption is a young mother, many are. Through adoption, many young women have found an ability to give their babies the best life possible, while finding the opportunity to realize their own dreams, as well. Call American Adoptions today at 1-800-ADOPTION.

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Adoption Glossary

Do adoption terms and phrases leave you feeling confused? Learn the meaning to key adoption words and phrases with our comprehensive adoption glossary.

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